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All Across the Land: Chicago, Phoenix, St. Louis, Detroit, San Francisco, and San Diego Film Critics Nominations

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I’ve got a personal connection to Chicago.

My family–well, my dad’s family–has been in Chicago for…at least 130 years. Probably closer to 150. Assuming I move there while my uncle still liveth, and assuming I live to a ripe old age, our family’s presence will span two centuries of Chicago history.

Chicago, for me, is the perfect combination of the Midwestern millieu I grew up in (I’m from Kansas) and the cosmopolitanism of, say, New York. It’s home to great theater, to some of my favorite restaurants, museums, and zoos; as a child, the CTA stoked my fascination with public transportation, as a man, it represents, for me, just about everything I would want from a city.

It was home to perhaps the most beloved film critic the world has ever, or will ever, know. Great films have been made there; great minds have been forged there. It is the home of my forebears, and God grant that it may be my home someday.

We have four more cities to tackle here, but since the option is here, let us first see what Chicago, prince of cities, birthplace of love itself, has to say.

(UPDATE: San Diego and St. Louis announced their winners today. I’ll bold the winners. I have no real commentary except…someone liked Nightcrawler.)

(UPDATE II: Now Phoenix has announced–just as I find out that there are actually two awards groups based in Phoenix!)

Chicago Film Critics:

Picture:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Under the Skin
  • Whiplash

Credit for 3 out of the 5 being more borderline contenders. I still have issues with Under the Skin, and I don’t know if I really support Whiplash as a Best Picture contender, but I’ll take it over The Imitation of Everything.

Director:

  • Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • David Fincher, Gone Girl
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Birdman
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood
  • Christopher Nolan, Interstellar

Well. Trying to have their cake and eat it too, it looks like. Not that Fincher and Nolan aren’t wholly deserving nominees. I’m just glad someone cited Nolan. (No Ava DuVernay, though?)

Actor:

  • Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game
  • Jake Gyllenhaal, Nightcrawler
  • Michael Keaton, Birdman
  • David Oyelowo, Selma
  • Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Spreading the love. I can appreciate that. Glad Oyelowo’s here.

Actress:

  • Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night
  • Scarlett Johansson, Under the Skin
  • Julianne Moore, Still Alice
  • Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
  • Reese Witherspoon, Wild

At least they didn’t go for Jennifer Aniston. I’d rather see Gugu Mbatha-Raw here than Johansson (or Cotillard), but whatever.

Supporting Actor:

  • Josh Brolin, Inherent Vice
  • Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
  • Edward Norton, Birdman
  • Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
  • J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

Hey, Josh Brolin! Anything to shake up this category.

ida wanda

Supporting Actress:

  • Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
  • Jessica Chastain, A Most Violent Year
  • Laura Dern, Wild
  • Agata Kulesza, Ida
  • Emma Stone, Birdman

Glad Kulesza’s here. Not wild about Dern getting on over Tilda Swinton, but we’ll always have Boston (Online).

Original Screenplay:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • Calvary
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Whiplash

Always good to see Calvary here. Whiplash…I think the script was one of its weaker elements, but I might as well accept that no one else is nominating Dear White People besides me.

Adapted Screenplay:

  • Gone Girl
  • The Imitation Game
  • Inherent Vice
  • Under the Skin
  • Wild

And I don’t get how anyone would find the script of Under the Skin award-worthy, but if they wanted my opinion, they’d pay me for it, wouldn’t they? At least Inherent Vice is here (and seems a safe bet for an Oscar nom).

Cinematography:

  • Birdman
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Ida
  • Inherent Vice
  • Interstellar

Interesting lineup, especially Inherent Vice. And again, glad to see Interstellar. Shocked Under the Skin didn’t make it.

Editing:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Whiplash

Now, this is the perfect category for Whiplash (that and the Sound categories). It’s the kind of film that’s so exciting you can overlook its lapses.

engine scene

Art Direction/Production Design:

  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Interstellar
  • Into the Woods
  • Only Lovers Left Alive
  • Snowpiercer

Ahhhhhhhh…

Also, interesting choice, Only Lovers Left Alive. I probably ought to see it. Probably.

