In the Heart of the Sea Movie Review

Ron Howard’s In the Heart of the Sea is a periodically engrossing yet often curiously flat rendering of the true story that inspired Herman Melville’s famed novel Moby Dick. It begins in 1850 as the author (Ben Whishaw) visits Thomas (Brendan Gleeson), the last survivor of the Essex, a ship that was destroyed by a great white whale and leaving its crew stranded at sea. Thomas isn’t anxious to regale Melville of the survival tactics used 30 years prior. Yet he relents and he’s soon playing Gloria Stuart to Melville’s Bill Paxton.

We move to Nantucket circa 1820 as the whale oil trade is at its height and Owen Chase (Chris Hemsworth) is under the impression that he’ll get his first plum assignment as captain of the vessel. Politics thwarts this plan as that job goes to the more inexperienced George Pollard (Benjamin Walker), whose family are titans in the business. Speaking of politics, the screenplay occasionally (and rather needlessly) pouns the point home that the practice of slaughtering whales was a necessity 200 years ago.

Chase isn’t happy about being first mate and leaving his pregnant wife (of course she is) but he soon sets sail with Pollard and a crew that includes young Thomas (Tom Holland). There’s also a second mate portrayed by the talented Cillian Murphy, who is given incredibly little to do.

After several weeks of no luck on the mission, the Essex crew soon find themselves eye to whale eye with its pesky nemesis. Let the torment begin. In the Heart of the Sea doesn’t bother to flesh out its characters to any real degree. Hemsworth certainly looks the leading man part here and throws spears with the grace of his Thor hammer skills. His New England accent leaves much to be desired and he’s not the only one. Walker is rather dull. The best work belongs to the always solid Gleeson, who gets the most emotional material to work with.

Compliments are owed to the makeup crew and actors themselves that convincingly convey the wear and tear of the men stranded for months at sea. Howard has clearly set out to make an old fashioned story with new style CG effects. His old school sensibilities are actually more in tune with the mid-1970s than a century plus earlier. We actually don’t see the great white whale too often here… kind of like another great white dweller in Jaws. In the Heart of the Sea may be true and may have inspired a masterpiece work of art. However, that doesn’t mean that today it doesn’t feel pretty familiar and a bit like Jaws with less interesting people in the water.

**1/2 (out of four)

Todd’s FINAL 2015 Oscar Predictions

Here we are folks! After numerous posts prognosticating on what and whom will be nominated for the Academy Awards honoring 2015’s best, we will all collectively find out tomorrow morning. This Oscar season has been filled with much intrigue and a great deal of uncertainty.

Many questions abound:

  • Will the performances of Rooney Mara (Carol) and Alicia Vikander (The Danish Girl) be recognized in lead Actress or Supporting Actress? That query alone makes predicting both of those races tricky this year. I will go with both being recognized in Supporting, but if Oscar voters go lead with one or both, it changes the whole dynamic. There’s also the possibility that Vikander could be honored in Supporting for Ex Machina and not Danish, which adds to the confusion.
  • Will the Academy nominate their first Star Wars pic (The Force Awakens) since the original 38 years ago? It’s already become the highest grossing film of all time and could certainly lead to even more eyeballs watching the telecast. That said, I have it narrowly missing the cut.
  • Will Leonardo DiCaprio finally win the gold statue for his work in The Revenant? Precursor awards including the Golden Globes point to yes. A nomination seems assured.
  • Is Spotlight truly the front runner or not? Many other possibilities are out there for an “upset” win. It is, at best, a soft front runner.
  • I’ll finally note that my predictions reflect a belief that Straight Outta Compton will be shut out. This goes against what several other predictors are saying and many have it being recognized in Best Picture. Another high profile offering that I have coming up empty: Black Mass.

As I’ve done for the last several weeks, I’m listing my predicted nominees and other possibilities in each category by likelihood of being nominated. Just because I have something listed as #1 doesn’t mean I’m predicting it to win (I’ll have my first blog post up predicting the winners this weekend). In parentheses after each entry is how far each predicted nominee/possibility has fallen from my previous predictions last week. On Thursday evening, I’ll have a post up letting you know how well (or not so much) I did.

Let’s get to it, shall we? My FINAL predictions:

Best Picture

As I see it, there are 21 films vying for anywhere from 5-10 spots. The magic number is usually 9 (last year it was 8). I’m going with 9 this year, though I believe 10 is more probable than 8. And strangely enough, my predicted nine has stayed the same over the course of the last month or so. Straight Outta Compton, Sicario, and even The Force Awakens have made some waves of late, but I still have them narrowly missing.

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. The Big Short (No Change)
  3. The Revenant (+3)
  4. Mad Max: Fury Road (-1)
  5. The Martian (No Change)
  6. Carol (+1)
  7. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  8. Room (-4)
  9. Brooklyn (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

10. Straight Outta Compton (No Change)

11. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)

12. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

13. Sicario (+1)

14. Inside Out (-1)

15. Steve Jobs (+1)

16. Ex Machina (+2)

17. Trumbo (No Change)

18. Beasts of No Nation (-3)

19. Son of Saul (+1)

20. The Danish Girl (-1)

21. Creed (No Change)

Best Director

Tuesday’s Directors Guild of America usually provides a reasonably reliable snap shot of at least three or four of the nominees that will end up being recognized here. Their picks were Tom McCarthy, Ridley Scott, George Miller, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, and Adam McKay. Of those, McKay seems the most vulnerable (with Miller and Scott behind). I’ll keep my prediction for Todd Haynes in and there’s certainly a chance there’s a shocker nominee as we sometimes see in this category.

  1. Tom McCarthy, Spotlight (+1)
  2. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant (+1)
  3. Ridley Scott, The Martian (+1)
  4. George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road (-3)
  5. Todd Haynes, Carol (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Steven Spielberg, Bridge of Spies (+1)

7. Adam McKay, The Big Short (-1)

8. Denis Villenueve, Sicario (+5)

9. Lenny Abrahamson, Room (-1)

10. F. Gary Gray, Straight Outta Compton (+1)

11. John Crowley, Brooklyn (-2)

12. Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight (-2)

13. J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)

14. Jay Roach, Trumbo (Previously Unranked)

15. Cary Fukanaga, Beasts of No Nation (-1)

16. Alex Garland, Ex Machina (Previously Unranked)

17. Laszlo Nemes, Son of Saul (-2)

18. Ryan Coogler, Creed (Previously Unranked)

19. Danny Boyle, Steve Jobs (Previously Unranked)

20. Tom Hooper, The Danish Girl (Previously Unranked)

Best Actor

This race is increasingly looking like ‘The Leo Show” with Mr. DiCaprio likely to nab (finally) his first Oscar. Only Leo seems to be a totally safe bet (though it would be a surprise to me if Redmayne and Fassbender don’t get in and probably Cranston too). I would say numbers 5-8 are practically interchangeable while anything 9 or below would be a fairly big surprise.

