My 87th ACADEMY AWARDS PREDICTIONS

The 87th Academy Awards will be hosted by Neil Patrick Harris

The big day has arrived! In just a few hours, we will find out the winners of the 87th annual Academy Awards! From Birdman to Boyhood to Selma to Whiplash, it has been an exceptional year in film. Below are my predictions on what will win, could win and should win!

BEST PICTURE
“American Sniper”
“Birdman”
“Boyhood”
“The Grand Budapest Hotel”
“The Imitation Game”
“Selma”
“The Theory of Everything”
“Whiplash”

WILL WIN: BOYHOOD
COULD WIN: BIRDMAN
SHOULD WIN: BOYHOOD

BEST ACTOR
Steve Carrell, “Foxcatcher”
Bradley Cooper, “American Sniper”
Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Imitation Game”
Michael Keaton, “Birdman”
Eddie Redmayne, “The Theory of Everything”

WILL WIN: EDDIE REDMAYNE
COULD WIN: MICHAEL KEATON
SHOULD WIN: MICHAEL KEATON

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

WILL WIN: JULIANNE MOORE
COULD WIN: ROSAMUND PIKE
SHOULD WIN: JULIANNE MOORE

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Robert Duvall, “The Judge”
Edward Norton, “Birdman”
Ethan Hawke, “Boyhood”
Mark Ruffalo, “Foxcatcher”
J.K. Simmons, “Whiplash”

WILL WIN: J.K. SIMMONS
COULD WIN: EDWARD NORTON
SHOULD WIN: J.K. SIMMONS

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Patricia Arquette, “Boyhood”
Laura Dern, “Wild”
Keira Knightley, “The Imitation Game”
Emma Stone, “Birdman”
Meryl Streep, “Into the Woods”

WILL WIN: PATRICIA ARQUETTE
COULD WIN: EMMA STONE
SHOULD WIN: PATRICIA ARQUETTE

BEST DIRECTOR
Alejando G. Inarritu, “Birdman”
Richard Linklater, “Boyhood”
Bennett Miller, “Foxcatcher”
Wes Anderson, “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
Morton Tyldum, “The Imitation Game”

WILL WIN: ALEJANDRO G INARRITU
COULD WIN: RICHARD LINKLATER
SHOULD WIN:RICHARD LINKLATER

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. & Armando Bo, “Birdman”
Richard Linklater, “Boyhood”
E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman, “Foxcatcher”
Wes Anderson, “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
Dan Gilroy, “Nightcrawler”

WILL WIN: THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL
COULD WIN: BIRDMAN
SHOULD WIN: NIGHTCRAWLER

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Jason Hall, “American Sniper”
Graham Moore, “The Imitation Game”
Paul Thomas Anderson, “Inherent Vice”
Anthony McCarten, “The Theory of Everything”
Damien Chazelle, “Whiplash”

WILL WIN: THE IMITATION GAME
COULD WIN: WHIPLASH
SHOULD WIN: WHIPLASH

SAG Awards Predictions!

The 21st Screen Actors Guild Awards will be simulcast on TNT and TBS on January 25, 2015

The 21st Screen Actors Guild Awards will begin in just a couple hours and I’m ready to reveal my FINAL SAG Awards predictions! From Birdman to Boyhood and The Theory of Everything to Foxcatcher, 2014 was an exceptional year in acting. Check out my predictions below!

BEST CAST

  • BIRDMAN (Fox Searchlight Pictures)
  • BOYHOOD (IFC Films)
  • THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL (FOX SEARCHLIGHT PICTURES)
  • THE IMITATION GAME (The Weinstein Company)
  • THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING (Focus Features)

WILL WIN: BIRDMAN

SHOULD WIN: BOYHOOD

BEST ACTOR

  • STEVE CARELL  – “FOXCATCHER”
  • BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH – “THE IMITATION GAME”
  • JAKE GYLLENHAAL – “NIGHTCRAWLER”
  • MICHAEL KEATON – “BIRDMAN”
  • EDDIE REDMAYNE – “THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING”

WILL WIN: MICHAEL KEATON

SHOULD WIN: MICHAEL KEATON

BEST ACTRESS

  • JENNIFER ANISTON – “CAKE”
  • FELICITY JONES – “THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING”
  • JULIANNE MOORE – “STILL ALICE”
  • ROSAMUND PIKE – “GONE GIRL”
  • REESE WITHERSPOON – “WILD”

