2012 Oscar Predictions

JOSEPH’S PREDICTIONS

Best Picture: The Artist
Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius
Best Actor: Jean Dujardin
Best Actress: Viola Davis
Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer
Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer
Best Original Screenplay: Midnight in Paris
Best Adapted Screenplay: The Descendants
Best Animated Feature: Rango
Best Documentary: Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory
Best Foreign Language Film: A Separation
Best Cinematography: The Tree of Life
Best Film Editing: The Artist
Best Visual Effects: Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Best Art Direction: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II
Best Costume Design: Jane Eyre
Best Makeup: Albert Nobbs
Best Sound Editing: War Horse
Best Sound Mixing: War Horse
Best Original Score: The Artist
Best Original Song: ‘Man or Muppet’
Best Animated Short: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris
Best Live-Action Short: The Shore
Best Documentary Short: The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom

CASSIE-MARIE’S PREDICTIONS

Best Picture: The Artist
Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius
Best Actor: George Clooney
Best Actress: Viola Davis
Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer
Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer
Best Original Screenplay: Midnight in Paris
Best Adapted Screenplay: The Descendants
Best Animated Feature: Rango
Best Documentary: Undefeated
Best Foreign Language Film: Bullhead
Best Cinematography: The Tree of Life
Best Film Editing: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Best Visual Effects: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II
Best Art Direction: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II
Best Costume Design: Jane Eyre
Best Makeup: The Iron Lady
Best Sound Editing: War Horse
Best Sound Mixing: War Horse
Best Original Score: The Artist
Best Original Song: ‘Man or Muppet’
Best Animated Short: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris
Best Live-Action Short: Raju
Best Documentary Short: The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom

DANIEL’S PREDICTIONS

Best Picture: The Artist
Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius
Best Actor: Jean Dujardin
Best Actress: Viola Davis
Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer
Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer
Best Original Screenplay: Midnight in Paris
Best Adapted Screenplay: The Descendants
Best Animated Feature: Rango
Best Documentary: Undefeated
Best Foreign Language Film: A Separation
Best Cinematography: The Tree of Life
Best Film Editing: The Artist
Best Visual Effects: Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Best Art Direction: Hugo
Best Costume Design: The Artist
Best Makeup: The Iron Lady
Best Sound Editing: Hugo
Best Sound Mixing: Hugo
Best Original Score: The Artist
Best Original Song: ‘Man or Muppet’
Best Animated Short: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris
Best Live-Action Short: Saving Face
Best Documentary Short: Tuba Atlantic

See you all tonight at the Oscars. Follow our Twitter accounts for LIVE up-to-date results and opinions:

@jdemme / @cinexcellence / @dtuck318 / @CMarieDemme

Oscar Nomination Predictions

The 2012 Oscar nominations will be formally announced tomorrow, and these are my predictions for the films that will be nominated. This year I’m only predicting the main categories.

Best Picture
The Artist
The Help
Hugo
The Descendants
Midnight in Paris
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
War Horse

Best Director
Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist)
Alexander Payne (The Descendants)
Woody Allen (Midnight in Paris)
Martin Scorsese (Hugo)
Terrence Malick (Tree of Life)

Best Actor
George Clooney (The Descendants)
Jean Dujardin (The Artist)
Leonardo DiCaprio (J. Edgar)
Brad Pitt (Moneyball)
Michael Fassbender (Shame)

Best Actress
Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady)
Viola Davis (The Help)
Michelle Williams (My Week with Marilyn)
Tilda Swinton (We Need to Talk About Kevin)
Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs)

Best Supporting Actor
Kenneth Branagh (My Week with Marilyn)
Albert Brooks (Drive)
Nick Nolte (Warrior)
Christopher Plummer (Beginners)
Patton Oswalt (Young Adult)

Best Supporting Actress
Bernice Bejo (The Artist)
Octavia Spencer (The Help)
Shaileen Woodley (The Descendants)
Jessica Chastain (The Help)
Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids)

Adapted Screenplay
The Descendants
The Help
Moneyball
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
The Ides of March

Original Screenplay
The Artist
50/50
Midnight in Paris
Bridesmaids
Win, Win

The Oscar nominations will be announced at 8:30 ET.

