My friend introduced me to this last year. I had no idea people did it, and I honestly think it’s the best way to pick the Oscars. Here’s how it works:
You take every category and rank all of the nominees in terms of order you think they’re going to win. If your #1 choice wins, you get 1 point. If #2 wins, you get to. Etc. And in the end, you tally your score up. And the lowest score (24 being the lowest) wins. It’s very simple, and the only time it gets confusing is if a tie happens, which is pretty rare in the history of the Academy (even though one did happen in 2012).
I prefer it because it’s based more on diagnosing the category than simply picking a winner. And diagnosing categories is my specialty.
Here’s my scorecard for this year’s Oscars: (more…)
My giant ballot article went up a few hours ago. This is the abridged version of that, for easy reference during the ceremony.
Here’s everything you should be taking, and what I’m taking. Very succinct, with cliff notes versions of all the categories.
And in a bit, I’m gonna post my scorecard for how I’m gonna rank myself on that. (Note: The rankings here may be slightly different from the ones I’m picking on the Scorecard.)
Here are the quick picks for the 88th Academy Awards: (more…)
Everything you need for Oscar night in one place. I make things as simple or as complex as you want them to be. You can read all 34,000 words like the insane person who wrote them, or you can skip through and look purely for my picks. It’s up to you. All I can promise is a respectable showing in your office/party pool and enough knowledge to make you look like you know what you’re talking about.
This article acts as both my own personal ballot as well as a tool for guessing what will win in every category. On the personal side, this acts as an extension of my Oscar Quest. I rank each category based on my thoughts having seen all the nominees and pick what I’d vote for if I were casting a ballot. That’s just for me. The practical side is more interesting. I run down every category, discuss the nominees in depth. I give you all the precursor information you need, then break down the categories. I tell you what’s most likely going to win, what its biggest competition is, and which nominee has a chance at sneaking up to surprise everyone with a win. I also link to all the category breakdowns I’ve been writing over the past couple of weeks (hint: you can click the name of each category to get to them) if you want every bit of information you can possibly get.
Then, at the very end, I plainly say “Here’s what I am taking on my ballot” and “Here is what you should take, because it is the safest and smartest decision, based on everything I’ve presented above.” I also color code everything, so you can easily find stuff. No one else goes this nuts with their coverage. Trust me. This is why you come to me. (more…)
The Academy announced the list of film scores eligible for the category this year. It totals 112 films.
As always, there will be films people are surprised aren’t on here, and films that make it on despite not seeming like they would. Mostly it’s 80& full of scores that have no chance of being nominated.
I use this article to sort through the mess and give you a good idea of which portion of the list you need not concern yourself with.
Here are all 112 scores eligible to be nominated for Best Original Score: (more…)
Well, that’s another year in the books. Goodbye, 2014, hello 2015.
I have no idea how many I got wrong or right. I think I was in the 18 range or so. Which is admirable. I don’t even care. Because not a single category threw me for a loop. I was right there with either the winner or runner up in every single category. That’s all I can ever ask for.
I was also extremely pleased that the majority of the Oscars went to three of my top four films of the year. And you throw in an extra win for my #6 film and another win for my #10 film. So I’m pretty pleased overall.
We’ll tally everything up tomorrow. In the mean time. I was typing up the Oscars as I watched it with my Chinese food and alcohol.
I was also feverishly texting throughout the whole thing. It’s actually kind of a miracle that I managed to get all of it done.
So, here’s my live blog of the Oscars, as I was watching: (more…)
My giant picks article went up a few hours ago. This is the abridged version of that, for easy reference during the ceremony.
Here’s everything you should be taking, and what I’m taking.
Oh, and rankings for that new system I’m trying to see how truly accurate I am at all of this. That is, I’m ranking them in terms of the order they will win. And the closest the winner is to my rankings, the better I do.
Here are the quick picks:
I used to call this Picks, Votes, Analysis, Rankings. But that’s not a fun title.
This article has everything you need for Oscar night. I run down every single category, tell you what’s nominated, how I felt about each of the nominees, tell you what wasn’t nominated that might have been, what I’d vote for, then break down the category and let you know what’s most likely going to win, what its biggest competition is, and what, if anything, has a chance to sneak in and surprise everyone. It has links to all the category breakdowns I’ve written over the past three weeks, and I even say, at the very end, “Here’s what I’m taking, and here’s what you should take, because it’s the smartest and safest decision.” I also color code everything, so you can find stuff incredibly easy.
