Archive for February 2015

87th Academy Awards: Best Picture Rankings   2 comments

 

bp 2015

Before the Oscars bestow their list of winners on Monday, it’s time to rank the Oscar Best Picture nominees for film year 2014. Unlike in 2012 and 2013 though though, it’s the first time that the Academy nominated only eight films for the top award. It’s a pretty good batch as a whole, though I have lots of reservations with the films in it, and how I wish Gone Girl made it over some of these clunkers in this batch. Anyway, here are my rankings:

IMITATION

08. THE IMITATION GAME
Director: Morten Tyldum

In first of the two British Oscar-contending films this year, this one is about one of Britain’s uncelebrated heroes of his time. Alan Turing has a very interesting story to tell; his team was able to crack the “unbreakable” Enigma leading to a World War II victory. The achievement would be of no value though as he was prosecuted for his homosexuality. What could have been a narration of such story was put to waste with the film’s very pedestrian treatment to it. Hackneyed dialogue, cliched treatment, and uneven focus on the story made the whole film totally disengaging. As if that’s not offensive yet, Benedict Cumberbatch’s campy portrayal is equally eye-roll worthy. With subtlety not existing in his dictionary, Cumberbatch spits every syllable of every word in every line as if it’s his last. Leave it to the sublime Keira Knightley to save the film, together with Alexander Desplat’s score. What might be the biggest missed opportunity here was the film just glossing over a part of Turing’s life that deserved the most attention. Oh well.

2.5/5

theory of everything

07. THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING
Director: James Marsh

The second of the two British-Oscar contending films this year, this one is about celebrated science figure Stephen Hawking. His name, probably more known because of The Big Bang Theory above many other reasons, has an equally compelling story to tell, and director James Marsh milked it for all its worth. Theory completed the handbook of how to do an Oscar-baity movie 101 highlighting the romance and the disease and the drama in succession. I have to say that I was initially hooked but easily worn out by the film’s cinematography using endless filters that really doesn’t offer much except to inform us that hey they really do have lots of filters. The film does a successful job of reminding us that it’s the British cousin of A Beautiful Mind, and if you digged that one, chances are you’d really enjoy this as well. Unlike Cumberbatch in Imitation Game, the only thing I appreciated about the film is Eddie Redmayne’s completely dedicated performance as Hawking. There is more than just the physicality of the role that he embraced which made it work. He might not be my pick for Best Actor at the Oscars, but one can’t deny that he did justice with his character.

2.5/5

american sniper

06. AMERICAN SNIPER
Director: Clint Eastwood

Clint Eastwood, except for that Best Director nomination, is back to Oscar’s good graces with his latest effort. American Sniper is based on the life story of Chris Kyle — known as the deadliest marksman in the US military with 255 bodies credited under his name. Aided by Bradley Cooper’s intense performance of Kyle, he manages to carry the whole film in his shoulders in spite of the noticeable flaws in the writing. While Eastwood delivered on the technical aspects further escalating the tension and making us feel the nitty gritty of it all (the whole sandstorm part in particular), the film weakens every time it shifts to Kyle’s own personal dilemma of dealing with his PTSD. I wasn’t even bothered by its by the numbers approach nor Eastwood’s political (or apolitical, depending on how you view it) favoring of his own take on militarism in the film. American Sniper could have been a more affecting film had it managed to strike the balance of both, but where one aspect Eastwood delivered, the other lacked. For what its worth, it’s still a solid, if not a bit pedestrian, and decent tribute to someone others consider as a figure of their American hero.

3/5

birdman

05. BIRDMAN
Director: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu

There’s a lot of things I loved about Inarritu’s Birdman. As for starters, there’s Michael Keaton’s comeback performance. And Edward Norton’s larger than life character. Then there’s the dark absurdity of the whole film which easily grabs your attention. Plus, the one long take approach of it. Lubezki’s cinematography and Antoio Sanchez’ underrated scoring are also top notch. While all of these seem to mesh out well to create a masterpiece, it still feels a bit underwhelming and not that exhilarating cinematic treat for me. The film has been too self-absorbed to the point that its ‘mocking’ of portraying Hollywood is as foolish as its portrayal of such. Birdman for me is a case of the individual parts being better than its sum where the gimmick hasn’t really stayed that much for me.

