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Mike's Fearless Oscar Picks for 2015

85th Academy Awards Nominations Luncheon - Inside
Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Mike's Fearless 2015 Oscar Predictions

Sunday is the 87th Annual Academy Awards. Here are my predictions of who will win, who I think should win (if different) and I point out a few "wild card" films that could sneak in steal an Oscar or two.

Photo courtesy of IFC Films

Best Picture "Boyhood"  -   I think it's down to "Boyhood" or "Birdman", with "Birdman" coming on strong in recent weeks. I just think that Richard Linklater's groundbreaking is too unique to ignore and "Birdman" is just a little too weird for some members of the Academy. "Mike's "Boyhood" Review

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Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight

Best Director:  Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu - "Birdman"  -   Certainly "Boyhood" could win this, and everything I hear it could go either way. I would give it to "Boyhood," as it changed how I look at movies and was one of the best movie going experiences of the year. Mike's "Birdman" Review

Photo courtesy of Focus Features

Best Actor: Eddie Redmayne  -  "The Theory of Everything" - Three months ago I would have said it was Michael Keaton for his performance in "Birdman" but Redmayne has become the talked about actor in Hollywood. I would give it to Keaton, but I would love Bradley Cooper to sneak in and win it for his great performance in "American Sniper." Mike's "The Theory of Everything" Review

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Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

Best Actress:  Julianne Moore  -  "Still Alice"  -  The slam dunk of the night. Moore is loved by her fellow actors and it's the type of role that Oscar loves. I would give it to Rosamund Pike for her incredible performance of the woman we loved to hate in "Gone Girl." Mike's "Still Alice" Review

Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

Best Supporting Actor:  J. K. Simmons - "Whiplash"  -  No one else is even in the running. Bet the house on this one. Mike's "Whiplash" Review

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Photo courtesy of IFC Films

Best Supporting Actress: Patricia Arquette - "Boyhood"  -  Another sure thing. Mike's "Boyhood" Review

Best Original Screenplay: "The Grand Budapest Hotel"  -   "Birdman" could win here, but I think there are too many fans of Wes Anderson and his fun and funny script. Mike's "The Grand Budapest Hotel" Review

Best Adapted Screenplay:  "The Imitation Game"  -   I am not a big fan of this film or the script. I would pick "Whiplash," which has great dialog and becomes as close to a horror movie as a drama can get.

Best Cinematography: "Birdman"  -  From the incredibly long scenes without cuts and the brilliant transitions between scenes, this film deserves it. I will say this, I loved the look of Best Foreign Film nominee "Ida."

Best Editing: "Boyhood"  -  The film felt more like 60 minutes in length (instead of the actual three hours), and much of the credit goes to the editing.

Best Documentary Feature:  "Citizenfour"  -  The doc about the WikiLeaks and Edward Snowden was a favorite of a bunch of critics, but I found it somewhat lacking. I would have picked the fascinating "Finding Vivian Maier" or the moving "Last Days in Vietnam" as much better films. But the real shame is that the best documentary of the year wasn't even nominated, "Life Itself." Mike's "Life Itself" Review

Best Song:  "Glory" - from the soundtrack of "Selma"  -  Its one of the few bones that the Academy can throw to "Selma." I loved "Lost Stars" from one of my favorite films of last year, "Begin Again." Mike's "Selma" Review

Best Score:  "The Grand Budapest Hotel"  -  The score perfectly matched the whimsy of the film. The lush sounds of "The Theory of Everything" might win out.

Best Sound Editing / Best Sound Mixing: "American Sniper"  -  The battle sequences in the film were an incredible mixture of sounds. My favorite was "Whiplash" but that just might be due to the wonderful jazz score. Mike's "American Sniper" Review

Best Costume Design: "The Grand Budapest Hotel"  -  The whole film was so much fun to watch, including the incredible costumes. The film was an almost sensory overload. "Into The Woods" was a beautiful film to watch.

Best Hair and Makeup: "The Grand Budapest Hotel" - See above.

Best Production Design: "The Grand Budapest Hotel" - See above.

Best Visual Effects: "Interstellar" - For all its faults, "Interstellar" was stunning to watch. Mike's "Interstellar" Review

Best Live Action Short: "The Phone Call" - The film about a woman (Sally Hawkins) working in a crisis center trying to stop a grieving widower from ending his life, has the star power to win. I thought "Aya," about two lost souls taking a car ride together was better. Mike's "Live Action Shorts" Reviews

Best Documentary Short:  "Joanna"  - This was a tough batch to watch as all the films were hard hitting.  "Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1" could sneak in here.

Best Animated Short:  "Feast"  -  The latest from short from Disney that played before "Big Hero 6" will win. For my money, "The Dam Keeper" is far better and more moving film. Plus it played at the Atlanta Film Festival last year. Mike's "Animated Shorts" Reviews

Best Foreign Film: "Ida" - Incredibly moving film from Poland. Both the Russian gangster film "Leviathan" and "Wild Tales" have been talked about quite a bit lately. Mike's "Ida" Review

Best Animated Film: "How to Train Your Dragon 2" - I still want to know how drunk the Academy members were when they filled out their nomination ballots, leaving off one of the best films of the year "The Lego Movie." Also, "The Song of the Sea" was so much a better film than "How to Train Your Dragon 2." Mike's "How to Train Your Dragon 2" Review

See how Mike's predictions stack up against the Couch Potato's.

For more of Mike's Reviews and Interviews click here

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