If you want to sound remotely like an expert at your Oscar party and know very little about the overall goings on apart from having seen some of the movies, read this article. You’ll be fine. (more…)
This is a tradition for me. Every year, before the Oscars, I break down every single one of the 24 categories. I do this to familiarize everyone with each category, how it works, what its history is, how it usually turns out, and also as a precursor to my picks article, allowing me to get most of the heavy lifting out of the way beforehand.
How these work is — I go over each category’s history, give you all the previous winners and nominees, then list the current year’s nominees. And then I’ll go over how each of the guilds (if there is a corresponding guild) have went, and how that corresponds to the Oscars (some guilds mean a lot to how a category will play out. Others mean nothing). It’s basically everything you need to know in order to make an informed decision when you make your picks on Oscar night. And then I also rank the nominees at the end in terms of where I see them in terms of their likelihood to win.
Today is Best Original Score, one of my favorite categories. Film scores are terribly underrated. (more…)
We’re almost done with our shortlists. By my count, there are only four left that are to come out, including this one. And another one is right behind this, and will be posted soon. The other two I’m sure will be coming this week.
This one is the entire list of eligible scores for Best Original Score. It’s not particularly helpful, because there are over 100 on it every year. But it’s nice to look at, since you can narrow down the entire list to about 15 or so that have a chance. I might even be able to get closer. And that’s always fun.
So here’s the list of all 114 scores that are eligible for Best Original Score: (more…)
So I sat down to watch the Oscars and decided to live-blog it.
So, here is everything I wrote down while watching the Oscars:
Monologue was all right. Mostly safe, but it worked. Not a fan of Ellen as a host.
The crowd is lively. I like it.
Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
Classy speech. Good job. (more…)
Here’s a quick list of winners for the Oscars:
Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave
Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity
Best Actor: Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club
Best Actress: Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
Best Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave (more…)
All right, here’s an abridged version of all my Oscar picks. Basically — what I’m picking, what I want to win, what you should pick, and what will win if my pick doesn’t win (the alternate, essentially). I’ll write a brief blurb underneath explaining the deal with the category.
Oh, and here’s a link to the giant picks article. For reference.
So anyway, here are the picks: (more…)
It’s that time again.
For some reason, during the most competitive (at least, Best Picture-wise) year in a long time, I find myself less excited about this night than I have been in a while. Honestly, I think it’s because most of the technical awards are pretty much sewn up. It takes the element of surprise out of most of the night and saves it for the very end, as opposed to knowing the end and being excited along the way.
I’m also glad I’m out doing this on my own. I don’t even want to think about the kind of bitterness and hatred and blind campaigning that’s going on at all those Oscar blogs and sites I used to read.
This will be the same as every year. I’ll guess each category. What I think will win, what I think its main competition is, what the spoiler is, what I’m picking, and what you should probably pick if you want to win your Oscar pool. I also color-code everything to make it as easy to follow as possible.
I’m expecting to do pretty horribly this year. If I can manage 16 correct, I’ll be pleased. So take my opinions as they are: opinions. I have no idea what’s going to happen. Let me also specify that while this (obviously) is all my personal opinion it also will not include my personal opinion. This is all what I think will happen. Whether or not I think that’s a good decision is something else entirely. I’m in the picking business, not the deciding business. I also don’t need to know your opinion. I have a difficult enough time deciding my own as to who’s gonna win. More would be chaos.
So, with that, let’s roll up the sleeves: (more…)
Every year, leading up to the Oscars, I break down every single category. It’s essentially a precursor to my picks. I explain all the stuff that needs to be explained in detail, so when the time comes to make my picks, I can refer to it as a shorthand.
In the articles, I’ll go over each category’s history, show previous winners and nominees, then list the current year’s nominees, talk about the guild history, if it’s important, what the guilds went with this year, whether that means anything for that particular category — all the background you need to know to make an informed decision. And then, once that’s all done, I’ll rank the nominees in that category in order of their likelihood to win, based on how I see it at the present.
The only difference between this year and previous years is that this year, I’ll be doing only one category a day instead of multiple categories. This is so I can take more time with each category and not stuff a bunch into a single article for information overload, and, simply, so I don’t have to do as much work. Though it is also easier this way. One category, one day.
