PGA Winner

For the films of 2014
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby Sabin » Thu Jan 29, 2015 6:17 pm

I say this as someone not convinced Birdman will win: all the film editing question asks is whether or not the film truly has widespread support. With Brokeback Mountain, the lack of a nomination means it did not. With Birdman, I'm not sure it means that. Its nominations for Sound Mixing and Effects imply this is a movie they love but found other candidates for Best Editing. The closest thing I can think of to a precedent for Birdman's kind of editing getting a nomination would be Children of Men, a film also not expected to get an editing nomination but what did it beat out? Dreamgirls, Little Miss Sunshine, Casino Royale, Letters from Iwo Jima, something I'm forgetting...all classically well-edited films. Birdman's competition was rougher.
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby CalWilliam » Thu Jan 29, 2015 4:44 pm

OscarGuy wrote:I'm with Tripp. It's been more than 30 years (Ordinary People in 1980) since a film that wasn't nominated for editing won Best Picture. Even films that won without a director nomination (Argo and Driving Miss Daisy for example) had editing nominations.


So now it's the time for breaking that record. Birdman is the kind of movie you can reward without that category. The Academy could just have thought it was an achievement focused mainly on directing and cinematography. I can understand that snub. It's true that we are in 2015, but in the 70's The Godfather, part II and Annie Hall also won without editing citation: two great movies today considered as classics, and not precisely conventional in terms of narrative; two movies which is difficult to imagine as not nominated for editing, and won with the fierce competition of Chinatown & Star Wars.

I can see Birdman winning this year in spite of this interesting speculation.
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby OscarGuy » Thu Jan 29, 2015 4:20 pm

I'm with Tripp. It's been more than 30 years (Ordinary People in 1980) since a film that wasn't nominated for editing won Best Picture. Even films that won without a director nomination (Argo and Driving Miss Daisy for example) had editing nominations.
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby FilmFan720 » Thu Jan 29, 2015 2:02 pm

No, but I think that we chose to ignore the editing slight, when perhaps it was a larger sign than we thought.

Couldn't the trickery of Birdman being "one shot" be accredited greatly to its editing, though? Wouldn't that be impressive enough to the editing branch to nominate it?
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby Sabin » Thu Jan 29, 2015 1:39 pm

FilmFan720 wrote
We do realize that Birdman does not have a Best Editing nomination, right? Because if 2005 taught us anything, that is a precedent that shouldn't be ignored!

You're right, that precedent shouldn't be ignored. On the other hand, what do you think really did Brokeback Mountain in? The fact that it was a gay cowboy movie, or the film that it wasn't nominated for its editing? I'm not sold on Birdman as a Best Picture winner yet but it is a film that attempts to be one single roaming shot. If there's a movie in which we can ignore that precedent, I'd say it's Birdman.

Something that I think Brokeback Mountain has in common with Birdman is that while an editing nomination should have been feasible, the competition was pretty tough. Crash, The Constant Gardener, Good Night and Good Luck., Munich, and Walk the Line are just more conventional choices for the Academy in that category. This past year, there were twice as many candidates besides the ones that were eventually nominated like Gone Girl, Nightcrawler, Selma, and Interstellar.
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby FilmFan720 » Thu Jan 29, 2015 1:36 pm

We do realize that Birdman does not have a Best Editing nomination, right? Because if 2005 taught us anything, that is a precedent that shouldn't be ignored!
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby Big Magilla » Sun Jan 25, 2015 5:47 pm

Mister Tee wrote:Note to Magilla: I think it's reductive to say Chariots of Fire only won because of the Olympics. Many people REALLY liked the movie, far more than putative front-runner Reds (it made a lot more money, as well). I've told the story before, but I was in a NY theatre bar a few hours before the ceremony, and, while everyone I spoke to believed Reds would win, each one of them (except me) said their favorite nominee was Chariots of Fire. I'm not saying it was a good choice, but it was a quite popular one.


Reductive, perhaps, but I didn't say it was the "only" reason it won. It was released way back in April and remained popular throughout the year with Vangelis' theme providing constant reminders as it played incessantly on the radio. I do maintain, however, that it was Olympic fever in L.A. that put it over the top.

