Awards Season 2014

So it was the Golden Globes this past weekend thus starting the official run of Awards Season – quite possibly my favourite time of year. Although there have already been several film critics’ awards, the Globes marks the start of the heavyweight ceremonies, leading up the King of them all – the Oscars. Most years I’ve paid attention during awards season but last year I got quite involved in the run up and this year I’ve made it my mission to watch many of them, so look out for my reviews of them in the next few months. So here is my rundown of what films to watch out for over the next few months and why.

American Hustle

David O’Russell reunites Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence from last year’s triumph Silver Linings Playbook and Christian Bale and Amy Adams from The Fighter and creates a fantastic ensemble drama with some stellar powerhouse performances which could see each of the four names above being nominated in the respective acting categories. The film performed really well at the Globes last night, with 3 acting wins and the best picture in a comedy/musical. O’Russell will probably get directing nominations and I could see it getting make-up and hair noms for its fantastic 70’s do’s.

12 Years a Slave

The true story of a man who is sold into slavery in America has been gaining momentum since the summer, and going into awards season is the frontrunner for Best Film. Chiwetel Ejiofo is also looking like a strong contender for Best Actor (for keen geeks, recognise him from Serenity?), and director Steve McQueen is looking good for a best director nomination.

Dallas Buyers Club

 

Matthew McConaughey further cements his place in serious acting roles with his turn as an AIDS sufferer in the movie, where he famously dropped a tonne of wait for the role – I’m sure he’ll pop up for acting nominations, but faces stiff competition. We can also expect Jared Leto to be in the running for Best Supporting Actor.

Frozen

This animated movie is certain for a nod for Best Original Song and Best Animated movie – it’s a magical movie and beautifully made.

 

Blue is the Warmest Colour

After it gained huge success at the Cannes Film Festival, surely this is one of the frontrunners for Best Foreign Film?

August Osage County

This ensemble cast is led by powerhouses Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep and deals with a dysfunctional family unit. It’s an outsider in terms of the frontrunners, but it looks like a great movie!

Philomena

 

This heart-warming true story could see a fair few acting nominations for Judi Dench who gives a stellar performance.

Her

 

Spike Jones’ film is gaining in its popularity and could see it being nominated for best film but also for Joaquin Phoenix’s performance as a man who falls in love with a computerised voice.

Inside Llewyn Davies

 

A film about a young country singer is the dark horse in this year’s awards films; with the film coming from the pot of the Coen brothers, anything is possible. Best Director(s), Best Screenplay are all possible nominations.

Blue Jasmine

 

Woody Allen’s latest film has a banker in its books in the form of Cate Blanchett – she’s an awards machine and is a shoe-in for the Best Actress title. Allen could get Best Director nominations as well as Sally Hawkins receiving Best Supporting Actress nods.

All is Lost

 

This tense drama involved Robert Redford lost at sea, contending with dangerous conditions (basically a slightly different version of Gravity). However, critics are calling this film one of Redford’s finest performances, so don’t be surprised if he receives nominations through the series.

Gravity

This Alfonso Cuarón film was a non-stop tense and magical ride when I saw it a few months ago, and Cuarón’s win at last night’s Globes cements him as one of the favourites to take home the Best Director prizes. Sandra Bullock could also pick up Best Actress nominations.

The Wolf of Wall Street

Martin Scorsese’s latest film about a stock broker who over-drinks, uses drugs, creates debauchery and generally throws money away in a relentless morally corrupt story. Scorsese will probably see plenty of Director nominations, whilst DiCaprio could be the dark horse for Best Actor, particularly after picking up the award at last night’s Globes. Could this finally be his year?

 

The Oscar nominations are announced on Thursday, and until the ceremony on March 2nd, I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled on the awards season with keen interest.

 

“I don’t know if anybody’s ever ready for another awards season. It’s kind of like Christmas.” (James McAvoy)

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Gravity

First of all, I’d like to apologise for the lack of posts – they’ve built up quite a bit and life’s been a bit hectic the last couple of weeks, mostly with work. Whilst I hold down the Blonde & Brunette fort, Kat is busy training to be a teacher, and does apologise for her absence. Hopefully we’ll both be back up to full speed soon – for now though…

Earlier this month I went to watch the movie Gravity directed by acclaimed visual director Alfonso Cuarón. I saw this movie previewed at Comic-Con and since then I’ve wanted to see it; starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney, it’s 90 minutes of them and space. To some it may appear boring, but to me it was tense, powerful and breath-taking to watch.

Dr Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock) enters space on a mission after six month intense NASA training, and after the first 10 minutes it all goes horribly wrong when debris from a crash crashes into their shuttle and sends Stone and her space lead astronaut Matt Kowalsky (George Clooney) battle for survival, drifting through space. Whilst the film is pretty much devoted to these two actors, Bullock is in about 95% of the film, carrying it beautifully and this film is really about her character.