Original Score:

  • Birdman
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game
  • Interstellar
  • Under the Skin

Come on, Mica Levi. Get that Oscar nomination. (I’m listening to the score now. It really is excellent. It makes me wish I liked the film more.)

Animated Feature:

  • Big Hero 6
  • The Boxtrolls
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2
  • The Lego Movie
  • The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

I really hope Kaguya makes the final five. That’s all.

Foreign Language Film:

  • Force Majeure
  • Ida
  • Mommy
  • The Raid 2
  • Two Days, One Night

The Raid 2? Come on, Chicago.

Documentary:

  • CITIZENFOUR
  • Jodorowsky’s Dune
  • Last Days in Vietnam
  • Life Itself
  • The Overnighters

Gee, think they’ll go for Life Itself?

Most Promising Performer:

  • Ellar Coltrane, Boyhood
  • Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Belle/Beyond the Lights
  • Jack O’Connell, Starred Up/Unbroken
  • Tony Revolori, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Jenny Slate, Obvious Child
  • Agata Trzebuchowska, Ida

Fuck these categories. The best performance is the best performance, dammit.

Also, do we really think Ellar Coltrane is going to have a lasting acting career? No offense to him, but I do not see it.

Most Promising Filmmaker:

  • Damien Chazelle, Whiplash
  • Dan Gilroy, Nightcrawler
  • Jennifer Kent, The Babadook
  • Jeremy Saulnier, Blue Ruin
  • Justin Simien, Dear White People

Oh, bullshit.

Chicago is also home to many delightful restaurants. ()

Chicago is also home to many delightful restaurants. (Source)

Phoenix Film Critics:

Picture/Top 10:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • The Imitation Game
  • The Lego Movie
  • A Most Violent Year
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Whiplash

Now that I’ve seen The Theory of Everything, I can say…it doesn’t belong on Best Picture lists at all. It’s not that good of a film. I’ll go into more detail with my review, but Redmayne and maybe Jones are the only nominations it really warrants. The film itself isn’t really worth it.

Good call on Guardians, though. Great call, even.

Director: 

  • Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Damien Chazelle, Whiplash
  • David Fincher, Gone Girl
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Birdman
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood

One shouldn’t put too much stock in regional critics’ awards, but Anderson really might get on the Oscar list. It’s really starting to look like it might happen.

Actor:

  • Bradley Cooper, American Sniper
  • Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game
  • Brendan Gleeson, Calvary
  • Tommy Lee Jones, The Homesman
  • Michael Keaton, Birdman
  • Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Redmayne I do get. Jones (I also saw that film recently)…I’m not sure I really see how he needed a nomination for that. If they liked GBH, why not go for Ralph Fiennes? (Or Oscar Isaac from Most Violent Year, for that matter.) But I don’t make the rules.

Actress:

  • Amy Adams, Big Eyes
  • Felicity Jones, The Theory of Everything
  • Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
  • Hilary Swank, The Homesman
  • Reese Witherspoon, Wild

They didn’t go for Julianne Moore. That might be the first time she hasn’t made a full list of nominees.

Swank I understand more than (Tommy Lee) Jones, though she wouldn’t make my own list. (Felicity) Jones I can understand, though…maybe it was the writing for the character that didn’t quite add up for me. I’ll explain in my review.

Neither, I have to say, were as good as Essie Davis in The Babadook. That was one hell of a performance.

Supporting Actor:

  • Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
  • Logan Lerman, Fury
  • Edward Norton, Birdman
  • Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
  • J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

Lerman doesn’t really merit a nomination (on paper, yes, but the actual performance in the film, eh), but at least it’s a respite from the usual faces in this category.

Though, speaking of The Babadook…Noah Wiseman deserves a fucking nomination. Holy shit, he was good.

Supporting Actress:

  • Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
  • Jessica Chastain, A Most Violent Year
  • Carrie Coon, Gone Girl
  • Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game
  • Emma Stone, Birdman

Coon’s an interesting choice (though I think Kim Dickens was even better). Otherwise, business as usual.

groot magic

Ensemble Acting:

  • Birdman
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Into the Woods

I love that Into the Woods mostly just shows up here and nowhere else. Also, Guardians. Yes.

Original Screenplay:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • A Most Violent Year
  • Whiplash

I wonder if J.C. Chandor will make the Oscar lineup again.

