Ontopic Reviews

2014 Academy Awards: Who Won and Who I Would Have Picked

Note: my picks are from the list of nominees. The only snub I was really mad about was Jeremy Renner not getting a nomination for Best Supporting Actor in American Hustle.

Best Picture

Winner: 12 Years a Slave

My Pick: 12 Years a Slave

Best Director

Winner: Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón)

My Pick: Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave)

Best Actor in a Leading Role

Winner: Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club)

My Pick: Chiwetel Ejifor (12 Years a Slave)

Best Actress in a Leading Role

Winner: Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)

My Pick: Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

Winner: Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)

My Pick: Michael Fassbender (12 Years a Slave)

Best Actress in a Supporting Role

Winner: Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave)                          

My Pick: Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave)

Best Animated Feature

Winner: Frozen (Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee, Peter Del Vecho)

My Pick: The Wind Rises (Hayao Miyazaki and Toshio Suzuki)

Best Cinematography

Winner: Gravity (Emmanuel Lubezki)

My Pick: Nebraska (Phedon Papamichael)

Best Costume Design

Winner: The Great Gatsby (Catherine Martin)

My Pick: American Hustle (Michael Wilkinson)

Best Documentary Feature

Winner: 20 Feet from Stardom (Morgan Neville, Gil Friesen, Caitrin Rogers)

My Pick: The Act of Killing (Joshua Oppenheimer and Signe Byrge Sørensen)

Best Film Editing

Winner: Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón, Mark Sanger)

My Pick: Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón, Mark Sanger)

Best Foreign Language Film

Winner: The Great Beauty (Italy)

My Pick: The Great Beauty (Italy)

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

Winner: Dallas Buyers Club (Adruitha Lee, Robin Mathews)

My Pick: Dallas Buyers Club (Adruitha Lee, Robin Mathews)

Best Original Score

Winner: Gravity (Steven Price)

My Pick: Her (William Butler and Owen Pallett)

Best Adapted Screenplay

Winner: 12 Years a Slave (John Ridley)

My Pick: 12 Years a Slave (John Ridley)

Best Original Screenplay

Winner: Her (Spike Jonze)

My Pick: Her (Spike Jonze)

 

The Tragic Death of Phillip Seymour Hoffman

I’ve always wondered why people feel a sense of loss when a celebrity dies. After all, what really separates a celebrity from of homeless man down the street? Neither of them know you, and you don’t really know them.

Today I realised that it can be, and is appropriate to feel a sense of less when a celebrity dies, as I did upon hearing the news of Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s death.

Never has news like this saddened me this much. A brilliant actor.

Great Filmmakers You Can’t Stand

As you can probably tell from looking at the title, I’m not talking about the Michael Bay’s or Uwe Boll’s of this world. Rather, I’m referring to the established, even canonised directors (the Spielberg’s, the Welles’, the Fellini’s, etc.). Which great filmmaker(s) do you really have a problem with? The main one I can think of:

            Quentin Tarantino

As much as I hate Vincent Gallo (another awful filmmaker), he perfectly summed up what Tarantino is to me: a collage artist. I like “Reservoir Dogs” and I love “Pulp Fiction,” but everything after has felt either unoriginal (“Kill Bill” especially) or dishonest (“Inglorious Basterds” and “Django Unchained). I think his films are very nice to look at — though much of this is more to do with his cinematographers than Tarantino himself — and he has provided some very memorable moments — who could forget the first seen of “Inglourious Basterds”? — but aside from that I’ve never gotten much out of his films.

Who are yours?

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