Golden Globes Predictions

 

For better or worse, Ricky Gervais returns tomorrow evening to host the 2012 Golden Globes Awards. The night is bound to have memorable moments as well as some painful ones. Remember Brendan Gleeson last year? Or that awkward moment during Natalie Portman’s speech? Then again, how could you forget when Jim Carrey won for The Truman Show? Or when Martin Scorsese accepeted the Cecil B. DeMille Award?

You can find a full list of nominations here, but we’ll only be focusing on the Film-centric awards due to the fact that we’re not as well-versed in the television nominations. Let us know who you think will win!

DANIEL’S PICKS

Drama: The Descendants
Actress (Drama): 
Viola Davis
Actor (Drama): 
George Clooney
Comedy/Musical:
The Artist
Actress (Comedy/ Musical): 
Kristin Wiig
Actor (Comedy/Musical): 
Jean Dujardin
Animated Feature: 
The Adventures of Tintin
Foreign Film: 
A Seperation
Supporting Actress: 
Octavia Spencer
Supporting Actor: 
Christopher Plummer
Director: 
Michel Hazanavicius
Screenplay: 
Midnight in Pairs
Original Score: 
The Artist
Original Song: 
“The Living Proof”

JOSEPH’S PICKS

Drama: The Help
Actress (Drama): 
Viola Davis
Actor (Drama): 
George Clooney
Comedy/Musical
The Artist
Actress (Comedy/ Musical): 
Michelle Williams
Actor (Comedy/Musical): 
Jean Dujardin
Animated Feature: 
The Adventures of Tintin
Foreign Film: 
A Separation
Supporting Actress: 
Octavia Spencer
Supporting Actor: 
Christopher Plummer
Director: 
Michel Hazanavicius
Screenplay: 
Moneyball
Original Score: 
The Artist
Original Song: 
“Lay Your Head Down”

Fall / Winter 2011

The Summer blockbuster season is over, and with the announcement that Eddie Murphy will be hosting next year, the race to the Oscars has begun.

Daniel & I are looking forward to a lot of films coming out in the next few months, and thought we’d share our individual top ten anticipated films with you.

Feel free to agree, disagree, and share your own top ten in the comments below.

DANIEL’S MOST ANTICIPATED

10. J. Edgar

Leonardo DiCaprio is one of the greatest actors to ever grace the silver screen. The list of directors he has worked with reads like an All-Star Hollywood lineup — Ridley Scott, James Cameron, Christopher Nolan, and Martin Scorsese, to name a few. Now he has a new name to add to his resume: Clint Eastwood. Eastwood showed he had a skilled hand for historical drama in 2008’s Changeling. With Oscar-winning writer Dustin Lance Black (Milk) on board for his latest work, we could be looking at another fine film from one of the greats.

9. Moneyball

We haven’t had a great baseball movie since The Rookie. The sad truth is that baseball movies are few and far between these days, but Moneyball looks to be a winner. Co-written by Aron Sorkin (The Social Network), the movie tells the story of Oakland A’s manager Billy Beane and his radical decision to use computers to draft baseball players. Co-starring Jonah Hill, Robin Wright, and the always reliable Philip Seymour Hoffman, Oscar buzz for this movie seems inevitable.

8. The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn

I’ve never been the biggest fan of motion capture animation, but after seeing the trailer for Spielberg’s first animated feature, I was sold. The Adventures of Tintin is something I don’t want to miss. Every frame is alive with spirited energy and overflowing with vibrant life. It’s always exciting to see directors pushing the medium forward. Who knows, maybe Spielberg will do for motion capture what Cameron did for 3D.

7. Drive

After his terrific performance in Blue Valentine last year, Ryan Gosling seems to be getting more and more roles. His latest is a man simply known as Driver, a professional Hollywood stunt driver who drives getaway cars in his spare time. After a heist goes wrong, he finds himself targeted by powerful men. Nicolas Winding Refn (Bronson, Vahalla Rising) took home top honors for his direction on the film at Cannes and will continue to receive such praise as we head into Oscar season.

6. 50/50

Screenwriter Will Reiser tells the story of his personal diagnosis with cancer and the effect it has on himself and those close to him. With an incredible cast featuring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, Anna Kendrick, and Bryce Dallas Howard, this mix of comedy and drama is sure to be one of the year’s best.

