Here we go! For the eleventh year, we are doing our live Academy Awards blog. Last year was our best predictions year ever. We were an astounding 20 out of 24. It will be very hard to top it this year. Something tells us there are going to be a fair share of surprises tonight. So for our loyal audience, stay tuned as we track our predictions and offer thoughts on the big show. Starting now!!
5:33 – Whenever you watch these montages, aren’t you surprised how many movies actually came out in a particular year? It’s really pretty amazing.
5:35 – Kind of funny that Chris Rock is wearing all white.
5:37 – Predictable opening jokes. Let’s be honest. Was it really a travesty that black actors were not nominated this year? Idris Elba SHOULD have been nominated. For sure. And Creed should probably have more nominations overall. But who else really got snubbed? Straight Outta Compton not getting a Best Picture nomination isn’t an outrage. It’s tough to get a Best Pic nomination. Look at Inside Out. Carol. The Danish Girl.
5:45 – Ok, first award of the night. Best Original Screenplay. It goes to Spotlight! Awesome. Looking at the clips, Inside Out probably should have won. It was the most “original” story, but the Academy usually gives this to a Best Picture contender. Spotlight was very well written and deserving. Awards Frenzy picked Spotlight so we are 1 for 1.
5:49 – Hmmm. Kind of interesting that Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling have never been in a movie together. They should. We can totally picture them in some kind of crime caper.
5:51 – Best Adapted Screenplay is awarded to The Big Short! This was expected. A very complicated book by Michael Lewis was effectively translated to the silver screen. It’s not easy to enable audiences to understand colladeralized debt obligations and mortgage backed securities. Awards Frenzy is now 2 for 2 and The Big Short and Spotlight are on track to contend for Best Picture.
6:01 – Might be nice if there was one joke not about the Oscars and the lack of black nominations. But then again. Chris Rock is the host.
6:06 – Sam Smith performs Writing on the Wall from Spectre. This is a damn good song, dark and moody like a classic Bond theme. Now we wonder if it may stand a chance to upset Lady Gaga, especially since more people have probably seen Spectre as opposed to The Hunting Ground.
6:11 – First major award of the night. The Best Supporting Actress is Alicia Vikander! This was somewhat of a close race as some people thought Kate Winslet might win since she won the Golden Globe. But Vikander was excellent in two movies this year, The Danish Girl and Ex Machina, and voters probably took that into account. A new star is born tonight! Awards Frenzy is 3 for 3 .
6:20 – Best Costume Design goes to Mad Max: Fury Road. Wow. We were wrong about this. It has been a long time since the Academy gave Costume Design to an epic action film. The last time was maybe Gladiator. Sandy Powell was nominated twice in this category for Carol and Cinderella but didn’t win. Awards Frenzy is now 3 for 4.
6:24 – Mad Max: Fury Road wins for Best Production Design. That’s the second of many awards for Mad Max tonight. This film was a true technical masterpiece. Awards Frenzy is now 4 for 5. By the way, hear that music in the background. That’s the underrated score from Mad Max: Fury Road composed by Junkie XL that should have been nominated!
6:27 – No surprise here. Best Makeup goes to Mad Max: Fury Road. We should have known these three awards would go together. Last year, Grand Budapest Hotel won Production Design, Costumes, and Makeup. The makeup was superb in this movie. Awards Frenzy is 5 for 6.
6:31 – Ok, so far this show is in a word…unremarkable. The jokes are stale and predictable. The awards are predictable. There are no entertaining song and dance pieces or anything interesting. The stupid producers are giving no one time to make their speeches, even playing the Best Supporting Actress winner off the stage. We wouldn’t be surprised if many people have changed the channel by now.
6:36 – Here’s the award for Best Cinematography. It goes to The Revenant! This is very amazing because Emmanuel Lubezki, nicknamed “Chivo,” has won this award three years in a row. It is the first award of the evening for The Revenant. Too bad Mad Max: Fury Road came out the same year as The Revenant, otherwise John Seale would have taken it in a cakewalk. The photography in Mad Max was breathtaking. Awards Frenzy is 6 for 7.
6:40 – The Best Editing Award is presented to Mad Max: Fury Road. Sense a pattern here? Action films do tend to do well in this category. And the battle sequences were indeed very hard to cut. Awards Frenzy is 7 for 8.
6:48 – Here are the Sound awards. Who knows the difference between mixing and editing? Raise your hands. It’s actually pretty simple. Best Sound Editing goes to Mad Max: Fury Road! No surprise here. Mad Max: Fury Road is cleaning up in all the technical categories. Awards Frenzy is 8 for 9.
6:50 – Best Sound Mixing also goes to Mad Max: Fury Road. Some thought The Revenant might take this, as it won the BAFTA and the Cinema Audio Society award, but there is no stopping Mad Max tonight. Awards Frenzy is 9 out of 10.
6:55 – Best Visual Effects goes to Ex Machina!! What?! This is the biggest upset of the night and maybe of the last few years. Wow! It was pretty obvious it wasn’t going to Star Wars, but how did Ex Machina stop the Mad Max juggernaut? Truly amazing. Well, that’s why we watch the show. Very exciting. Awards Frenzy picked Mad Max so unfortunately we are now 9 out of 11.
7:00 – We’d take BB8 over R2-D2. You?