Today is Best Original Score. Which doesn’t really require much of an introduction. (more…)
This one isn’t a shortlist so much as it is a longlist.
The Academy announced the scores eligible to be nominated for Best Original Score. There are 114.
The best thing about this is — it gives you the opportunity to see the gears at work. Because in theory, there are 114 scores with a chance to be nominated, and yet — you can clearly narrow them down to about 20 without any effort whatsoever. You can clearly see that only a certain number of films and composers will get a look, because the Academy doesn’t really watch and listen to everything. They go by what the “big” films are and what’s getting the buzz.
Just reading through this list, you can clearly see which films will and won’t have a chance come nominations day, which is slightly upsetting, given the ideal concept that all films have a chance, but also easy for us, since — who the hell wants things to be so wide open you won’t be able to guess it?
So, that said, here are your eligible scores for Best Original Score: (more…)
Oscars 2012 Category Breakdown: Best Original Song & Best Original Score & Best Foreign Language Film
Today we continue my breakdown of all the Oscar categories by going into Best Original Score, Best Original Song, and Best Foreign Language Film.
Foreign Language Film is a category I don’t care about, and I’m glad this is an easy year for that.
Best Original Score is a category I like, even if they don’t always nominate stuff I like or vote for what should actually win. But there’s not much to say there. It’s like Cinematography. It’s usually more interesting than not and usually they vote well in it.
Best Original Song — I’m glad they finally changed that stupid ass voting process. That said, now the problem is that they don’t write good songs for films anymore. But that has nothing to do with the Oscar category. The branch tried to make their stupidity right, and I’ll respect that for the time being. Because that was much easier changed than a lack of great original songs for movies.
But, that’s what we’re doing today. I’ll go over all the past nominees of the categories, list this year’s nominees, then rank what I think each’s chances at winning are.
We start with Best Original Score, then move onto Song, then finish with Foreign Language Film: (more…)
Two more things were announced yesterday, one that has Oscar implications, and one that doesn’t, but is still interesting.
The first is the list of eligible scores for Best Original Score. There are 104 of them, but I bet when I’m done, I can narrow it down to a manageable twenty or so, if not less.
The other is the American Film Institute’s top ten films of the year. They tend to stray more toward what the Oscars will do than NBR, which typically has those few character choices that make me gravitate toward them. But AFI is usually pretty solid.
So we’ll start with them and get them out of the way, and then end with the scores. (more…)
Oscars 2011 Breakdown: Best Original Song, Best Original Score, Best Foreign Language Film, Best Animated Feature
Today we’re just grouping random things together. Normally I could spend a whole article just talking about Best Original Song and Best Original Score, but the music branch of the Academy has gotten so bad over the past decade that I can’t even bear to talk about how they make their decisions. I’d much rather look back in history at all the great stuff that’s come out of the categories. But since 2000, it’s been shit on top of shit on top of shit.
Then Best Foreign Langauge Film is a category I don’t much care about. I’m mostly interested in looking at what was nominated (since this is the first time I’m actually looking at the categories), just to see how many films I recognize. I’d wager that many of the films we know to be great foreign films didn’t even so much as make the nominees list, which is precisely why this category never meant anything to me. And Best Animated Feature — it’s a new category, created because of Pixar and Disney, and has basically been about rewarding Pixar and Disney. Except this year. I don’t really know what happened this year. It’ll take some time to figure that one out.
Anyway, those are the categories we’ll be dealing with today. I’ll try to contain my talk mostly to what’s nominated this year. What I’d actually like to say about these categories is too much for this one article. (more…)
Hooray, more Oscar stuff.
I’ve been patiently awaiting all of the guilds to announce. We’re almost a month away from Oscar nominations, so I’m looking for all the little things to tide me over until they’re announced. At least with the guilds, I can use them to be like, “So is this what they’re gonna nominate?” They haven’t even announced BAFTA yet.
But until then — I have another “shortlist,” if that’s what we’re calling it. Apparently 97 scores have qualified to be nominated for Best Original Score. I really have no better way to do this, so I’m just gonna list them all and then read through them all as I do. And then I’ll immediately throw off the absolute “never gonna happens,” which will probably be a good, I don’t know, two-thirds, hopefully, and then from there, gauge each one’s chances. Hopefully I’ll be able to whittle it down to “strong contender, definite, possible, long shit” lists. Let’s see what we get. (more…)