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Re: PGA Winner

Postby Mister Tee » Sun Jan 25, 2015 3:01 pm

I just dropped by to convey the news last night; my more elaborate thoughts:

Like Italiano, I've never thought of Boyhood as any slam-dunk winner. In fact, had The Hurt Locker not proven a low-grossing critics' favorite could go all the way, I'd have been deeply pessimistic about it from the start. Even as the season has got underway, I've been dubious about its staying power, but, again like Italiano, have been hard-pressed to find a viable alternative. As BJ noted a while back, the other seemingly solid contenders -- Birdman and Grand Budapest Hotel -- equally fail to fit the profile of typical best picture winner. American Sniper and The Imitation Game seem far more the sort of films that could swoop in and provide the unchallenging alternative to secure the votes of older/more esthetically conservative Academy members.

So, in one sense, I'm not surprised the PGA went somewhere other than Boyhood -- this a group that's in the past chosen Gladiator, The Aviator and Little Miss Sunshine, and of course began the bandwagon shift to The King's Speech. But I'd have expected them to go with The Imitation Game or, maybe, American Sniper (though the latter's lack of an Academy directors' nod keeps me thinking it's a deep best picture long-shot, whatever gazillions it earns). Birdman, contrarily, feels like an idiosyncratic pick, maybe the PGA's first since Moulin Rouge! But Moulin Rouge! didn't have anywhere else to go in the Guild derbies -- and Luhrmann's omission from the Academy directors' slate made the film a lame option. Birdman, on the other hand, has always seemed a solid choice for SAG Ensemble. Should it indeed win that tonight, it puts Boyhood on the spot, truly needing to win DGA to stay alive (quite a change from a few days ago, when, having swept through the Globes & BFCA, Linklater's film looked unstoppable).

I'd still lean toward Linklater for that DGA win, but of course I couldn't believe the same group would pass over Fincher for Hooper, so next Saturday night will be quite a suspenseful one.

On a personal level, let me say (1) I still root for Boyhood to win the Oscar, as it's my favorite movie of recent years, (2) I'd much more ENJOY a Boyhood win if it's uncertain to the end, rather than rote ratification of earlier groups, and (3) if it's Birdman instead, I couldn't get too angry about it, because it, too, is a unique work, and one of my favorites of 2014.

Note to Magilla: I think it's reductive to say Chariots of Fire only won because of the Olympics. Many people REALLY liked the movie, far more than putative front-runner Reds (it made a lot more money, as well). I've told the story before, but I was in a NY theatre bar a few hours before the ceremony, and, while everyone I spoke to believed Reds would win, each one of them (except me) said their favorite nominee was Chariots of Fire. I'm not saying it was a good choice, but it was a quite popular one.

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Re: PGA Winner

Postby Sabin » Sun Jan 25, 2015 12:38 pm

I remember watching Birdman and thinking "This could win." It'd be unusual but the year's Best Picture winner is always a movie that becomes a bit more than what it actually is. I'm a Birdman fan but it's absolutely become more than what it is. To be fair, so has Boyhood. Of the three late heavy precursors (SAG, PGA, DGA), the one I thought Birdman was most likely to nab was Best Ensemble from the Screen Actor's Guild.
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby Big Magilla » Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:13 am

I still think we're looking at a Boyhood at the Oscars, though Birdman could pull an upset.

Harvey is over-promoting The Imitation Game to the point where people are almost as sick of hearing about the film as they are of hearing from him. There is no Chariots of Fire in this year's race, no film that is peculiarly of more interest to Los Angelinos than it is to other groups of people.

Chariots of Fire won the 1981 Oscar on March 29, 1982 because of the upcoming 1984 Olympics. I know, I was there.

I lived and worked in the Los Angeles area from February, 1982 to December, 1983. I had two offices. One in Orange County, where everyone lived for the beach and one in downtown L.A. where there were basically two topics of conversation, the movie business which everyone seemed to be either connected to in some way or wanted to be, and the upcoming Olympics which everyone wanted a piece of. People were talking about renting rooms and selling tickets to park on their lawns. All this excitement with the Olympics still two years away was insane, but real. Oscar voters were just as crazy.

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Re: PGA Winner

Postby CalWilliam » Sun Jan 25, 2015 7:41 am

ITALIANO wrote:
CalWilliam wrote:
I's say that The imitation game could be that Chariots of fire you mean, Italiano, with Weinstein-mob behind, but after all it seems unlikely today.