Adapted Screenplay:

  • American Sniper
  • Gone Girl
  • The Imitation Game
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Wild

Theory of Everything. For Screenplay. No.

Also, why is Wild popping up so much here? Is the script really that good?

Cinematography:

  • Birdman
  • Interstellar
  • Into the Woods
  • A Most Violent Year
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Unbroken

Theory‘s cinematography was fine. Nomination-strength? Eh. But I won’t complain.

Editing:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • Gone Girl
  • Interstellar
  • Into the Woods

Into the Woods? Really? I guess it does interweave several plot threads, but it still feels like a weird pick here.

Production Design:

  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game
  • Interstellar
  • Snowpiercer

Drinks are on me!

Costume Design:

  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Inherent Vice
  • Into the Woods
  • Maleficent
  • The Theory of Everything

Okay, Theory had nice costumes, too. I’ll admit that.

(Maleficent? That’s an unusual choice.)

Original Score:

  • Birdman
  • Gone Girl
  • The Imitation Game
  • Interstellar
  • The Theory of Everything

In case you hadn’t heard, Birdman‘s score can’t be up for an Oscar. Which is horseshit. So is Under the Skin not being here.

Original Song:

  • “Everything is Awesome”, The Lego Movie
  • “Immortals”, Big Hero 6
  • “Lost Stars”, Begin Again
  • “Miracles”, Unbroken

There’s a song from Unbroken?

Visual Effects:

  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
  • Edge of Tomorrow
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies
  • Interstellar

I really don’t know which of these I’d actually vote for. This is a hell of a category.

I was having a hard time finding good stills for this one, but this one shows off the lighting real well. ()

Stunts:

  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
  • Edge of Tomorrow
  • John Wick
  • Need for Speed
  • The Raid 2

Kudos to Phoenix for having this category. John Wick had some damn fine work, but the fight choreography in The Raid 2 is pretty unbeatable.

Animated Film:

  • Big Hero 6
  • The Boxtrolls
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2
  • The Lego Movie

I guess they didn’t get to see Princess Kaguya.

Foreign Language Film:

  • Force Majeure
  • Ida
  • Mood Indigo
  • The Raid 2

…the fuck? I’ve seen all four, and Mood Indigo…no. At least not in the version initially released here. The Raid 2 isn’t that great, either. I’m guessing they just never saw The Dance of Reality?

Documentary:

  • CITIZENFOUR
  • Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me
  • Jodorowsky’s Dune
  • Life Itself
  • Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon

I need to see Jodorowsky’s Dune soon. I bet I’d like it.

Overlooked Film of the Year:

  • Calvary
  • Edge of Tomorrow
  • Obvious Child
  • The Skeleton Twins
  • Snowpiercer

This is my kind of category. Two of these (guess which) I outright agree with. Edge, kind of, Skeleton Twins, not really, Obvious Child…eh. It seems like the Internet gave it its due.

Live Action Family Film:

  • Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Into the Woods
  • Maleficent
  • Muppets Most Wanted

I never did see Alexander. I mean, Guardians wins this by a mile, but I heard Alexander was actually decent.

Performance by a Youth – Male:

  • Ellar Coltrane, Boyhood
  • Daniel Huttlestone, Into the Woods
  • Jaeden Lieberher, St. Vincent
  • Ed Oxenbould, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
  • Tony Revolori, The Grand Budapest Hotel

Noah Wiseman not making this list is a damn joke.

Seeing St. Vincent tomorrow. (UPDATE: Saw it. Liberher is really good. I’d be cool with him winning this.)

Performance by a Youth – Female:

  • Lilla Crawford, Into the Woods
  • Mackenzie Foy, Interstellar
  • Sterling Jerlins, And So It Goes

Does Foy not win this in a landslide? (UPDATE: I guess not.)

Breakthrough Performance on Camera:

  • Ellar Coltrane, Boyhood
  • Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
  • Jenny Slate, Obvious Child

You guys know Pike’s been making movies for over a decade, right?

Breakthrough Performance Behind the Camera:

  • Damien Chazelle, Whiplash
  • Dan Gilroy, Nightcrawler
  • Gillian Robespierre, Obvious Child
  • Jon Stewart, Rosewater

I never did see Rosewater. My bad.

