Nick’s Oscar Picks

I have a bone to pick with the Academy. Though they have finally embraced the future by allowing Internet voting for the first time, they still somehow have managed to announce the Oscar nominations prior to the Golden Globe ceremony and—most jarringly—before Zero Dark Thirty is released in more than just two cities. (Hardly a bastion of cineasts, Washington, D.C. still should not have to wait longer than Los Angeles and New York to see this über-important film.) Here’s hoping they make it up to me by nominating a Bond film for Best Picture. But more on that later. . . .

First: an unlikely benefit of marriage. As husband to a wondrous wife, I’m not naïve to the many many perks of wedded bliss. One unintended one, however, has caught me a bit by surprise: I now see far fewer less-than-good movies than I did before. Unfortunately, I still miss out—or am delayed in viewing—some excellent ones too, but overall I think this a substantial turn for the better. So if you are a regular reader of these predictions, each year since March 2010 when I started to date my future wife, my five worst movies of the year get better and better. So it was this year with the best—worst—movie of 2012. After last summer’s stupendous Midnight in Paris, I had high hopes for To Rome with Love, Woody Allen’s European follow-up. And boy it was disappointing. It didn’t help, either, that my wife and I saw it on my birthday, switching from Magic Mike, a far superior film, at the very last minute.

I’ve discussed above my having not seen Zero Dark Thirty due to forces outside of my control. I alone am to blame for not yet seeing three films—Amour, Django Unchained, and The Impossible—that most likely would have ended up among my Top 11 movies of 2012. Once this (and other lesser-seen fare like The Master and Arbitrage) are viewed, I will update the list (as needed) on Twitter and in future blog posts. An inconvenient truth: the Academy’s deadline necessarily informs my prognostication timeline and some movies—which I’ll surely see before the Oscars air on February 24—suffer for it. That said, after I see Zero on Friday I am nearly positive it will be either first or second on my list.

Now entering their second decade (!), Nick’s Oscar picks were made by myself alone, sans the aid of any Internet trolling or cheat sheets. Please read on to find my annual—and uncannily accurate—Academy Award predictions. Enjoy!

The Worst Movies of the Year

1. To Rome with Love
2. Wanderlust
3. Hyde Park on Hudson
4. The Road
5. Rock of Ages

The Best Movies of the Year

11. Les Misérables
10. Magic Mike
9. The Dark Knight Rises
8. Life of Pi
7. Perks of Being a Wallflower
6. The Avengers
5. Looper
4. Argo
3. Silver Linings Playbook
2. Skyfall
1. Lincoln

Best Movie That Made the Most Amount of Money: Skyfall ($296,804,366 domestically in 2012)
Best Movie That Made the Least Amount of Money: Your Sister’s Sister ($1,636,190),
Worst Movie That Made the Most Amount of Money: Rock of Ages ($38,518,613)
Worst Movie That Made the Least Amount of Money: To Rome with Love ($16,685,867)

Last year I created some new categories, in which I offered up some bold predictions. It would only be fair, then, if I followed those up with a one year appraisal of my prognostications:

Though I still think this a sage call, Shailene Woodley—my (first) Next ‘It’ Actress—had a limited 2012 filmography that was a bit disappointing. In 2013, though, she is slated to appear in three films—The Spectacular Now, White Bird in a Blizzard, and A Thousand Words or Less—and will inherit Kirsten Dunst’s role of Mary Jane Watson in the next Spiderman movie.

Speaking of the webbed wonder: my Next ‘It’ Director Marc Webb—who also happens to be a graduate of Madison West, my alma mater—certainly acquitted himself well in his excellent reboot of the Spiderman franchise. And he will return to direct Woodley et al in the 2014 sequel.

As for my Next ‘It’ Actor Joel Edgerton? Nailed it! Next year he is playing the role of Tom Buchanan in Baz Luhrmann’s 3D version of The Great Gatsby and he currently takes a prominent place among a terrific cast in a little movie called Zero Dark Thirty.

And now this year’s selections:

Next ‘It’ Actress: Samantha Barks
Next ‘It’ Actor: Dane DeHaan
Next ‘It’ Director: Rian Johnson

And three new categories:

Best Movie I Haven’t Seen (Yet): Zero Dark Thirty
Worst Movie I Will Never See: 2016 Obama’s America

Movie Quote of the Year: ‘Argo fuck yourself.’

An apéritif:

Animated: Wreck-It Ralph
Documentary: Bully
Foreign: Amour (Austria)
Score: Lincoln (John Williams)
Screenplay (original): Zero Dark Thirty (Mark Boal)
Screenplay (adapted): Lincoln (Tony Kushner)

And now, without further ado, the nominees are . . . :

Supporting Actress:

Amy Adams, The Master
Anne Hathaway, Les Misérables
Helen Hunt, The Sessions
Maggie Smith, Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Sally Field, Lincoln

Sleeper: Jacki Weaver, Silver Linings Playbook
Dark Horse: Ann Dowd, Compliance

Supporting Actor:

Alan Arkin, Argo
Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Philip Seymour Hoffman, The Master
Robert DeNiro, Silver Linings Playbook
Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln

Sleeper: Javier Bardem, Skyfall
Dark Horse: Leonardo DiCaprio, Django Unchained

Lead Actress:

Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Marion Cotillard, Rust and Bone
Naomi Watts, The Impossible
Quvenzhane Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild

Sleeper: Emmanuelle Riva, Amour
Dark Horse: Rachel Weisz, The Deep Blue Sea

Lead Actor:

Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Denzel Washington, Flight
Hugh Jackman, Les Misérables
John Hawkes, The Sessions

Sleeper: Joaquin Phoenix, The Master
Dark Horse: Richard Gere, Arbitrage


Ang Lee, Life of Pi
Ben Affleck, Argo
Kathryn Bigelow, Zero Dark Thirty
Steven Spielberg, Lincoln
Tom Hooper, Les Misérables

Sleeper: David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook
Dark Horse: Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained

Best Picture:

Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Misérables
Life of Pi
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

And the Oscar goes to . . .

Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway
Supporting Actor: Tommy Lee Jones
Lead Actress: Jessica Chastain
Lead Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis
Director: Steven Spielberg
Film: Lincoln

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6 Responses to Nick’s Oscar Picks

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  6. Amy says:

    I have lots of comments. Too many for the web. Enjoy the predictions as always. Need to catch up on my viewing before the big day! Need to see what The Master is all about. But can’t understand why you gave Les Mis so much credit. Did you hear Russell Crow???
    More to discuss later:)

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