  1. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl (No Change)
  3. Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
  4. Bryan Cranston, Trumbo (No Change)
  5. Matt Damon, The Martian (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Steve Carell, The Big Short (-1)

7. Will Smith, Concussion (No Change)

8. Johnny Depp, Black Mass (No Change)

9. Ian McKellen, Mr. Holmes (No Change)

10. Michael Caine, Youth (No Change)

11. Michael B. Jordan, Creed (+1)

12. Geza Rohrig, Son of Saul (-1)

Best Actress

As previously discussed, all the rules go out the window if either Rooney Mara or Alicia Vikander are recognized here instead of in Supporting Actress. That said, I feel pretty confident about Larson, Ronan, and Blanchett. The rest? Not so much.

  1. Brie Larson, Room (No Change)
  2. Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn (No Change)
  3. Cate Blanchett, Carol (No Change)
  4. Jennifer Lawrence, Joy (+1)
  5. Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)

7. Helen Mirren, Woman in Gold (+1)

8. Emily Blunt, Sicario (+3)

9. Blythe Danner, I’ll See You in My Dreams (+1)

10. Sarah Silverman, I Smile Back (-1)

11. Maggie Smith, The Lady in the Van (Previously Unranked)

Best Supporting Actor

Bottom line: I feel like Rylance and Stallone are the only safe bets here. This category has been wide open for quite some time and all 12 performers listed here could get in. Very curious to see how this works out come tomorrow.

  1. Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  2. Sylvester Stallone, Creed (+1)
  3. Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation (-1)
  4. Paul Dano, Love and Mercy (+1)
  5. Christian Bale, The Big Short (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Michael Keaton, Spotlight (No Change)

7. Michael Shannon, 99 Homes (No Change)

8. Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight (No Change)

9. Tom Hardy, The Revenant (No Change)

10. Jacob Tremblay, Room (+1)

11. Benicio del Toro, Sicario (-1)

12. Jason Mitchell, Straight Outta Compton (Previously Unranked)

Best Supporting Actress

Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander seem like safe bets – as long as they’re nominated here and not in Actress. Kate Winslet (fresh off a Globe win) and Jennifer Jason Leigh should play here, too. The fifth slot is truly up for grabs, I feel.

  1. Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl (No Change)
  2. Rooney Mara, Carol (No Change)
  3. Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs (+1)
  4. Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight (-1)
  5. Helen Mirren, Trumbo (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Jane Fonda, Youth (-1)

7. Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria (No Change)

8. Rachel McAdams, Spotlight (+1)

9. Joan Allen, Room (-1)

10. Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina (No Change)

11. Elizabeth Banks, Love and Mercy (No Change)

12. Marion Cotillard, MacBeth (Previously Unranked)

Best Original Screenplay

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Inside Out (No Change)
  3. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  4. The Hateful Eight (-1)
  5. Sicario (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Ex Machina (-1)

7. Straight Outta Compton (No Change)

8. Love and Mercy (No Change)

9. Son of Saul (+2)

Best Adapted Screenplay

  1. The Big Short (No Change)
  2. Carol (No Change)
  3. Room (No Change)
  4. Steve Jobs (+1)
  5. Brooklyn (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. The Revenant (+1)

8. Beasts of No Nation (+1)

9. Trumbo (-2)

10. Mad Max: Fury Road (Previously Unranked)

11. Anomalisa (No Change)

Best Animated Feature

  1. Inside Out (No Change)
  2. Anomalisa (No Change)
  3. Shaun the Sheep Movie (No Change)
  4. Kahlil Gabran’s The Prophet (No Change)
  5. The Peanuts Movie (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Good Dinosaur (-1)

7. When Marnie Was There (No Change)

8. Minions (Previously Unranked)

Best Documentary Feature (First Time Predictions)

  1. Amy
  2. The Look of Silence
  3. Winter on Fire
  4. Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief
  5. He Named Me Malala

Other Possibilities:

6. Listen to Me Marlon

7. Best of Enemies

8. The Hunting Ground

9. Where to Invade Next

10. Heart of the Dog

Best Foreign Language Film (First Time Predictions)

  1. Son of Saul
  2. Mustang
  3. A War
  4. The Brand New Testament
  5. Embrace of the Serpent

Other Possibilities:

6. The Fencer

7. Labyrinth of Lies

8. Theeb

9. Viva

Best Production Design

  1. The Danish Girl (No Change)
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  3. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  4. Carol (-2)
  5. The Revenant (+4)

Other Possibilities:

6. Brooklyn (-1)

7. The Martian (Previously Unranked)

8. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+3)

9. The Hateful Eight (-3)

10. Cinderella (-3)

Best Cinematography

  1. The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  3. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  5. Sicario (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Carol (+1)

7. Son of Saul (+2)

8. The Martian (-2)

9. The Assassin (-1)

10. Spotlight (Previously Unranked)

Best Costume Design

  1. The Danish Girl (No Change)
  2. Carol (No Change)
  3. Cinderella (+1)
  4. Brooklyn (-1)
  5. Far from the Madding Crowd (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Mad Max: Fury Road (+6)

7. The Hateful Eight (-1)

8. Suffragette (-1)

9. The Revenant (No Change)

10. Mr. Holmes (Previously Unranked)

Best Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Big Short (No Change)
  3. Spotlight (+2)
  4. The Revenant (No Change)
  5. Bridge of Spies (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (-3)

7. Sicario (+3)

8. Steve Jobs (-2)

9. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+3)

10. The Hateful Eight (-1)

11. Room (-3)

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (No Change)
  3. The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared (+1)

Other Possibilities:

4. Black Mass (-1)

5. Mr. Holmes (No Change)

6. Concussion (No Change)

7. Legend (No Change)

Best Sound Mixing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (+3)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  4. Sicario (No Change)
  5. The Martian (-3)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