WILL WIN: JULIANNE MOORE

SHOULD WIN: JULIANNE MOORE

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

  • ROBERT DUVALL – “THE JUDGE”
  • ETHAN HAWKE – “BOYHOOD”
  • EDWARD NORTON – “BIRDMAN”
  • MARK RUFFALO – “FOXCATCHER”
  • J.K. SIMMONS – “WHIPLASH”

WILL WIN: J.K. SIMMONS

SHOULD WIN: J.K. SIMMONS

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

  • PATRICIA ARQUETTE – “BOYHOOD”
  • KEIRA KNIGHTLEY – “THE IMITATION GAME”
  • EMMA STONE – “BIRDMAN”
  • MERYL STREEP – “INTO THE WOODS”
  • NAOMI WATTS – “ST. VINCENT”

WILL WIN: PATRICIA ARQUETTE

SHOULD WIN: PATRICIA ARQUETTE

2015 Oscar Nominations Predictions

The 87th Academy Awards will be telecast live on February 22, 2015

The day is almost here! Tomorrow, January 15 at 5:30am the 87th Academy Awards nominations will be announced live at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills! And or the first time in Oscar Nomination announcement history, all 24 Oscar categories will be telecast LIVE. You can watch the Oscar Nominations unveiled LIVE here on MAX ON THE RED CARPET tomorrow at 5:30am. The live feed video will be posted later tonight. The presenters for the nomination announcement include Academy Award winning director Alfonso Cuaron, J.J. Abrams, and Chris Pine, who will be joined with Academy President Cheryl Boone-Isaacs. We’ve been on a crazy awards journey so far, with so many outstanding films and performances vying for a limited number of spots. However, with my research and analysis, I’m ready to make my FINAL Oscar nomination predictions for tomorrow! Here they are:
BEST PICTURE

  • Boyhood
  • Birdman
  • The Imitation Game
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Selma
  • Nightcrawler
  • Whiplash
  • American Sniper
  • Gone Girl

ALTERNATES: Foxcatcher, Into the Woods

BEST DIRECTOR

  • Richard Linklater “Boyhood”
  • Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu “Birdman”
  • Wes Anderon “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • Clint Eastwood “American Sniper”
  • David Fincher “Gone Girl”

ALTERNATES: Morten Tyldum “The Imitation Game”, Ava DuVernay “Selma”, Damien Chazelle “Whiplash”

BEST ACTOR

  • Michael Keaton “Birdman”
  • Eddie Redmayne “The Theory of Everything”
  • Benedict Cumberbatch “The Imitation Game”
  • David Oyelowo “Selma”
  • Jake Gyllenhaal “Nightcrawler”

ALTERNATES: Ralph Fiennes “The Grand Budapest Hotel”, Bradley Cooper “American Sniper”

BEST ACTRESS

  • Julianne Moore “Still Alice”
  • Rosamund Pike “Gone Girl”
  • Felicity Jones “The Theory of Everything”
  • Reese Witherspoon “Wild”
  • Jennifer Aniston “Cake”

ALTERNATES: Amy Adams “Big Eyes”, Marion Cotillard “Two Days, One Night”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

  • J.K. Simmons “Whiplash”
  • Edward Norton “Birdman”
  • Ethan Hawke “Boyhood”
  • Mark Ruffalo “Foxcatcher”
  • Steve Carell “Foxcatcher”

ALTERNATES: Robert Duvall “The Judge”, Christoph Waltz “Big Eyes”

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

  • Patricia Arquette “Boyhood”
  • Emma Stone “Birdman”
  • Meryl Streep “Into the Woods”
  • Keira Knightley “The Imitation Game”
  • Renee Russo “Nightcrawler”

ALTERNATES: Jessica Chastain “A Most Violent Year”, Laura Dern “Wild”

2015 Golden Globes predictions

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will host the Golden Globe Awards for the third year in a row

The 72nd Annual Golden Globes are right around the corner and we are sure to be in for a treat with Amy Poehler and Tina Fey returning for the third time to host one of the most entertaining awards shows in the world! And with such great and diverse films that have been released in the past year, we are sure to be in for suspenseful night of envelope opening.

