‘Gravity’ and ‘American Hustle’ Top 86th Annual Academy Awards Nominees

The 86th Annual Academy Awards Nominees 2014

This morning Thor Chris Hemsworth and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences president, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, were nice enough to wake up at the butt crack of dawn to announce the nominees for the 86th Annual Academy Awards. While there were many that stood out as “duh” nominations, like American Hustle and Gravity earning ten nominations and12 Years a Slave walking away with nine, there were snubs that actually surprised me this year. And then there were films like Nebraska and Philomena snatching up nominations like Augustus Gloop at Willy Wonka’s factory. See the full list of nominees for the 2014 Oscars after the break.

Now I know it was a long shot for Scarlett Johansson to be nominated for her voice in Her, but the fact that Short Term 12 received no love is sad. And then there was Inside Llewyn Davis that only received one nomination for Best Cinematography of all things. No Best Director (Joel and Ethan Coen), Actor (Oscar Isaac), or Original Song (“Please Mr. Kennedy”). Weak.

Tom Hanks was a big surprise no show in the Best Actor category for Captain Phillips. And then there was poor Emma Thompson who is no where to be found in the Best Actress category for her excellent portrayal of P.L. Travers in Saving Mr. Banks. One that grinds my gears the most is the lack of recognition for Monsters University. I don’t get it. This is the third Pixar film to be left out of Best Animated Feature, joining the likes of A Bug’s Life, Cars 2, and Toy Story 2. It’s also the second Pixar film to be unrecognized in any category along with A Bug’s Life. Monsters University is far superior than Despicable Me 2.

So I got 35 out of 49 of my Oscar predictions. I should have gone with who I felt would be nominated versus my infusion of wishful thinking and my actual predictions. You win some you lose some. Without further ado, the nominees are:

Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips
Bradley Cooper, American Hustle
Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave
Jonah Hill, The Wolf of Wall Street
Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club

A solid bunch, I’m surprised the Academy voted in favor of Bradley Cooper or Abdi over Tom Hanks; one of two categories he was knocked out of. It’s sad that Bruhl (Rush) or McConaughey (Mud) weren’t recognized though. I don’t think Cooper be in this mix at all.

Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine
Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave
Julia Roberts, August: Osage County
June Squibb, Nebraska

I’m a bit taken by everyone’s love for Squibb. I don’t see her really going out of her way to bring a memorable character. “Oh she’s so edgy because she flashed her naughty bits at a grave stone.” Big whoop. Scarlett Johansson brought a level of acting on screen when she wasn’t even there in a physical form. A similar snub to that of Andy Serkis who has never been nominated for his motion capture acting. This is the exact reason the Academy needs to introduce a voice acting category.

Best Director
David O. Russell, American Hustle
Alfonso Cuarón, Gravity
Alexander Payne, Nebraska
Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
Martin Scorsese, The Wolf of Wall Street

Alexander Payne really? Not sure where you’re going with this one Academy. You’ve got the Coen brothers, Woody Allen, and Spike Jonze, all who have created brilliant works, and yet you give it to Payne. And also David O. Russell? Why? American Hustle was decent, but it was meandering at times and needed some definite cuts.

Best Actress in a Leading Role
Amy Adams, American Hustle
Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Sandra Bullock, Gravity
Judi Dench, Philomena
Meryl Streep, August: Osage County

I can live with this minus Judi Dench. Brie Larson has been incredibly overlooked, most likely due to the lack of a “Consideration” campaign, but come on. If Jennifer Lawrence can get nominated for her first big feature in Winter’s Bone than Brie Larson can be nominated for Short Term 12.

Best Actor in a Leading Role
Christian Bale, American Hustle
Bruce Dern, Nebraska
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Wolf of Wall Street
Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club

Bruce. Dern. What did this man do to stand out above a spectacular heartfelt performance by Oscar Isaac (Inside Llewyn Davis)? The man pours his soul into that performance to bring make a pathetic man surprisingly sympathetic. All Bruce Dern does is act old and senile. And I don’t believe you could argue Dern brought a better performance than Joaquin Phoenix. Not for a second. Good grief.

Best Picture
American Hustle
Captain Phillips
Dallas Buyers Club
12 Years a Slave
The Wolf of Wall Street

Again, we have Philomena and Nebraska showing their ugly faces in parts they are not welcome. Yet another snub for the Coens (Inside Llewyn Davis), Short Term 12, and Blue Jasmine. There are special places in hell reserved for this kind of tomfoolery.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Before Midnight, written by Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy, and Ethan Hawke
Captain Phillips, screenplay by Billy Ray
Philomena, screenplay by Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope
12 Years a Slave, screenplay by John Ridley
The Wolf of Wall Street, screenplay by Terence Winter

Philomena. Stahhhhhp. Did anyone see August: Osage County? That movie is a fantastic adaptation.

Best Original Screenplay
American Hustle, written by Eric Warren Singer and David O. Russell
Blue Jasmine, written by Woody Allen
Dallas Buyers Club, written by Craig Borten & Melisa Wallack
Her, written by Spike Jonze
Nebraska, written by Bob Nelson

And then we have Nebraska. What is this shenanigans?