7. Bridge of Spies (Previously Unranked)

8. Jurassic World (-1)

Best Sound Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  3. The Revenant (No Change)
  4. The Martian (No Change)
  5. The Hateful Eight (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario (-1)

7. Jurassic World (+1)

8. Bridge of Spies (Previously Unranked)

Best Visual Effects

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  3. Jurassic World (No Change)
  4. The Martian (No Change)
  5. The Revenant (Previously Unranked)

Other Possibilities:

6. Ex Machina (-1)

7. The Walk (No Change)

8. Ant-Man (Previously Unranked)

9. Avengers: Age of Ultron (-1)

10. In the Heart of the Sea (-4)

Best Score

  1. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  2. Carol (+1)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+2)
  4. Bridge of Spies (-2)
  5. The Danish Girl (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Spotlight (No Change)

7. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)

Best Original Song

  1. “See You Again” from Furious 7 (+2)
  2. “Til It Happens to You” from The Hunting Ground (-1)
  3. “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre (+4)
  4. “Simple Song #3” from Youth (No Change)
  5. “So Long” from Concussion (-3)

Other Possibilities:

6. “Love Me Like You Do” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

7. “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

These FINAL predictions reflect a belief that the following pictures will receive this number of nominations:

10 Nominations

The Revenant

9 Nominations

Mad Max: Fury Road

8 Nominations

Carol

7 Nominations

Bridge of Spies

6 Nominations

The Martian

5 Nominations

The Danish Girl, The Hateful Eight

4 Nominations

The Big Short, Brooklyn, Spotlight, Star Wars: The Force Awakens

3 Nominations

Room, Sicario, Steve Jobs

2 Nominations

Inside Out, Trumbo

1 Nomination

Beasts of No Nation, Cinderella, Concussion, Creed, Far from the Madding Crowd, 45 Years, Furious 7, The Hunting Ground, Joy, Jurassic World, Love and Mercy, The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared, Spectre, Youth

And there you have it, folks! My final Oscar predictions! I’ll have an update posted tomorrow. Until then…

 

Todd’s Weekly Oscar Predictions: January 8th Edition

We have arrived at my weekly Friday predictions for who and what will be nominated for the Oscars honoring 2015 pictures. This will be the last Friday I’ll be doing so because the nominations themselves come out this Thursday, January 14th. I will have one final post of predictions either on Tuesday or Wednesday next week.

One consistent source of consternation is whether Rooney Mara will be nominated in lead Actress or Supporting Actress for Carol (same goes, to a lesser degree, for Alicia Vikander’s work in The Danish Girl). Last week, I had her in Actress, but now I’m switching back to Supporting. We shall see. As with my posts every week, it will show where the movers and shakers have shifted around with chances of nomination.

So here goes… my penultimate Oscar predictions…

Best Picture

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. The Big Short (+1)
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  4. Room (-2)
  5. The Martian (+1)
  6. The Revenant (+1)
  7. Carol (-2)
  8. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  9. Brooklyn (-1)

Other Possibilities:

10. Straight Outta Compton (+3)

11. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)

12. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

13. Inside Out (-2)

14. Sicario (+4)

15. Beasts of No Nation (-1)

16. Steve Jobs (No Change)

17. Trumbo (+2)

18. Ex Machina (Previously Unranked)

19. The Danish Girl (+1)

20. Son of Saul (-5)

21. Creed (-4)

DROPPED OUT: Anomalisa

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Director

  1. George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  2. Tom McCarthy, Spotlight (-1)
  3. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant (+1)
  4. Ridley Scott, The Martian (-1)
  5. Todd Haynes, Carol (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Adam McKay, The Big Short (No Change)

7. Steven Spielberg, Bridge of Spies (+1)

8. Lenny Abrahamson, Room (-1)

9. John Crowley, Brooklyn (+3)

10. Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight (-1)

11. F. Gary Gray, Straight Outta Compton (Previously Unranked)

12. J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)

13. Denis Villenueve, Sicario (Previously Unranked)

14. Cary Fukanaga, Beasts of No Nation (-1)

15. Laszlo Nemes, Son of Saul (-5)

DROPPED OUT: Ryan Coogler, Creed

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Actor

  1. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl (+1)
  3. Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs (-1)
  4. Bryan Cranston, Trumbo (+1)
  5. Steve Carell, The Big Short (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. Matt Damon, The Martian (-2)

7. Will Smith, Concussion (No Change)

8. Johnny Depp, Black Mass (-2)

9. Ian McKellen, Mr. Holmes (+1)

10. Michael Caine, Youth (-1)

11. Geza Rohrig, Son of Saul (+2)

12. Michael B. Jordan, Creed (-1)

DROPPED OUT: Tom Hanks, Bridge of Spies

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Carell. Out: Damon.

Best Actress

  1. Brie Larson, Room (No Change)
  2. Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn (No Change)
  3. Cate Blanchett, Carol (No Change)
  4. Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years (+2)
  5. Jennifer Lawrence, Joy (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Rooney Mara, Carol (-2) MOVED TO SUPPORTING

7. Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)

8. Helen Mirren, Woman in Gold (+1)

9. Sarah Silverman, I Smile Back (Previously Unranked)

10. Blythe Danner, I’ll See You in My Dreams (-2)

11. Emily Blunt, Sicario (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Rampling. Out: Mara (moved to supporting)

Best Supporting Actor

  1. Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  2. Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation (+1)
  3. Sylvester Stallone, Creed (-1)
  4. Christian Bale, The Big Short (No Change)
  5. Paul Dano, Love and Mercy (+4)

Other Possibilities:

6. Michael Keaton, Spotlight (No Change)

7. Michael Shannon, 99 Homes (-2)

8. Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight (-1)

9. Tom Hardy, The Revenant (-1)

10. Benicio del Toro, Sicario (+1)

11. Jacob Tremblay, Room (-1)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Dano. Out: Shannon.

Best Supporting Actress

  1. Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl (+2)
  2. Rooney Mara, Carol (Previously Ranked in lead Actress)
  3. Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight (-2)
  4. Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs (-2)
  5. Jane Fonda, Youth (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. Helen Mirren, Trumbo (-2)

7. Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria (+2)

8. Joan Allen, Room (-3)

9. Rachel McAdams, Spotlight (-3)

10. Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina (-2)

11. Elizabeth Banks, Love and Mercy (-1)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Mara, Fonda. Out: Mirren, Allen.

