Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Wednesday Oscar Watch with Abe

Welcome to the first 2014 edition of this returning feature here at Movies with Abe, Wednesday Oscar Watch with Abe. It’s a bit early to be able to accurately predict the eventual Oscar nominees, but around this time, plenty of likely contenders are being released. I’ll be looking every Wednesday at the awards chances for all of the films released the previous week. Additionally, to make up for lost time, I’ll also be taking a look at the films released earlier in the year, two months at a time. Chime in with your thoughts on the Oscar chances for these films in the comments section. Also, if I’ve missed any films from the previous months, please say so!

Films released October 3rd-10th, 2014

Gone Girl
This box office hit has proven divisive, but I think that it could still manage a Best Picture mention. Director David Fincher missed out on the top two races last time, for “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” but scored with his two previous films in both categories, so he’s a serious contender to return for Best Director and Best Picture. The film’s screenplay seems like a solid bet, and a few technical categories like Best Film Editing aren’t out of the question either. This won’t be Ben Affleck’s shot to earn his first acting nomination, but I think Rosamund Pike has a strong chance as a potential Best Actress nominee.

This film was a hit at Sundance and the New York Film Festival and is going to earn more buzz as more people see it. Miles Teller was a longshot contender last year for “The Spectacular Now,” and he has a much better shot now for his involved performance. The film seems like a very possible Best Picture nominee, and Best Director and Best Original Screenplay (though it’s based on a short film) could follow suit. Its best chance, however, is for the first career nomination for supporting actor J.K. Simmons, who delivers a fierce and fearsome turn as a tyrannical music instructor.

Films released January and February 2014

Gloria (January 17)
Chile’s official submission for Best Foreign Film from last year didn’t pan out, and though I’m not exactly sure, I think that means the film is in contention in all other categories this year. That may have worked years ago for “Y Tu Mama Tambien” and “City of God” a decade ago, but I think that, despite her plethora of international mentions, star Paulina Garcia will manage only to siphon a few votes and not place high enough on enough ballots.

The Lego Movie (February 7)
This crowdpleaser is a lock in two categories – Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song, for the catchy and ridiculous “Everything is Awesome.” It could also factor into the Best Sound or Best Sound Editing race or elsewhere if it ends up being the definitive animated film of the year, which I’m not quite sure it will be by the end of 2014.

The Monuments Men (February 7)
Had this film been released in December as originally planned, it would have been at the forefront of Oscar voters’ minds when they were filling out their ballots. Instead, it came at a highly unmemorable time and didn’t receive the greatest mentions. George Clooney is still a formidable force, but I think this film will ultimately get nothing, but watch out for it to place in the Best Art Direction or Best Costume Design categories.

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