Sunday, March 3, 2024

Chasing The Gold: Critics Choice Predictions

The 27th Critics’ Choice Awards is this Sunday and once again I’m honored to be a part of it in a small way as a voting memeber. The group may not have the best reputation, but at the very least I’ve done my due diligence to see all the films and consider every nomination. Obviously, not all of my picks will win, however I’m hoping for a few surprises.

At any rate, below are my predictions for the 2022 Critics Choice Awards!

BEST PICTURE
Belfast
CODA
Don’t Look Up
Dune
King Richard
Licorice Pizza
Nightmare Alley
The Power of the Dog
tick, tick…Boom!
West Side Story

Prediction: It’s The Power of the Dog. Until I see evidence of the contrary, it’s hard to go against the power behind The Power of the Dog. I genuinely think it’s the best film of 2021 and it’s the movie I want to see win here.

BEST ACTOR
Nicolas Cage – Pig
Benedict Cumberbatch – The Power of the Dog
Peter Dinklage – Cyrano
Andrew Garfield – tick, tick…Boom!
Will Smith – King Richard
Denzel Washington – The Tragedy of Macbeth

Prediction: I really want Nicolas Cage to win this. He gave the best male performance of 2021, however this is Will Smith’s award to lose. And I can’t be mad at that, honestly. Smith has had a fascinating career and he’s quite great in King Richard , so it feels like something that’s been on the way for some time. When he wins I’ll be more than happy for him.

BEST ACTRESS
Jessica Chastain – The Eyes of Tammy Faye
Olivia Colman – The Lost Daughter
Lady Gaga – House of Gucci
Alana Haim – Licorice Pizza
Nicole Kidman – Being the Ricardos
Kristen Stewart – Spencer

Prediction: Kristen Stewart. Kristen Stewart. Kristen Stewart. She gave the best performance of the year and she’s my winner for this category. Can’t wait to see her acceptance speech.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Jamie Dornan – Belfast
Ciarán Hinds – Belfast
Troy Kotsur – CODA
Jared Leto – House of Gucci
J.K. Simmons – Being the Ricardos
Kodi Smit-McPhee – The Power of the Dog

Prediction: Troy Kotsur has been on a roll and is more than deserving of this award. He’s so funny in CODA, but he’s also involved in the film’s most emotionally blistering scenes as well. There’s a lot of discusison about that final audition scene, but his work in the concert scene, and the “truck scene” that takes place right after, is truly special.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Caitríona Balfe – Belfast
Ariana DeBose – West Side Story
Ann Dowd – Mass
Kirsten Dunst – The Power of the Dog
Aunjanue Ellis – King Richard
Rita Moreno – West Side Story

Prediction: I’m somewhat torn on this category. My heart lies with Caitríona Balfe and her work in Belfast, which is the heart and soul of that movie in many ways. However, at the same time, I do very much get the love for Ariana DeBose and why she’s going to win here. So, as much as I love Balfe and would love to see her take this award, it’s going to DeBose.

BEST YOUNG ACTOR/ACTRESS
Jude Hill – Belfast
Cooper Hoffman – Licorice Pizza
Emilia Jones – CODA
Woody Norman – C’mon C’mon
Saniyya Sidney – King Richard
Rachel Zegler – West Side Story

Prediction: Holy good God this category. Personally speaking, I’m not even sure where to begin. Every single one of these nominees deserves to win. All of them. My gut instinct is that Rachel Zegler will win given the broad love for West Side Story, however I’m hoping for an upset with Cooper Hoffman or Emilia Jones. Imagine the moment if Hoffman wins and he goes up on stage and starts talking about his late-great father. There won’t be a dry in the place. I would personally turn into a waterfall. Jones is equally as deserving though and gives a remarkable performance in CODA. In the end I will predict Hoffman, but I can see it going to any of them. On a side note, my true vote is Woody Norman, but there’s been no love for C’mon C’mon sadly (which is heartbreaking to me).

BEST ACTING ENSEMBLE
Belfast
Don’t Look Up
The Harder They Fall
Licorice Pizza
The Power of the Dog
West Side Story

Prediction: This category is also tricky as there’s at least three really good contenders here between The Power of the Dog, West Side Story and Belfast. With Haim and Hoffman also nominated, maybe Licorice Pizza has a small chance as well, but not sure I see that film winning here. My gut is that Belfast ends up winning here as this may be the only category to award the film.

BEST DIRECTOR
Paul Thomas Anderson – Licorice Pizza
Kenneth Branagh – Belfast
Jane Campion – The Power of the Dog
Guillermo del Toro – Nightmare Alley
Steven Spielberg – West Side Story
Denis Villeneuve – Dune

Prediction: Jane Campion is a legend and I can’t wait to see her walk up on stage.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Paul Thomas Anderson – Licorice Pizza
Zach Baylin – King Richard
Kenneth Branagh – Belfast
Adam McKay, David Sirota – Don’t Look Up
Aaron Sorkin – Being the Ricardos

Prediction: This could be the other category where Belfast gets a win, and if the rest of the group loves it as I do, maybe that’ll be the case, however I’m going with PTA to win this category. Anderson been somewhat in the hot seat lately, and maybe that will influence some of the voters, but this is where Licorice Pizza gets its love if there’s any to go around (unless I’m right about Hoffman also winning).