Best Original Screenplay

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Inside Out (No Change)
  3. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  5. Ex Machina (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario (+4)

7. Straight Outta Compton (-1)

8. Love and Mercy (-1)

9. Trainwreck (Previously Unranked)

10. Mad Max: Fury Road (Previously Unranked)

11. Son of Saul (-2)

12. 99 Homes (-4)

DROPPED OUT: Joy

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Adapted Screenplay

  1. The Big Short (No Change)
  2. Carol (+1)
  3. Room (-1)
  4. Brooklyn (+1)
  5. Steve Jobs (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. Trumbo (+3)

8. The Revenant (-1)

9. Beasts of No Nation (-1)

10. The Danish Girl (+2)

11. Anomalisa (-2)

DROPPED OUT: Creed, Mad Max: Fury Road (moved to Original)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Animated Feature

  1. Inside Out (No Change)
  2. Anomalisa (No Change)
  3. Shaun the Sheep Movie (No Change)
  4. Kahlil Gabran’s The Prophet (+1)
  5. The Good Dinosaur (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Peanuts Movie (-2)

7. When Marnie Was There (No Change)

DROPPED OUT: Minions

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Good Dinosaur. Out: The Peanuts Movie.

Best Production Design

  1. The Danish Girl (+1)
  2. Carol (-1)
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  5. Brooklyn (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (-1)

7. Cinderella (-1)

8. MacBeth (+3)

9. The Revenant (-1)

10. Far From the Madding Crowd (No Change)

11. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-2)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Brooklyn. Out: The Hateful Eight.

Best Cinematography

  1. The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  3. The Hateful Eight (-1)
  4. Sicario (No Change)
  5. Bridge of Spies (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. Carol (+1)

8. The Assassin (Previously Unranked)

9. Son of Saul (-2)

DROPPED OFF: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Costume Design

  1. The Danish Girl (+1)
  2. Carol (-1)
  3. Brooklyn (+1)
  4. Cinderella (-1)
  5. Far from the Madding Crowd (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

7. Suffragette (+3)

8. Trumbo (Previously Unranked)

9. The Revenant (No Change)

10. MacBeth (-2)

11. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)

12. Mad Max: Fury Road (-5)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Big Short (+5)
  3. The Martian (+1)
  4. The Revenant (-2)
  5. Spotlight (-2)

Other Possibilities:

6. Steve Jobs (-1)

7. Bridge of Spies (+1)

8. Room (+4)

9. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

10. Sicario (-4)

11. Straight Outta Compton (Previously Unranked)

12. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-2)

DROPPED OUT: Carol

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Big Short. Out: Steve Jobs.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Black Mass (+1)
  3. The Revenant (-1)

Other Possibilities:

4. The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared (+2)

5. Concussion (-1)

6. Mr. Holmes (-1)

7. Legend (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Sound Mixing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Martian (+2)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)
  4. Sicario (+1)
  5. The Revenant (-2)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

7. Jurassic World (+1)

8. In the Heart of the Sea (-1)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Sound Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+1)
  3. The Revenant (-1)
  4. The Martian (No Change)
  5. Sicario (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (+1)

7. In the Heart of the Sea (-2)

8. Jurassic World (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Sicario. Out: In the Heart of the Sea.

Best Visual Effects

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  3. Jurassic World (+1)
  4. The Martian (-1)
  5. Ex Machina (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. In the Heart of the Sea (No Change)

7. The Walk (No Change)

8. Avengers: Age of Ultron (Previously Unranked)

9. Everest (-1)

DROPPED OFF: The Revenant

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Original Score

  1. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  2. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  3. Carol (No Change)
  4. The Danish Girl (+1)
  5. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Spotlight (No Change)

7. Steve Jobs (No Change)

8. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)

DROPPED OFF: Inside Out, The Revenant

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Original Song

  1. “Til It Happens to You” from The Hunting Ground (No Change)
  2. “So Long” from Concussion (+1)
  3. “See You Again” from Furious 7 (-1)
  4. “Simple Song #3” from Youth (No Change)
  5. “Love Me Like You Do” from Fifty Shades of Grey (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

7. “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre (-1)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: “Love Me Like You Do”. Out: “Earned It”.

These current predictions reflect the following breakdown of films getting these numbers:

9 Nominations

Mad Max Fury Road

8 Nominations

Carol, The Revenant

6 Nominations

Bridge of Spies, The Martian

5 Nominations

The Big Short, Brooklyn, The Danish Girl

4 Nominations

The Hateful Eight, Spotlight, Star Wars: The Force Awakens

3 Nominations

Room. Sicario, Steve Jobs

2 Nominations

Ex Machina, Inside Out

1 Nomination

Anomalisa, Beasts of No Nation, Black Mass, Cinderella, Concussion, Creed, Far from the Madding Crowd, Fifty Shades of Grey, 45 Years, Furious 7, The Good Dinosaur, The Hunting Ground, Joy, Jurassic World, Kahlil Gabran’s The Prophet, Love and Mercy, Shaun the Sheep Movie, Trumbo, Youth

That’ll do it for now, folks! I’ll have my FINAL Oscar predictions up next week…

 

Todd’s Weekly Oscar Predictions: January 1st Edition

Happy New Year, loyal blog readers!!

We begin 2016 with my weekly Oscar predictions leading up to nominations being announced on January 14th. This will mean I’ll have two more posts prognosticating on what and who will be nominated (one on Friday the 8th and one likely the day before the announcements).

A couple of quick notes on various races:

  • There is considerable speculation as to whether Rooney Mara will be nominated in the category of Best Actress or Supporting Actress for her work in Carol. So far, I’ve speculated a nomination for her in the latter. Today, I am changing it to the former.
  • Same goes for Alicia Vikander in The Danish Girl, but I’m keeping her in Supporting Actress for now. There is also speculation that her nod could come for Ex Machina and not Danish Girl.
  • The historic box office performance of Star Wars: The Force Awakens is increasing its shot at a Best Picture nomination. I’ve still got it on the outside looking in, but don’t be shocked if that changes in the coming days.