3.5/5

selma

04. SELMA
Director: Ava Duvernay

What makes the experience of cinema fascinating is when you witness a story, that in no way, shape, or form involves you, but touches your heart with what it presented to you. That is what Ava Duvernay did with Selma. On the outside, one might consider it as another general biopic advocating the human triumph, but what makes Selma much more sophisticated is that there is a raw sincerity with the lines, and the portrayals, and the technical peaks that it is definitely on a higher pedestal. What Duvernay accomplished here is to flaunt her cinematic potential while retelling a story whose effect aligned with the personal journey of the people during its time. Also, David Oyelowo’s snub will easily go down as one of the worst ever in Academy history. Selma is sensible and sincere that you can’t help but be affected by it.

4/5

the grand budapest hotel

03. THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL
Director: Wes Anderson

It’s really difficult to pin down Wes Anderson films since there’s a lot that we can discuss about his efforts, but I guess let’s start with the obvious. In true Anderson fashion, this one is probably his most deliciously looking film ever. One thing I’ve always appreciated about him is how he builds his own world and that it elevates the whole movie watching experience. In here, the Budapest hotel isn’t merely a background because it’s a star of its own with its use of wide space and set. And can we talk about Milena Canonero’s costume design here? ASTONISHING. With that said, the real deal here is Anderson’s storytelling. I’ve felt that it was his own homage to arts in general. His take on loyalty, passionate love, death, first love, and friendship among others was written with both poignancy and silly humor. Plus, of course that ever reliable ensemble with Ralph Fiennes front and center. Budapest is funny yet tragic, charming and whimsical, and a very delightful movie experience. 

4.5/5

WHIPLASH

02. WHIPLASH
Director: Damian Chazelle

A year after his short film of the same title won the Short Film Jury Prize award at last year’s Sundance, Damien Chazelle translated “Whiplash” into a full length feature film and has made the festival rounds from Sundance to Cannes and Toronto the past few months. The film tells the story of aspiring jazz drummer Andrew Neyman (Miles Teller) who undergoes training under notorious jazz conductor Terence Fletcher (J.K. Simmons) who has an atypical way of mentoring his students. The film did not waste any opportunity to build the intensity as we’ve seen from the interaction of Andrew and Terence in the opening scene. And there’s no stopping from there. Well crafted for the most part, particularly its creative, albeit really showy, editing and the musical score which heightens the tension further. Chazelle directs this with such precision making his audience feel the same discomfort that his characters feel, and his screenplay did not box the people as simply black and white; instead he composed them as larger than life ones — probably juxtaposed with the characters’ ambitions. J.K Simmons was every inch scary as the foul mouthed, no holds barred perfectionist maestro and there’s a level of brutality that his presence exudes. Rhythmically in sync though was Miles Teller, who should be given equal credit as he plays to Simmons’ level letting his Andrew be intimidated yet inspired with his verbal abuse. Whiplash is a painful reminder that greatness is no easy feat and that it literally takes blood, sweat, and tears to be achieved.

