ProCreate Oscars

Steven's Selections for The 86th Academy Awards


It’s that time of the year ladies and gentlemen…it’s time for me to do embarrassingly bad in my Oscar picks. I am picking 21 of the major categories listed below; of course everyone picks a bit differently I have movies that I loved very much or performances that I really enjoyed but don’t think they will win the awards. I may highlight certain nominees who I am rooting for or believe they have a chance to compete in the category. Explanation over…let’s get to the picks! 

12 Years a Slave

Best Picture

12 Years a Slave-It is literally 50/50 split between Gravity and 12 Years a Slave, both have an extremely great chance of winning with American Hustle being that lingering 3rd choice. I loved Gravity and I think it is going to win plenty of Oscars but 12 Years a Slave might just be this year’s best film.

American Hustle

Gravity- Like last year’s Argo, Gravity is the most exciting movie to hit theaters and the most thrilling of which to be nominated in this category. It’s breathtakingly shot with incredible 3D special effects. Sandra Bullock gives one of the year’s top performances and this is the movie that is most likely to take the best picture over 12 Years a Slave considering it is considered a lock for nearly every other category that it is nominated for.

Captain Phillips

The Wolf of Wall Street

Her- My favorite movie of 2014 by far, I loved every second of it and wish its buzz was higher. It should win for Best Original Screenplay but it won’t take home the Best Picture Oscar.



Dallas Buyers Club 

Alfonso Cuarón

Best Director

Alfonso Cuarón – Gravity- He created a new way to make movies, and took a wild premise and made it one of the great movie watching experiences I have ever had. The innovation of the 3D technology is incredible enough but between its star and director it should remain one of the most incredible movies of the last 10 years.

Steve McQueen – 12 Years a Slave-McQueen is known for making incredibly tragic films. 12 Years a Slave is not the most graphic movie he has ever made (Shame is) but it should be considered his most intense. It’s difficult to sit through but beautifully shot and acted, if anyone upsets Cuarón its Steve McQueen.

David O. Russell – American Hustle

Martin Scorsese - The Wolf of Wall Street

Alexander Payne – Nebraska


Matthew McConaughey

Best Actor in a Leading Role

Chiwetel Ejiofor – 12 Years a Slave

Leonardo DiCaprio – The Wolf of Wall Street-This Oscar nom was well earned, DiCaprio gives one of his best performances as Jordan Belfort with 3 hour journey of greed, sex, and drugs this role is a transformation for Leo and a mighty good one. Having seen Dallas Buyers and Wolf back to back recently it’s hard to not have a lingering thought or two that Leo could swoop in and steal this one.

Matthew McConaughey – Dallas Buyers Club- It’s the McConaissance! The year Matthew McConaughey took over Hollywood and his turn in Dallas Buyers Club is nothing short of heroic. A brilliant performance that is deserving of the top honor in acting, he has taken home too many awards and has received too much admiration by voters to be denied.

Christian Bale – American Hustle

Bruce Dern – Nebraska


Cate Blanchett

Best Actress in a Leading Role

Sandra Bullock – Gravity- It’s unbelievable to think Sandra Bullock is not the top choice in this category; she gave an unreal performance in an exhilarating film. Any other year she is the favorite, Cate Blanchett’s performance

Cate Blanchett – Blue Jasmine- Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine was packed with surprising performances, there was nothing surprising about Cate Blanchett as a deeply troubled, somewhat crazy women who moves in with her sister in San Francisco. Blanchett gives a tragic, memorable performance that won’t soon be forgotten. She has won practically every award leading up to the Oscars, Oscar night won’t be any different.  

Judi Dench – Philomena

Amy Adams – American Hustle

Meryl Streep - August: Osage County


Jared Leto

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

Jared Leto – Dallas Buyers Club-Leto is as close to a mortal lock as they come, he has taken home every previous award this year for Supporting actor as Rayon, the transgender aids patient that befriends Ron Woodruff in Dallas Buyers Club. Leto is fantastic, and transforms into his character in one of the better performances in 2013. This Oscar will be well earned.

Michael Fassbender – 12 Years a Slave

Jonah Hill - The Wolf of Wall Street- Hill’s 2nd Oscar nomination is better than his first, as the loudmouth partner of Jordan Belfort in Wolf. Hill gives a brash performance as the awful, drug addled, strange Donnie Azoff it’s hard to ignore one of the year’s top performances.

Bradley Cooper – American Hustle

Barkhad Abdi – Captain Phillips


Lupita Nyong'o

Best Actress in a Supporting Role

Jennifer Lawrence – American Hustle-Ok so how many of you referred to your microwave as a science oven after Jennifer Lawrence’s hilarious role in American Hustle? Jennifer Lawrence continues her run of being everyone’s favorite actress and it’s no surprise that some are picking her over Lupita Nyong’o, Lawrence already stole a few awards from Nyong’o this year so keep an eye out for her to continue her trend as Oscars golden girl.

Lupita Nyong'o – 12 Years a Slave- It takes almost half the film before we even meet Lupita Nyong’o as Patsy in 12 Years a Slave. Yet from the moment she enters the film till the moment the movie ends she takes over. Stealing scenes from Oscar nominees Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nyong’o has become this year’s runaway Oscar favorite from gracing the cover of Entertainment Weekly’s Oscar edition to slowing becoming a rising star in Hollywood she has earned it and Only Jennifer Lawrence has the punch to take the award over the 12 years a Slave star.