And without further or do, here are my Golden Globes predictions:

Best Motion Picture — Drama

  • “Boyhood”
  • “Foxcatcher”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Selma”
  • “The Theory of Everything”

WILL WIN: Boyhood

SHOULD WIN: Boyhood

Best Actress in a Motion Picture — Drama

  • Julianne Moore for”Still Alice”
  • Rosamund Pike for “Gone Girl”
  • Reese Witherspoon for “Wild”
  • Felicity Jones for “The Theory of Everything”
  • Jennifer Aniston for “Cake”

WILL WIN: Julianne Moore

SHOULD WIN: Julianne Moore

Best Actor in a Motion Picture — Drama

  • Eddie Redmayne for “The Theory of Everything”
  • Steve Carell for “Foxcatcher”
  • Benedict Cumberbatch for “The Imitation Game”
  • David Oyelowo for “Selma”
  • Jake Gyllenhaal for “Nightcrawler”

WILL WIN: Eddie Redmayne

SHOULD WIN: Eddie Redmayne

Best Motion Picture — Musical or Comedy

  • “Into the Woods”
  • “Birdman”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “St. Vincent”
  • “Pride”

WILL WIN: Birdman

SHOULD WIN: Birdman

Best Actress in a Motion Picture — Musical or Comedy

  • Julianne Moore for “Maps to the Stars”
  • Amy Adams for “Big Eyes”
  • Emily Blunt for “Into the Woods”
  • Helen Mirren for “The Hundred-Foot Journey”
  • Quvenzhané Wallis for “Annie”

WILL WIN: Emily Blunt

SHOULD WIN: Emily Blunt

Best Actor in a Motion Picture — Musical or Comedy

  • Michael Keaton for “Birdman”
  • Bill Murray for “St. Vincent”
  • Ralph Fiennes for “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • Christoph Waltz for “Big Eyes”
  • Joaquin Phoenix for “Inherent Vice”

WILL WIN: Michael Keaton

SHOULD WIN: Michael Keaton

Best Animated Feature Film

  • “The Lego Movie”
  • “How to Train Your Dragon 2″
  • “Big Hero 6″
  • “The Book of Life”
  • “The Boxtrolls”

WILL WIN: The Lego Movie

SHOULD WIN: Big Hero 6

Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture

  • Jessica Chastain for “A Most Violent Year”
  • Keira Knightley for “The Imitation Game”
  • Patricia Arquette for “Boyhood”
  • Meryl Streep for “Into the Woods”
  • Emma Stone for “Birdman”

WILL WIN: Patricia Arquette

SHOULD WIN: Patricia Arquette

Best Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture

  • Ethan Hawke for “Boyhood”
  • Robert Duvall for “The Judge”
  • Edward Norton for “Birdman”
  • J.K. Simmons for “Whiplash”
  • Mark Ruffalo for “Foxcatcher”

WILL WIN: J.K. Simmons

SHOULD WIN: J.K. Simmons

Best Director — Motion Picture

  • Ava DuVernay for “Selma”
  • Wes Anderson for “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu for “Birdman”
  • David Fincher for “Gone Girl”
  • Richard Linklater for “Boyhood”

WILL WIN: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu

SHOULD WIN: Richard Linklater

Best Screenplay — Motion Picture

  • Wes Anderson for “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • Gillian Flynn, “Gone Girl”
  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris and Armando Bo for “Birdman”
  • Richard Linklater for “Boyhood”
  • Graham Moore for “The Imitation Game”

WILL WIN: The Grand Budapest Hotel

SHOULD WIN: Boyhood

Best Original Score — Motion Picture

  • Alexandre Desplat for “The Imitation Game”
  • Jóhann Jóhannsson for “The Theory of Everything”
  • Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for “Gone Girl”
  • Antonio Sanchez for “Birdman”
  • Hans Zimmer for “Interstellar”

WILL WIN: Birdman

SHOULD WIN: The Theory of Everything

Best Original Song — Motion Picture

  • “Big Eyes”
  • “Selma”
  • “Noah”
  • “Annie”
  • “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part I”

WILL WIN: Selma

SHOULD WIN: Annie

Review: Cake

Hello readers! I apologize for the sporadic posts that I’ve been writing here on Max on the Red Carpet. But I can promise you that now, in the heat of awards season, I will keep you all updated on my reviews of the nominated films as well as my awards predictions. To start of the awards season coverage, let’s talk about Cake. Not the desert you usually eat during your birthday, but the newly-released, Jennifer Aniston starring film that takes us into the darkly funny world of Claire Bennett (Jennifer Aniston) who plays a woman battling chronic pain. She initiates a dubious relationship with a widower (Sam Worthington) while confronting fantastical hallucinations of his dead wife (Anna Kendrick). With her feisty housekeeper and caretaker (Adriana Barraza) ever at her side, Claire searches for human connection and self-forgiveness in this tale of personal redemption.

