OSCARS 2016: Who will take home the awards?

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So it’s the Oscars this Sunday, which to most of us probably doesn’t mean much. They don’t exactly have a solid record of always picking the best movies or performances for the year past – but nonetheless it’s still the most coveted prize in the business and fun to try and determine who will walk away with what Oscar. This year in particular, has a large number of really good films competing for the top prizes, so while some categories should be easy to determine the winner, many are still wide open.

Below is a list of all the nominees and who I think should win in the respective category.

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BEST PICTURE

THE BIG SHORT: Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner, Producers

BRIDGE OF SPIES: Steven Spielberg, Marc Platt and Kristie Macosko Krieger, Producers

BROOKLYN: Finola Dwyer and Amanda Posey, Producers

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Doug Mitchell and George Miller, Producers

THE MARTIAN: Simon Kinberg, Ridley Scott, Michael Schaefer and Mark Huffam, Producers

THE REVENANT: Arnon Milchan, Steve Golin, Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Mary Parent and Keith Redmon, Producers

ROOM: Ed Guiney, Producer

SPOTLIGHT: Michael Sugar, Steve Golin, Nicole Rocklin and Blye Pagon Faust, Producers

Who I think will win:

It should be The Revenant. Although it’s a tough category with many strong films, I think The Revenant has a lot going for it and is probably the most well rounded film of the bunch. I would love to see it go to Mad Max, but that probably won’t happen. The Big Short is another potential winner for this and a fantastic movie – but doesn’t seem to have a lot of momentum going for it.

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DIRECTING

THE BIG SHORT: Adam McKay

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: George Miller

THE REVENANT: Alejandro G. Iñárritu

ROOM: Lenny Abrahamson

SPOTLIGHT: Tom McCarthy

Who I think will win:

Inarritu for The Revenant. It was probably the most stylistic of all the movies and was incredibly well shot. Again, the others movies on the list are brilliant, but Inarritu has been winning all the awards so far and I don’t see that changing. Adam McKay and George Miller could’ve won it had it been another year.

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ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

BRYAN CRANSTON in Trumbo

MATT DAMON in The Martian

LEONARDO DICAPRIO in The Revenant

MICHAEL FASSBENDER in Steve Jobs

EDDIE REDMAYNE in The Danish Girl

Who I think will win:

Yes, it’s a 3rd win for The Revenant. I honestly can’t see any of the other performers taking it from Leo this time. Its funny, as he has few lines to say in the film, but he still nails this award with a strong physical performance.

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ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

CATE BLANCHETT in Carol

BRIE LARSON in Room

JENNIFER LAWRENCE in Joy

CHARLOTTE RAMPLING in 45 Years

SAOIRSE RONAN in Brooklyn

Who I think will win:

I recently reviewed Room, and I really think Brie Larson deserves to win this with a solid and emotionally convincing performance. If it goes to anyone else I would be surprised, though Cate Blanchett’s performance in Carol is quite popular.

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ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

CHRISTIAN BALE in The Big Short

TOM HARDY in The Revenant

MARK RUFFALO in Spotlight

MARK RYLANCE in Bridge of Spies

SYLVESTER STALLONE in Creed

Who I think will win:

Stallone. I would go for Idris Elba, but he wasn’t even nominated. Mark Rylance might deserve it more, but Stallone has nostalgia going for him and is the most iconic of all the characters in this list.

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ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

JENNIFER JASON LEIGH in The Hateful Eight

ROONEY MARA in Carol

RACHEL MCADAMS in Spotlight

ALICIA VIKANDER in The Danish Girl

KATE WINSLET in Steve Jobs

Who I think will win:

Alicia Vikander was really the glue that held The Danish Girl together and her performance was really outstanding in this film, so I expect her to go home with the award. The funny thing though is she should actually be vying for Best Actress with Brie Larson for this film as she had more screen time than Eddie Redmayne and is actually a full lead. Its one of those strange things where the studios put her name forward for a minor category because they feel she has more chance of winning (which she does), but its not really fair and something they need to fix to give the awards more credibility. Same applies with Rooney Mara here who actually has more screen time than Cate Blanchett in Carol.INSIDE-OUT-8-1940x1092