5. The Ides of March

George Clooney’s Good Night and Good Luck remains one of the best films of the last decade, and I’m very excited to see what he brings to the table in this year’s Ides of March. Loosely based on Howard Dean’s failed presidential campaign back in 2004, the movie explores dirty politics in a presidential campaign. Boasting one of the best ensemble casts of the year (Clooney, Gosling, Tomei, Giamatti, and more), The Ides of March is bound to be a key player in this year’s Oscar race.

4. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

Gary Oldman is garnering quite a bit of Oscar buzz for his role as George Smiley in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, an all-star thriller set during the Cold War. Oldman may be getting most of the buzz, but it’s the cast as a whole (Colin Firth, Tom Hardy, Toby Jones, and Mark Strong to name a few) that has me really excited for this movie. After learning that a Soviet agent has embedded himself deep inside MI6, Smiley comes out of retirement to find the traitor. I don’t know much about the original novel or the British television series it inspired, but I know I’m going to see this as soon as I can.

3. The Artist

The Artist promises to be one of the most unique movie experiences this year. The year is 1927, and the arrival of talking pictures is right around the corner. This poses a problem for George Valentin, one of the kings of silent cinema. While he  deals with the changes that Hollywood is embracing, he must also confront his interest in a young dancer by the name of Peppy Miller. The movie was a huge success at Cannes, and it looks to be a personal instant favorite. The biggest attraction to this movie is that it’s filmed like a silent film, the kind that we would have seen back in Valentin’s day.

2. Hugo

Is there any genre Martin Scorsese won’t tackle? He’s done biblical drama, period pieces, romances, concert movies, documentaries, and more. Hugo, based on the beloved children’s book by Brian Selznick, is the great director’s first family-oriented film. Scorsese transports us to 1930s Paris, where we follow a young boy named Hugo and his quest to discover the mysteries left behind by his father.

I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather have in the director’s chair for a proper adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. David Fincher’s work on films like Seven and Fight Club are perfect examples of why he is the right man for the job. I enjoyed the Swedish adaptation of the popular novel, but it suffered from budget constraints. I can’t wait to see what Fincher does with the material and a more appropriate budget. Its dark and haunting story might be too much for Oscar voters to handle, but it’s bound to be one of the year’s best.

 

JOSEPH’S MOST ANTICIPATED

10. Albert Nobbs


2011 is definitely a good year for strong female leads, even with Glen Close playing a woman character who dresses as a man. I’m really looking forward to her performance, which in my mind, is a follow-up to Steven Spielberg’s Hook. (Don’t believe me?)

9. My Week with Marilyn

Michelle Williams takes on the titular role of the celibritous Marilyn Monroe. Kenneth Branagh also stars, in a role envied by many a British actor, as Sir Laurence Olivier. Emma Watson, fresh off of the Harry Potter train, joins the cast as well.

8. The Rum Diary


I will admit that I haven’t seen Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (also based on a Hunter S. Thompson novel), but I have heard about this adaptation for many years. The hype has slowly been building in the back of my mind, and with the recently revealed trailer, it looks like this film has actually been filmed.

7. Drive



Reminding me of the genre-bending present in Hanna, Ryan Gosling stars in a film that, on paper, sounds like a knock-off of the Jason Statham vehicle, The Transporter. With that preconception in mind, the positive buzz from Cannes was confusing. The trailer for the film shows that yes, it shares the same concept, but is something else entirely (Apologies to Martin Scorsese for bumping Hugo from the list at the last minute). Also, I need to watch Bronson now.

6. The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn


I have fond memories of reading the American versions of The Adventures of TinTin, a comic book series by Belgian artist Herge. I had worries about it being translated to the big screen, but I think it’s in good hands with director Steven Spielberg. They seem to have a grasp on the overall tone and atmosphere that makes the series the period/modern/future swashbuckler that it is.

5. The Iron Lady


The theme today is performances, and The Iron Lady is no exception. I’d watch a movie starring Meryl Streep playing a woman who watches paint dry. (Paging Gus Van Sant) Streep stars as former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and as usual, chameleons her character well. I’m interested to see how Phyllida Lloyd (Mamma Mia!) does directing a period film.

