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I'm not a film critic, but I'll tell you what I think about the movies I watch. I enjoy understanding the history behind the movies we watch, as well as the collaborative effort necessary to produce movies.

The 89th Academy Awards – My Picks


academy-awards-5I think it’s fair to say that 2016 was an excellent year for film. The Academy Awards are the pinnacle of the award season, and this year should be no different. Last year I enjoyed seeing a number of the films and making my picks, so I’m back for another go.

Like every year I’ve done this I’ll be presenting my personal pick as well as the film I expect to win. I look forward to seeing your thoughts on the many films nominated this year.

academy-awards-9Best Picture

This might be one of the toughest picks I’ve ever had to make in this category. The films are all solid, but several stood out for me.I would’ve loved to see Lion get a bit more attention since I loved that film. I also think Hell or High Water was a standout film this year. There really isn’t an undeserving film in this category though, so the choice was rough.

My Pick: La La Land

My Sentimental Favorite: Lion

The winner: Moonlight

This is a nice win for a good film. Sad that the mix up at the end ruined the moment.

academy-awards-2Best Actor in a Leading Role

This year the nominees were right in line with what I expected, with the exception of Mortensen. It’s not a reflection on his performance, it just wasn’t a film that I had even heard much about. This pick was a little easier for me, but every one of these actors did great work.

My Pick: Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea

I wanted this to be right. He’s so good.

academy-awards-9Best Actress in a Leading Role

I didn’t get a chance to see two of the nominated films this year. Missing those performances definitely makes this pick more of a shot in the dark. Still, having done my research I feel like my pick is a solid one.

My Pick: Emma Stone, La La Land

My Sentimental Favorite: Ruth Negga, Loving

The winner: Emma Stone, La La Land

Not a huge surprise, but not my pick.

academy-awards-3Best Actor in a Supporting Role

I really liked all of these performances. Each of these actors nailed their roles and made this another difficult choice.

My Pick: Mahershala Ali, Moonlight

My Sentimental Favorite: Dev Patel, Lion

The winner: Mahershala Ali, Moonlight

And….. I nailed this one. Great win for Ali.

academy-awards-9Best Actress in a Supporting Role

This is a great collection of talented actresses who were nominated for their roles in very good films. My pick was a little easier since one of these women stood out above the rest. Still, I wouldn’t be too surprised to see any of these women win.

My Pick: Viola Davis, Fences

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: Viola Davis, Fences

This is a great win for her. I loved her performance and the film. They were all great, she was just a little better.

academy-awards-1Best Animated Feature Film

  • Kubo and the Two Strings
  • Moana
  • My Life as a Zucchini
  • The Red Turtle
  • Zootopia

It wasn’t a conscious choice to miss these films this year, I just didn’t get to them. This pick is more of a guess, but I’ve also done my research and I’m relying on the people I trust who watch as many movies as I do.

My Pick: Kubo and the Two Strings

My Sentimental Favorite: Zootopia

The winner: Zootopia

Not a surprise to see this win.

academy-awards-9Best Cinematography

This category features four films that I was fortunate enough to see, and one that I have been dying to see. While there are great visuals in all of the films, I think I had a bit of an easier time picking this one.

My Pick: Moonlight

My Sentimental Favorite: Lion

The winner: Linus Sandgren, La La Land

I didn’t expect this one, but I’m not too surprised.

academy-awards-4Best Costume Design

Not seeing all of the films in a category can make predicting the winners a little challenging. This is one of the categories where that is especially true. I’ve made my best pick based on what I have seen, read, and heard.

My Pick: Florence Foster Jenkins

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: Colleen Atwood, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

I wasn’t sure where this one would land. I’m happy with the winner even if I was wrong.

academy-awards-9Best Directing

This category features five wildly different films that all succeeded within their genres. I think there are several possible winners in the bunch, but I’ve made my picks with confidence.

My Pick: Manchester by the Sea

My Sentimental Favorite: Hacksaw Ridge

The winner: Damien Chazelle, La La Land

Not surprising considering the buzz he’s gotten the last few years.

oscars-4Best Documentary (Feature)

This category includes a nominee that I just don’t understand. Leaving four films to pick from made it a little easier for me. I’m curious about how much politics will play into the way the voters approached this one.

My Pick: O.J.: Made in America

My Sentimental Favorite: Life, Animated

The winner: O.J.: Made in America

I had a feeling that this would win.

academy-awards-9Best Documentary (Short Subject)

This year’s short subject documentaries feature a unique blend of subjects. Like the feature documentaries, the politics might play a part in the outcome of the voting.

