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Friday, February 19, 2016

Oscar Predictions -2016-Acting Awards

  • Best Actor
Most Likely Winner: Leonardo DiCaprio as Hugh Glass in Revenant. Might actually be the year for DiCaprio to get his Oscar. They might have to change the memes about always missing out (or bring out lots more if he does). A prominent role where DiCaprio gets to play a man going through pain and torture and fuelled by vengeance. Completely different from his more heralded roles as rich playboys in The Aviator and Wolf of Wall Street. Details of the harrowing filming conditions and the difficulty in portraying the part will surely also play in Dicaprio's favour as well. But the strength of the performance of a frenzied man is what would win him the Oscar.

 Backup Pick:  Eddie Redmayne as Lili Elbe/Einar Wegenar in The Danish Girl. It's a cliche that an actress must make herself look unattractive to have a better chance at an Oscar (Charlize Theron in Monster, Nicole Kidman in The Hours) . I'm not sure how the case of Eddie Redmayne looking stunning as Lili Elbe works in line with stereotypes but it works brilliantly in terms of quality acting. LGBT biopic is sure to be popular with the Academy as always and in with the recent increase in visibility of coverage of transgender topics, it's likely to be a strong second choice for telling the story of the first recipient of sex reassignment surgery.

Most Deserving (My Pick) : Eddie Redmayne as Lili Elbe/Einar Wegenar in The Danish Girl. Not as strong a performance as Steven Hawking for which he won the Oscar last year but another great performance with massive physical transformations in this as well. Last year, however, it was the physical that would win him the award. This time, if he wins, it's for the masterful display of confusion, conflict and acceptable in showing Einar grappling with the realization that Lili isn't an alternate role but his main identity.

  • Best Actress
Most Likely Winner: Brie Larson as Joy "Ma" Newson in Room. At odds of 1/20, Larson is almost certain to pick up the Oscar. Taking into account the nature of the storyline, Larson obviously has to play a huge range of emotions and it's something she does incredibly well (no surprise considering her career thus far). The transition of a person's harrowed existence transferring into an exploration of a world beyond her scope and her comprehension of that role is exceedingly difficult to conceptualize. To portray it is an exceptional accomplishment.

Backup Pick: Saoirse Ronan as Ellis Lacey in Brooklyn. This film really resonated with me due to it's portrayal of migration and homesickness. These feelings are perfectly encapsulated by Ronan who gives the full range of feelings from the initial hope, the self-doubt of being away from everyone and the uplift that comes from falling in love.

Most Deserving (My Pick) : Saoirse Ronan as Ellis Lacey in Brooklyn. Love is a huge theme in this film. It's not particularly easy to manage to show relationships without seeming cliche or overdone. But it's done flawlessly here. Also perfectly done is the guilt of keeping secrets and the strength of the character which is understated throughout until the climax of the film where it is expressed.

  • Best Supporting Actor
Most Likely Winner: Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa in Creed. Though Slyvester Stallone isn't who you'd expect to get a Oscar nomination for "overdue" recognition, he managed it with this role. And he'll likely pick up the win too. Very strong performance in a role made for him (made by himself, of course) showing the elderly Balboa pass on the knowledge of the first six films.

Backup Pick: Mark Rylance as Rudolf Abel in Bridge of Spies. Very much a supporting role, Rylance has a strong case to pick up the Oscar. His role is subtle in playing a spy (which goes perfectly with how a spy should be, of course) and the character is filled with mannerisms which are unique and memorable (especially his attitude). The entire film is based on having the "traitor to the national security" seem real and sympathetic, and Rylance manages this with ease.

Most Deserving (My Pick) : Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa in Creed. I love the Rocky series and would love to see it rewarded on the biggest stage. Despite the overdone cliches like the training montages and the boxer's attitude being the biggest problem, the film is far greater than any small issues. I want the award to go to Stallone more for the whole film than for the series, since I think an award being won for playing Rocky represents the whole series being worthy.

  • Best Supporting Actress
Most Likely Winner:Alicia Vikander as Gerda Wegener in The Danish Girl. Definitely more of a joint lead than a supporting role in my opinion. The character finds a whole host of emotions as her husband tries to work out his identity. Starting with mischievousness at the game they have both discovered and going into confusion and guilt, followed by acceptance and support; it could be said the role of Wegener was probably written as a backup piece to Redmayne's lead but the way Vikander plays it puts it strong enough to be lead.

Backup Pick:Rooney Mara as Therese Belivet in Carol . Played a confused young woman attempting to understand her feelings of infatuation and what they mean about her sexuality. Quite a heartfelt performance with a strong showing of strength of character in a role that's the complete opposite of the other fictional character in the field , Jennifer Jason Leigh as Daisy Domergue.

Most Deserving (My Pick) : Jennifer Jason Leigh as Daisy Domergue in The Hateful Eight. I'm a huge fan of Westerns and Tarantino, so this was always going to be a favourite. Daisy Domergue is not a likeable character and though far from the polished Hans Landa which Christoph Waltz won his Oscar for, the character does manage to be manipulative, funny and wholly enthralling. And there's a fair bit of physical acting to be done as well, with all the punishment the character takes.

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