4. J. Edgar


Leonardo DiCaprio has an impressive track record for quality acting, and has been busy for the last several years. His latest performance, as J. Edgar Hoover, teams him up with director Clint Eastwood (Million Dollar Baby) and writer Dustin Lance Black (Milk). If this isn’t a recipe for a road to the Oscars, I don’t know what is.

3. Moneyball


I love a good game of baseball, but as a spectator sport, I’d rather watch golf. So why, out of all the films coming out this year, would I want to watch this? Director Bennett Miller, writer Aaron Sorkin, and actors Brad Pitt, Philip Seymour Hoffman (woefully absent from the trailers), and Jonah Hill (hoping he does well in a non-comedic role).

2. War Horse


While at times sounding more like Lassy than Gone With the Wind, I’m excited about the latest from Steven Spielberg. (I loved Munich and enjoyed Crystal Skull) The story sounds moving, epic, and judging from the trailer, looks gorgeous. It stars David Thewlis, Emily Watson, Tom Hiddleston, and newcomer Jeremy Irvine in the lead role.

 

1. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy


This movie looks fantastic, plain and simple. Tomas Alfredson, who directed the magnificent Let the Right One In in 2008, returns with a film set during the Cole War. Alfredson has proved his skill in subtlety and atmosphere, and has surrounded himself with a steller cast, including Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Tom Hardy, John Hurt, Mark Strong, Cieran Hinds…the list goes on. Watch out for this one.

 

UPDATED LIVE: 83rd Academy Awards Winners

Well it’s that time at last. All our questions will be answered at this year’s award season comes to a close. It’s been a fun ride, even more so since this is one of the best years of film we’ve ever seen. I’ll be posting the winners here, but be sure to follow us on twitter!

@jdemme / @cinexcellence@dtuck318@CMarie_Demme

Our predictions can be found here.

 

Enjoy this year’s Oscars!

 

Art Direction: Alice in Wonderland

Cinematography: Inception

Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo, The Fighter

Animated Short Film: The Lost Thing

Animated Feature Film: Toy Story 3

Adapted Screenplay:  Aaron Sorkin, The Social Network

Original Screenplay: David Seidler, The King’s Speech

Best Foreign Film: In A Better World

Supporting Actor: Christian Bale, “The Fighter”

Original Score: The Social Network

Sound Mixing: Inception

Sound Editing: Inception

Makeup: The Wolfman

Costume Design: Alice in Wonderland

Documentary Short Subject:  Strangers No More

Live Action Short Film: God of Love

Documentary: Inside Job

Visual Effects: Inception

Editing: The Social Network

Original Song: “We Belong Together,” Toy Story 3

Director: Tom Hooper, “The King’s Speech”

Actress: Natalie Portman, “Black Swan”

Actor: Colin Firth, “The King’s Speech”

Picture: The King’s Speech

 

Cinexcellence 2011 Oscar Predictions

The award season is over, the ballots are in, and these are our predictions for this year’s Oscars. Joseph’s wife, Cassie-Marie, will be adding her .02 cents as well.

We also have an Oscar Pool going on right now, and there’s still time to enter for FREE PRIZES.

Best Motion Picture

Joseph: The Social Network
Cassie-Marie: The Social Network
Daniel: The King’s Speech

Best Director

Joseph: David Fincher (The Social Network)
Cassie-Marie: David Fincher (The Social Network)
Daniel: Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech)

Best Actor in a Leading Role

Joseph: Colin Firth (The King’s Speech)
Cassie-Marie: Colin Firth (The King’s Speech)
Daniel: Colin Firth (The King’s Speech)

Best Actress in a Leading Role

Joseph: Natalie Portman (Black Swan)
Cassie-Marie: Natalie Portman (Black Swan)
Daniel: Natalie Portman (Black Swan)

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

Joseph: Christian Bale (The Fighter)
Cassie-Marie: Christian Bale (The Fighter)
Daniel: Christian Bale (The Fighter)

Best Supporting Actress in a Supporting Role

Joseph: Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit)
Cassie-Marie: Melissa Leo (The Fighter)
Daniel: Melissa Leo (The Fighter)

Best Adapted Screenplay

Joseph: Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network)
Cassie-Marie: Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network)
Daniel: Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network)