7:08 – And now back to the awards. Best Animated Short Film goes to Bear Story! These categories are always hard to pick. Bear Story seemed to be the sentimental favorite and past winners such as Feast and Paperman have usually been the most sentimental and uplifting. Awards Frenzy is 10 out of 12. Congrats to these winners. It’s always nice to see obscure film-makers win these awards and have their moment on stage. Much more meaningful that seeing Meryl Streep or Steven Spielberg claim another award.
7:11 – Best Animated Film is won by Inside Out. This was probably the most guaranteed award of the night. Inside Out is a revelation of a film and should have been a Best Picture nominee. Every person on earth needs to see this film. Awards Frenzy is 11 out of 13.
7:22 – We’re more than halfway through the awards. This show is going by quick, probably because there’s really nothing going on. The song performances have been good. They should play the scores too, but they haven’t done that in a while.
7:28 – Chris Rock was funnier ten years ago when he made fun of Jude Law.
7:29 – Best Supporting Actor goes to Mark Rylance from Bridge of Spies! This is another stunner but if you look closer, it’s actually not a total surprise. Stallone wasn’t nominated for BAFTA or by the all-important Screen Actor’s Guild. He wasn’t even nominated! Rylance won BAFTA and in all honesty, he was sensational in Bridge of Spies. Everyone just assumed Sylvester Stallone would win for sentimental reasons. It is quite disappointing, in our opinion, that he didn’t win, but this was an award for “Best” Supporting Actor. Awards Frenzy is 11 out of 14. Not a good night.
7:38 – The award for Best Documentary Short Film goes to A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness. Another bad call by us. This was the most moving of the stories and we should have known it was going to win. Body Team 12 was too short. Both were distributed by HBO, but the longer and more emotional one had the edge. We are 11 out of 15 and reeling.
7:44 – Best Documentary Feature is Amy. This was expected especially given the tragic death of Amy Winehouse, the subject of the film. Awards Frenzy is 12 for 16.
7:52 – They could have some more montages or something that actually pays tribute to films! Ellen Degeneres’ ordering pizza was better than Chris Rock’s girl scout cookies bit. The clip from the movie theater in Compton was pretty funny though.
7:58 – Nice tribute to those who will be remembered. James Horner was one of the greatest film music composers that ever lived. Legends of the Fall. Titanic. Braveheart. Mask of Zorro. The Rocketeer. Avatar. Troy. Glory. Searching for Bobby Fischer. Apollo 13. Field of Dreams. And much much more. A true musical legend!
8:07 – Stutterer wins Best Live Action Short. Supposedly it was the most charming and uplifting of all the nominees. We were wrong again and went with the consensus favorite Shok. It is a terrible night for us. Awards Frenzy is 12 for 17.
8:09 – Best Foreign Language Film goes to Hungary for Son of Saul! This was expected and is the first foreign language film win for Hungary. Congrats! Awards Frenzy is 13 for 18.
8:12 – This performance of Til It Happens to You is the most powerful moment of the night. Lady Gaga has a tremendous voice and stage presence.
8:23 – Ennio Morricone wins the Best Original Score for The Hateful Eight! The Academy clearly wanted to honor him, as evident by this standing ovation. Morricone has been around for a long time and some of our favorite scores by him are The Untouchables and In the Line of Fire. We are wondering though, if the voters went for someone like Morricone for in essence a career achievement award, why not give it to Sylvester Stallone? Awards Frenzy is 14 for 19.
8:32 – Best Original Song goes to Spectre for Writing’s on the Wall. Awards Frenzy is 14 for 20. Like we said at the beginning, this is a night full of surprises. Lady Gaga was the favorite, but in all honesty, the Sam Smith song was probably the better song, music wise, and catchier.
8:41 – Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu wins back to back directing awards! He was the favorite going in, having won the DGA award, but we thought some voters would have reservations giving him a second Best Director in a row. Apparently not. Talent is talent. The Revenant was a very hard film to make and it took a determined director to pull it all off. Awards Frenzy is 14 for 21.
8:48 – The Best Actress award goes to Brie Larson for Room! She played a very difficult part and played it very well. The interactions between her and Jacob Tremblay were very sweet and moving in the film. It’s nice to see a relatively unknown actress win on her first try. Reminds some people of Hilary Swank. Awards Frenzy is 15 for 22.
8:53 – And here’s Leo’s Oscar at last! Best Actor goes to Leonardo DiCaprio for The Revenant. Of course, we all have to be happy for DiCaprio. He has been in so many great movies and arguably could have won for The Aviator, but Jamie Foxx was probably slightly better that year. Awards Frenzy is 16 for 23.
8:59 – And in the shocker of the night, Spotlight wins Best Picture!! We are thrilled about this actually. The Revenant was overblown and overhyped. We were pretty sure either Spotlight or The Big Short would win Best Picture. We were just wrong on which one. The Revenant had a very weak story. It was a triumph of directing, acting, and cinematography. No writing nomination usually means no Best Picture win. Spotlight was great and was an actor’s movie. It won the Screen Actor’s Guild ensemble award. It had a very important subject matter too and unlike The Big Short, the good guys won. The Big Short, in retrospect, was a little too clever and satirical for its own good. It was also more of a comedy, and comedies don’t usually win. Congrats to Spotlight! It is a very deserving film. Awards Frenzy finished the night 16 out of 24, one of our worst showings ever. We’ll bounce back next year. Thanks for tuning in everyone!!