Tag Archives: Live Action

Oscar Predictions – Animated, Foreign, Doc, and Short Films

frozen olaf in summer

Welcome to The Screen Life’s Oscar Predictions! This is the first in a 6-part series, in which you will find a quick breakdown of each category, accompanied by ranked predictions. Also be sure to check out the complete OSCAR PREDICTIONS page (in the menu up top), which will be continually updated throughout the week. This is your grand guide to Sunday’s big night!

Best Animated Feature

This might seem to be a done deal, and it probably is. But don’t be fooled; it’s far from the surest thing this year. Hayao Miyazaki is always a force to be reckoned with. He’s won here before, and he has more than hinted that The Wind Rises will be his last film. Meanwhile, The Croods has been doing some serious campaigning and has a lot of champions. (Same with Despicable Me 2, though that’s more for the song.) And Ernest and Celestine was one of the most pleasant surprises all year. Still, Frozen appears to be the long awaited return-to-form for Disney, who sill has yet to win this award. (Though you can be sure, if this category existed in their heyday of the 80’s and 90’s, they would’ve clean up!)

1. Frozen
2. The Wind Rises
3. The Croods
4. Ernest and Celestine
5. Despicable Me 2

Best Foreign Language Film

I have seen exactly ZERO of these movies, so I have to base my predictions solely on the precursors and prognosticators. The foreign film juggernaut of the season, Blue Is the Warmest Color, was ineligible. The next behind in terms of critics awards was The Great Beauty. But critics aren’t voting here, so the winner is likely to be something a little more accessible. The Hunt is the box office draw, with recognizable star Mads Mikkelsen, and The Broken Circle Breakdown is more of the smaller indie favorite.

1. The Hunt (Denmark)
2. The Broken Circle Breakdown (Belgium)
3. The Great Beauty (Italy)
4. Omar (Palestine)
5. The Missing Picture (Cambodia)

Best Documentary Feature

Again, like Foreign, I haven’t seen any of these. The Act of Killing has dominated the season so far, along with the snubbed Stories We Tell and (to a lesser degree) Blackfish. But it seems, again, the more accessible 20 Feet From Stardom has the upper hand here. I’ve heard only wonderful things about it, so there really is no reason to vote against it. As for the others, they all have won their share of precursors here and there, and honestly any one of them could conceivably take the prize.

1. 20 Feet From Stardom
2. The Act of Killing
3. The Square
4. Dirty Wars
5. Cutie and the Boxer

Best Short Film – Animated

This year, the short categories were opened up to the entire Academy. Before, voters had to prove they had seen all the films. But now, like most other categories, screeners were sent out to everybody, and voters are left on the honor system to watch them all. If they do, Disney’s Get a Horse! could suffer from the loss of 3D. That would be great for Mr. Hublot. I honestly don’t see any of the others winning this, though Room on the Broom has the star power. But the Disney film is by far the most recognizable and widely seen of the nominees. If voters just check the name they recognize and are most familiar with, it’s the likely winner. (See my reviews here.)

1. Get a Horse!
2. Mr. Hublot
3. Room on the Broom
4. Feral
5. Possessions

Best Short Film – Live Action

This is a tough call. The overall quality of this category is better than its animated cousin, which is unusual in my short experience. Recently English language films and comedies have had the advantage here, which could be a great sign for The Voorman Problem. But in the end, I think voters will agree with me that it feels a little stunted, which throws the field wide open for any of the others. And in a true head to head, I just don’t see how the powerful, amazing standout Just Before Losing Everything loses this race. (See my reviews here.)

1. Avant De Tout Perdre (Just Before Losing Everything)
2. The Voorman Problem
3. Pitääkö Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?)
4. Helium
5. Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn’t Me)

Best Short Film – Documentary

Not only have I not seen any of these, I’ve never been able to catch any films nominated for Doc Short, EVER. Even after they began releasing the short programs to theaters almost a decade ago, the documentaries never made it beyond NY and LA. We here in the “flyovers” aren’t apparently aren’t worthy or smart enough to appreciate them. (Bitterness? What bitterness?) Honestly, few others have seen them either, so in this one category? Your guess is as good as mine. If you want to be a shade more informed, though, check out Kris Tapley’s rundown of the category here. One final quick note: The titular lady from The Lady in Number 6 just passed away on Sunday. Ballots are still out, so there could be a bit of either sympathy voting, or surge of recognizability.

1. The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life
2. Karama Has No Walls
3. Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall
4. Facing Fear
5. CaveDigger


Check out the other parts of the Oscar Predictions Series here:
Part 1 – Animated, Foreign, Doc, and Short Films
Part 2 – Technical Categories (Cinematography, Costumes, Makeup, Production Design, and Visual Effects)
Part 3 – Sound and Music
Part 4 – Storytelling (Editing and Screenplays)
Part 5 – Acting
Part 6 – Picture and Director

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