Chicago's public transit system is one of the finest in the country! ()

Chicago’s public transit system is one of the finest in the country! (Source)

St. Louis Film Critics:

Picture:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game

I’m just going to say it’s increasingly obvious that GBH will be up for Best Picture.

Director:

  • Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • David Fincher, Gone Girl
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Birdman
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood
  • Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game

It’s too bad Tyldum didn’t earn any of these nominations for Headhunters. That movie was incredible.

Actor:

  • Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game
  • Jake Gyllenhaal, Nightcrawler
  • Tom Hardy, Locke
  • Michael Keaton, Birdman
  • Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Hi, Tom Hardy!

Actress:

  • Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night
  • Felicity Jones, The Theory of Everything
  • Julianne Moore, Still Alice
  • Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
  • Reese Witherspoon, Wild

No surprises here…

Supporting Actor:

  • Josh Brolin, Inherent Vice
  • Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
  • Edward Norton, Birdman
  • Tony Revolori, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
  • J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

Squeezing Revolori into the category is an interesting choice, though. He was good, too.

She will accomplish great things. But she's also going to want her father back. ()

Supporting Actress:

  • Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
  • Jessica Chastain, A Most Violent Year
  • Carrie Coon, Gone Girl
  • Mackenzie Foy, Interstellar
  • Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game
  • Emma Stone, Birdman

And Foy. Clearly they didn’t want to marginalize here or Revolori in a “Youth Performance” category. I like that.

And another nom for Coon! Good for her.

Original Screenplay:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Locke
  • Nightcrawler
  • Whiplash

And another citation for Locke. I’m glad that film hasn’t been forgotten.

Adapted Screenplay:

  • Gone Girl
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • The Imitation Game
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Unbroken

Woof. I love Guardians, but it’s pretty obvious they didn’t have a lot to work with in this category.

Cinematography:

  • Birdman
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Interstellar
  • Nightcrawler
  • Unbroken

A hair surprised they didn’t push Nightcrawler for Picture.

Art Direction:

  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Mr. Turner
  • Nightcrawler
  • Snowpiercer
  • Under the Skin

At this point, it’s looking like Snowpiercer has at least this one nomination in the bag. I hope so.

But, seriously…Nightcrawler? Was there any art direction of note there?

Music Score:

  • Birdman
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Inherent Vice
  • Interstellar
  • Under the Skin

I would love if Inherent Vice got an Oscar nomination here. Jonny Greenwood was totally fucked over for There Will Be Blood and The Master.

Music Soundtrack:

  • Begin Again
  • Boyhood
  • Get On Up
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Into the Woods
  • Whiplash

For me, this category has only one winner–the soundtrack so awesomely retro they actually released it on cassette.

Visual Effects:

  • Birdman
  • Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Interstellar
  • Noah

Ooh, Birdman! Those were some pretty good effects that have mostly gone overlooked. GBH is an iffier choice, though; even allowing that the crudeness of the effects was deliberate, they took me out of the film somewhat.

Just another day of getting mistaken for other men.

Foreign Film:

  • Force Majeure
  • Gloria
  • Human Capital
  • Ida
  • Two Days, One Night

I think Gloria was Oscar-eligible last year. Heard it was good, though. Human Capital I’ve heard more mixed things about.

Had another argument about Force Majeure the other day. Loved it.

Animated Film:

  • Big Hero 6
  • The Book of Life
  • The Boxtrolls
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2
  • The Lego Movie
  • Penguins of Madagascar

Penguins, eh? First time anyone’s cited that film. And no Princess Kaguya. But that’s life.

Documentary:

  • CITIZENFOUR
  • Finding Vivian Maier
  • Jodorowsky’s Dune
  • Life Itself
  • Red Army
  • Rich Hill

I do want to see the Vivian Maier film. And Red Army had such badass posters. And Rich Hill looked quite good as well (if very, very depressing). Probably should’ve seen it when it was playing near me.

Comedy:

  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Obvious Child
  • St. Vincent
  • 22 Jump Street

Some funny movies on here. Dear White People is funnier than any of them.

Arthouse:

  • Boyhood
  • Calvary
  • Frank
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Locke
  • Whiplash

I wonder what they’d make of something like Upstream Color or Goodbye to Language.