And with that, here’s my weekly predictions that list all possibilities for each race and how they’ve fluctuated since Christmas Day:

Best Picture

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Room (No Change)
  3. The Big Short (+2)
  4. Mad Max: Fury Road (+2)
  5. Carol (-2)
  6. The Martian (+1)
  7. The Revenant (-3)
  8. Brooklyn (No Change)
  9. Bridge of Spies (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

10. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+8)

11. Inside Out (-2)

12. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

13. Straight Outta Compton (-2)

14. Beasts of No Nation (-1)

15. Son of Saul (+2)

16. Steve Jobs (No Change)

17. Creed (-2)

18. Sicario (+1)

19. Trumbo (-5)

20. The Danish Girl (No Change)

21. Anomalisa (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Director

  1. Tom McCarthy, Spotlight (No Change)
  2. George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  3. Ridley Scott, The Martian (+1)
  4. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant (-1)
  5. Todd Haynes, Carol (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Adam McKay, The Big Short (+1)

7. Lenny Abrahamson, Room (-1)

8. Steven Spielberg, Bridge of Spies (No Change)

9. Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight (No Change)

10. Laszlo Nemes, Son of Saul (+3)

11. J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+4)

12. John Crowley, Brooklyn (-2)

13. Cary Fukanaga, Beasts of No Nation (-2)

14. Ryan Coogler, Creed (-2)

DROPPED OUT: F. Gary Gray, Straight Outta Compton

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Actor

  1. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs (No Change)
  3. Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl (No Change)
  4. Matt Damon, The Martian (+1)
  5. Bryan Cranston, Trumbo (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Johnny Depp, Black Mass (No Change)

7. Will Smith, Concussion (No Change)

8. Steve Carell, The Big Short (No Change)

9. Michael Caine, Youth (+1)

10. Ian McKellen, Mr. Holmes (-1)

11. Michael B. Jordan, Creed (No Change)

12. Tom Hanks, Bridge of Spies (No Change)

13. Geza Rohrig, Son of Saul (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Actress

  1. Brie Larson, Room (No Change)
  2. Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn (No Change)
  3. Cate Blanchett, Carol (No Change)
  4. Rooney Mara, Carol (Previously Unranked In This Category)
  5. Jennifer Lawrence, Joy (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years (-1)

7. Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road (-1)

8. Blythe Danner, I’ll See You In My Dreams (-1)

9. Helen Mirren, Woman in Gold (No Change)

DROPPED OUT: Sarah Silverman, I Smile Back

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Mara. Out: Rampling.

Best Supporting Actor

  1. Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  2. Sylvester Stallone, Creed (No Change)
  3. Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation (No Change)
  4. Christian Bale, The Big Short (No Change)
  5. Michael Shannon, 99 Homes (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Michael Keaton, Spotlight (-1)

7. Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight (+1)

8. Tom Hardy, The Revenant (+1)

9. Paul Dano, Love and Mercy (-2)

10. Jacob Tremblay, Room (+1)

11. Benicio del Toro, Sicario (-1)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Shannon. Out: Keaton.

Best Supporting Actress

  1. Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight (+3)
  2. Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs (+1)
  3. Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl (-2)
  4. Helen Mirren, Trumbo (+1)
  5. Joan Allen, Room (+4)

Other Possibilities:

6. Rachel McAdams, Spotlight (+1)

7. Jane Fonda, Youth (-1)

8. Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina (Previously Unranked)

9. Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria (-1)

10. Elizabeth Banks, Love and Mercy (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Allen. Out: Rooney Mara (moved to Best Actress)

Best Original Screenplay

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Inside Out (No Change)
  3. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  5. Ex Machina (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Straight Outta Compton (No Change)

7. Love and Mercy (+2)

8. 99 Homes (-1)

9. Son of Saul (-1)

10. Sicario (No Change)

11. Joy (Previously Unranked)

DROPPED OUT: Youth

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Adapted Screenplay

  1. The Big Short (+1)
  2. Room (+1)
  3. Carol (-2)
  4. Steve Jobs (No Change)
  5. Brooklyn (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. The Revenant (+2)

8. Beasts of No Nation (-1)

9. Anomalisa (+1)

10. Trumbo (-2)

11. Creed (+2)

12. The Danish Girl (No Change)

13. Mad Max: Fury Road (-2)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Animated Feature

  1. Inside Out (No Change)
  2. Anomalisa (No Change)
  3. Shaun the Sheep Movie (+1)
  4. The Peanuts Movie (+1)
  5. Kahlil Gabran’s The Prophet (-2)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Good Dinosaur (No Change)

7. When Marnie Was There (No Change)

8. Minions (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Cinematography

  1. The Revenant (No Change)
  2. The Hateful Eight (+1)
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road (-1)
  4. Sicario (No Change)
  5. Bridge of Spies (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (No Change)

7. Son of Saul (-2)

8. Carol (-1)

9. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Previously Unranked)

DROPPED OUT: In the Heart of the Sea

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Bridge of Spies. Out: Son of Saul.

Best Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  2. The Revenant (+2)
  3. Spotlight (-2)
  4. The Martian (+2)
  5. Steve Jobs (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario (Previously Unranked)

7. The Big Short (-4)

8. Bridge of Spies (-1)

9. The Hateful Eight (-1)

10. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)

11. Carol (Previously Unranked)

12. Room (-3)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Martian. Out: The Big Short.

Best Production Design

  1. Carol (No Change)
  2. The Danish Girl (No Change)
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  4. Bridge of Spies (+1)
  5. The Hateful Eight (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. Cinderella (No Change)

7. Brooklyn (-3)

8. The Revenant (+1)

9. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)

10. Far from the Madding Crowd (Previously Unranked)

11. MacBeth (-1)

DROPPED OUT: The Martian

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Hateful Eight. Out: Brooklyn.