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Jane Campion – The Power of the Dog
Maggie Gyllenhaal – The Lost Daughter
Siân Heder – CODA
Tony Kushner – West Side Story
Jon Spaihts, Denis Villeneuve, Eric Roth – Dune

Prediction: Ms Campion, please come accept another award. You just won for screenplay as well.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Bruno Delbonnel – The Tragedy of Macbeth
Greg Fraser – Dune
Janusz Kaminski – West Side Story
Dan Laustsen – Nightmare Alley
Ari Wegner – The Power of the Dog
Haris Zambarloukos – Belfast

Prediction: Another stacked category. Can it be a six-way tie? Is that possible? If not, I hope Greg Fraser is ready to accept this award. And who knows, maybe he’ll be back again in a year for The Batman. All joking aside though, Dune‘s cinematography is out of this world (pun intended) and he’s more than deserving to win here.

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
Jim Clay, Claire Nia Richards – Belfast
Tamara Deverell, Shane Vieau – Nightmare Alley
Adam Stockhausen, Rena DeAngelo – The French Dispatch
Adam Stockhausen, Rena DeAngelo – West Side Story
Patrice Vermette, Zsuzsanna Sipos – Dune

Prediction: I don’t love Nightmare Alley as many others do, but you can’t deny the production value of that film. It’s stunning to look at the much of that is due to the production design of that film.

BEST EDITING
Sarah Broshar and Michael Kahn – West Side Story
Úna Ní Dhonghaíle – Belfast
Andy Jurgensen – Licorice Pizza
Peter Sciberras – The Power of the Dog
Joe Walker – Dune

Prediction: As many of you know, I’m not an awards expert by any means, even if I do follow along and pay attention to what happens each season. Context that’s important here because many of our friends who I’d consider to be experts on the matter have Dune winning this category. Which very well may be true. However, given the amount of love I’m expecting for The Power of the Dog, I’m going with Peter Sciberras to win here. That could be myopic of me, but that’s my bet and I’m sticking with it.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Jenny Beavan – Cruella
Luis Sequeira – Nightmare Alley
Paul Tazewell – West Side Story
Jacqueline West, Robert Morgan – Dune
Janty Yates – House of Gucci

Prediction: Really want to go with Dune here, but not sure if it will be Cruella, a film that’s literally about costume design. So, Cruella it is for me.

BEST HAIR AND MAKEUP
Cruella
Dune
The Eyes of Tammy Faye
House of Gucci
Nightmare Alley

Prediction:If Cruella doesn’t win here, it seems as if The Eyes of Tammy Faye as this one.

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Dune
The Matrix Resurrections
Nightmare Alley
No Time to Die
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Prediction: Now this one has Dune written all over it. I can’t fathom it losing here.

BEST COMEDY
Barb & Star Go to Vista Del Mar
Don’t Look Up
Free Guy
The French Dispatch
Licorice Pizza

Prediction: With Licorice Pizza being nominated for Best Picture, it would seem really silly for it to lose here, but I don’t care, I’m going with Barb & Star Go to Vista Del Mar. I don’t care how illogical that is, what a hilarious movie and I want to win.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
Encanto
Flee
Luca
The Mitchells vs the Machines
Raya and the Last Dragon

Prediction: Encanto will win, and it is good, but I do think it should go to Flee. It’s one of the very best films of 2021, period, regardless of how you want to categorize it.

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
A Hero
Drive My Car
Flee
The Hand of God
The Worst Person in the World

Prediction: As we talked about at the 2021 InSession Film Awards, it was a phenomenal year for foreign language films, with two of these nominees in my personal Top 10 of the year. However, this is Drive My Car‘s award to lose and it will take home the prize here.

BEST SONG
Be Alive – King Richard
Dos Oruguitas – Encanto
Guns Go Bang – The Harder They Fall
Just Look Up – Don’t Look Up
No Time to Die – No Time to Die

Prediction: “No Time to Die” is a fine song, but in the Bond canon, it’s not nearly as memorable or impactful. I’m hoping that “Dos Oruguitas” steals this one.

BEST SCORE
Nicholas Britell – Don’t Look Up
Jonny Greenwood – The Power of the Dog
Jonny Greenwood – Spencer
Nathan Johnson – Nightmare Alley
Hans Zimmer – Dune

Prediction: Hans Zimmer should have won the Oscar in 2014 when Interstellar came out. He arguably (and I know many will push back on this) should have won in 2010 for Inception. It’s hard to believe that he only has one Oscar up until this point, and that it came almost 30 years ago, but it does seem as if that’s going to change in a few weeks when we do get to the Oscars. And I think his win here is another stepping stone in that process.

JD Duran
JD Duranhttps://insessionfilm.com
InSession Film founder and owner. I love film. Love art. Love how it intersects with our real lives. My favorite movies include Citizen Kane, The 400 Blows, Modern Times, The Godfather and The Tree of Life. Follow me on Twitter @RealJDDuran. Follow us @InSessionFilm.

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