2015 Oscar Predictions: Who Should Win & Who Will Win?
Football fans had the Super Bowl and music aficionados sat through the Grammy Awards, but now we’re less than 24 hours away from the night that film buffs everywhere have been eagerly anticipating: The Oscars! It’s time to fill out those ballots, plan your viewing party and finally get around to seeing Boyhood. There are a lot of strong nominees this year, but only a select few will go home with that iconic, golden statue. Who will they be? Lucky for you, I’ve seen all of this year’s major contenders and I’m super good at guessing. Here’s what you can expect to happen on Sunday…
Actor in a Leading Role
Who should win: Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything)
There are a lot of fantastic performances in this category, but no one disappears into their role quite like Eddie Redmayne. He completely transforms into Stephen Hawking and doesn’t miss a single detail. It’s a heartbreaking performance, yet Redmayne also manages to capture Hawking’s sense of humor with nothing more than a subtle movement of his eyes. There are times where you actually have to remind yourself that he’s acting. He’s just that good.
Who will win: Michael Keaton (Birdman)
This is a performance that no one saw coming. Eddie Redmayne is phenomenal, but it’s Keaton’s time. The man has been in the business forever and this is only his first nomination. Crazy, right? It’s well deserved too. Keaton is in top form as Riggan Thomson, whether he’s wrestling with Edward Norton or parading through New York City in his undies. It’s a career-defining role for a man who has had so many in the past. Plus, Michael Keaton is just so damn likable. How could they not give it to him?
Actress in a Leading Role
Who should win: Julianne Moore (Still Alice)
Much like Michael Keaton, Julianne Moore has been in the business for quite some time and has yet to take home the Oscar. She’s been nominated 4 times in the past, but this could be her year. Still Alice tells the story of a college professor who is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. It’s a realistic depiction of what Alzheimer’s patients and their families go through, which sets the scene for Moore to deliver one of the most powerful performances of her career.
Who will win: Julianne Moore (Still Alice)
There were a lot of great leading ladies this year, but it’s not even close. This is Julianne Moore’s year.
Actor in a Supporting Role
Who should win: J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)
This could very well be the greatest performance of the past year. Simmons went from being an underrated character actor to being a household name almost overnight and it’s all thanks to this film. Simmons plays a brutal music instructor and he utterly dominates every scene he’s in. There’s chair hurling, a slew of profanities and somehow he’s still weirdly charming. I don’t know how he does it, but Simmons has the remarkable ability to be both hilarious and frightening at the same time. Also, he cracked two ribs when Miles Teller tackled him during a scene. That’s dedication.
Who will win: J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)
Mark Ruffalo is brilliant in Foxcatcher and Edward Norton is a scene-stealer in Birdman, but it’s not even close. His character may despise these words, but J.K. Simmons really did do a good job.
Actress in a Supporting Role
Who should win: Emma Stone (Birdman)
Stone may not have as much screen time as some of her costars, but she doesn’t waste any of it either. The monologue that she delivers to Michael Keaton’s character shows a side of her that we’ve never seen before and it is surprisingly intense. That scene alone is as good a reason as any to give her the win.
Who will win: Patricia Arquette (Boyhood)
I don’t understand the hype, but critics have been going nuts for Patricia Arquette’s work in Boyhood. It’s not a particularly memorable performance, but she does deserve some credit. She spent 12 years of her adult life working on this project and that’s certainly commendable.
Who should win: Alejandro G. Iñárritu (Birdman)
There are a lot of ambitious projects this year, but Iñárritu’s decision to shoot Birdman as if it were one, continuous shot is unparalleled. It’s extremely risky, unbelievably difficult and absolutely genius. As if that weren’t enough, he also manages to get each actor in his A-list cast to deliver some of their greatest performances to date.
Who will win: Richard Linklater (Boyhood)
Linklater has also done something that has never been attempted before. Boyhood tells the unremarkable story of a regular kid growing up with his older sister and divorced parents, but the movie was shot over the course of 12 years. We literally get to see the entire cast grow old in front of our very eyes. It’s a terrific idea and Linklater deserves some credit for sacrificing 12 years of his life to make this film. He also has the unique ability to capture human life in such a real and honest way. It’s almost like watching a scripted documentary.
Who should win: Birdman
This one is a toughie. Whiplash is my favorite of the nominated films, but I honestly feel like Birdman deserves this one. In a world where nearly every actor is involved in a major superhero franchise, Birdman could not be more relevant. It’s one of the most groundbreaking pieces of cinema in recent years and for that, it should be rewarded.
Who will win: Boyhood
I didn’t dislike Boyhood, but let’s be honest… If it weren’t for the fact that it took 12 years to film, would anyone really care? Something tells me no. The movie has a lot of heart and I appreciate the sentiment, but I don’t really see it as Best Picture-worthy. Unfortunately, critics and voters alike are eating it up. I’ll be shocked if it doesn’t win.
Who are you hoping will take home an Oscar this year? Check back here to see if my predictions were accurate and watch the 87th Academy Awards on ABC on Sunday, February 22nd at 7:00 pm.