Best Costume Design

  1. Carol (+1)
  2. The Danish Girl (-1)
  3. Cinderella (No Change)
  4. Brooklyn (No Change)
  5. Far from the Madding Crowd (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (+1)

7. Mad Max: Fury Road (-2)

8. MacBeth (+1)

9. The Revenant (+1)

10. Suffragette (-4)

11. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Far from the Madding Crowd. Out: Mad Max: Fury Road.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (+4)
  3. Black Mass (+1)

Other Possibilities:

4. Concussion (Previously Unranked)

5. Mr. Holmes (+2)

6. The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared (Previously Unranked)

7. Legend (Previously Unranked)

DROPPED OUT: The Danish Girl, Carol, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (these top seven finalists indicated above have now been announced)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: The Revenant, Black Mass. OUT: The Danish Girl, Carol

Best Sound Mixing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (No Change)
  3. The Revenant (No Change)
  4. The Martian (No Change)
  5. Sicario (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight (-1)

7. In the Heart of the Sea (No Change)

8. Jurassic World (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Sicario. Out: The Hateful Eight.

Best Sound Editing

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (No Change)
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+1)
  4. The Martian (-1)
  5. In the Heart of the Sea (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario (No Change)

7. The Hateful Eight (No Change)

8. Jurassic World (No Change)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes.

Best Visual Effects

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)
  2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)
  3. The Martian (No Change)
  4. Jurassic World (No Change)
  5. Ex Machina (+3)

Other Possibilities:

6. In the Heart of the Sea (-1)

7. The Walk (-1)

8. Everest (Previously Unranked)

9. The Revenant (-2)

WHAT’S CHANGED – In: Ex Machina. Out: In the Heart of the Sea.

Best Original Score

  1. The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  2. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  3. Carol (+1)
  4. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (-1)
  5. The Danish Girl (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Spotlight (No Change)

7. Steve Jobs (+1)

8. Inside Out (+1)

9. Mad Max: Fury Road (-2)

10. The Revenant (Previously Unranked)

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

Best Original Song

  1. “Til It Happens to You” from The Hunting Ground (No Change)
  2. “See You Again” from Furious 7 (+1)
  3. “So Long” from Concussion (-1)
  4. “Simple Song #3” from Youth (+1)
  5. “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre (+1)

7. “Love Me Like You Do” from Fifty Shades of Grey (-1)

DROPPED OUT: “I’ll See You In My Dreams” from I’ll See You in My Dreams

WHAT’S CHANGED: No Changes

And there you have it – my latest Oscar predictions and first post of 2016!

Box Office Predictions: December 25-27

This year, Christmas falls on a Friday and there are five new presents to potentially unwrap at the theater: Will Ferrell/Mark Wahlberg comedy Daddy’s Home, David O. Russell/Jennifer Lawrence collaboration Joy, Oscar hopeful The Big Short with Steve Carell, Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling, and Brad Pitt, action remake Point Break, and Will Smith NFL centered drama Concussion. You can read my detailed prediction posts on each of them here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/15/daddys-home-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/15/concussion-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/15/joy-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/15/point-break-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/16/the-big-short-box-office-prediction/

As I see it, all five are likely to gross somewhere from the high single digits to mid to high teens. I have Daddy’s Home managing to come in first among the newbies, but it could be a close competition for sure.

As for holdovers, both Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip and Sisters will be entering their sophomore frames after sturdy debuts (especially considering the competition). The Christmas weekend usually means that holdovers often increase their gross from the previous weekend and I believe this will hold true for Alvin (and Hunger Games and The Good Dinosaur and Creed for that matter). Sisters should experience a fairly small decline.

And that, of course, brings us to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which will be entering weekend #2 after its historic opening (more on that below). Audiences and critics have taken to it and it has quickly become a cultural phenomenon. Its next record could be highest second weekend total of all time and in order to do so, it would need to top the six month long record of Jurassic World‘s $106.6 million. As I see it, Force shouldn’t have much of a problem accomplishing that feat and I envision a drop of around 40% for the holiday weekend.

And with that, I’ll expand beyond my usual number and do a Top 11 predictions for an extraordinarily packed Christmas weekend:

  1. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Predicted Gross: $151.6 million (representing a drop of 38%)

2. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip

Predicted Gross: $16.7 million (representing an increase of 17%)

3. Daddy’s Home

Predicted Gross: $16.5 million

4. Joy

Predicted Gross: $14.9 million

5. Concussion

Predicted Gross: $13.8 million

6. Point Break

Predicted Gross: $11 million

7. Sisters

Predicted Gross: $10.4 million (representing a drop of 25%)

8. The Big Short

Predicted Gross: $8.1 million (Friday to Sunday prediction), $10.6 million (Wednesday to Sunday prediction)

9. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

Predicted Gross: $6.5 million (representing an increase of 11%)

10. Creed

Predicted Gross: $5.8 million (representing an increase of 14%)

11. The Good Dinosaur

Predicted Gross: $4.9 million (representing an increase of 14%)

Box Office Results (December 18-20)

Slip in any cliche you like. The Force was with it. It moved at warp speed past the record. Star Wars: The Force Awakens easily set the high for largest domestic opening of all time with an otherworldly $247.9 million, topping my projection of $234.7M. This blasted past the record of Jurassic World, which made $208.8M this summer by nearly $40M. With universal acclaim, Awakens has given Disney a mega franchise to work with for years and crowds were clearly clamoring for a return to that galaxy far, far away.

Two titles dared to open against this juggernaut and both fared decently. Alvin and the Chipmunks took the runner-up spot with $14.2 million, right on par with my $14.3M estimate. While this fourth entry in the series easily had the smallest debut of the bunch, it’s still not bad considering it was up against Luke and company. I’m predicting it’ll see a bounce and stay #2 next weekend.

The Tina Fey/Amy Poehler comedy Sisters was third with $13.9 million for a commendable beginning. My prediction? $13.9M… boom!

Holdovers fell a bit further than my predictions. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 fell to fourth after four weeks at #1 with $5.8 million (I said $7M). Its total stands at $254M.

Creed rounded out the top five with $5 million compared to my $6.3M estimate for an overall gross of $87M.

Pixar disappointment The Good Dinosaur was sixth with $4.3 million, under my $6.8M projection. It has yet to reach $100M after 4 weeks at $96M.

I incorrectly had Krampus outside my top seven and it took that number with $4.1 million for a tidy gross of $35M. That’s because I had the Ron Howard/Chris Hemsworth dud In the Heart of the Sea in seventh. It plummeted to 8th in weekend #2 with a gross of just $3.4 million (compared to my $5.6M estimate) and ten days earnings of just $18M. Ouch.

And that’ll do it for now, ladies and gents! Be sure to check back next week for all the Merry results…

 

 

Todd’s Weekly Oscar Predictions: December 18th Edition

We arrive at my weekly Oscar predictions and a new wrinkle has been added. I’m predicting every category with the exception of Foreign and Documentary (those will eventually be added).