ANIMATED FEATURE FILM

ANOMALISA: Charlie Kaufman, Duke Johnson and Rosa Tran

BOY AND THE WORLD: Alê Abreu

INSIDE OUT: Pete Docter and Jonas Rivera

SHAUN THE SHEEP MOVIE: Mark Burton and Richard Starzak

WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE: Hiromasa Yonebayashi and Yoshiaki Nishimura

Who I think will win:

I’ve only seen Inside Out on this list and although it wasn’t perfect, it was a really thought-provoking film and I think should win this comfortably…

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CINEMATOGRAPHY

CAROL: Ed Lachman

THE HATEFUL EIGHT: Robert Richardson

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: John Seale

THE REVENANT: Emmanuel Lubezki

SICARIO: Roger Deakins

Who I think will win:

Emmanuel Lubezki probably had the biggest challenge with the use of natural light in The Revenant, so I do expect him to walk away with a win here and a 4th award for The Revenant. It would also be his 3rd win in a row after doing it for both Gravity and Birdman the past two years, so it could round-out a nice hat-track for him. Spare a thought for Roger Deakins and his work in Sicario who has an even worse record than Leo with 0 wins from 13 nominatinos in this category. Sadly, this is likely still not the year for him to finally get it.

Read  Stephen Chbosky to write and direct Disney's Prince Charming movie

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COSTUME DESIGN

CAROL: Sandy Powell

CINDERELLA: Sandy Powell

THE DANISH GIRL: Paco Delgado

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Jenny Beavan

THE REVENANT: Jacqueline West

Who I think will win:

To be really honest, my gut feel says that The Revenant may win again, but I’m actually hoping that Mad Max walks away with this one, as it had the most original outfits of the lot. Sandy Powell being nominated twice in this category can feel unlucky for missing out in a tough year.

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FILM EDITING

THE BIG SHORT: Hank Corwin

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Margaret Sixel

THE REVENANT: Stephen Mirrione

SPOTLIGHT: Tom McArdle

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS: Maryann Brandon and Mary Jo Markey

Who I think will win:

Mad Max is a certainty for me in this category. The movie’s fast high-octane pace was largely a result of the fantastic editing work by Margaret Sixel and I think she should be rightly awarded for this.

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FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

EMBRACE OF THE SERPENT: Colombia

MUSTANG: France

SON OF SAUL: Hungary

THEEB: Jordan

A WAR: Denmark

Who I think will win:

I haven’t watched any of these films, but Son of Saul has been gaining strong sentiment, so I will go with that. Don’t shout at me if I’m wrong.

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MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Lesley Vanderwalt, Elka Wardega and Damian Martin

THE 100-YEAR-OLD MAN WHO CLIMBED OUT THE WINDOW AND DISAPPEARED: Love Larson and Eva von Bahr

THE REVENANT: Siân Grigg, Duncan Jarman and Robert Pandini

Who I think will win:

The Revenant‘s make-up was quite convincing for me and I think it is in-line for yet another win here.

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PRODUCTION DESIGN

BRIDGE OF SPIES: Production Design: Adam Stockhausen; Set Decoration: Rena DeAngelo and Bernhard Henrich

THE DANISH GIRL: Production Design: Eve Stewart; Set Decoration: Michael Standish

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Production Design: Colin Gibson; Set Decoration: Lisa Thompson

THE MARTIAN: Production Design: Arthur Max; Set Decoration: Celia Bobak

THE REVENANT: Production Design: Jack Fisk; Set Decoration: Hamish Purdy

Who I think will win:

Mad Max should really take this one. You could argue for The Revenant again or perhaps The Danish Girl, but Mad Max has the most iconic and inventive look and feel of the lot and I’m hoping the voters see that.

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What is the difference between sound editing and sound mixing?

