Richard Linklater (#110 of 41)

Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Original Screenplay

Comments Comments (...)

Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Original Screenplay
Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Original Screenplay

In what's become an annual tradition, last weekend's Writers Guild Awards weren't much of a trial heat for the Oscars. Membership requirements repeatedly keep out many of the higher-profile Academy Award contenders. And sometimes the two branches, even when they both love certain scripts, disagree on where to slot them. Behold the miraculously adapted-original screenplay for Whiplash, of which the shenanigans that led to its “exclusion” here at least excuse me from having to fantasize about how thrilling voters likely find Damien Chazelle's 50 shades of gay panic. (Ed gets that honor of unpacking the whole gory mess, so stay tuned.) That glitch aside, this slate is still a four-for-five match with the guild's.

Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Director

Comments Comments (...)

Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Director
Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Director

Even as Boyhood steamrolled the critics groups, even as it dominated the Golden Globes, we had our doubts about its frontrunner status here and in best picture. This little film that so deeply ponders matters of life and love struck such a universal nerve that it seemed as if it could actually buck the trend on Oscar night wherein the most self-congratulatory totem to Hollywood itself typically reigns supreme. After losing the PGA, then (more expectedly) the SAG ensemble, only to then persevere at the BAFTAs, Boyhood was following in all of The Social Network's footsteps. And just as David Fincher lost the DGA award to Tom Hooper, solidifying The King's Speech's frontrunner status leading into Oscar night, the nail in Boyhood's coffin seemed to come when Richard Linklater lost to Alejandro González Iñárritu. Boyhood, a bigger-hearted film than The Social Network, may still win best picture—that is, if the PGA, SAG, and DGA victories for Birdman can be understood to represent a passionless kind of respect for the means by which the film's producers, actors, and director, working in perfect congress, realized the pyrotechnic wonder of their one-take stunt. But that's Eric Henderson's argument to make next week. In this category where formal bombast is so often rewarded, as conductor of Birdman brute-force razzle dazzle, González Iñárritu is your winner almost by default.

Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions Documentary Short

Comments Comments (...)

Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Documentary Short
Oscar 2015 Winner Predictions: Documentary Short

It's decision time and our gurus of gold bring you tidings of great confusion. This year's nominees for documentary short are all, almost conspicuously, united by their deployment of the canniest of distancing effects. They're also among the most galvanizing selections we've ever had the pleasure of screening—if pleasure is the word to describe how they've harpooned our hearts, minds, and seemingly impenetrable tear ducts. Just about the only thing we can agree on is that, as a piece of filmmaking, Gabriel Serra's The Reaper has no equal here, but that a victory for this haunting, expressionistic, and deeply graphic articulation of a slaughterhouse worker's relationship to death seems impossible in a world where Richard Linklater is probably the only AMPAS member to have ever made it through the entirety of Fassbinder's In a Year of 13 Moons without covering his eyes.