I am only a peon in the Oscar blogging world. I do not have the opportunity to go to film festivals and studio screenings. And most of my readers are the same. We have to wait for these movies to be released wide.
We go in with our minds made up after reading all the hype. So my goal is not to be the first with reviews or spoilers. My goal is to report which movies have the best Oscar chances by word of mouth and my opinion based on what I have learned the last few years. One thing I have learned is not to predict an Oscar nomination until I have seen the film. I easily buy in to all the hype, but I have learned what the Academy goes for and what they don’t. With that said, they can still be pretty unpredictable. All I can do is post about I think should or will win this year. For all of us “little guys” here is a list of the most likely Oscar contenders and their release dates for November and December:
FLIGHT (Nov. 2) — Denzel Washington plays a pilot who drinks a lot.
WRECK-IT RALPH (Nov. 2) — Throw this in the possible Best Animation group.
LINCOLN (Nov. 9) — Steven Spielberg with Daniel Day-Lewis as LINCOLN. Already a lock for a Best Pic nomination and Best Actor DDL.
SKYFALL (Nov. 9) — Bond, James Bond return. Said to be the best James Bond movie in 20 years. Only Oscar that could come from this is the Adele song.
ANNA KARENINA (Nov. 16) — Joe Wright adapted novel. Keira Knightley, Jude Law star.
LIFE OF PI (Nov. 21) — Ang Lee makes a great looking film (including 3D) to bring to life Yann Martel’s book about a boy at sea with a tiger. No major stars in it, so look for technical awards. Possible BP nomination.
SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK (Nov. 21) — This is considered the year’s real spoiler. A romantic comedy, shows what happens when a teacher gets out of a mental institution and tries to make it back in society. On many BP lists and Jennifer Lawrence is a lock for Best Actress nomination.
HITCHCOCK (Nov. 23) — Anthony Hopkins stars as the acclaimed director. The film shows what went on behind the scenes during the making of “Psycho.” Helen Mirren co-stars and in the running for Best Supporting Actress. Anthony Hopkins is doing a characacher of Hitchcock, Oscar voter don’t go for that.
HYDE PARK ON HUDSON (Dec. 7) — Bill Murray plays Franklin Roosevelt during a weekend when King George VI came to visit. Good costumes, but that might be it.
THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY (Dec. 14) What? THE HOBBIT comes out this year??
LES MISERABLES (Dec. 14) — Theater folks have been waiting for this one for years. The adaptation of the hit musical has all the elements you could want in a huge Oscar film. Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe and Anne Hathaway star.
THE IMPOSSIBLE (Dec. 21) — If you think snow is bad, try a tsunami. That’s what faces a family in Thailand in 2004. Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor star. Acting nominations possible. In my mind Naomi Watts can do no wrong.
THIS IS 40 (Dec. 21) — This comedy about coping with middle age. Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann star under Judd Apatow’s direction. A comedy in the Oscar race?? and is 40 middle age??
DJANGO UNCHAINED (Dec. 25) — Quentin Tarantino makes noise whenever he completes a film. Don’t expect anything different before this one opens. Jamie Foxx plays a slave in the South during a particularly volatile period of time. Leonardo DiCaprio checks in as a bad plantation owner.
ZERO DARK THIRTY (Jan 11) (Dec 18,19 in LA/NY) — What did it take to get Osama bin Laden? Kathryn Bigelow speculates in this drama that takes its own liberties. Joel Edgerton, Jessica Chastain and Kyle Chandler star. Chastain is already being shopped for a Best Actress nomination.