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Oscar.... 'he goes a little mad sometimes'

Let's talk Hitchcock and Oscar. I'm in the process of updating every Oscar chart -- tis the season! -- and I think I'm just going to give Hitchcock the benefit of the doubt. No one has seen it but if they're rushing to complete it having moved it from 2013 to now, Fox Searchlight must feel they really have something (best case scenario) or that the competition or their other films are weak (worst case scenario). New photos just emerged from People Magazine of which these of Alfred Hitchcock (Sir Anthony Hopkins) and Janet Leigh (Scarlett Johansson) are excerpted below.

The "Scoop" page ripped from People makes the movie look a little cheapzy (that's cheap + cheesy) but that could just be People's formatting influence for broad appeal. I'm giving the film the benefit of the doubt and expecting an Oscar hit. You?

Fully updated charts with shakeups and some new text. Gains for Hitchcock and Life of Pi as The Master and Lincoln are in danger of fading and Hyde Park on Hudson disappears altogether.

Where do you think my "order" is spot on and which films would you flip? Do you think the Directing Oscar is Ben Affleck's to lose even if Argo doesn't win Best Picture?


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Reader Comments (28)

Nate, what led you to think Lincoln fell a few pegs?

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMatt

Lincoln falls? Really? If anything I think it's gained a few slots with the latest trailer and the inclusion of it at NYFF.

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJordan

Hey, Nathaniel, have you heard ANYTHING about Jessica Lange in Therese Raquin?

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn D.

That's a 2013 release John. Her co-star Elizabeth Olsen is highly complimentary of the legend.

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter4rtful

4rtful -- I thought that was the case, but, according to the IMDB, it opens December 28th


October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn D.

My mistake they did move it to 2012.

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter4rtful

I'm a little dubious about Ben Affleck as director. I've thought that his strengths were understanding the unit of a scene, especially from an actor's point of view, but was shakier on understanding the total narrative of a film.

His first two movies were in a milieu that he knew well, so he didn't have to do any research. His third film was set in a different country, different era, with specific politics. Yet it appears he didn't do ANY research. When it was suggested to him that maybe he should have done more homework, his response was surprise, that he just followed the script. It's an incurious attitude and maybe more of an actor's response than a director's response.

However, I haven't seen the movie. Maybe it's really good.

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteradri

I echo those who think that Lincoln is still strong. If AMPAS goes for War Horse, they'll eat up Lincoln. Whether it's in the top 5 or the next howevermany I don't know then.

Contrastingly, I can't express how or why (and without knowing much about it) but Hitchcock feels like a bunch of actors just playing dress-up. Nathaniel I'm shocked that you're giving the benefit of the doubt to a film directed by the writer of The Terminal.

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRobert A.

Omg, Scarlett looks so bad with that hair lolol

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPhilip

I admit that the buzz for The Master has faded a bit since its wide release, but I think it's going to come back in a big way once the critics start releasing their top 10 lists and awards.

Also, while I agree that Lincoln doesn't feel like the big frontrunner a lot of people thought it might be, ranking it below Cloud Atlas seems to be exaggerating the case. It's probably still going to be nominated, even if critics don't go gaga over it.

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEdwin

Saw the Lincoln tv ads this week and felt the same way. It just looks ... bad. Not every historical biopic aimed at the Academy's "sweet spot" is actually received with open arms. I think it would have to do fantastic box office, and that just doesn't seem very likely. I'm expecting Lincoln to end up more like J. Edgar.

On the Directors chart, I think I have higher expectations for Bigelow and Tarantino. Maybe just wishful thinking, and it's such a long time until their respective films will even be seen. Which also makes me think that Affleck has an awful long time to hang on to the top spot.

October 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTravis

The fact that Tony Kushner is writing Lincoln makes me think it's pretty much a shoe-in for BP. The guy is a genius. Also, this is Spielberg's dream project and the fact that he's doing so many test screenings (which he typically HATES) means he knows he has something special.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJordan

I, for one, am getting excited about this. Love ScarJo's take at Janet Leigh! :)

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCarlos

Loved Hitchcock movies and his TV persona so willing to do a wait and see on the film. Plus anything that replaces The Master on lists is fine with me. I know the majority of critics are besotted with the movie, but when 40% of the audience says "don't bother", it can wait for a few decades to be honored as a classic if they are all wrong.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJamie

looking forward to your best actor updates. sessions was pretty darn good.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjimmy

BoxOfficeMojo doesn't have Therese Raquin listed on December 28, and in my experience, they're the most accurate source for release dates, especially compared to IMDb.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz N.