As with last week, I’ll ranking according to my feelings on likelihood of the films and performers being nominated and let you know what’s changed since last week. The pluses and minuses and no changes indicated their ranking from last week to this week.

Let’s get to it!

Best Picture

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. The Revenant (No Change)
  3. Room (No Change)
  4. Brooklyn (+3)
  5. Carol (-1)
  6. The Martian (No Change)
  7. Mad Max: Fury Road (-2)
  8. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  9. The Big Short (+2)

Other Possibilities:

10. Inside Out (No Change)

11. The Hateful Eight (-2)

12. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+11)

13. Trumbo (+6)

14. Son of Saul (+3)

15. The Danish Girl (+1)

16. Sicario (+5)

17. Beasts of No Nation (-3)

18. Steve Jobs (-5)

19. Straight Outta Compton (-4)

20. Creed (-8)

21. Joy (-2)

22. Love and Mercy (-1)

23. Anomalisa (-6)

What’s Changed Since Last Week – IN: The Big Short. OUT: The Hateful Eight.

Best Director

  1. Tom McCarthy, Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, The Revenant (No Change)
  3. George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road (No Change)
  4. Ridley Scott, The Martian (No Change)
  5. Todd Haynes, Carol (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Steven Spielberg, Bridge of Spies (+1)

7. Lenny Abrahamson, Room (-1)

8. J.J. Abrams, Star Wars: The Force Awakens (+9)

9. John Crowley, Brooklyn (No Change)

10. Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight (-2)

11. Adam McKay, The Big Short (+1)

12. Laszlo Nemes, Son of Saul (+1)

13. Jay Roach, Trumbo (Previously Not Ranked)

14. Tom Hooper, The Danish Girl (+2)

15. Danny Boyle, Steve Jobs (-1)

16. Cary Fukunaga, Beasts of No Nation (-5)

17. Ryan Coogler, Creed (-7)

DROPPED OUT: David O. Russell, Joy

What’s Changed Since Last Week: NO CHANGES

Best Actor

  1. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant (No Change)
  2. Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs (+1)
  3. Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl (-1)
  4. Bryan Cranston, Trumbo (+1)
  5. Johnny Depp, Black Mass (-1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Matt Damon, The Martian (No Change)

7. Will Smith, Concussion (No Change)

8. Michael Caine, Youth (+3)

9. Ian McKellen, Mr. Holmes (No Change)

10. Tom Hanks, Bridge of Spies (No Change)

11. Geza Rohrig, Son of Saul (+2)

12. Steve Carell, The Big Short (No Change)

13. Michael B. Jordan, Creed (-5)

What’s Changed Since Last Week: No Changes

Best Actress

  1. Brie Larson, Room (No Change)
  2. Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn (No Change)
  3. Cate Blanchett, Carol (No Change)
  4. Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years (No Change)
  5. Jennifer Lawrence, Joy (No Change)

Other Possibilities:

6. Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road (+1)

7. Helen Mirren, Woman in Gold (+2)

8. Blythe Danner, I’ll See You in My Dreams (-2)

9. Sarah Silverman, I Smile Back (-1)

10. Maggie Smith, The Lady in the Van (No Change)

11. Carey Mulligan, Suffragette (+1)

12. Lily Tomlin, Grandma (-1)

What’s Changed Since Last Week: No Changes

Best Supporting Actor

  1. Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  2. Michael Keaton, Spotlight (+1)
  3. Paul Dano, Love and Mercy (+1)
  4. Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation (+1)
  5. Sylvester Stallone, Creed (-3)

Other Possibilities:

6. Michael Shannon, 99 Homes (+4)

7. Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight (-1)

8. Tom Hardy, The Revenant (No Change)

9. Christian Bale, The Big Short (-2)

10. Jacob Tremblay, Room (+1)

11. Benicio del Toro, Sicario (-2)

What’s Changed Since Last Week: No Changes

Best Supporting Actress

  1. Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl (No Change)
  2. Rooney Mara, Carol (No Change)
  3. Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight (No Change)
  4. Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs (No Change)
  5. Helen Mirren, Trumbo (+2)

Other Possibilities:

6. Rachel McAdams, Spotlight (+4)

7. Jane Fonda, Youth (-2)

8. Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria (-2)

9. Elizabeth Banks, Love and Mercy (No Change)

10. Joan Allen, Room (-2)

DROPPED OUT: Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina

What’s Changed Since Last Week – IN: Helen Mirren, OUT: Jane Fonda.

Best Original Screenplay 

  1. Spotlight (No Change)
  2. Inside Out (+1)
  3. The Hateful Eight (-1)
  4. Bridge of Spies (No Change)
  5. Love and Mercy (+1)

Other Possibilities:

6. Son of Saul (-1)

7. Mad Max: Fury Road (Previously Not Ranked)

8. 99 Homes (No Change)

9. Sicario (+1)

10. Ex Machina (+1)

11. Straight Outta Compton (-4)

12. Youth (Previously Not Ranked)

13. Joy (-4)

14. Trainwreck (-2)

What’s Changed Since Last Week – IN: Love and Mercy. OUT: Son of Saul.

Best Adapted Screenplay

  1. Room (+2)
  2. Brooklyn (+2)
  3. Carol (-2)
  4. The Big Short (+1)
  5. Steve Jobs (-3)

Other Possibilities:

6. The Martian (+1)

7. Trumbo (+3)

8. The Revenant (-2)

9. Beasts of No Nation (No Change)

10. Anomalisa (-2)

11. The Danish Girl (+1)

DROPPED OUT: Creed

What’s Changed Since Last Week: No Changes

Best Animated Feature (First Time Predictions)

  1. Inside Out
  2. Anomalisa
  3. Kahlil Gobran’s The Prophet
  4. Shaun the Sheep Movie
  5. The Good Dinosaur

Other Possibilities:

6. The Peanuts Movie

7. When Marnie Was There

8. Home

Best Cinematography (First Time Predictions)

  1. The Hateful Eight
  2. The Revenant
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road
  4. The Martian
  5. Sicario

Other Possibilities:

6. Carol

7. Bridge of Spies

8. The Danish Girl

Best Production Design (First Time Predictions)

  1. Carol
  2. The Danish Girl
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road
  4. Cinderella
  5. Bridge of Spies

Other Possibilities:

6. The Revenant

7. Brooklyn

8. The Martian

9. The Hateful Eight

10. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

11. MacBeth

Best Editing (First Time Predictions)

