With the Academy Awards coming up on Sunday, it’s time to choose our favorites on the annual award show extravaganza. No doubt, it’s a competitive field this year with no obvious favorite in many of the major categories. Check out our picks and share your favorites on Facebook.
Best Picture: There seem to be three favorites in the running this year, The Power of the Dog, Belfast and CODA. No question, Power of the Dog is Oscar-worthy on many levels, and I expect Jane Campion to win for Best Director, but I’m picking CODA for the win. The feel-good movie about the daughter of deaf parents who becomes a singer is a realistic, moving portrayal. It’s a New England film, too, and Hollywood loves those Boston accents! Prediction: CODA wins the big one.
Best Director: As mentioned above, I’m going with Jane Campion for her spine-tingling Western drama The Power of the Dog. The film, Campion’s first in 11 years, is a clinic in filmmaking. There’s some stiff competition, including Stephen Spielberg and Kenneth Branaugh, but Campion, with several strong films behind her, should win this year. Prediction: Jane Campion.
Best Actress: This is the most wide-open major category this year with several leading ladies competing. Jessica Chastain is the anointed frontrunner for her role in The Eyes of Tammy Faye, but it’s a tight field. Nicole Kidman was strong in Being the Ricardos and I really liked Kristin Stewart in her unsettling role as Princess Diana in Spencer. I’m going with the upset … Prediction: Kristin Stewart.
Best Actor: Some fantastic performances in this category with Will Smith in King Richard, playing the obsessed father of tennis greats Serena and Venus Williams, the odds-on favorite. He will be hard to beat, although I think Benedict Cumberbatch had an equally fine performance in The Power of the Dog. Prediction: I’m going with Smith (51%) over Cuberbatch (49%) for the win!
Best Supporting Actress: Everyone is picking Ariana DeBose for her performance in West Side Story, and no doubt, she was all-around fantastic. She’ll be tough to beat. I thought Kirsten Dunst was equally strong in The Power of the Dog, and she also deserves praise. Prediction: DeBose for the win!
Best Supporting Actor: Some interesting choices in this category including Jesse Plemons in The Power of the Dog and Ciaran Hinds in Belfast, but the nod has to go to Troy Katsur for his endearing role in CODA. His reaction to his daughter Ruby, played by Emilia Jones, singing “All That I Need to Get By,” is as moving as anything in cinema. Prediction: Troy Kotsur.
Watch the Academy Awards Sunday night beginning at 8PM on ABC.