Last Minute Not-So-Fearless Oscars Forecast

<> on October 19, 2009 in Santa Clarita, California.

Hollywood loves movies about showbiz, and Alejandro Inarritu‘s funny, visually novel and quite original “Birdman” is justifiably lauded for its excellence in direction/tech and acting. So look to see that film win for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Cinematography, and possibly for Best Actor (for Michael Keaton’s brilliant performance AND his body of work).

Still, I’m thinking it’s more likely that Eddie Redmayne will win for his impressive feat as Stephen Hawking in “The Theory of Everything.” Because, you know, it’s a “serious” biopic and Hawking is played by a Brit. And Brits win many of the big acting Oscars.

The cumulative effect of Richard Linklater‘s beautiful, unusual “Boyhood” — seeing a boy played by the same actor grow from child to adult, and his family members age, too, in what feels like real time over the course of a few hours — indeed was emotionally engaging, and it was the first feature film to notch that accomplishment. So it COULD take Best Picture and Best Director, but my guess is that Patricia Arquette‘s naturalistic turn as the protagonist’s long-suffering mom will result in the movie’s only major win, for Best Supporting Actress.

Best Actress: Julianne Moore, as an Alzheimer’s patient in the moving but not entirely satisfying “Still Alice,” deserves the win, and will get it, in part for a career’s worth of great work.

Best Supporting Actor: J.K. Simmons will win for his towering performance in “Whiplash” as the scariest band director in history.

Best Original Screenplay: Wes Anderson’s quirky, wildly inventive screenplay for his “The Grand Budapest Hotel” deserves it and will win it, I think. The film will win for Production Design, too, and probably Costume Design.

Adapted Screenplay: “The Imitation Game” deserves/gets the win.

Editing: What feat could beat the artfully-stitching-together-12-years-of-footage accomplishment of “Boyhood”?

Visual Effects: “Interstellar” deserves it and, I think, will win.

Foreign film: Probably “Ida.”

Documentary: Probably “Citizenfour”

Score: Probably Johann Johannsson, for “The Theory of Everything”; AMPAS wrongly denied Antonio Sanchez a nom for “Birdman,” IMO.

Upset potential: If anything, the commercial juggernaut “American Sniper” could force a surprise or two.

Stay tuned.

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Florida Film Critics Circle: “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” “Birdman” and “Boyhood” Take Top Honors

“Birdman” was named best picture, and the theater-world satire’s star Michael Keaton was named best actor in this year’s Florida Film Critics Circle Awards.

Richard Linklater’s innovative “Boyhood,” 12 years in the making, also took top honors, winning for best director and supporting actress (Patricia Arquette).

Wes Anderson’s quirky, gorgeously composed “The Grand Budapest Hotel” grabbed the most FFCC honors, with awards for best original screenplay, best ensemble, and best art direction/production design.

More than 20 critics from around Florida voted in this year’s awards. For the complete list of winners and runners-up, visit the FFCC site, or see below:

Best Picture:

Birdman

Runner-up: Boyhood

Best Director:

Richard Linklater – Boyhood

Runner-up: Alejandro González Iñárritu – Birdman

Best Actress:

Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl

Runner-up: Julianne Moore – Still Alice

Best Actor:

Michael Keaton – Birdman

Runner-up: Jake Gyllenhaal – Nightcrawler

Best Supporting Actor:

J.K. Simmons – Whiplash

Runner-up: Edward Norton – Birdman

Best Supporting Actress:

Patricia Arquette – Boyhood

Runner-up: Emma Stone – Birdman

Best Ensemble:

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Runner-up: Boyhood

Best Original Screenplay:

The Grand Budapest Hotel (Wes Anderson)

Runner-up: Birdman (Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Armando Bo)

Best Adapted Screenplay:

Gone Girl (Gillian Flynn)

Runner-up: Inherent Vice (Paul Thomas Anderson)

Best Cinematography:

Interstellar (Hoyte Van Hoytema)

Runner-up: The Grand Budapest Hotel (Robert D. Yeoman)

Best Visual Effects:

Interstellar

Runner-up: Guardians of the Galaxy

Best Art Direction/Production Design:

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Runner-up: Interstellar

Best Score:

Under the Skin (Micah Levi, aka Micachu)

Runner-up: Gone Girl (Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross)

Best Documentary:

Life Itself

Runner-up: Citizenfour

Best Foreign-Language Film:

The Raid 2

Runner-up: Force Majeure

Best Animated Film:

The Lego Movie

Runner-up: How to Train Your Dragon 2

Pauline Kael Breakout Award:

Damien Chazelle (writer/director: Whiplash)

Runner-up: Gugu Mbatha-Raw (actress: Belle, Beyond the Lights)

Golden Orange:

The Borscht Corp.