I have heard this question before, so for the next two categories I am going to help you understand what the difference between sound editing and sound mixing are, because they do often seem like the same thing to most of us with untrained ears. Editing is the creation of new sounds – more like a composer and mixing is the way the different sound effects are mixed together in the film, more like a conductor. Most of us probably don’t pick up on these things, but they’re actually quite advanced technical effects in their own right.

SOUND EDITING

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Mark Mangini and David White

THE MARTIAN: Oliver Tarney

THE REVENANT: Martin Hernandez and Lon Bender

SICARIO: Alan Robert Murray

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS: Matthew Wood and David Acord

Who I think will win:

This is a really tough category, which is difficult to determine because its not something you always pick up on when watching a film and you need to be a sound expert to actually pick these things up, but I am going with another Mad Max victory here. If it doesn’t get it – Star Wars could take it. I don’t think The Revenant really stands a chance here as they didn’t have as much sound to create and work with as the other movies.

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SOUND MIXING

BRIDGE OF SPIES: Andy Nelson, Gary Rydstrom and Drew Kunin

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Chris Jenkins, Gregg Rudloff and Ben Osmo

THE MARTIAN: Paul Massey, Mark Taylor and Mac Ruth

THE REVENANT: Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño, Randy Thom and Chris Duesterdiek

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS: Andy Nelson, Christopher Scarabosio and Stuart Wilson

Who I think will win:

As above, I think Mad Max should win here and if not, it could be Star Wars.

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VISUAL EFFECTS

EX MACHINA: Andrew Whitehurst, Paul Norris, Mark Ardington and Sara Bennett

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: Andrew Jackson, Tom Wood, Dan Oliver and Andy Williams

THE MARTIAN: Richard Stammers, Anders Langlands, Chris Lawrence and Steven Warner

THE REVENANT: Rich McBride, Matthew Shumway, Jason Smith and Cameron Waldbauer

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS: Roger Guyett, Patrick Tubach, Neal Scanlan and Chris Corbould

Who I think will win:

This should be The Revenant, for the very reason that the bear attack scene was so incredibly real. However, you could argue that there isn’t enough going on throughout the movie to justify an award here for the film and if that is the case I would then go for Ex Machina or Mad Max. What – not Star Wars or The Martian? The visual effects of those films is great, but we’ve seen it all before and at least the other movies offer something different.

Read  George Miller suing Warner Bros. over Mad Max: Fury Road money

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MUSIC (ORIGINAL SCORE)

BRIDGE OF SPIES: Thomas Newman

CAROL: Carter Burwell

THE HATEFUL EIGHT: Ennio Morricone

SICARIO: Jóhann Jóhannsson

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS: John Williams

Who I think will win:

Ennio Morricone will likely win this award for The Hateful Eight, though I really loved John Williams work in Star Wars. How he can still make use of those common Stars Wars themes and make them completely different and engaging is incredible.

WRITING (ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY)

BRIDGE OF SPIES: Written by Matt Charman and Ethan Coen & Joel Coen

EX MACHINA: Written by Alex Garland

INSIDE OUT: Screenplay by Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve, Josh Cooley; Original story by Pete Docter, Ronnie del Carmen

SPOTLIGHT: Written by Josh Singer & Tom McCarthy

STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON: Screenplay by Jonathan Herman and Andrea Berloff; Story by S. Leigh Savidge & Alan Wenkus and Andrea Berloff

Who I think will win:

I think Inside Out should take this. In my opinion it is the most original script of the lot and the way they broke down a complex topic with such simplicity is incredible. It probably won’t win and Spotlight and Ex Machina are the favourites for this, but I’m really hoping the voting goes with creativity and originality here.

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WRITING (ADAPTED SCREENPLAY)

THE BIG SHORT: Screenplay by Charles Randolph and Adam McKay

BROOKLYN: Screenplay by Nick Hornby

CAROL: Screenplay by Phyllis Nagy

THE MARTIAN: Screenplay by Drew Goddard

ROOM: Screenplay by Emma Donoghue

Who I think will win:

I personally love the writing in Room, but I have a feeling The Big Short will take it, as it has a larger and more complex scope, especially with the wide array of characters it has to work with.