4.5/5

boyhood

01. BOYHOOD
Director: Richard Linklater

Richard Linklater’s 12 year in the making masterpiece is as ambitious as one can get, but the simple and organic approach in its depiction of a slice (is it even just a slice?) of life is certainly one of the most emotionally affecting movie watching experience I’ve ever had. This film follows the life of a kid, Mason, for 12 years as he experiences the highs and lows of his life. It wasn’t really alienating per se since Linklater is very much self-aware that Mason and everyone around him are as ordinary as us or the people around us. Its depiction of “life just going by” is probably one of the least pretentious yet most effective I have ever seen not because of the statement that it leaves, but by refusing to dictate such. There’s a line in the film mentioned by Patricia Arquette where she said “I just thought there would be more…”, and that perfectly sums up the film for me – that the experiences and the time that already passed by can either be a memory of what we were before and a reminder of what have become. Despite running for 165 minutes, I would have been more than fine to see two to three more hours of it. Its use of pop culture references (Pokemon! Harry Potter! Lady Gaga!) and music (Coldplay! Aaliyah! Family of the Year!) is a highlight to this experience as well. In the end, more than the achievement of such a “stunt” project (if one can even call it that), what makes Linklater’s Boyhood every inch effective and memorable is that it was able to capture the accuracy of one’s growing up beyond its literal meaning. The feelings you invested in these characters are too much and too deep that you just don’t want it to end. Well in my case, I really don’t.

5/5

How many have you seen from this year’s batch? Which are your favorites? And who would you be rooting for come Oscar night? Talk to me about it by tweeting me: @nikowl

 

 

57th Grammy Awards Winner Predictions   Leave a comment

On Sunday (Monday morning here in Manila), music’s biggest night is about to happen. Well that’s an exaggeration of some sort truth be told, but hey despite what we rant about the Grammys 100+ categories or how there are more performances than awards every single year, we still give them a free pass when they give us moments like that of Daft Punk’s cool performance that had everyone bopping, or the reggae tribute two years ago with Sting, Bruno Mars, and Rihanna. So before we watch this year’s telecast that will feature performances from Kanye West, Rihanna, and Sir Paul McCartney to the Selma tribute of John Legend, Beyonce, and Common, we predict those who will be ending the night as Grammy winners in nine different fields.

roty

RECORD OF THE YEAR:
Iggy Azalea ft. Charli XCX, “Fancy”
Sia, “Chandelier”
Sam Smith, “Stay With Me (Darkchild Version)”
Taylor Swift, “Shake It Off”
Meghan Trainor, “All About That Bass”

PREDICTION: “Shake It Off” (Taylor Swift) Shake It Off doesn’t really fit the mold of a ROTY winner, but then again this is a pretty weak lineup. I don’t see Fancy or All About That Bass winning this and Chandelier is more of a SOTY mold. You know we’re bound to get a Taylor ROTY now or in the future right? So let’s just keep this one off the Grammy’s bucket list already.

ALTERNATE: “Stay With Me (Darkchild Version)”  (Sam Smith) I don’t know if the Darkchild version will confuse voters or not, but if they love Sam Smith and will shower him with Grammys on that night, then expect at least an Adele type of winning for this ballad.

aoty

ALBUM OF THE YEAR:
“Morning Phase”, Beck
“Beyonce”, Beyonce
“X”, Ed Sheeran
“In the Lonely Hour”, Sam Smith
“GIRL”, Pharrell Williams

PREDICTION: Beyonce, “Beyonce” This whole Beyonce era has been life-giving in so many ways that I think this is the perfect coronation night for Grammy’s most-nominated woman.

ALTERNATE: Beck, “Morning Phase” But hold on that weave, Bey. Sometimes, not because you’re the biggest artist means you’re taking the biggest award easily (see Arcade Fire over Eminem in 2010?). Beck has the respect and the critics to back him up. Either way, we’re getting a fantastic winner with these two.

soty

SONG OF THE YEAR
“All About That Bass,” (Meghan Trainor)
“Chandelier,” (Sia)
“Shake It Off,” (Taylor Swift)
“Stay with Me,” (Sam Smith)
“Take Me To Church,” (Hozier)

PREDICTION: Chandelier (Sia). I think Sia becoming a go-to songwriter of the biggest popstars gives her a bit of an advantage here. And not to discredit the song itself, it’s an equally deserving SOTY material.

ALTERNATE: Stay with Me (Sam Smith). That said, Stay with Me is such a Grammy catnip here that I won’t be surprised if they go with the straight ballad in this group.

bna

BEST NEW ARTIST
Iggy Azalea
Bastille
Brandy Clark
HAIM
Sam Smith

PREDICTION: Sam Smith. They could have mailed him the actual Grammy since the announcement for all I know.