Scene:

  • Birdman – Times Square
  • Guardians of the Galaxy – Prison break
  • Selma – Church bombing
  • 22 Jump Street – End credits
  • Whiplash – Finale drum solo
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past – Quicksilver Pentagon escape

Wait, that’s the only place you cite Selma? Weak.

These are all good scenes, though. The Quicksilver scene is by a mile the best scene in that film. And the end credits to 22 Jump Street are truly hysterical.

Okay, when Detroit comes up, you have to cite RoboCop. Because it's RoboCop. Because HE'S RoboCop. ()

Okay, when Detroit comes up, you have to cite RoboCop. Because it’s RoboCop. Because HE’S RoboCop. (Source)

Detroit Film Critics:

Picture:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Under the Skin
  • Whiplash

I admit, seeing Under the Skin in the theater, I didn’t really expect it would still be in the awards conversation. I suppose, even given my issues with it, I’m glad something that abstract and obscure is being embraced by the awards groups. Better that than another fucking biopic.

Director:

  • Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Damien Chazelle, Whiplash
  • Jonathan Glazer, Under the Skin
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Birdman
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood

5 for 5. Always seems a bit boring, no?

Actor:

  • Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game
  • Brendan Gleeson, Calvary
  • Jake Gyllenhaal, Nightcrawler
  • Tom Hardy, Locke
  • Michael Keaton, Birdman
  • Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Always glad to see Gleeson. Really wish that film had more traction in the Best Picture races. It’s so good.

Actress:

  • Essie Davis, The Babadook
  • Scarlett Johansson, Under the Skin
  • Julianne Moore, Still Alice
  • Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
  • Reese Witherspoon, Wild

So, so happy that Essie Davis is here. She was so fucking great. And apparently the film isn’t eligible for Oscars (presumably for some bullshit reason). Well, it’ll be eligible here, folks.

Also, seeing Johansson led me to conclude that Under the Skin might be this year’s Drive; an arthousey film, widely acclaimed by critics, embraced by critics awards, and almost totally shafted by the Oscars. Because there, I can’t imagine it’ll get more than Score (and maybe Cinematography. That branch throws out a few curveballs). But here…racking up the noms.

Supporting Actor:

  • Josh Brolin, Inherent Vice
  • Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
  • Edward Norton, Birdman
  • Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
  • J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

I hope Brolin is the #5 and not Robert Duvall. More love for a PTA film and less love for a film that sucked. That seems reasonable, right?

Supporting Actress:

  • Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
  • Laura Dern, Wild
  • Rene Russo, Nightcrawler
  • Emma Stone, Birdman
  • Tilda Swinton, Snowpiercer

So…it…is.

This would really be about the best possible version of this category, given who’s likely to be nominated. Maybe swap out Dern for Jessica Chastain. Give me Tilda and I’d be happy with anything, though.

Ensemble:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Into the Woods

I’d really love if Guardians got a rogue Adapted Screenplay nomination. That’d be so much more interesting than Wild.

painting pissing gif

Screenplay:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • Calvary
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Whiplash

I really need to get a copy of Calvary. I bet it’d hold up to repeat viewings.

Documentary:

  • CITIZENFOUR
  • Finding Vivian Maier
  • Jodorowsky’s Dune
  • Keep On Keepin’ On
  • Life Itself

Man, I can’t wait for The Look of Silence.

Breakthrough:

  • Damien Chazelle, Whiplash
  • Jennifer Kent, The Babadook
  • Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Belle/Beyond the Lights
  • Chris Pratt, Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Dan Stevens, The Guest

Really should’ve seen The Guest when it was playing here.

I’d put Mbatha-Raw in Actress (go with 6 nominees like in Actor, or take out Johansson), and give this to Kent, but that’s just me.

No trip to Chicago would be complete without a stop at the Field Museum to see Sue. My mother always considered it a personal highlight of our trips there to "commune" with Sue. (Source)

No trip to Chicago would be complete without a stop at the Field Museum to see Sue. My mother always considered it a personal highlight of our trips there to “commune” with Sue. (Source)

San Francisco Film Critics: (they announced their winners already, so I’ll bold them)

Picture:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Imitation Game
  • Under the Skin
  • Whiplash

More Under the Skin. I’ll tell you, once upon a time the Academy would probably give it a Best Director nod (like Woman in the DunesFellini Satyricon, etc.), but now, I can’t see that happening. But if it does happen, I won’t be quite as shocked as most.

