The Oscars Rundown – Acting Awards

Leading up to the Oscars – which take place on February 22, 2015 – we will be giving a few predictions of some of the big awards. This post will focus on the stars of the show. The people we actually see on screen. These are the acting awards..



  • Steve Carell in “Foxcatcher”
  • Bradley Cooper in “American Sniper”
  • Benedict Cumberbatch in “The Imitation Game”
  • Michael Keaton in “Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)”
  • Eddie Redmayne in “The Theory of Everything”

And the predicted winner is:

Tendai’s pick – Benedict Cumberbatch – The Imitation Game

Cumberbatch engrossed the role and the character of Alan Turing, a brilliant British mind that was out to make history the best way any scientist would, by changing the world. “Sometimes it is the people no one imagines anything of, who do the things that no one can imagine”. Cumberbatch was exactly that. Though not your average actor in the industry but he went far and beyond to play one of the greatest minds we know today. A social outcast, far from the norm, the modern day nerd and most importantly, the founding father of computer science. Cumberbatch brought to life the person that was Turing in a way only a true artist would.

Dean’s pick – Benedict Cumberbatch – The Imitation Game

We’ve spoken about the script and how Alan Turing’s character was perfectly written. But that means very little without a talented actor who can absorb the role with such grace. Cumberbatch is no stranger to playing socially awkward geniuses as he currently plays the titular role in the BBC series Sherlock, but don’t let that undersell his performance in The Imitation Game. His ability to bring heart and soul to a man who was complicated to say the least, was nothing short of brilliant. People will remember him in this role for the rest of his career, and that is not a bad thing, considering how important this story is and how incredible his performance is, too.



  • Robert Duvall in “The Judge”
  • Ethan Hawke in “Boyhood”
  • Edward Norton in “Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)”
  • Mark Ruffalo in “Foxcatcher”
  • J.K. Simmons in “Whiplash”

And the predicted winner is:

Tendai’s pick – J.K. Simmons – Whiplash

Intense, scary, motivating, feared, respected and honoured. Simmons took the role of Terrence Fletcher and made it so convincing that even any average Joe would cry just to impress him. A perfectionist, type A personality, the ideal go-getter, Simmons was everything you would want in a man that got results, and a man that did not care about sympathy, empathy or the general well-being of mankind. The perfect but not so perfect human being. Simmons was outstanding and probably the best actor out of all the nominees in this year’s awards.

Dean’s pick – J.K. Simmons – Whiplash

J.K. Simmons has always been a super underrated actor in the same mould as a Stanley Tucci or Sam Rockwell. He brings a confidence on screen that is always consistent and he can make anyone feel like they’re the smallest person on the planet. Despite Miles Teller appearing in every single scene, to me, this was Simmons’ film. He was frightening and intimidating and I was simply just a viewer. As a drill sergeant of a band leader, he took control of every scene. He demands perfection, pushes everyone to their limits, but instead of hating him, you want his approval, acceptance and gentle nod that says you have done well. He is also the favourite for this award having won the Golden Globe for best supporting actor earlier this year for the same role.

Click here to view our spoiler-FREE review for Whiplash.



  • Marion Cotillard in “Two Days, One Night”
  • Felicity Jones in “The Theory of Everything”
  • Julianne Moore in “Still Alice”
  • Rosamund Pike in “Gone Girl”
  • Reese Witherspoon in “Wild”

And the predicted winner is:

Tendai’s pick –  Julianne Moore –Still Alice

Absolutely outstanding. Taking the role of a woman that has an early set of dementia and convincing the audience, including those with dementia, that she has the terminal illness was brilliant. She totally enveloped the disease and performed in a manner only a great actress would. People may see this as a way male actors are guaranteed an Oscar, I see it as an actress that wants to take her abilities to the next level. She took it there and all you can do is shed a tear at her brilliance. She was convincing, she deserved the emotion the audience showed and felt for her, she was Oscar worthy.

Dean’s pick – Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl

I followed Rosamund Pike’s career and to me she was never anything more than just a bond girl or that lady in a film who you always thinks has an agenda. Her performance in Gone Girl proved she can take that old archetype and drowns her in a bath tub filled with her own blood. The visual was filthy and shocking. And so was Pike’s performance in Gone Girl. The trailer told me that Ben Affleck was the star but I learned very quickly that this was Pike’s film. Her ability to switch between poor helpless victim and vengeful mastermind seemlessly, made me sit up and take notice. I couldn’t help but stare on in a rare mixture of excitement and terror every time she appeared on screen. She deserves the nomination and despite tough competition in this category, she is my dark horse to win it.

Click here to view our spoiler-FREE review for Gone Girl



  • Patricia Arquette in “Boyhood”
  • Laura Dern in “Wild”
  • Keira Knightley in “The Imitation Game”
  • Emma Stone in “Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)”
  • Meryl Streep in “Into the Woods”

And the predicted winner is:

Tendai’s pick –  Patricia Arquette – Boyhood

Arquette played her role in a manner that any actor would. She acted. As simple as that may sound and as anti-climactic as that may seem, not many actors can actually take a role and do what it requires. Arquette did that and to consider that this movie was shot over 12 years, Arquette managed to maintain her style, composure, that little umph that no one else had, each time she was on set on her given timeline. She acted. She filled the shoes that were set out for her and she performed the role like an actor should. Brilliance all the way through.

Dean’s pick – Emma Stone – Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Everyone jokes about how Meryl Streep should just be given an Academy Award as soon as she enters the building. And she is a phenomenal actress. But this year I think the award belongs to one Emma Stone. I went into Birdman thinking Emma Stone would be nothing more than a forgotten fringe character, but I could not be more wrong. Her role as the daughter of former movie star was performed with such angst and passion that I forgot this was the same actress that starred in popcorn flicks like Easy A and The Amazing Spiderman. This role showed a whole new side to Emma Stone, and proved she’s not just the love interest or quirky leading lady. She can bounce off seasoned actors and actresses and hold her own.

Click here to view our spoiler-FREE review for Birdman.

About the authors: Tendai and Dean have spoken to Benedict Cumberbatch and have agreed that if he doesn’t win for best actor, they will all sneak onto the stage and photobomb the acceptance speech of whoever wins. Either way, Cumberbatch will get his moment.

You can follow Dean on Twitter @deeno15 while you can catch the latest from Tendai @1_platinum

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