My Pick: Joe’s Violin

My Sentimental Favorite: Extremis

The winner: The White Helmets

I didn’t think this was a winner, but the voters disagreed.

academy-awards-5Best Film Editing

This is another great selection of films. I’ve made my choice, and I’m excited to see who takes home the statue.

My Pick: Hell or High Water

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: Hacksaw Ridge

Not my pick for the win, but a good choice all the same.

academy-awards-9Best Foreign Language Film

  • Land of Mine
  • A Man Called Ove
  • The Salesman
  • Tanna
  • Toni Erdmann

I wasn’t good at getting out to see some of the harder-to-find films this year. This means that this pick comes down to research and the opinions of trusted sources.

My Pick: A Man Called Ove

My Sentimental Favorite: Land of Mine

The winner: The Salesman

Having missed these films, I can’t really complain.

academy-awards-2Best Makeup and Haristyling

I think this is really a two horse race. I’ll let you decide which two films I’m referring to.

My Pick: Star Trek Beyond

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: Suicide Squad

I didn’t expect such a lame film to win an Oscar, but I guess you can never tell.

academy-awards-9Best Music (Original Score)

This is a tough choice. Music is a big part of what makes a film connect with me on an emotional level. The films I’ve seen from this category all had great scores.

My Pick: La La Land

My Sentimental Favorite: Lion

The winner: Justin Hurwitz, La La Land

I knew that this was going to La La Land.

academy-awards-4Best Music (Original Song)

I think that La La Land is the clear favorite here. It’s just a matter of which song voters liked more. I guess I could be wrong since the other songs nominated are also very good.

My Pick: “City of Stars” – La La Land

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: “City of Stars”, La La Land

This was my favorite song from the film, and one of the best of the season.

academy-awards-9Best Production Design

Leave it to the Oscars to remind me that Hail Caesar! was released in 2016. That seems like a movie that came out years ago. This is a tough choice for me. I think each of the films that I saw had some great production design work. My choice was based on the effect the design had on the overall experience.

My Pick: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: David Wasco and Sandy Reynolds-Wasco, La La Land

Not a surprising win, although I didn’t see it coming.

Best Short Film (Animated)

  • Blind Vaysha
  • Borrowed Time
  • Pear Cider and Cigarettes
  • Pearl
  • Piper

This is a tough one since I wasn’t able to see the shorts in their entirety. With the limited access I had I am once again forced to rely on the people I trust and my own research.

My Pick: Pearl

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: Piper

I can’t wait to see the winner.

academy-awards-9Best Short Film (Live Action)

  • Ennemis Interieurs
  • La Femme et le TGV
  • Silent Nights
  • Sing
  • Timecode

This is a tough one since I wasn’t able to see the shorts in their entirety. With the limited access I had I am once again forced to rely on the people I trust and my own research. (Sound familiar?)

My Pick: Silent Nights

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

The winner: Sing

Another good choice from the voters.

academy-awards-8Best Sound Editing

This is a category that I had a tough time with this year. Normally there is a film in the mix that stands out. This time I had to trust my ears and hope the voters agree.

My Pick: Hacksaw Ridge

My Sentimental Favorite: Same

I’m disappointed, but not upset at this one. I think Arrival was great.

academy-awards-9Best Sound Mixing

I think this is another tight race, but I’m confident in my pick.

My Pick: 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi

My Sentimental Favorite: Hacksaw Ridge

I am glad that my sentimental favorite won. I think 13 Hours was just a very underappreciated film.

academy-awards-7Best Visual Effects

Another fun category where I might as well roll some dice or flip a coin.

My Pick: The Jungle Book

My Sentimental Favorite: Doctor Strange

The winner: The Jungle Book

This seemed like a good pick, so I went for it.

academy-awards-9Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

All good films in this category. It’s going to be fun to see who wins.

My Pick: Hidden Figures

My Sentimental Favorite: Lion

The winner: Barry Jenkins and Tarell Alvin McCraney, Moonlight

Such a wonderful film.

academy-awards-3Best Writing (Original Screenplay)

There are two films in this category that I don’t think deserve the nominations. As for the others, I think the competition is tight. I really loved Hell or High Water, La La Land, and Manchester by the Sea. It will be interesting to see who wins this one.

My Pick: Manchester by the Sea

My Sentimental Favorite: Hell or High Water

The winner: Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea

I knew this was a winner.

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2 Comments on “The 89th Academy Awards – My Picks”

  1. Dan O. February 26, 2017 at 5:55 PM #

    It seems like it’s going to be La La Land for a whole lot.

    Like

    • jeffro517 February 26, 2017 at 6:22 PM #

      I think they get four or less. Just don’t think it held up down the award season stretch.

      Like

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