ALTERNATE: Brandy Clark. Never underestimate the country bloc especially someone who has been churning out hits for some of the biggest country names right now.

POP FIELD:

pop

POP SOLO PERFORMANCE:
John Legend, “All of Me (Live Version)”
Sia, “Chandelier”
Sam Smith, “Stay With Me”
Taylor Swift, “Shake It Off”
Pharrell Williams, “Happy (Live Version)”

This one would be an easy win for Sam Smith regardless if he goes home with many Grammys or not. Maybe he’s shoo-in category after Best New Artist. Watch out for Oscar nominee John Legend though in one of the year’s biggest hits and vocal venues.

PREDICTION: “Stay with Me” (Sam Smith)
ALTERNATE: “All of Me (Live Version)” (John Legend)

POP PERFORMANCE BY A DUO OR GROUP:
Iggy Azalea feat. Charli XCX, “Fancy”
Coldplay, “A Sky Full of Stars”
A Great Big World and Christina Aguilera, “Say Something”
Jessie J, Ariana Grande, and Nicki Minaj, “Bang Bang”
Katy Perry feat. Juicy J, “Dark Horse”

What an absurd category. It seems like except for Bang Bang, you can make a case for any of these songs. Fancy has the General Field nomination, but somehow it’s not a guarantee here. Let’s just go with the AC catnip here of Say Something.

PREDICTION: “Say Something” (A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera)
ALTERNATE: “Fancy” (Iggy Azalea ft. Chrali XCX)

POP VOCAL ALBUM:
Coldplay, Ghost Stories
Miley Cyrus, Bangerz
Ariana Grande, My Everything
Katy PerryPrism
Ed Sheeran, x
Sam Smith, In the Lonely Hour

With two Album of the Year nominees here, it’s definitely between these two Brits. I give the advantage to Ed Sheeran though, as I see it is a consolation for his great year. Plus you know they’re dying to reward him with a Grammy already.

PREDICTION: “X” (Ed Sheeran)
ALTERNATE: “In the Lonely Hour” (Sam Smith)

TRADITIONAL POP ALBUM:
Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga, Cheek to Cheek
Annie Lennox, Nostalgia
Barry Manilow, Night Songs
Johnny Mathis, Sending You a Little Christmas
Barbra Streisand, Partners

This one’s a bit tricky. The easiest name-checking would definitely be Bennett and Gags especially since Bennett is a regular winner here. But don’t underestimate Barbra Streisand’s strong narrative on her successful comeback album. I can see this one getting really close.

PREDICTION: “Cheek to Cheeck” (Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga)
ALTERNATE: “Partners” (Barbra Streisand)

DANCE/ELECTRONICA FIELD

dance recording

DANCE RECORDING
“Never Say Never,” Basement Jaxx
“Rather Be,” Clean Bandit featuring Jess Glynne
“F For You,” Disclosure featuring Mary J. Blige
“I Got U,” Duke Dumont featuring Jax Jones
“Faded,” Zhu

Again, this one is a two-way race. Rather Be is the biggest hit in the lineup, but F for You has the name recognition. I give the slight edge to Rather Be,

PREDICTION: “Rather Be” (Clean Bandit feat. Jess Glynne)
ALTERNATE: “F For You” (Disclosure feat. Mary J. Blige)

dance electronica album

DANCE ELECTRONICA ALBUM
“Syro”, Aphex Twin
“while(1<2)”, deadmau5
“Nabuma Rubberband”, Little Dragon
“Do It Again”, Royksopp & Robyn
“Damage Control”, Matt Zo

PREDICTION: “Syro” (Aphex Twin)
ALTERNATE: “while(1<2)” (deadmau5)

ROCK AND ALTERNATIVE FIELD

rock alternative

ROCK PERFORMANCE:
“Gimme Something Good”, Ryan Adams
“Do I Wanna Know?”, Arctic Monkeys
“Blue Moon”, Beck
“Fever”, The Black Keys
“Lazaretto”, Jack White

The logical choice is Beck, but if they’ll spread the wealth, this is the place where I can see them giving the win to another contender via Arctic Monkeys.