June Squibb – Nebraska

Sally Hawkins – Blue Jasmine

Julia Roberts – August: Osage County



Best Original Screenplay

Blue Jasmine


American Hustle

Her - The keyword in this category is original and no movie presented something more original then Spike Jonze’s Her. One of the most beautiful and moving films of 2013(and my personal favorite) the only movie that can dethrone Her from victory is American Hustle.

Dallas Buyers Club



Best Adapted Screenplay

12 Years a Slave-12 Years a Slave might be the favorite in this category, it is a brutal film and its script reflects it. It also includes plenty of incredibly written scenes that should stand out to voters.

Captain Phillips

Before Midnight

Philomena - Philomena is charming, hilarious, and devastating, similar to Her which I have winning the original screenplay race. The script written by Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope is a gorgeous interpretation of a true story and thanks to a fantastic turn by Dame Judi Dench and a great leading role from Steve Coogan Philomena has earned an Oscar win.

The Wolf of Wall Street



Best Animated Feature Film

Frozen - Disney hasn’t made a better animated musical since The Lion King, classic original songs and a vintage Disney story that manages to even wink at the classic Disney princess tropes with lines like “You can’t marry a man you just met”. It’s Disney’s most progressive musical and one of the best films of 2013.

The Croods

The Wind Rises-Miyazaki’s swan song may have enough push to upset the Disney Favorite.

Ernest & Celestine

Despicable Me 2


The Act of Killing 

Best Documentary Feature

Dirty Wars

The Act of Killing-Black Fish somehow didn’t make the list of nominees, but The Act of Killing (available on Netflix instant along with most of the other nominees) is a graphic look at a dark time in Indonesian history where the perpetrators of mass killings reenact their graphic murders.

The Square

20 Feet from Stardom-The most talked about doc of the year and the other major contender should be considered a possibility by voters.

Cutie and the Boxer


The Great Beauty

Best Foreign Language Film

The Hunt

The Broken Circle Breakdown

The Great Beauty-With no Blue Is the Warmest Color in contention, The Great Beauty is the definite front runner.


The Missing Picture



Best Cinematography

The Grandmaster

Gravity- Is there even a question? Gravity is probably going to bring home every technical award it’s nominated for and this will be the first of many.

Inside Llewyn Davis





Best Original Score

The Book Thief


Gravity-Steven Price’s score is heart stopping and helps pace Gravity through some of its most exciting moments.

Saving Mr. Banks

Philomena- I loved this score from the great Alexandre Desplat, helps Philomena move between comedy and drama flawlessly.


Dallas Buyers Club

Best Make-up

Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa

Dallas Buyers Club-It’s funny to see which movies were nominated in this category but the work done on Dallas Buyers Club was truly fantastic, helping the actors make their performances seem as real as possible.

The Lone Ranger



Best Film Editing

Gravity-Gravity is already a visually stunning movie, but those beautiful long tracking shots make it the front runner.

American Hustle

Dallas Buyers Club

12 Years a Slave

Captain Phillips



Best Sound Editing

Gravity- It’s the favorite in this category as well, and it should win.

Captain Phillips

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

All is Lost

Lone Survivor



Best Production Design

12 Years a Slave

The Great Gatsby-The front-runner in this category but Gatsby didn’t blow me away it’s a lush background with beautiful scenery and magnificent colors.

Her-The creation of a futuristic LA is one of the many reasons why Her is a wonderful film. I am a bit biased towards my favorite movie of 2013.

American Hustle



American Hustle 

Best Costume Design

The Great Gatsby

The Grandmaster

American Hustle-The wacky, sexy, stunning costume work in this movie gave us a look into each of these significantly broken characters and the lifestyles that they lead. Voters may prefer Gatsby but In my opinion American Hustle takes the gold statue.

The Invisible Woman

12 Years a Slave


"Let It Go" (Frozen)

Best Original Song

"Let It Go" (Frozen)- Not one person I know left this movie without humming this song, the movies best tune and thanks to a fantastic performance from Broadway Star Idina Menzel “Let It Go” is the prohibitive favorite.

"Ordinary Love" (Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom)

"Happy" (Despicable Me 2) - Pharrell’s tune took home a Grammy but can it upset Frozen? I’d consider it an option but doubtful.  

"The Moon Song" (Her)



Best Visual Effects

Gravity-This is a lock, Gravity may not contain a fire breathing dragon motion captured by Benedict Cumberbatch but it is the most impressive special effects spectacle since Avatar.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Iron Man 3

The Lone Ranger

Star Trek Into Darkness



Best Sound Mixing

Gravity- The favorite in this category for its usage of negative sound, showing less is more for a movie that takes place almost entirely in space.

Captain Phillips

Inside Llewyn Davis-Llewyn Davis may have been somehow spurned by Oscar voters, but no one can deny the beautiful music made in this film. It might be a shocking upset but Inside Llewyn Davis may have enough to beat out Gravity.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

Lone Survivor


Steven Panzarella: ProCreate Film Critic

Steven Panzarella has been reviewing movies for as long as he can remember, but his passion flourished while working at 88.7 FM WRHU, and writing for

Steven is ProCreate's resident film critic.


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