  1. Spotlight
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road
  3. The Revenant
  4. The Big Short
  5. Steve Jobs

Other Possibilities:

6. The Hateful Eight

7. The Martian

8. Bridge of Spies

9. Room

Best Costume Design (First Time Predictions)

  1. Carol
  2. Cinderella
  3. Brooklyn
  4. The Danish Girl
  5. Far from the Madding Crowd

Other Possibilities:

6. Mad Max: Fury Road

7. Suffragette

8. Trumbo

9. The Hateful Eight

10. MacBeth

Best Makeup and Hairstyling (First Time Predictions)

  1. The Danish Girl
  2. Carol
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Other Possibilities:

4. Mad Max: Fury Road

5. Black Mass

6. Pan

7. The Hateful Eight

8. The Revenant

Best Visual Effects (First Time Predictions)

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road
  2. The Martian
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  4. Jurassic World
  5. The Walk

Other Possibilities:

6. The Revenant

7. In the Heart of the Sea

8. Ex Machina

Best Sound Mixing (First Time Predictions)

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road
  2. The Martian
  3. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  4. The Revenant
  5. Sicario

Other Possibilities:

6. Jurassic World

7. The Hateful Eight

8. In the Heart of the Sea

Best Sound Editing (First Time Predictions)

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road
  2. The Revenant
  3. The Martian
  4. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  5. In the Heart of the Sea

Other Possibilities:

6. Sicario

7. The Hateful Eight

8. Jurassic World

Best Original Score (First Time Predictions)

  1. The Hateful Eight
  2. Carol
  3. Spotlight
  4. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  5. The Danish Girl

Other Possibilities:

6. The Revenant

7. Bridge of Spies

8. Sicario

9. Brooklyn

10. Mad Max: Fury Road

11. Southpaw

Best Original Song (First Time Predictions)

  1. “Til It Happens To You” from The Hunting Ground
  2. “See You Again” from Furious 7
  3. “Love Me Like You Do” from Fifty Shades of Grey
  4. “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre
  5. “Earned It” from Fifty Shades of Grey

Other Possibilities:

6. “Simple Song #3” from Youth

7. “One Kind of Love” from Love and Mercy

8. “So Long” from Concussion

Whew! Those predictions reflect a current belief of the following films garnering nominations with number included:

9 Nominations

Carol

8 Nominations

Mad Max: Fury Road

7 Nominations

The Revenant

6 Nominations

The Danish Girl, The Martian, Spotlight

5 Nominations

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

4 Nominations

Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, The Hateful Eight, Steve Jobs

3 Nominations

The Big Short, Room

2 Nominations

Cinderella, Fifty Shades of Grey, Inside Out, Love and Mercy, Sicario, Trumbo

1 Nomination

Anomalisa, Beasts of No Nation, Black Mass, Creed, Far from the Madding Crowd, 45 Years, Furious 7, The Good Dinosaur, The Hunting Ground, In the Heat of the Sea, Joy, Jurassic World, Kahlil Gabron’s The Prophet, Shaun the Sheep Movie, Spectre, The Walk

 

Box Office Predictions: December 18-20

It’s a weekend that box office prognosticators like myself have been waiting for all year long! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the fourth Alvin and the Chipmunks film has arrived!!!

OK… in all seriousness, you may have heard of the big picture arriving this weekend called Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The seventh episode of the beloved franchise has been breathlessly awaited and it stands a shot at breaking pretty much every box office record there is. I truly feel it could gross anywhere from $170-$275 million out of the gate so I basically split the difference. That means my prediction does have it devouring the all time opening weekend record posted by Jurassic World this summer. It is worth noting that other estimators are saying this will come under what Jurassic accomplished, but we shall see. You can read my detailed prediction post on it here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/08/star-wars-the-force-awakens-box-office-prediction/

Somewhat surprisingly, other studios are premiering new product in hopes of serving as counter programming to The Force. We have the aforementioned Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip and Tina Fey/Amy Poehler comedy Sisters. I look for them to have fairly soft openings and have a close competition for second place. On the bright side, both titles could continue to play well and experience small declines into further holiday weekends. My prediction posts on both of them can be found here:

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/10/sisters-box-office-prediction/

https://toddmthatcher.com/2015/12/10/alvin-and-the-chipmunks-the-road-chip-box-office-prediction/

As for holdovers, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 will finally fall from its four week perch atop the charts. In the Heart of the Sea got off to a lackluster start (more on that below) and I actually expect it to drop farther percentage wise than The Good Dinosaur and Creed.

And with that, my top seven predictions for what could be a historic weekend:

  1. Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Predicted Gross: $234.7 million

2. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip

Predicted Gross: $14.3 million

3. Sisters

Predicted Gross: $13.9 million

4. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2

Predicted Gross: $7 million (representing a drop of 38%)

5. The Good Dinosaur

Predicted Gross: $6.8 million (representing a drop of 36%)

6. Creed

Predicted Gross: $6.3 million (representing a drop of 37%)

7. In the Heart of the Sea

Predicted Gross: $5.6 million (representing a drop of 49%)

Box Office Results: December 11-13

Ron Howard’s $100 million whale tale In the Heart of the Sea with Chris Hemsworth was crushed by a wave of audience ambivalence with a gross of just $11 million, well under my $18.4M estimate. The pic, which received mixed reviews, simply didn’t capture the attention of adventure fans who may be biding their time until this weekend.

That allowed The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 to stay #1 for the fourth weekend in a row with $11.3 million, just topping my $10.5M projection. The franchise finale has taken in $244 million.

Pixar’s disappointing The Good Dinosaur was third with $10.5 million, ahead of my $9.4M prediction for a total of $89 million. This is well below the standards of what its studio is accustomed to and it remains on track to be Pixar’s smallest earner. On the bright side for parent company Disney, they’ve got a pretty high profile release out this weekend…

Creed took fourth with $10.1 million, a bit higher than my $9.1M estimate for an overall tally of $79 million. This looks to be the first Rocky flick to top $100M since Rocky IV some thirty years ago.

Krampus was fifth in its second weekend with $8.4 million, topping my $7.3M projection. Its taken in a tidy $28 million at press time and is performing solidly for a relatively low budget horror comedy.

And that’ll do it for now, folks! Until next time… May The Force Be With You…