Best Supporting Actress: It’s nice to see Laura Dern get nominated (she could’ve been nominated for The Fault in Our Stars just as easily). I have a feeling it’ll be Arquette who wins, but you never know.
The Nominees: Patricia Arquette (Boyhood), Laura Dern (Wild), Keira Knightley (The Imitation Game), Emma Stone (Birdman), Meryl Streep (Into the Woods)
Will Win: Patricia Arquette
Could Win: Keira Knightley
Best Supporting Actor: Robert Duvall got nominated for a mediocre performance in a decent movie? That’s a headscratcher, especially with the other deserving actors. No matter, J.K. Simmons will be thanking the Academy come February.
The Nominees: Robert Duvall (The Judge), Ethan Hawke (Boyhood), Edward Norton (Birdman), Mark Ruffalo (Foxcatcher), J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)
Will Win: J.K. Simmons
Could Win: Edward Norton
Best Leading Actress: It appears as if Julianne Moore will finally get her much deserved Oscar, although I’d like to see Rosamund Pike with the win. She truly gave a career performance that sticks with you long after the credits roll.
Will Win: Julianne Moore
Could Win: Felicity Jones
Best Leading Actor: Carell is not the lead of his film, so I don’t get his nomination in this category over the deserving Channing Tatum. Cooper and Redmayne are good, but neither gave a better performance than David Oyelowo or Jake Gyllenhaal. Eddie Redmayne could easily win, but his performance isn’t unique (fellow nominee Benedict Cumberbatch played the same role better in an old BBC production), so I hope the resurging Michael Keaton will nab this one in a strong and crowded field. This could’ve easily been ten nominees and is the most exciting category of the night.
The Nominees: Steve Carell (Foxcatcher), Bradley Cooper (American Sniper), Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game), Michael Keaton (Birdman), Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything)
Will Win: Michael Keaton
Could Win: Eddie Redmayne
Should’ve Been Nominated: David Oyelowo (Selma), Jake Gyllenhaal (Nightcrawler), Tom Hardy (Locke), Channing Tatum (Foxcatcher), Oscar Isaac (A Most Violent Year)
Best Director: Excluding Ava DuVernay is inexcusable, and Damien Chazelle definitely should have been nominated. There was some great directing this year, but I won’t argue with Linklater winning though. Boyhood is our generation’s masterpiece, and you have to applaud the man who put it together.
The Nominees: Wes Anderson (The Grand Budapest Hotel), Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (Birdman), Richard Linklater (Boyhood), Bennett Miller (Foxcatcher), Morten Tyldum (The Imitation Game)
Will Win: Richard Linklater
Could Win: Alejandro G. Inarritu
Should’ve Been Nominated: Ava DuVernay (Selma), Damien Chazelle (Whiplash), Dan Gilroy (Nightcrawler), David Fincher (Gone Girl), Christopher Nolan (Interstellar), J.C. Chandor (A Most Violent Year)
Best Picture: What’s the point of having ten slots if you’re not going to use them? Also, get American Sniper out of here…it doesn’t belong. 2014 was a fantastic year for cinema and this group just doesn’t reflect that. Kudos to the Whiplash nomination, but this is Boyhood’s trophy to lose, and I think it just might. I won’t be disappointed by a Birdman win. It’s won nearly everything up to this point and Academy voters love movies about Hollywood and themselves. My heart says Boyhood, but my brain is sticking with Birdman.
Will Win: Boyhood
Could Win: The Imitation Game