By Mandela Wells



Award season begins in less than a few weeks and as of Christmas day all the film contenders have been released in theaters. Unlike past years there doesn’t seem to be a distinct film or performance that is going to sweep the Golden Globes, Critics Choice Awards, SAG Awards and Oscars. The playing field is on even ground so to speak. However as always there are some interesting stories going into it all. Here are my thoughts on it all

“Mad Max: Fury Road” has been surprising everyone especially me with its numerous nominations. I know it was a great action film the best one of this year but a golden globe nomination for the film and George Miller is just giving it too much praise. This “Mad Max” remake was Artsy, well crafted script wise, had great cinematography and was well directed to the point where it was  a lot of fun to watch. However it was missing a lot of elements that future films are going to explore such as more history on the characters, the main villain could have been a little better. Plus its mainly adrenaline junkie action that is great as a blockbuster but that doesn’t really make it a distinguishable enough film that it is considered one of the greats of the year.

This spot is really meant for “Brooklyn“, in my opinion. “Mad Max’s” nominations should have really stopped at the Critics Choice Awards. Either way it is highly unlikely that “Mad Max Fury Road” will gain any awards at the golden globes, though it might have a good night at the Critics Choice Awards. Definitely no Oscar nominations for this.

Another interesting story for this season is the fact that some believe Leonardo Dicaprio may actually win an academy award this time. I love Leonardo Dicaprio and I think he definitely deserves to be in this year of course. However, Eddie Redmayne pulled out a transformative performance that to me far exceeds his one in “Theory of Everything“. His work in”The Danish Girl” was astonishing and he flawless portrayed the gradual change from Einar to Lili. The Academy has always loved when men or woman can become the other, I mean look at the success and praise Jared Leto received at last years award season. Based off of what I’ve seen, this doesn’t seem like a strong enough performance from Dicaprio to beat out Redmayne and the other nominees this season, which include Michael Fassbender, Johnny Depp, Will Smith and Bryan Cranston. I will admit I need to see this film but for now I think Redmayne is the favorite to win the best actor categories this season.

One of the categories in each award show that has legitimately shocked me is the best supporting actor category. I got one question, WHERE THE HELL IS BENECIO DEL TORO!!!?? He gave an incredibly mysterious, intense and overall tremendous performance as the revenge fueled Alejandro in “Sicario”. He stood above Emily Blunt and Josh Brolin in the movie and was on every prediction list for months and yet the academy put Paul Dano in instead of him. It is a travesty to me because his supporting performance is actually the best I’ve witnessed all year, no joke. Dano’s performance in “Love and Mercy” was great but not something extraordinary. Mark Rylance‘s work in “Bridge of Spies” compared to the others nominated was lackluster and annoying at times because I just couldn’t get a read on his character which is not good for any actor trying to portray the basics that make up a real life individual. After checking out these two films I had missed over the year a few weeks ago I came to see that Idris Elba‘s work in “Beasts of No Nation” and Michael Shannon‘s in “99 Homes” are worthy of their nomination, phenomenal performances from both of them. Then of course I’m happy Sylvester Stallone is getting his props for “Creed“. This is a category in which its hard to say who the favorite is but my pick is Mr. Elba.

People have been saying that Brie Larson may sweep awards this season but I really believe Cate Blanchett will be picking up Oscar # 3 for her. Blanchett was elegant in her acting and really created a complex but intriguing woman who doesn’t end up the same woman she was in the beginning of the film. In an ideal world I would love if Soasire Ronan won for “Brooklyn” but I think Blanchett is going to sweep for sure and I also think Rooney Mara will be joining her come the Oscar nominations announcement.

I think Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu is the clear cut favorite for best director this season but then again Todd Haynes, Tom McCarthy and Ridley Scott all did excellent with their directing this year so it could go either way. I am not surprised by any of the Best Screenplay nominations and same with best animated film but like I said it could go either way for any of them.

As far as others I see winning big in 2016, Amy Schumer may very well pick up several statues for her comedy work in “Trainwreck“, “The big Short” may have a good run, I think Jacob Tremblay deserves that critics choice award nomination for best young actor/actress, Alicia Vikander I think will win at least one award and hell even “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” should have a good night at the Critics Choice Awards. Also I would love if Simple Song #3 from “Youth” won best original Song.

One on a last note I hope Michael Caine gets nominated for an Oscar come the announcement time. He deserves one after his marvelous work in Youth.

There is so much more i could get into but nonetheless, these Award nights should prove very interesting. I know my interest has peaked this year compared to past years.

The Golden Globes will be broadcast on January 10th, followed by the Critics Choice Awards on January 17th, The SAG Awards on January 30th and finally the Oscars on February 28th.