Wednesday, February 26, 2014


It’s been a while since I’ve been able to write here, but I’m retiring from ministry this weekend, so I’m anticipating I will have much more time to dedicate to writing about what I love: Movies!

It seems fitting that I’m retiring on the Sunday the Academy Awards will be shown. It will be a full day with church, my retirement party and then the Oscars in the evening, but I’m ready!

I always make it a point to see every film nominated for Best Picture and as many others as I can manage. I am blessed to have married a wonderful man who also loves the movies and together we’ve seen all 9 nominated films. So here are my predictions for the top six Academy Awards.

BEST PICTURE: I find it amazing that out of the nine films nominated five of them are based on a true story. I have to say that I was a bit disappointed that The Book Thief wasn’t included in any of the nominations. I found it an incredibly touching film that moved me at my core. Also, I missed out on seeing Inside Llewyn Davis so I can’t comment on whether or not that film should have been included. All of the films nominated were good for different reasons, but I believe the film that will win the prize will be 12 Years a Slave. American Hustle has received quite a bit of buzz, but I don’t think it will take home many, if any Oscars. 12 Years a Slave is a film that was extremely difficult to watch and left me feeling ashamed of my race, but it is totally deserving of Best Picture and seems to have the momentum.

BEST DIRECTOR: It isn’t often that Best Picture and Best Director Awards are split, but I believe that will happen this year. Alfonso Cuaron deserves the statue for Gravity. The film was mesmerizing and left me asking myself ‘how’d they do that?’ This film will take home quite a few more Oscars. I predict Oscars for Gravity for Best Film Editing, Cinematography, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing and Visual Effects.

BEST ACTOR: Chiwetel Ejiofor could possibly win for 12 Years a Slave, but I believe it will and should go to Matthew McConaughey. First of all, Hollywood often rewards actors/actresses who go to great physical extremes for their character, and McConaughey lost about 45 pounds for this role. As someone who is presently working on losing a few pounds, I admire his tenacity. He was also quite riveting and believable in the role.

BEST ACTRESS: This one is tough. Meryl Streep was awesome in August: Osage County, but she’s already won 3 Academy Awards and most people think she’s won even more than that as she’s been nominated 18 times. There has been a lot of talk about Amy Adams, and while she was good, I don’t believe she will win. When I saw Sandra Bullock in Gravity I knew she would be nominated. It has to be difficult to act in a film basically alone and against a green screen much of the time. However, the actress whose has been raking in all the awards (very deservedly) is Cate Blanchett for her role in Blue Jasmine and I believe she will take home the Oscar as well.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: This one feels like a slam dunk. It will be Jared Leto from Dallas Buyer’s Club….no contest. All of the other actors were great. Barkhad Abdi in Captain Phillips, Michael Fessbender in 12 Years a Slave, Bradley Cooper in American Hustle and Jonah Hill of The Wolf of Wall Street are all great actors, they just picked the wrong year to compete.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS:  I know there is a lot of buzz about Jennifer Lawrence in American Hustle and she just won last year, so there is some momentum for her to win two years in a row. There is also some sentiment for June Squibb to finally win an Oscar for her role in Nebraska. However, I believe the statue will go to Lupita Nyong’o for 12 Years a Slave. She has certainly won the hearts of the world with her heart-wrenching performance and I, for one, can’t wait to see what she wears on the Red Carpet.

I did not see any of the films nominated for BEST ANIMATED FEATURE, although I intend to see Frozen soon and the word among critics seems to be predicting it to win.

The Academy Awards is only a few days away and I’m looking forward to Ellen DeGeneres as host once again. My husband and I will each fill out our ballots and sit down in our living room on Sunday night to enjoy the show. I almost hope some of my predictions don’t come true as it seems like the Awards show has become way too predictable. I miss the days when strange and unpredictable things happened….like someone streaking out across the stage. Also, is it too much to ask for some interesting acceptance speeches…. forget the long list of people to thank and please tell us something unique and memorable!

It won’t matter to me how late the show runs as I’ll be retired. Unfortunately my husband will have to get up early to walk the dog and go to work….ah well. Life is Sweet. See you at the movies!