PREDICTION: “Do I Wanna Know?” (Arctic Monkeys)
ALTERNATE: “Blue Moon” (Beck)

ROCK SONG:
Paramore, “Ain’t It Fun”
Beck, “Blue Moon”
The Black Keys, “Fever”
Ryan Adams, “Gimme Something Good”
Jack White, “Lazaretto”

This one is an easy Beck win though regardless of competing against other familiar names and pop(!) hits.

PREDICTION: “Blue Moon” (Beck)
ALTERNATE: “Lazaretto” (Jack White)

ROCK ALBUM:
Ryan Adams, Ryan Adam
Beck, Morning Phase
The Black Keys, Turn Blue
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Hypnotic Eye
U2, Songs of Innocence

’tis a part of the Beck’s deserved Rock field sweep, so there ‘ya go.

PREDICTION: “Morning Phase” (Beck)
ALTERNATE: “Songs of Innocence” (U2)

ALTERNATIVE MUSIC ALBUM:
“This is All Yours”, alt-J
“Reflektor”, Arcade Fire
“Melophobia”, Cage the Elephant
“St. Vincent”, St. Vincent
“Lazaretto”, Jack White

St. Vincent has the most critical backing in this group, but I think that would be put into the sidelines when competing against two favorites. Thus, I gave the edge to Jack White here.

PREDICTION: “Lazaretto” (Jack White)
ALTERNATE: “Reflektor” (Arcade Fire)

R&B FIELD

rnb

R&B PERFORMANCE
“Drunk In Love,” Beyoncé featuring Jay Z
“New Flame,” Chris Brown featuring Usher & Rick Ross
“It’s Your World,” Jennifer Hudson featuring R. Kelly
“Like This,” Ledisi
“Good Kisser,” Usher

Bey and Jay easily.

PREDICTION: “Drunk in Love” (Beyonce feat. Jay-Z)
ALTERNATE: “Good Kisser” (Usher)

TRADITIONAL R&B PERFORMANCE:
“As,” Marsha Ambrosius & Anthony Hamilton
“I.R.S,” Angie Fisher
“Jesus Children,” Robert Glasper Experiment feat. Lalah Hathaway & Malcolm Jamal Warner
“Nobody,” Kem
“Hold Up (Wait a Minute),” Antonique Smith

Robert Glasper pulled off an upset two years ago, so he’s definitely on the radar. Add the fact that Lalah also did last year, so maybe this is one underrated powerful collab?

PREDICTION: “Jesus Children” (Robert Glasper Experiment feat. Lalah Hathaway & Malcolm Jamal Warner)
ALTERNATE: “As” (Marsha Ambrosius & Anthony Hamilton)

R&B SONG
“Drunk In Love,” Beyonce ft. Jay Z
“Good Kisser,” Usher
“New Flame,” Chris Brown ft. Usher & Rick Ross
“Options (Wolfjames Version),” Luke James ft. Rick Ross
“The Worst,” Jhené Aiko 

Again, thanks for trying everyone but no one comes close to Bey and Jay.

PREDICTION: “Drunk in Love” (Beyonce feat. Jay-Z)
ALTERNATE: “Good Kisser” (Usher)

R&B ALBUM:
Islander, Bernhoft
Lift Your Spirit, Aloe Blacc
Love, Marriage & Divorce, Toni Braxton & Babyface
Black Radio 2, Robert Glasper Experiment
Give The People What They Want, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings

I think the throwback to these two 90s R&B names would be enough to give them comeback Grammys since their last wins over a decade ago. Watch out for Aloe Blacc though just because he has the crossover appeal of The Man.