Best Animated Feature Film
The Croods
Despicable Me 2
Ernest and Celestine
The Wind Rises

It doesn’t even make sense in my mind how Despicable Me 2 is better than Monsters University. It hurts my brain actually.

Best Documentary Feature
The Act of Killing
Cutie and the Boxer
Dirty Wars
The Square
20 Feet From Stardom

Best Foreign Language Film
The Broken Circle Breakdown (Belgium)
The Great Beauty (Italy)
The Hunt (Denmark)
The Missing Picture (Cambodia)
Omar (Palestine)

I need to investigate why Blue is the Warmest Color is ineligible for this category.

Best Cinematography
The Grandmaster, Philippe Le Sourd
Gravity, Emmanuel Lubezki
Inside Llewyn Davis, Bruno Delbonnel
Nebraska, Phedon Papamichael
Prisoners, Roger A. Deakins

I can dig it sans Nebraska.

Best Original Song
“Alone Yet Not Alone,” Alone Yet Not Alone, music by Bruce Broughton and lyric by Dennis Spiegel
“Happy,” Despicable Me 2, music and lyric by Pharrell Williams
“Let It Go,” Frozen, music and lyric by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
“The Moon Song,” Her, music by Karen O; lyric by Karen O and Spike Jonze
“Ordinary Love,” Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, music by Paul Hewson, Dave Evans, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen and lyric by Paul Hewson

Best Costume Design
American Hustle, Michael Wilkinson
The Grandmaster, William Chang Suk Ping
The Great Gatsby, Catherine Martin
The Invisible Woman, Michael O’Connor
12 Years a Slave, Patricia Norris

Best Documentary Short Subject
CaveDigger, Jeffrey Karoff
Facing Fear, Jason Cohen
Karama Has No Walls, Sara Ishaq
The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life, Malcolm Clarke and Nicholas Reed
Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall, Edgar Barens

Best Film Editing
American Hustle, Jay Cassidy, Crispin Struthers and Alan Baumgarten
Captain Phillips, Christopher Rouse
Dallas Buyers Club, John Mac McMurphy and Martin Pensa
Gravity, Alfonso Cuarón and Mark Sanger
12 Years a Slave, Joe Walker

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Dallas Buyers Club, Adruitha Lee and Robin Mathews
Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa, Stephen Prouty
The Lone Ranger, Joel Harlow and Gloria Pasqua-Casny

I’d be pissed if I was the hairstylist for American Hustle.

Best Original Score
The Book Thief, John Williams
Gravity, Steven Price
Her, William Butler and Owen Pallett
Philomena, Alexandre Desplat
Saving Mr. Banks, Thomas Newman

Best Production Design
American Hustle, Judy Becker (Production Design) and Heather Loeffler (Set Decoration)
Gravity, Andy Nicholson (Production Design) and Rosie Goodwin and Joanne Woollard (Set Decoration)
The Great Gatsby, Catherine Martin (Production Design) and Beverley Dunn (Set Decoration)
Her, K.K. Barrett (Production Design) and Gene Serdena (Set Decoration)
12 Years a Slave, Adam Stockhausen (Production Design) and Alice Baker (Set Decoration)

Best Animated Short Film
Feral, Daniel Sousa and Dan Golden
Get a Horse!, Lauren MacMullan and Dorothy McKim
Mr. Hublot, Laurent Witz and Alexandre Espigares
Possessions, Shuhei Morita
Room on the Broom, Max Lang and Jan Lachauer

Best Live-Action Short Film
Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn’t Me), Esteban Crespo
Avant Que De Tout Perdre (Just Before Losing Everything), Xavier Legrand and Alexandre Gavras
Helium, Anders Walter and Kim Magnusson
Pitääkö Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?), Selma Vilhunen and Kirsikka Saari
The Voorman Problem, Mark Gill and Baldwin Li

Best Sound Editing
All Is Lost, Steve Boeddeker and Richard Hymns
Captain Phillips, Oliver Tarney
Gravity, Glenn Freemantle
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Brent Burge
Lone Survivor, Wylie Stateman

Best Sound Mixing
Captain Phillips, Chris Burdon, Mark Taylor, Mike Prestwood Smith and Chris Munro
Gravity, Skip Lievsay, Niv Adiri, Christopher Benstead and Chris Munro
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Christopher Boyes, Michael Hedges, Michael Semanick and Tony Johnson
Inside Llewyn Davis, Skip Lievsay, Greg Orloff and Peter F. Kurland
Lone Survivor, Andy Koyama, Beau Borders and David Brownlow

Best Visual Effects
Gravity, Tim Webber, Chris Lawrence, Dave Shirk and Neil Corbould
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Joe Letteri, Eric Saindon, David Clayton and Eric Reynolds
Iron Man 3, Christopher Townsend, Guy Williams, Erik Nash and Dan Sudick
The Lone Ranger, Tim Alexander, Gary Brozenich, Edson Williams and John Frazier
Star Trek Into Darkness, Roger Guyett, Patrick Tubach, Ben Grossmann and Burt Dalton

Be sure to keep up with all of the updates on Awards season by following the tag, Movie Awards. Check out the nominees for the 19th Annual Critics Choice Awards as they will be awarded this Thursday, January 16.

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