Exactly. The Imitation Game COULD be today's Chariots of Fire - and that's why I expected it to triumph here. It didn't - and while it's true that Boyhood didn't, either, it's The Imitation Game which now suffers most from this outcome.


So that leaves us with a possible split between Boyhood and Birdman that seems completely unlikely to happen. Anyway, no matter PGA results, I do think that the preferential ballot won't spoil at all the chances of The imitation game, though it won't win; yes, it seems very unlikely by now. But my point is that Boyhood or Birdman are not the consensus movies they are expected to be to finally winning, and besides, it doesn't make sense that any of both could win without Best Director, and the Guilds show that there's no agreement. Iñárritu should win DGA for making sense. Maybe tonight SAG will have something to say with The Grand Budapest Hotel? for confusing the situation even more.
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby ITALIANO » Sun Jan 25, 2015 7:20 am

CalWilliam wrote:
ITALIANO wrote:Well, we all know that Boyhood isn't the typical Best Picture Oscar winner - which, of course, doesn't mean that it WON'T win: I still think that it will, but simply because there aren't suitable alternatives - there isn't a Chariots of Fire in sight. But the fact that the producers picked Birdman - which I haven't seen yet - at least makes the race a bit more interesting. And let's face it - Boyhood, in theory, would be the kind of movie which gets Best Director but not Best Picture - but even statistically, can this split happen three times in three years?


I's say that The imitation game could be that Chariots of fire you mean, Italiano, with Weinstein-mob behind, but after all it seems unlikely today.


Exactly. The Imitation Game COULD be today's Chariots of Fire - and that's why I expected it to triumph here. It didn't - and while it's true that Boyhood didn't, either, it's The Imitation Game which now suffers most from this outcome.

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Re: PGA Winner

Postby CalWilliam » Sun Jan 25, 2015 7:05 am

ITALIANO wrote:Well, we all know that Boyhood isn't the typical Best Picture Oscar winner - which, of course, doesn't mean that it WON'T win: I still think that it will, but simply because there aren't suitable alternatives - there isn't a Chariots of Fire in sight. But the fact that the producers picked Birdman - which I haven't seen yet - at least makes the race a bit more interesting. And let's face it - Boyhood, in theory, would be the kind of movie which gets Best Director but not Best Picture - but even statistically, can this split happen three times in three years?


I's say that The imitation game could be that Chariots of fire you mean, Italiano, with Weinstein-mob behind, but after all it seems unlikely today. I think the only precedent of a three years in a row Best Picture/Best Director split is Mutiny on the Bounty/Ford, The great Ziegfeld/Capra and The life of Émile Zola/McCarey, and since the 37s, the splits only happened twice in a row when they happened. It would be a record if Linklater wins this year without Boyhood getting the top prize, so that's what's keeping me cautious, specially when two movies like Argo and 12 years a slave would have won along with Best Director easily just a decade before. In general I feel a lack of consensus these last years, at least since that horrid Slumdog millionaire won every damn award.
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Re: PGA Winner

Postby ITALIANO » Sun Jan 25, 2015 6:29 am

Well, we all know that Boyhood isn't the typical Best Picture Oscar winner - which, of course, doesn't mean that it WON'T win: I still think that it will, but simply because there aren't suitable alternatives - there isn't a Chariots of Fire in sight. But the fact that the producers picked Birdman - which I haven't seen yet - at least makes the race a bit more interesting. And let's face it - Boyhood, in theory, would be the kind of movie which gets Best Director but not Best Picture - but even statistically, can this split happen three times in three years?

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Re: PGA Winner

Postby CalWilliam » Sun Jan 25, 2015 5:01 am

Such good news at last, and some fresh air too. I hope tonight SAG has something different to say from Keaton/Redmayne, Moore, Simmons, Arquette, because this is being a boring race indeed until now. Nevertheless, I think that even with Birdman with PGA and SAG and Linklater with DGA Boyhood could actually win the Oscar easily. I just don't buy the Academy making Birdman finally prevailing. It seems to weird and edgy for their standars, but I hope it happens. We'll see.

Last time PGA & SAG winner didn't win the Oscar was Little Miss Sunshine, with DGA winner Scorsese finally prevailing with The departed, but thank heaven, Birdman is NOT that kind of movie Little Miss Sunshine is, so there's still some hope for Iñárritu, if the Academy has some sense of humour, a new and brave sense of humour, not Argo's. Of course, Birdman is more than a comedy.
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