PREDICTION: “Love, Marriage & Divorce” (Toni Braxton & Babyface)
ALTERNATE: “Lift Your Spirit” (Aloe Blacc)

URBAN CONTEMPORARY ALBUM:
Jhene Aiko, Sail Out
Beyonce, Beyonce
Chris Brown, X
Mali Music, Mail Is
Pharrell Williams, G I R L

Sorry Pharrell, but Beyonce has this one locked.

PREDICTION: “Beyonce” (Beyonce)
ALTERNATE: “GIRL” (Pharrell Williams)

RAP FIELD:

rap

RAP PERFORMANCE
“3005,” Childish Gambino
“0 To 100/ The Catch Up,” Drake
“Rap God,” Eminem
“i,” Kendrick Lamar
“All I Need Is You,” Lecrae

Rap God. End of discussion. EMinem might just steamroll to another Rap field Grammy domination.

PREDICTION: “Rap God” (Eminem)
ALTERNATE: “i” (Kendrick Lamar)

RAP/SUNG COLLABORATION:
“Blak Majik,” Common ft. Jhené Aiko
“The Monster,” Eminem ft. Rihanna
“Tuesday,” I Love Makonnen ft. Drake
“Studio,” ScHoolboy Q ft. BJ The Chicago Kid
“Bound 2,” Kanye West & Charlie Wilson

Let’s just go with the biggest hit in the group. And maybe a consolation since they lost for Love the Way You Lie in 2010. Otherwise, Kanye is the other big name here so maybe him.

PREDICTION: “The Monster” (Eminem and Rihanna)
ALTERNATE: “Bound 2” (Kanye West feat. Charlie Wilson)

RAP SONG
“Anaconda,” Nicki Minaj
“Bound 2,” Kanye West & Charlie Wilson
“i,” Kendrick Lamar
“We Dem Boyz,” Wiz Khalifa
“0 to 100/The Catch Up,” Drake

After his shutout last year, and with no Eminem in competition this year, then maybe it’s finally bound for a Kendrick Lamar Grammy win… unless they give Kanye another one.

PREDICTION: “i” (Kendrick Lamar)
ALTERNATE: “Bound 2” (Kanye West)

RAP ALBUM:
The Marshall Mathers LP 2, Eminem
Because The Internet, Childish Gambino
The New Classic, Iggy Azalea
Blacc Hollywood, Wiz Khalifa
Oxymoron, Schoolboy Q
Nobody’s Smiling, Common

Eminem has the biggest album of the bunch, and this field loves to rubberstamp winners so there ‘ya go. Imagine the pandemonium among the people and the rap community though if Iggy Azalea wins this. LMAO.

PREDICTION: “The Marshall Mathers LP 2” (Eminem)
ALTERNATE: “The New Classic” (Iggy Azalea)

COUNTRY FIELD:

country

COUNTRY SOLO PERFORMANCE
“Give Me Me Back My Hometown,” Eric Church
“Invisible,” Hunter Hayes
“Automatic,” Miranda Lambert
“Something In the Water,” Carrie Underwood
“Cop Car,” Keith Urban

Miranda has the biggest hit of the bunch, and her only Grammy is for a vocal performance, so I’m quite complacent with this one. Carrie poses a big threat, but last year proved she still loses (and even gets snubbed!) in this category.

PREDICTION: “Automatic” (Miranda Lambert)
ALTERNATE: “Something in the Water” (Carrie Underwood)

COUNTRY DUO/GROUP COLLABORATION:
“Gentle On My Mind,” The Band Perry
“Somethin’ Bad,” Miranda Lambert with Carrie Underwood
“Day Drinking,” Little Big Town
“Meanwhile Back At Mama’s,” Tim McGraw ft. Faith Hill
“Raise ‘Em Up,” Keith Urban ft. Eric Church

These are two of their favorite vocalists, so I say easy win for Team Girl Power?