That is absolutely absurd. So we should let audiences decide what wins Best Picture? I assume that you would be the first person to stand up and cheer if the last Twilight movie won, right?

And where exactly are you getting the "40 percent of the audience hates it" number?

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz N.

I think I'll give "Hitchcock" a chance. "Anvil! The Story of Anvil" was by far one of the best documentaries I've ever seen, so I believe Sacha Gervasi can be able to present a good movie... Don't know if I believe it can be good or if I WANT THE MOVIE TO BE GOOD, but we are talking about one of the most iconic men in cinema history and the making of an horror classic

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEd

My favourite of the People Magazine photos is the one with James D'Arcy. The make-up job on him is uncanny. But then he has the benefit of being the least famous actor in that cast ergo the one with the least star baggage/cleanest slate. Or that y'all have forgiven him for W.E.

But still can't get over Tony and Scarlett. I'm too tired to like anything this year anymore.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPaolo

Love " Hitchcok" , Hopkins and Mirren!

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterclaire marino


I got the 40% number from Rotten Tomatoes so make that 38% just to be accurate. No I don't think the audience should decide what gets the Oscar, but when the discrepancy between the critics and the audience is so great (more than 20% difference), then there is a good chance that what you have is the critics investigating their navels for dust bunnies rather than whether or not it is actually a good film. The negative reactions, mine included, are from people who genuinely like film and great acting but found the hunk of sludge virtually without merit. In fact my original reaction was a compliment to the acting if not the film. After considering it further, I have a lower opinion of the Phoenix performance than before.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJamie

Kind of a bummer that Moonrise Kingdom has fallen so completely off the radar.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRoark

I decided I don't have the energy to defend The Master. I barely have it to bash and defend my Streep bashing.

I love The Master because it operates from a literary place. It's about the internal dialogue and fragments. This doesn't allow for a massively popular sit-through, but the textures, tones, and form they come in, can be very inviting for the one that allows it to wash over him like sun rays.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter4rtful

I decided I don't have the energy to defend The Master. I barely have it to bash and defend my Streep bashing.

I love The Master because it operates from a literary place. It's about the internal monologue and fragments. This doesn't allow for a massively popular sit-through, but the textures, tones, and form they come in, can be very inviting for the one that allows it to wash over him like sun rays.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter4rtful


there is a good chance that what you have is the critics investigating their navels for dust bunnies rather than whether or not it is actually a good film.

No, it means that there's a good chance that the critics (and it's not like all critics like the movie anyway) simply disagreed with those 38 percent of Rotten Tomatoes voters (if that number even means anything in the first place).

Is the idea of a large group of people disagreeing with you about a film's merits so inconceivable to you that you chalk it up to some vast conspiracy, rather than a difference of opinion?

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz N.

Of course not. Everyone is totally entitled to their opinion. It is just that in a year with what seems to be a good sized crowd of excellent movies already out or coming soon, I don't like to see the majority of critics already handing out the statue to a film that I truly didn't enjoy.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJamie

So by the same logic, you would be completely behind someone who didn't want to see Meryl Streep nominated because he/she did not enjoy the performance, right, regardless of how you felt about it? After all, Hope Floats was disliked by 35 percent of Rotten Tomatoes users, compared to 38 percent for The Master. Almost the same.

Or is that somehow different?

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz N.

Hope Floats was hated by the critics and starred Sandra Bullock. Hope Springs starring Streep had critics at 74% and Audience at 65% a much closer divide. My complaint isn't about who loves or hates a film but rather that the critics seem to be trying to bully the audience into loving a film all the way to the Oscars that a significant percentage of the audience not only doesn't care for but genuinely dislikes. In my opinion, and it is only MY opinion, The Master will barely be remembered a year from now. It will have its fans, but neither the box office, pay per view, or DVD sales will be memorable in any way unless it wins an Oscar that I don't think it deserves. This is with the full understanding that I don't have a vote and really won't care all that much the day after the event other than to be vaguely upset if it is nominate and wins over a film that I think deserved it more. Strictly like this place ... water cooler conversation with all the importance that implies.

October 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJamie
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