Aniston gave a transformative performance as a woman battling with chronic pain in the aftermath of a tragic event. Her mannerisms and actions made you feel her struggles, suffering and agony. This performance from Aniston is a dramatic departure from her usual comedic turns in films such as We’re The Millers and Just Go With It. And she was incredible from start to finish. Wearing no make-up throughout the film, Aniston conveys a realism to her character as she struggles through her day-to-day routines. We see her as an unattractive, depressed and angry woman who we feel invested in and care for as she battles through her pains. She is a tour-de-force in this film. This film provided a challenge to Aniston to develop her more serious acting chops and it proved a success. Aniston has received Best Actress nominations from the Golden Globes, SAG Awards, and Critics Choice Awards, and an Academy Award nomination seems likely. And well deserved. This is the best work Aniston has done and is a landmark in her continuing career. She gave her heart in this role. And for that, I consider it an honor watching her intimate performance.

Jennifer Aniston in “Cake”

Film Review: Boyhood

Ellar Coltrane in Boyhood

Groundbreaking. If I had to describe the Richard Linklater-directed film “Boyhood” in one word, that would be the word I would use. Boyhood tells the story about a boy named Mason (Ellar Coltrane) as he ages from 6 to 18 years old. The film examines the relationship he has with his divorced parents (Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke) as he grows into adolescence. We as the viewer literally see Mason and the rest of the cast grow up through our very eyes as the film was shot over the course of 12 years; from 2002 to 2013. Every year during the 12 year period the cast and crew would get together for a few weeks to shoot the story. This movie could have easily ended in a terrible and humiliating way.

But it does just the opposite. Boyhood is a masterful epic depicting the early life of Mason and the personal struggles he goes through. Ellar Coltrane’s performance as Mason is simply mesmerizing. As he grows, he becomes more comfortable and relaxed in front of the camera. He approaches the character of Mason with such delicacy and assurance. Coltrane’s performance is something you’ve never seen from a child actor before in cinematic history. Throughout the film, you could understand that Coltrane cared about Mason throughout the 12 years, and wanted to make sure he was able to create a sense of friendship and warmth between himself and the audience. He makes us care for him as he grows and develops into manhood. One of the greatest child acting performances of all time and one of the best performances of this year.

Mason’s mother, Patricia Arquette, delivers an intimate and caring performance as Olivia. Arquette is able to add the the realism of this epic as she approaches issues in her life such as her marital problems, financial issues, and struggling to go to complete school. We feel we’re right there with Olivia at the table every time she gives a moment to cry as all the problems in her life are of too much stress to her. We feel for her and care about her without her trying to persuade us to feel such a way. Arquette delivers a beautiful performance. It’s time for her to earn her first Oscar nomination.

Ethan Hawke delivers an unforgettable performance as the father of Mason and Samantha. Hawke continues to impress on film after showcasing his amazing talent in the Before series, also directed by Linklater. Hawke is unreserved and intriguing as Mason Sr.. Hawke adds to the realism that is already apparent in the film by delivering his lines so naturally and with ease like in his previous work. Hawke is the heart to this film; sending a message to chase your dreams and to believe in yourself. He gives us an interesting look into being a divorced father and just being a person. His performance in Boyhood proves that he is a reliable, yet under-appreciated, talent in Hollywood. He continues to surprise us with his brilliance.

Then there is Mason’s sister Samantha, played by Lorelei Linklater (daughter of Richard Linklater). You unknowingly fall in love with her character throughout the film as she ages graciously from girl to woman. She provides such comfort, personality and warmth in her performance that you forget that this is a story and not for real. Linklater’s performance is just as outstanding and pitch perfect as the other members of the dynamic cast. She provides a breath of fresh air in this film and in the film industry as a whole. I hope that her performance is one that will be remembered for some time.

Overall, Boyhood is an unbelievable and powerful coming-of-age epic. It’s an epic without trying to be one. The performances are so natural, real, caring and strong. The direction is done with tenderness and love. The script is masterful. Linklater has done great work in the past with Before Surise, Before Sunset, School of Rock, Before Midnight, and Bernie. However, he has now done his best work to date with Boyhood. When the creators of film were alive over a century ago, this was what they had in mind. In Boyhood, we were emotionally invested in these characters. We cared for them, worried for them, laughed for them, and cried for them. You didn’t want the film to end. You wanted it to continue. You wanted to see what new journeys Mason and his family would embark on. I’ve always said that in order for a film to be successful, it needs to have the ability to emotionally attach itself to the audience and it did just that. Boyhood is one of the finest films in the history of cinema. Period. It is an instant American classic.