First of all, Bullock and Clooney work wonderfully together; there’s a lovely chemistry between these two characters, and the two actors have been friends for years. Even though we don’t find out much about Clooney’s character, we warm to him instantly, due to his charisma, charm and his stories, gaining a number of laughs from the audience. You imagine his character to be potentially what Clooney is like in real life, but with more ego-faced humour such as when he states “I know it’s difficult to stop looking at me”.

Sandra Bullock however steals the show and gives a beautiful performance Ryan Stone; her character is drifting through life affected by the sudden death of her daughter. She comes to space to escape the life she now had – her description of her daily life sounds as if she’s merely existing, rather than living. Whilst Stone starts off as someone existing, by the end she’s fighting for her life to survive. It’s a powerful metaphor of the rebirth of someone’s life.

Cuarón also creates a film that visually, is beautifully stunning – you could sense the loneliness leap off-screen but also the utter peace and tranquillity it could bring. The visuals of space are so realistic and the intensity of the situation that the two characters are in – drifting, lost in space with no one to hear them but themselves – is a striking situation to be in.

The film has award season contender written all over it, particularly for Bullock who gives a breathtaking performance as Ryan Stone. You leave the cinema feeling inspired and exhausted after the intense visual experience.

Matt: Is there someone down there, looking up thinking about you?
Ryan: I had a daughter. (Gravity)

Tis the Season for Awards

For the longest time now the months of January and February have brought one of my favourite times of year – film awards season! It all kicks off properly this Sunday with the Golden Globes, but this past week has seen the nominations for the BAFTA’s and the Oscars come out so I thought it was appropriate to run down the main contenders for the tops awards across the board.

 

Lincoln

Steven Spielberg’s biopic about US President Abraham Lincoln is certainly one of the frontrunners for best film – it’s nominated for Best Picture across the major awards and Daniel Day-Lewis’ powerhouse performance as President Lincoln is quite possibly the one to beat in the Best Actor category. Sally Field and Tommy Lee Jones are also nominated in the Best Supporting categories. Spielberg has been a bit hit and miss with getting nominations for Best Director – he hit jackpot with an Oscar nod and Golden Globe, but was left out of the BAFTA nominations. However, I feel Lincoln will have a healthy awards season and tonight’s Globes could be the start of that.

Zero Dark Thirty

Kathryn Bigelow’s drama about the search for Osama Bin Laden, the biggest man hunt seen in recent years is also a very high possibility for Best Picture. It star Jessica Chastain is certainly one of the frontrunners for Best Actress given her stellar performance and Kathryn Bigelow could also potentially walk away with an award of two for her direction of the film. Sadly though, she won’t be winning her second Oscar as she was surprisingly snubbed in this year’s nominations.

 

Argo

Ben Afflek’s true story drama based around the Iranian hostage situation in the late 70’s could snake in and take Best Picture as it has started to pick up momentum in some of the smaller awards ceremonies. Alan Arkin has picked up an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor and Aflek has gotten several nominations for Best Director and even picked up a BAFTA Best Actor nomination. However, shockingly he is also not in the running for Best Director at the Oscars, a snub which perhaps comes down to the fact he is an actor turned director. However, I really hope this film does well – It’s such an awesome film and it deserves some recognition.

 

 

Silver Linings Playbook

David O. Russell’s comedy starring Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper had great critical reviews when it first came out and also stands a good chance at picking up some Best Picture awards, particulary at tonight’s Globes as the Best Film is split into drama and comedy – with the only film surely standing in its way being Les Misérables. Lawrence and Cooper both stand a good chance at Best Actor/Actress, particularly tonight at the Golden Globes when the categories are split.

 

 

 

Les Misérables

Tom Hooper’s movie based on the musical has also picked up Best Picture nominations across the board but Hooper has failed to pick up a lot of Best Director nominations. It stands a chance in the Best Song category with ‘Suddenly’ the new song specifically wrote for the film (and this award). Anne Hathaway is certainly the frontrunner in the Best Supporting Actress category for her amazing performance in this film, and Hugh Jackman has also picked up several nominations for Best Actor, including an Oscar nod. He certainly gives the performance of his career and he stands an even bigger shot of picking up the Globe with the categories again split into drama and comedy/musical.

 

 

 

Life of Pi

Ang Lee’s film looks visually stunning, and having picked up nominations from across the board he’s certainly in the race. However, I think this film will probably take some of the less dominant awards such as Cinematography and Visual Effects.

 

 

 

 

 

The Master

It seems nominations for this film have favoured the actors more so with Joaquin Pheonix, Amy Adams and Phillip Seymour Hoffman getting nominations left, right and centre for their roles in this film. Hoffman is probably the most likely to pick up something as Adams will be mostly up against the juggernaut train that is Anne Hathaway and Phoenix will be up again heavyweights Day-Lewis and Bradley Cooper.

