Sunday, February 28th, 2016

10th Annual Academy Awards Contest

Last year, our annual Oscar battle was blowout victory for me. I won 12 categories, Susan won five and we missed on seven. Usually we are much closer. To Susan's credit, she did finish the evening by picking the Best Picture winner. After nine years, here are the current standings:

Bill 5-3-1
Susan 3-5-1

Here is a listing of the annual winner and the corresponding Best Picture winner.

2007: Susan / The Departed
2008: Bill / No Country for Old Men
2009: Tie / Slumdog Millionaire
2010: Susan / The Hurt Locker
2011: Bill / The King's Speech
2012: Susan / The Artist
2013: Bill / Argo
2014: Bill / 12 Years a Slave
2015: Bill / Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

How does our competition work? It's simple really. Last year's winner selects first. We alternate categories and cannot share the same pick. Best Picture is always the final category. Obviously, we have not seen all of the nominated films, so some picks are based solely upon reputation, media hype and our cycling class discussions every other Saturday. I'm embarrassed to say that, out of all the categories, I've only seen six nominated films. What's worse? Five of the six films are in the Short Film (Animated) category. But, I do feel a mild sense of relief since Susan and I both watched every film in that category. Those films are: Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Bear Story, Prologue, Sanjay's Super Team, We Can't Live Without Cosmos and World of Tomorrow.

Being a huge Star Wars fan, I want to see the people behind Star Wars: The Force Awakens hoisting some gold men this evening, but science-fiction films tend to get overlooked. I do feel a sense of guilt by not selecting the seventh installment of the greatest film franchise ever in any categories. For me, the most powerful scene from 2015 was when Rey climbed the rocky island steps to discover Luke Skywalker and returning his original lightsaber to him.

So without further ado, here are our selections:

Best Picture
Mad Max: Fury Road (S)
The Big Short (B)

Best Actor
Matt Damon, The Martian (S)
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant (B)*

Best Actress
Brie Larson, Room (S)*
Cate Blanchett, Carol (B)

Supporting Actor
Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight (S)
Sylvester Stallone, Creed (B)

Supporting Actress
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight (S)
Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl (B)*

Animated Feature
Anomalisa (S)
Inside Out (B)*

The Revenant (S)*
Mad Max: Fury Road (B)

Costume Design
Cinderella (S)
Mad Max: Fury Road (B)*

Adam McKay, The Big Short (S)
Alejandro G. Inarritu, The Revenant (B)*

Documentary (Feature)
What Happened, Miss Simone? (S)
Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight for Freedom (B)

Documentary (Short Subject)
A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness (S)*
Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah (B)

Film Editing
The Big Short (S)
The Revenant (B)

Foreign Language Film
Son of Saul (S)*
A War (B)

Makeup and Hairstyling
Mad Max: Fury Road (S)*
The Revenant (B)

Music (Original Score)
Carol (S)
The Hateful Eight (B)*

Music (Original Song)
Simple Song #3, Youth (S)
Til It Happens to You, The Hunting Ground (B)

Production Design
The Danish Girl (S)
Mad Max: Fury Road (B)*

Short Film (Animated)
Bear Story (S)*
We Can't Live Without Cosmos (B)

Short Film (Live Action)
Everything Will Be Okay (Alles Wird Gut) (S)
Ave Maria (B)

Sound Editing
The Martian (S)
The Revenant (B)

Sound Mixing
The Martian (S)
The Revenant (B)

Visual Effects
Mad Max: Fury Road (S)
The Revenant (B)

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)
Room (S)
The Big Short (B)*

Writing (Original Screenplay)
Straight Outta Compton (S)
Spotlight (B)*

Update (2/29/2016)
I have extended my winning streak to four years. The score this year was:
Bill 9, Susan 6, N/A 9
* Indicates winner

Courtesy: The New Yorker, MoviePilot, Pinterest, The Cantina

Tags:  Movies, Star Wars
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