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DOCUMENTARY (SHORT SUBJECT)

BODY TEAM 12: David Darg and Bryn Mooser

CHAU, BEYOND THE LINES: Courtney Marsh and Jerry Franck

CLAUDE LANZMANN: SPECTRES OF THE SHOAH: Adam Benzine

A GIRL IN THE RIVER: THE PRICE OF FORGIVENESS: Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy

LAST DAY OF FREEDOM: Dee Hibbert-Jones and Nomi Talisman

Who I think will win:

No clue. I pick the first one because it has a cool name.

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DOCUMENTARY (FEATURE)

AMY: Asif Kapadia and James Gay-Rees

CARTEL LAND: Matthew Heineman and Tom Yellin

THE LOOK OF SILENCE: Joshua Oppenheimer and Signe Byrge Sørensen

WHAT HAPPENED, MISS SIMONE?: Liz Garbus, Amy Hobby and Justin Wilkes

WINTER ON FIRE: UKRAINE’S FIGHT FOR FREEDOM: Evgeny Afineevsky and Den Tolmor

 Who I think will win:

Alwynne really liked Amy, so I’m going with his opinion here as I haven’t seen any of these.

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SHORT FILM (ANIMATED)

BEAR STORY: Gabriel Osorio and Pato Escala

PROLOGUE: Richard Williams and Imogen Sutton

SANJAY’S SUPER TEAM: Sanjay Patel and Nicole Grindle

WE CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT COSMOS: Konstantin Bronzit

WORLD OF TOMORROW: Don Hertzfeldt

Who I think will win:

I still don’t know why this award even exists and think it should just be joined with the next category, but being pressed, I will go with Sanjay’s Super Team because it looks different and is from Pixar.

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SHORT FILM (LIVE ACTION)

AVE MARIA: Basil Khalil and Eric Dupont

DAY ONE: Henry Hughes

EVERYTHING WILL BE OKAY (ALLES WIRD GUT): Patrick Vollrath

SHOK: Jamie Donoughue

STUTTERER: Benjamin Cleary and Serena Armitage

Who I think will win:

I’ve heard good thinks about Ave Maria here, but it also gets my vote largely because I haven’t heard much about the rest. I guess marketing does count for something.

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MUSIC (ORIGINAL SONG)

FIFTY SHADES OF GREY: “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey; Music and Lyric by The Weekend, Ahmad Balshe, Jason Quenneville and Stephan Moccio

RACING EXTINCTION: “Manta Ray” from Racing Extinction; Music by J. Ralph, Lyric by Anohni

YOUTH: “Simple Song #3” from Youth; Music and Lyric by David Lang

THE HUNTING GROUND: “Til It Happens To You” from The Hunting Ground; Music and Lyric by Diane Warren and Lady Gaga

SPECTRE: “Writing’s On The Wall” from Spectre; Music and Lyric by Jimmy Napes and Sam Smith

Who I think will win:

Quite honestly, this is a horrible list of nominations and I don’t think any of them should win an Oscar. Writing on the Wall seems to be popular choice here though, so I will stick with that opinion for the win.

 

So, if it pans out the way I expect, The Revenant will be the big winner of the evening with Mad Max coming in second – which is not bad as both are stellar movies. Spotlight and Carol are probably the movies that will be unluckiest to not go home with anything, though – which is a pity as they are both great films. The irony, is I won’t even be watching the awards show, as I never do – so will need to tune into this site on Monday morning to see how close I got in the end.

What do you think – do you agree with my predictions or am I way off? Or – are you just wishing that these stupid award shows will just finish already?

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Critical Hit as an organisation.

Last Updated: February 26, 2016

Craig Risi

A man of many talents, but no sense how to use them. I could be discovering the cure for aids or finding ways to achieve world peace, but I’d rather be watching movies and writing here instead.

  • The Sten

    Best actor will be Eddie Redmayne for The Danish Girl

    …Call it a hunch

    • Sandelk

      Interesting hunch. Personally, I think Eddie Redmayne’s performance was not as good as Leo’s, but lets see how it plays out. It would certainly be a surprise.

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