Steve’s Oscar Predictions: Part Three – Director and Picture

It’s been a good year at the movies. Although nothing really stands out as an all-time great movie, there certainly was a good variety of things to see, as represented by the Best Picture nominees. There were certainly fine movies and directors who failed to get nominated, but those that were have given us plenty to ponder. So, with no further ado, we’re on to the big two.

Best Director

Seen: Woody Allen (Midnight in Paris), Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life), Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist), Alexander Payne (The Descendants), Martin Scorsese (Hugo)

Will Win: Martin Scorsese – The field is tightly packed. A strong case could be made for any of these five. Four of these films are in my top five for the year. Hugo didn’t even make my top ten, yet I think Scorsese will win this Oscar. Many critics have applauded his wonderful use of 3D, but I think it is the 3D that caused its low placement in my rankings. I do not like 3D! I’m looking forward to seeing Hugo again soon at home in 2D. I think Scorsese will win because, even though he won the Oscar for The Departed, the Academy still feels that it owes him for letting so much of his great work go unrewarded. Also, it doesn’t hurt that Hugo is a love song to movie-making. Of course, The Artist is also such a love song, but I think Hazanavicius will lose out as a both an outsider and a newcomer. Although, I wouldn’t be surprized if he does win.

Should Win: Terrence Malick – The Tree of Life was an incredible feat of movie-making. It had a grand vision. True, it is not for everyone, mostly because Malick was too caught up in his vision, but nonetheless I would like to see such a bold and personal effort be rewarded.

Best Picture

Seen: The Artist, The Descendants, The Help, Hugo, Midnight in Paris, Moneyball, The Tree of Life

Haven’t Seen: Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, War Horse

Will Win: The Artist – This movie was charming, but is that enough to win Best Picture? I think it will be. The story wasn’t particularly deep, but it was effective. Will the Academy vote for a silent film shot in black and white? Again, I think it will. In its own way, this was a bold piece of film-making so I think we will see a dog on stage Sunday evening.

Should Win: The Tree of Life – This was the best film of the year, despite its flaws. Some found parts of it to be boring (and I’ll agree that the creation scene went on a little too long), but I found parts of The Artist to be dull, too. Overall, The Tree of Life is epic work, as close to great as anything came this year. It was deep. It was profound. I can’t wait to see it again and again. I love movies because of movies like this!

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