Brian Henry Martin at the movies

The Best Oscars Ever?

Published Thursday, 27 February 2014
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This Sunday night from the heart of Hollywood, Ellen DeGeneres will host the 86th Academy Awards. However, this will be more than just another glittering night of gushing stars garnering gold statuettes.

As I believe the 2014 Oscars contains the finest list of Best Picture nominations ever.

Nine excellent movies, each one a worthy winner. Read and wonder the outstanding lineup; 12 Years a Slave, American Hustle, Gravity, The Wolf of Wall Street, Dallas Buyers Club, Her, Nebraska, Philomena and Captain Phillips. There have been other classic years, 1939, 1975 and 1993 spring to mind, but, if like me, you have been lucky enough to see all the Oscar nominated films this year, then you will surely agree that cinema does not get better than this.

Here is my guide who should win and will win at the 2014 Oscars.

Best Director

Should win - inexplicably no black filmmaker has ever won the ultimate film prize but the former Turner Prize winning artist Steve McQueen would be a worthy Oscar winner for the terrible beauty of 12 Years a Slave.
Will win - Mexican Alfonso Cuarón spent more than four years making his breathless space adventure Gravity, boldly taking 3D where it has never been before.

Best Actor

Should win and will win - lone star Matthew McConaughey elevated his extraordinary talent to a career high in Dallas Buyer's Club, with an electrifying performance for which he shed nearly three stone but rightly gained his greatest acclaim.

Best Actress

Should win - Dame Judi Dench recently admitted that she can no longer read scripts due to her failing eyesight, but Philomena read to her by co-star and screenwriter Steve Coogan is perhaps her best screen performance.
Will win - Cate Blanchett's Best Actress acceptance speech at the BAFTAs for Blue Jasmine was the highlight of the evening when she dedicated her award to the late Philip Seymour Hoffman; expect another repeat performance.

Best Supporting Actor

Will win - Barkhad Abdi was driving a limo in Minnesota before his debut role in Captain Philips now he arrives on the ultimate red carpet as favourite to win.
Should win - six years after his last film role, rock star turned actor Jared Leto was painfully brilliant as the T-Rex obsessed transexual Rayon in Dallas Buyer's Club.

Best Supporting Actress

Will win - 23 year old Jennifer Lawrence is a cinema sensation,the best young actor in Hollywood. This time as radiant Rosalyn, she steals American Hustle with her Bond theme mime in marigold gloves.
Should win - newcomer Lupita Nyong'o in 12 Years A Slave, who broke our hearts as the brutal whip broke her skin, as doomed plantation slave Patsy.

Best Animated Feature

Should win and will win - Frozen, remarkably no Disney feature has won this category, which has been dominated by Pixar since it's inception in 2001, the awards thaw finally ends this year.

The 86th Academy Awards take place on Sunday 3rd March, you can follow my live tweets throughout the ceremony.

© UTV News
B. H. Martin
B. H. Martin

Brian Henry Martin is an accomplished documentary filmmaker and UTV's resident film critic, appearing regularly on UTV Live Tonight.

No matter what the film, there's a good chance Brian has seen it.


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