Best Original Screenplay

Joseph: David Seidler (The King’s Speech)
Cassie-Marie: David Seidler (The King’s Speech)
Daniel: David Seidler (The King’s Speech)

Best Art Direction

Joseph: Alice in Wonderland
Cassie-Marie: Inception
Daniel: The King’s Speech

Best Cinematography

Joseph: True Grit
Cassie-Marie: True Grit
Daniel: True Grit

Best Costume Design

Joseph: The King’s Speech
Cassie-Marie: The King’s Speech
Daniel: The King’s Speech

Best Film Editing

Joseph: The Social Network
Cassie-Marie: The Social Network
Daniel: The Social Network

Best Makeup

Joseph: The Wolfman
Cassie-Marie: The Wolfman
Daniel: The Wolfman

Best Music (Original Score)

Joseph: The Social Network
Cassie-Marie: The Social Network
Daniel: The King’s Speech

Best Music (Original Song)

Joseph: “I See the Light” (Tangled)
Cassie-Marie: “We Belong Together” (Toy Story 3)
Daniel: “We Belong Together” (Toy Story 3)

Best Sound Editing

Joseph: Inception
Cassie-Marie: Inception
Daniel: Inception

Best Sound Mixing

Joseph: Inception
Cassie-Marie: Inception
Daniel: Inception

Best Visual Effects

Joseph: Inception
Cassie-Marie: Inception
Daniel: Inception

Best Animated Feature Film

Joseph: Toy Story 3
Cassie-Marie: Toy Story 3
Daniel: Toy Story 3

Best Documentary Feature Film

(See a montage of documentaries here)

Joseph: Exit Through the Gift Shop
Cassie-Marie: Exit Through the Gift Shop
Daniel: Exit Through the Gift Shop

Best Animated Short Film

(Read about them here)

Joseph: Day & Night
Cassie-Marie: Madagascar, a Journey Diary
Daniel: Madagascar, a Journey Diary

Best Live Action Short Film

Joseph: Na Wewe
Cassie-Marie: Na Wewe
Daniel: God of Love

Best Documentary Short

Joseph: Strangers No More
Cassie-Marie: Poster Girl
Daniel: Strangers No More

—-

Well, that’s all folks. See you tomorrow night, where we will be providing you with LIVE UPDATES from the Oscars, and tweeting our responses:

@jdemme / @cinexcellence / @dtuck318 / @CMarie_Demme

OSCAR ANALYSIS: Live-Action Shorts

Read part 1 HERE.

Title: The Confession (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: Quiet and Sincere 9-year old Sam is worried about making his first confession.

Will it Win? The Confession has the necessary ingredients for an excellent short film: Talented actors, beautiful locations, and conflict. I was impressed by the ending conversation between the main character and the priest during the titular confession; it was a subtle, atmospheric scene. I wasn’t sold by the supporting cast, however, and the conflict in the film was taken to unnecessary extremes.

Title: The Crush (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: An 8 year old schoolboy is so besotted with his teacher that he challenges her boyfriend to a duel…to the death!

Will it Win? Judging from the premise, I thought I was going to enjoy this short a lot. It’s good, but could have been great. There’s a wonderful back-and-forth between the boy and the teacher’s boyfriend that the story should have been framed around more than it was. The Crush falls into the short narrative trap of including ‘the twist’ and loses track of itself. It’s still a worthy film, and a contender for the award.

Title: God of Love (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: A lovestruck, lounge-sining darts champion finds his prayers are answered — literally — when he mysteriously received a box of love-inducing darts.

Will it Win? From start to finish, God of Love instantly falls into the ‘quirky independent’ category, and rightly so. It’s a fun little film with a simple message, and it’s insanely enjoyable. If I were an Academy member, this might get a check on my ballot.

Title: Na Wewe (iTunes Link Coming Soon!)

IMDb Summary: There is a civil war on in Burundi. A genocidal conflict opposing Hutus and Tutsis. We are witnesses to one of those sadly frequent episodes.

Will it Win? Taking place in one scene in the midst of surrounding genocide, Na Wewe is about personal identity, and all the various factors that go into it. The Burundi conflict is used more as a backdrop for the event, and handled well. The acting was great, and the ending, while a tad on the cheesy side, was a great note to end on. Na Wewe has my vote; we’ll see if the Academy agrees.


