Will Win: Birdman
Could Win: Boyhood
Should Win: Whiplash
Statistically speaking, this is a tight, tight race between Boyhood and Birdman with a little possibility of The Grand Budapest Hotel sprinkled in. The cinematic community loves to praise Boyhood, and with good reason, but it’s hard to separate the film from the way it was made. After I watched Boyhood I found myself asking “Would I have liked this as much if I had not known it was filmed over 12 years?” and I’m not sure I can answer that. If the answer to that question is no, is my evaluation of the film as a final product fair? These are questions that Academy voters have had to grapple with as well. That flicker of doubt aside, I thought Birdman was the better film. It was more entertaining and daring in a different way. It’s not without its flaws but definitely makes sense as the Best Picture winner this year. I still stand by my claim that Whiplash was the best movie made in 2014, but that’s just not how the Academy will vote. History has shown that Academy voters love movies about the artistic process and Birdman is all over that.
This is one of the first years since the new ‘up to 10 nominees’ system that I’ve been really, really pleased with every movie nominated. Usually there are 3 that are so clearly not in the same league as the winners that I sometimes never even bothered to see those films, but the spread is pretty even this year. American Sniper, The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Imitation Game, Selma, and the Theory of Everything are all great films but haven’t struck me with the kind of excitement that Birdman, Boyhood, and Whiplash have.
That wraps up all of the predictions! For one final look at other awards ceremonies you can check out last night’s results of the Independent Spirit Awards.
Red Carpet coverage on E! starts today at 12:30pm (even I think that’s excessive) with the show being broadcast on ABC at 7:30pm! (All times are CST). I will be live tweeting the show as well.