Steve’s 2013 Oscar Predictions, Part 4: Best Actress

Best Actress Nominations

Amy Adams for American Hustle

Cate Blanchett for Blue Jasmine

Sandra Bullock for Gravity

Judi Dench for Philomena

Meryl Streep for August: Osage County



Will Win: Cate Blanchett

Should Win: Cate Blanchett

Could Win: Amy Adams

Let’s take a breath and do an easy one before moving on to the highly competitive Director and Picture races. This category belongs to Blanchett and well it should. Her performance in Blue Jasmine is achingly perfect. She presents a character that is completely unlikeable in her narcissism and unredeemed in her brokenness, yet we can’t take our eyes off of her. If there ever was a performance that was a lock for an Oscar, this is it. It is stunning. The one and only thing that could prevent her from placing a second golden statue on her mantel is the Woody Allen controversy, but I don’t think that will be enough to dethrone her. If she did happen to lose, who would take advantage of her misfortune? Hey, look, there looms Meryl Streep and Meryl Streep is Meryl Streep. She chews up the scenery in August: Osage County, but adds just enough nuance so that the part doesn’t go completely over the top. I greatly enjoyed watching her, but Julia Roberts gave the best performance in that movie. Add to that the fact that Streep won an Oscar two years ago and it becomes highly unlikely  she will win this one. How about Judi Dench? After all, Judi Dench isn’t simply Judi Dench, she is Dame Judi Dench and she has assembled an incredible body of work in the latter portion of her career. She is as delightful as ever in Philomena, but the role isn’t meaty enough, nor the movie big enough to get her the win. Sandra Bullock gives a fine performance in Gravity, but that movie is not at all about the acting, so she will not win, either. American Hustle is most certainly about the acting and Amy Adams is terrific in it. She is so crafty as the con artist, yet so vulnerable. The way she slips in and out of the English accent depending on what her character is up to is pure magic. If she wins, it will not simply be due to Blanchett’s misfortune. She deserves it for this role and she could pick up a few “it’s time” votes also, this being her fifth nomination in nine years with no wins yet. That could be enough to make this race interesting, but I still wouldn’t bet against Blanchett.

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