February 24, 2013

Richard Roeper's Academy Awards picks

Here is a full list of the nominees for those who'd like to play at home.

And for those who like to hedge their bets, What Would Nate Silver Predict?

Make your predictions, snark on the fashion, groan through the musical numbers (I don't mean Barbra!) and wonder why they keep hiring Bruce Vilanch to write unfunny jokes for the presenters every damn year.

Here are John Amato's predictions:

I haven't seen every movie up for awards, but I'll throw in my two cents anyway.

I have Argo winning the Oscar for Best Picture. Ben Affleck's movie was simply compelling and funny while crafting the action around a very tough time in our history---the 1979 hostage crisis. Although it wasn't a true depiction of the actual events since the Canadians played a major part in saving the Americans, it still was a terrific movie.

Beasts of the Southern Wild was a magical surprise of a film with a cast of real people (not actors) that shined and a new young rising star (Quvenzhané Wallis) that captures your imagination from the first scene to the last.

Django Unchained was completely overrated. Yes it was fun, but once Christoph Waltz (SPOILER ALERT) was killed, the movie flamed out. And at one point it appeared that Tarantino tried to turn it into a Mel Brooks comedy when KKK members argued about how badly their hoods were made.

Les Misérables had good intentions until Russell Crowe opened his mouth. I couldn't finish it.

Lincoln was good, but not as great as the early reviews claimed it to be. On a side note, the Beltway press is trying to paint this as a movie that shows how Lincoln brought disagreeing parties together to ratify the 13th Amendment because today's Congress is so toxic. But the truth is it passed only because Lincoln was able to buy off as many people as he needed.

Silver Linings Playbook I loved. It was hard to watch during the first third because Bradley Cooper (most excellent) was so manically obsessed with his wife that it was unnerving; then it settled in and rocked until David O. Russell decided to give it a typical Hollywood feel-good ending.

Zero Dark Thirty was well made, but highly overrated. It was a film that covered the historical progression of modern terrorism starting with 9/11---along with the search for Bin Laden until he was found and killed. And yes, the excessive time spent on torture was unnecessary and factually not accurate in its aiding of the discovery of UBL.

Best Director will go to Steven Spielberg.

Best Actor will go to Daniel Day-Lewis. I thought Joaquin Phoenix's performance in The Master has been the most overlooked by the critics though. Bradley Cooper was simply terrific as well. (And he was Sydney's BFF in Alias)

Best Actress will go to Jennifer Lawrence. I've been a fan since I saw her in Winter's Bone and thought she should have won then. When she was introduced in the movie I thought she was too young to play the role of a widowed sex addict, but after a few scenes she flat out blew me away. Her monologue to De Niro disproving his idea that she's a jinx to the Eagles was fantastic and should not be missed.

Best Supporting Actor might be the hardest one to pick. Every one of them was awesome in their roles. Christoph Waltz made Django Unchained watchable. Tommy Lee Jones is always excellent. Philip Seymour Hoffman was tremendous as an L. Ron Hubbard-esque character. Alan Arkin was hysterical in Argo, but my pick is Robert De Niro. I know, I'm going against the grain here. I think I felt this way partially because his character was so similar to the way I root for my sports teams. Yes, don't get to close to me if the NY Giants are in a Super Bowl, but it wasn't just his crazed rituals whenever an Eagles game was on, but the low key way that he made you understand why Bradley is the way he is.

Best Supporting Actress is going to be Anne Hathaway. What a performance.

This is your Academy Awards open thread. Use it.

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