2013 Oscars: Various Categories

So usually I only write about what I call the “Top 8” categories for the Oscars: Best Picture, Director, the four acting and the two writing categories. However, the nominees have been pretty streamlined this year. That is to say that the total number of films receiving Oscars nominations was relatively low compared to most years, so I actually completed a lot more Oscars categories than I usually do.

While I don’t claim to be a huge expert on these Oscars categories, I hereby offer my opinion nonetheless. I don’t know enough about the technical specs to say who SHOULD win, so these are just my own personal picks. I’ll cover the Top 8 categories in later posts as we come closer to the Academy Awards and Oscars night.

Cinematography
Oscars Nominees: Anna Karenina, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Skyfall.
My pick: Skyfall. Though I didn’t think this movie was as great as everyone else seemed to, it looked amazing. The shots that particularly stand out in my mind were the fire and field shots towards the end (trying to not give any spoilers). Amazing.

Costume Design
Oscars Nominees: Anna Karenina, Les Miserables, Lincoln, Mirror Mirror, Snow White and the Huntsman
My pick: Les Miserables. I don’t proclaim to be an expert on clothes, but Les Mis had an amazing range to it, and it all felt authentic to me (poor beggars clothes all the way up to high society). Full disclosure: I didn’t see Mirror Mirror; couldn’t bring myself to do it. But I saw more than enough previews.

Film Editing
Oscars Nominees: Argo, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook, Zero Dark Thirty
My pick: I actually think Les Mis should win this one; the editing made that movie. But, from this list: Argo. The sequence towards the end was especially taut and well done.

Music – Original Score
Oscars Nominees: Anna Karenina, Argo, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Skyfall
My pick: Lincoln. I’m a sucker for John Williams; it’s the only one that stands out to me.

Production Design
Oscars Nominees: Anna Karenina, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Les Miserables, Life of Pi, Lincoln
My pick: Life of Pi. Incredibly hard movie to stage and film; they did an amazing job bringing that book to life.

Sound Editing
Oscars Nominees: Argo, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Skyfall, Zero Dark Thirty
My pick: Django Unchained. Why? The blood splatter sound effects; added an element of gross humor and helped drive the movie.

Sound Mixing
Oscars Nominees: Argo, Les Miserables, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Skyfall
My pick: Les Miserables. The music integrated seamlessly with the movie, and never sounded put on.

Visual Effects
Oscars Nominees: The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Life of Pi, Marvel’s The Avengers, Prometheus, Snow White and the Huntsman
My pick: Life of Pi. This is the only movie on the list where the Visual Effects WERE the story (and some of the main characters too). Full disclosure: I didn’t see Prometheus (don’t dig on Alien movies; find them boring), so going off the preview I saw at least a dozen times.

Oscars Categories I didn’t complete
Animated Feature Film (0/5)
Documentary Feature (0/5)
Documentary Short (0/5)
Foreign Language Film (1/5)
Makeup and Hairstyling (2/3)
Music – Original Song (3/5)
Short Film – Animated (1/5)
Short Film – Life Action (0/5)