Also, I could see Birdman pulling a King’s Speech and snagging Best Picture at the last minute, even though Boyhood, like The Social Network, was the favorite.

Director:

  • Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Jonathan Glazer, Under the Skin
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Birdman
  • Mike Leigh, Mr. Turner
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood

Leigh over Chazelle, and Anderson over Tyldum? Interesting, especially since this is the first I’ve seen of Leigh, at least where American awards are concerned.

Actor:

  • Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game
  • Jake Gyllenhaal, Nightcrawler
  • Michael Keaton, Birdman
  • Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything
  • Timothy Spall, Mr. Turner

I’m surprised they didn’t go for Mr. Turner for Picture. But that’s the way it goes.

Actress:

  • Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night
  • Essie Davis, The Babadook
  • Scarlett Johansson, Under the Skin
  • Julianne Moore, Still Alice
  • Reese Witherspoon, Wild

No Rosamund Pike? Wow. Love the Davis nom, but omitting Pike (and keeping Johansson) doesn’t work so well.

Supporting Actor:

  • Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
  • Gene Jones, The Sacrament
  • Edward Norton, Birdman
  • Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
  • J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

I’m sure you too are wondering who Gene Jones is, and what The Sacrament is.

It is, apparently, a found-footage horror film set in a cult commune. Jones plays the leader of the cult. Apparently, he was the gas station owner in No Country for Old Men, the “friendo” in, “Call it, friendo”. Here’s a picture of him in the film:

Looks like there’s some potential for entertaining/chilling histrionics there. Not sure I’d particularly want to see it, but Jones’ nomination seems quite reasonable. And kudos to the SF Film Critics for shaking things up a little.

Supporting Actress:

  • Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
  • Jessica Chastain, A Most Violent Year
  • Agata Kulesza, Ida
  • Emma Stone, Birdman
  • Tilda Swinton, Snowpiercer

This is pretty much the perfect lineup for this category, for this year. I mean, Uma Thurman in Nymphomaniac would make it even better, but I’ll be a realist for once.

Also, surprised they didn’t go with Knightley here.

Original Screenplay:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Mr. Turner
  • A Most Violent Year
  • Whiplash

It’s sad that A Most Violent Year has been kind of AWOL (outside of nods for Jessica Chastain) for a lot of the season. I’m still looking forward to it.

Adapted Screenplay:

  • Gone Girl
  • The Imitation Game
  • Inherent Vice
  • Snowpiercer
  • Wild

I’m tempted to quote the entire “be a shoe” speech, or the entire “Cool Girl” speech, but I’ll instead say that, even though I’ve seen the trailer for Wild about 50 times (pitfalls of going to the movies a lot), that bit with the fox is still ridiculous.

birdman liquor store

Cinematography:

  • Birdman
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Ida
  • Mr. Turner
  • Under the Skin

I’d be cool with this being the Academy lineup. Maybe swap one of these for Interstellar, but even that’s not a necessity.

Editing:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • Inherent Vice
  • Under the Skin
  • Whiplash

Inherent Vice for Editing? A film that’s already notoriously incoherent (by design)? All right, then.

Production Design:

  • Birdman
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Inherent Vice
  • Mr. Turner
  • Snowpiercer

“We all freeze and die!”

Animated Feature:

  • Big Hero 6
  • The Boxtrolls
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2
  • The Lego Movie
  • The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

If this isn’t the Academy lineup, I’ll be genuinely shocked. I guess it’s not that out of the realm of possibility for Kaguya to get shafted, but what would they pick instead?

Foreign Language Film:

  • Force Majeure
  • A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
  • Ida
  • Two Days, One Night
  • Wild Tales

Love that A Girl Walks Home is here. Swap out Two Days for Leviathan and I’d be completely happy.

Documentary:

  • CITIZENFOUR
  • Finding Vivian Maier
  • Jodorowsky’s Dune
  • Life Itself
  • The Overnighters

More Vivian Maier support. That could sneak onto the Academy ballot.

