And the winner is…

And the winner is… sees JSHmoviestuff with all the latest predictions, nominations and downright hoopla of the annual movie awards season.

Spotlight_Best Picture winnerWell, in the end, I think the right movie won ‘Best Motion Picture of the Year’. To almost everyone’s surprise – and there were a few audible gasps inside the Dolby Theatre when it was announced – Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight took home the biggest prize of the 88th Academy Awards.

As much as I’d wanted The Big Short – a film very much about today – to triumph, it had to be content with winning one of the Writing awards – for ‘Adapted Screenplay’. And so Spotlight, the movie telling the true story of a team of crusading journalists uncovering a terrible child abuse scandal within the Boston Catholic church, was the deserving winner. It was also awarded ‘Original Screenplay’ and as you can see in the photo, everyone was very happy indeed.

Leonardo DiCaprio was also extremely happy, as he now is the proud recipient of a ‘Best Actor’ Oscar, giving a very moving acceptance speech and his Revenant director, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu again carried off ‘Best Director’ for the 2nd year running. Finally, I thought Brie Larson was also a deserving winner for Room – must go and see that!

And we’re done for another year. Time to go and watch some more movies!

Woo hoo! We’re now in The Oscars week, so it’s well past time to give my predictions on the movies and artists who may be walking away with that old charming gold statuette from the 88th Academy Awards come Sunday.

Chris Rock and OscarLet’s see how Chris Rock fares as the host, in what’s already a hugely controversial year with the protests at the number of white nominees joining the already heated discussions on the gender pay gap. Looks like he’ll have his hands full dealing with all of that. Good luck Chris!

So what’s going to win? With The Revenant, its star Leonardo DiCaprio and Room lead actress Brie Larson all triumphing at the British Academy Film Awards, the smart money seems to be on them to repeat that on 28th February. But you never know, there could always be a surprise…

Best Picture

Photograph: news.com.auThe Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant

Back at the start of the autumn, it seemed a foregone conclusion that Tom McCarthy’s journalist drama Spotlight would take this prize but a lot can happen in a the space of a couple of months and now the likes of George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road and The Martian also seem in with a shout after having had successes during this year’s awards season. My personal favourite in this category is Adam McKay’s astonishing drama The Big Short, which I’ve only just seen but which completely matched my prediction last year (after seeing its first trailer) when I called it ‘one of the essential movies to see in 2016‘. However, it could be edged out by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu achieving a rare double after last year’s triumph with Birdman and so I think we may just see him win for The Revenant.

Wanna win: The Big Short
Will win: The Revenant

Actor in a Leading Role

The MartianBryan Cranston – Trumbo
Matt Damon – The Martian
Leonardo DiCaprio – The Revenant
Michael Fassbender – Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne – The Danish Girl

Having only caught 1 of the performances in this category, this one’s a toughie. When word started to filter out that Eddie Redmayne’s next portrayal after last year’s Oscar-winning Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything was going to be as transgender artist in Tom Hooper’s The Danish Girl, he shot to the forefront of the front-runners list. But since then, we’ve seen Michael Fassbender hugely lauded for his fantastic turn as Steve Jobs in Danny Boyle’s drama and Bryan Cranston similarly honoured as blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo in Jay Roach’s biopic. I would so love Matt Damon to get this for his magnificently winning performance in Ridley Scott’s The Martian but I think it’s finally Leonardo DiCaprio’s time and after him not getting the award last year for what I thought was the finest of his career in The Wolf of Wall Street, we’ll pretty much definitely going to see him on that podium on Sunday.

Wanna win: Matt Damon
Will win: Leonardo DiCaprio

Actress in a Leading Role

RoomCate Blanchett – Carol
Brie Larson – Room
Jennifer Lawrence – Joy
Charlotte Rampling – 45 Years
Saoirse Ronan – Brooklyn

Once again, this category seemed to signal a sure-fire double for Cate Blanchett a few months back, when Todd Haynes’ Carol was premiered but over the awards season, we’ve seen Saoirse Ronan triumph for what it is apparently a brilliant performance in John Crowley’s Brooklyn (haven’t seen it yet! but have admired her since Atonement) and then Brie Larson emerge as the category’s front-runner for her extraordinary portrayal as Ma, one of the captives in Lenny Abrahamson’s drama Room. Even though the other nominees are the Oscar-winning Jennifer Lawrence and the iconic Charlotte Rampling, I’d like to see Brie Larson take this one.

Wanna win: Brie Larson
Will win: Brie Larson

In terms of the other biggie ‘Directing’ everyone pretty much thinks Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu will win for The Revenant and in doing so, achieve another double.

And as for the supporting categories, Kate Winslet has been taking quite a few of the awards this season for her role in Steve Jobs and could well win this and although Sylvester Stallone is many people’s favourite for his portrayal of the trainer (not the boxer this time) in the Rocky film Creed after triumphing at the Globes, I’d really like to see Mark Rylance take this for his much-lauded performance opposite Tom Hanks in Steven Spielberg’s Bridge of Spies.

Finally in the 2 ‘Writing’ awards, I’d really like to see Alex Garland win the ‘Original Screenplay’ award for Ex Machina and Charles Randolph & Adam McKay win the ‘Adapted Screenplay’ one for The Big Short. Let’s see…

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