 

 

 

Django Unchained

Tarantino’s latest film has had a mixed bag in this awards season – despite Leonardo DiCaprio giving a wonderful performance he failed to pick up a lot of nominations, with the Academy snubbing him in the Best Supporting Actor category in favour of his co-star Christoph Waltz. Tarantino himself also failed to get a nomination from the Academy for Best Director, but nonetheless he could still pick up a few wins in over ceremonies.

 

 

There is the main contenders for this year’s awards – as the season goes on, and we build to the finale that is the Academy Awards, we’ll have more of an inclination about who and what will take the big awards. I know I’ll certainly be keeping a close eye on everything.

The People’s Choice Awards: The Winners….

So last night saw the People’s Choice Awards winners announced. There were some very deserving winners, some unsuspected winners, some questionable winners and some downright, WRONG winners – can anyone guess who I may mean by this?

Yes you’ve guessed it: the TWI-HARDS!!! Okay, yes I am biased, as a loyal Potterhead I am slightly distraught that we were not accepting the award BUT at least there was a tiny link to HP with Robert Pattinson being involved. Even still, we should have won.

The other big shocker for me was the winner of Best Movie Franchise, going to The Hunger Games…er hello?! They only have 1 film out, they haven’t been around very long, you can’t buy everything in the form of the Hunger Games, and to top it off, THEY DON’T HAVE A THEME PARK. I would have been quite happy if HP lost to Twilight, I can see how that franchise could be top of the list – I even own a Twilight bed spread, but I mean The Hunger Games? Come on, get real?!

Some other, very deserving winners included the beautiful Jenifer Aniston for Favorite Comedic Movie Actress; Big Bang Theory for Favorite Network TV Comedy and Ellen DeGeneres for Favorite Daytime TV host. In the music realm Katy Perry wiped the floor, claiming 4 awards, including her Katycats winning Favorite Fan Following and Taylor Swift scooped up Favorite Country Artist – I mean really, who else was going to win that one?

I accept I am bias as to who I love, but in the end aren’t we all? Take a look at the winners and decide for yourself.

Favorite Comedic Movie Actress: Jennifer Aniston

Favorite Comedic Movie Actor: Adam Sandler

Favorite Comedic Movie : Ted

Favorite Movie Actress: Jennifer Lawrence

Favorite Movie Actor: Robert Downey Jr.

Favorite Movie Icon: Meryl Streep

Favorite Movie: The Hunger Games

Favorite Movie Franchise: The Hunger Games

Favorite Action Movie Star: Chris Hemsworth

Favorite Action Movie: The Hunger Games

Favorite Dramatic Movie Actress: Emma Watson

Favorite Dramatic Movie Actor: Zac Efron

Favorite Dramatic Movie: Perks of Being a Wallflower

Favorite Movie Fan Following: Twi-hards, Twilight

Favorite Comedic TV Actress: Lea Michele

Favorite Comedic TV Actor: Chris Colfer

Favorite Cable TV Comedy: A wkward

Favorite Network TV Comedy: The Big Bang Theory

Favorite New TV Comedy: The New Normal

Favorite Dramatic TV Actress: Ellen Pompeo

Favorite Dramatic TV Actor: Nathan Fillion

Favorite Network TV Drama: Grey’s Anatomy

Favorite Cable TV Drama: Leverage

Favorite New TV Drama: Beauty and the Beast

Favorite TV Crime Drama: Castle

Favorite Premium Cable TV Show: True Blood

Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Show: Supernatural

Favorite Competition TV Show: The X Factor

Favorite Celebrity Judge: Demi Lovato

Favorite TV Fan Following: SPNFamily, Supernatural

Favorite Daytime TV Host: Ellen DeGeneres

Favorite Late Night Talk-Show Host: Jimmy Fallon

Favorite New Talk-Show Host: Steve Harvey

Favorite Male Artist: Jason Mraz

Favorite Female Artist: Katy Perry

Favorite Country Artist: Taylor Swift

Favorite Pop Artist: Katy Perry

Favorite R&B Artist: Rihanna

Favorite Hip-Hop Artist: Nicki Minaj

Favorite Band: Maroon 5

Favorite Breakout Artist: The Wanted

Favorite Album: Up All Night , One Direction

Favorite Song: “What Makes You Beautiful,” One Direction

Favorite Music Video: “Part of Me,” Katy Perry

Favorite Music Fan Following: KatyCats, Katy Perry

Favorite Superhero: Robert Downey Jr., Iron Man

Favorite Face of Heroism: Jennifer Lawrence, The Hunger Games

People’s Voice Award: Christina Aguilera

Favorite Onscreen Chemistry: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, The Hunger Games

Favorite Humanitarian: Sandra Bullock