Special Citation:

  • Blue Ruin
  • The Galapagos Affair
  • A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
  • Listen Up Philip
  • The One I Love

Is this a competitive award or are all five equally cited? I’m not sure. (Competitive. And I really need to see The One I Love. It sounds like something I might like.)

Grandeur, thy name is Chicago. ()

Grandeur, thy name is Chicago. (Source)

San Diego Film Awards:

Picture:

  • Boyhood
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Nightcrawler
  • Selma
  • The Theory of Everything

No Birdman? Wow. At least Selma made it on.

Director:

  • Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • David Fincher, Gone Girl
  • Dan Gilroy, Nightcrawler
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Birdman
  • Richard Linklater, Boyhood

Another spread-the-love kind of awards group. That’s fair.

Actor:

  • Ralph Fiennes, The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Brendan Gleeson, Calvary
  • Jake Gyllenhaal, Nightcrawler
  • Tom Hardy, Locke
  • Michael Keaton, Birdman
  • Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

No David Oyelowo?

Actress:

  • Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night
  • Felicity Jones, The Theory of Everything
  • Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
  • Hilary Swank, The Homesman
  • Mia Wasikowska, Tracks

Woah. No Julianne Moore, but they put Mia Wasikowska on? That’s bold. I kind of want to see that film (it really came and went, though). Also, Swank again.

Supporting Actor:

  • Riz Ahmed, Nightcrawler
  • Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
  • Edward Norton, Birdman
  • Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
  • J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

I still don’t really think Ahmed was nomination-good, but anything to shake up this boring fucking category.

Supporting Actress:

  • Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
  • Carrie Coon, Gone Girl
  • Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game
  • Rene Russo, Nightcrawler
  • Emma Stone, Birdman

I like Coon, but I still say Kim Dickens was better. Also, I’d just like to mention how Carmen Ejogo (Coretta Scott King in Selma) was pegged as a potential nominee early on in the year, but it doesn’t seem to have panned out. Pity.

Ensemble:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game
  • Selma

Only two nominations for Selma. Odd. And this is about the only place Nightcrawler wasn’t nominated.

He's happy. I think. Maybe "satisfied" is more like it.

He’s happy. I think. Maybe “satisfied” is more like it.

Original Screenplay:

  • Birdman
  • Boyhood
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Locke
  • Nightcrawler

I wonder if Locke could manage an Oscar nomination here. You’ve got three locks in this category (the first three, alphabetically), and a lot of potential contenders for those last two slots. Especially since Selma has been pretty AWOL in this category.

Adapted Screenplay:

  • The Fault in Our Stars
  • Gone Girl
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Unbroken
  • Wild

Fault in Our Stars, huh? I’m not objecting, really, I liked the film, it’s just kind of an out-there pick.

Cinematography:

  • Force Majeure
  • Gone Girl
  • Interstellar
  • Nightcrawler
  • Unbroken

Love the Force Majeure citation. But no Birdman? Ridiculous.

Editing:

  • Boyhood
  • Edge of Tomorrow
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Nightcrawler

Again glad that Edge of Tomorrow hasn’t been forgotten.

Production Design:

  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game
  • Into the Woods
  • Interstellar
  • The Theory of Everything

This what I’m afraid the Academy lineup will be.

Score:

  • Birdman
  • Gone Girl
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Imitation Game
  • Nightcrawler

9 nominations for Nightcrawler. Damn. It happens sometimes, these random sweeps.

Foreign Language Film:

  • Force Majeure
  • Heli
  • Ida
  • Two Days, One Night
  • Venus in Fur

Heli was Mexico’s Foreign Film submission last year. It also won Best Director at Cannes last year. Why it’s up for the award this year, I’m not sure.

Why Venus in Fur is up for anything, I am also not sure.

Documentary:

  • CITIZENFOUR
  • Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me
  • Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me
  • Last Days in Vietnam
  • Life Itself

Last Days in Vietnam looks good. I’ll try and see that.

Animated Film:

  • Big Hero 6
  • The Boxtrolls
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2
  • The Lego Movie
  • The Nut Job

The Nut Job?

The fucking Nut Job?

There’s only one way to end this article, then:

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