Title: Wish 143 (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: Tells the story of a young man desperate to come of age before time runs out.

Will it Win? This is a sweet, yet serious film that deals with serious subject material. It’s a film that grew on me after watching it. The chemistry between the main character and the resident priest is fleshed out and feels lived-in. A decision is made by one of the characters that I didn’t think the character would have made, but other than that, it’s a worthy film, and one that I can see the Academy falling for.

What were YOUR favorites?

Cinexcellence Oscar Pool

Attention followers of the Oscar: We are now less than a week away from the Academy Awards. Are you excited? Will the dynamic duo of Franco and Hathaway keep us entertained for 8+ hours? Will Banksy make (steal) the show? One can only wonder and hope. But for now all you have to do is put a little check next to the nominees that you think will win this year. There will be prizes for the winners.

Basic Rules / Information

(1) Shipped prizes will go to U.S. residents only
(2) Daniel and I will be excluded from entering
(3) The tie-breaker will NOT be the existing on on the ballot. Instead, the tie-ess will submit a 50+ word argument on how Nic Cage’s best performance was in Ghost Rider. (cinexcellence-at-gmail-dot-com)
(4) The deadline for entering the contest is 8:00 PM EST on Sunday, February 27th.

PRIZES:

First Place: 1 best picture nominee on DVD/BluRay (under $25 value) and a movie poster.
Second Place: 1 movie poster
Third Place: 1 random DVD

To enter your predictions, follow this LINK, register if you haven’t already done so, and fill out the ballot.
Note: Their is no password for this event. Just click “Join” when asked for one.

OSCAR ANALYSIS: Animated Shorts

One of my favorite traditions for the last three years has been downloading and watching the Oscar-nominated live-action and animated short films on iTunes each year before the Academy Awards. Not only does it give me a (supposed) edge on my Oscar Pools, but I’ve found that I really enjoy a good short-form story. It’s tough work for a storyteller to restrict himself to a short duration, and each year I applaud their efforts; $2 each. :)
This year I had the fortune of watching them at the Midtown Cinema in Harrisburg, an independent theater that I recommend very much. Great atmosphere and a wonderful selection of films. My wife took me there on a surprise Valentine’s Day date this year; it was great seeing the short films on a large screen.
Here are my quick takes on the animated films (Look for my post on the live-action shorts soon)

Title: Day & Night (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: The personifications of daytime and nighttime learn to get along.

Will it Win? With a creative, brave style, Pixar’s latest short tells a simple story of giving things up and sharing in a friendship. It’s got early buzz from being released before Toy Story 3 this Summer, so everyone and their kids have seen it. I think this has the best shot of taking home the award (which Pixar hasn’t won since 2001 for For the Birds).

Title: The Gruffalo (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: A cunning mouse goes for a walk in the forest and outwits a succession of predators.

Will it Win? Based on the children’s book of the same name, The Gruffalo is a film that overstays it’s repetitive storyline. It’s clever, but after the first few minutes, I was ready for the next film.

Title: Let’s Pollute (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: In the spirit of 50’s & 60’s educational films [. . .] ‘Let’s Pollute’ is a modern satire.

Will it Win? Along the same veins as the previous entry, Let’s Pollute satirically by reversing our views of pollution. It’s funny and cute, but again, is a dinner guest that HAS to go home. The animation is creative and well done. Quite frankly, I don’t know how this film made it through the nomination process. The honorary mentions were much more deserving, in my opinion.

Title: The Lost Thing (iTunes Link)

IMDb Summary: A boy finds a strange creature on a beach.

Will it Win? This is one of the most magical films I’ve seen this year, in a weird Eraserhead meets Steampunk kind of way. The story is creative, draws you in, and leaves you with a delighted grin on your face.

Title: Madagascar, a Journey Diary (iTunes Link)

Summary: A story told through what appears to be an interactive diary of a journey to Madagascar and his encounters there.

Will it Win? It took me a few minutes to get involved in the story, but once I was immersed, Madagascar turned out to be a wonderful episodic tale of wonder and sadness. The storyteller tells a lot through various styles of animation. This would be my next pick after Day & Night.

What are some of YOUR favorite short films?