PREDICTION: “Something’ Bad” (Miranda Lambert & Carrie Underwood)
ALTERNATE: “Raise ‘Em Up” (Keith Urban & Eric Church)

COUNTRY SONG
“American Kids,” Kenny Chesney
“Automatic,” Miranda Lambert
“Give Me Back My Hometown,” Eric Church
“I’m Not Gonna Miss You,” Glen Campbell
“Meanwhile Back at Mama’s,” Tim McGraw ft. Faith Hill

I think they’ll throw Eric Church a bone for having a great year as well so either this and/or Album would be the place to reward it.

PREDICTION: “Give Me Back My Hometown” (Eric Church)
ALTERNATE: “Automatic” (Miranda Lambert)

COUNTRY ALBUM:
Riser, Dierks Bentley
The Outsiders, Eric Church
The Way I’m Livin’, Lee Ann Womack
12 Stories, Brandy Clark
Platinum, Miranda Lambert

Miranda Lambert seems to be the default frontrunner, but she always seems to be sidetracked at the Grammys, so I’m going with either Eric Church or Brandy Field who has the General Field support.

PREDICTION: “The Outsiders” (Eric Church)
ALTERNATE: “12 Stories” (Brandy Clark)

SOUNDTRACK ALBUM:

soundtrack

SONG WRITTEN FOR MOTION PICTURE
“Everything is Awesome,” (Tegan & Sara with The Lonely Island) from The LEGO Movie
“I See Fire,” (Ed Sheeran) from The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
“I’m Not Gonna Miss You” (Glen Campbell) from Glen Campbell: It’ll Be Me
“Let It Go” (Idina Menzel) from Frozen
“The Moon Song,” (Karen O) from Her

To the other nominees, let it go. There’s no way you’re winning this over the instant fairy tale classic.

PREDICTION: “Let It Go” (Idina Menzel) from Frozen
ALTERNATE: “I’m Not Gonna Miss You” (Glen Campbell) from Glen Campbell: It’ll Be Me

COMPILATION ALBUM:
American Hustle 
Guardians of the Galaxy
Frozen 
Get On Up: The James Brown Story 
The Wolf of Wall Street

Being one of the most-selling albums in this day and age would be enough to assure that this is another Frozen win, unless the sympathy is really high for the late James Brown.

PREDICTION: “Frozen” (Various Artists)
ALTERNATE: “Get On Up: The James Brown Story” (James Brown)

SCORE SOUNDTRACK:
Frozen (Christopher Beck)
Gone Girl (Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross)
The Grand Budapest Hotel (Alexander Desplat)
Gravity (Steven Price)
Saving Mr. Banks (Thomas Newman)

At this point, I’m just predicting they’re gonna continue the Frozen love. But Steven Price must be considered as well as he’s the only other one with no wins in this category yet.

PREDICTION: “Frozen” (Christophe Beck)
ALTERNATE: “Gravity” (Steven Price)

MUSIC VIDEOS:

music video

MUSIC VIDEO
“We Exist,” Arcade Fire
“Turn Down for What,” DJ Snake & Lil Jon
“Chandelier,” Sia
“Happy,” Pharrell Williams
“The Golden Age,” Woodkid ft. Max Richter

This one seems like an easy win for Sia especially if she doesn’t win in her other nominations. Consider this as the template place to reward her.

PREDICTION: “Chandelier” (Sia)
ALTERNATE: “Happy” (Pharrell Williams)

music film

MUSIC FILM:
Beyoncé & Jay Z: On The Run Tour, Beyoncé & Jay Z
Ghost Stories, Coldplay
20 Feet From Stardom, Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer & Judith Hill
Metallica: Through The Never, Metallica
The Truth About Love Tour: Live From Melbourne, Pink

Sorry Jay and Bey, but you have to sit this one out. You’re competing against the Oscar winner for Best Documentary Feature. I’m sure one Grammy less won’t hurt your shelf.

PREDICTION: “20 Feet From Stardom” (Darlene Love, Merry Clayton, Lisa Fischer & Judith Hill)
ALTERNATE: “On The Run Tour” (Beyonce)

Talk to me about the Grammys by tweeting me: @nikowl