Oscar analysis: 'Lincoln' will take best picture
BY MICHAEL SMITH World Scene Writer
Thursday, January 10, 2013
1/10/13 at 1:42 PM
The Academy Award nominations were announced on Thursday, and “Lincoln” was awarded best picture.
That fact won’t become official until the Feb. 24 Oscar ceremony, but it appears to be an inevitability.
In a year filled with snubs (critics and fans alike seem to think Ben Affleck is one of the best directors of this year for “Argo,” but not the Academy), there is also little suspense for the next six weeks.
It will be a long wait to learn that Steven Spielberg’s historical epic is the winner of Oscar’s best picture, and that Daniel Day-Lewis will become the first three-time winner of the best actor Oscar for his portrayal of our 16th president.
Why is this victory so inevitable? Consider the following five reasons.
No. 1: The Oscar for best editing
This Oscar is critical, because the winner of best picture for 31 consecutive years has also been a nominee in the best editing category. That likely means the dream of a best-picture Oscar is over for “Amour,” “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” “Django Unchained” and “Les Miserables,” as these four movies were not named in the category and the other five best picture nominees are the editing nominees.
No. 2: Lincoln has the most nominations
“Lincoln” received 12 Oscar nominations, one ahead of “Life of Pi” but four more than any other movie competing this year. In the last 22 years, the movie with the most nominations has won 15 times.
Those odds might seem to leave a chance for “Life of Pi” to sneak in, but its odds are further reduced by the fact that …
No. 3: A film with no acting nominations has won only 11 times in 84 years
While “Lincoln” sports nominations in three of the four acting categories, “Life of Pi” has none. This would seem to make “Silver Linings Playbook,” which is the first film with nominees in all four acting categories in 31 years (“Reds” in 1981), the main competitor to “Lincoln.” There’s that, and there’s the fact while “Zero Dark Thirty” and “Argo” each have one acting nominee.
No. 4: No nomination for best director = no chance at best picture
Affleck (“Argo”) was not the only snub in the best director category. Kathryn Bigelow (“Zero Dark Thirty”) also failed to make the cut, and so did Tom Hooper of “Les Miserables,” a surprise to many. That leaves “Lincoln” with Spielberg as a directing nominee, and “Silver Linings Playbook” with David O. Russell nominated as best director for his rather unconventional mental-health comedy.
No. 5: “Lincoln” is an almost perfect “Oscar movie”
After last year’s unconventional choice of “The Artist” (silent, black-and-white, French), a return to convention seems to be on track for Spielberg’s all-American movie. It features a defining performance at its core. It has a sweeping style of historical storytelling, told on a giant scale with a cast of seeming thousands. Its technical proficiency, from costuming to cinematography, is beyond impressive.
“Lincoln” looks like your winner.
Not official yet: The Academy Award nominations were announced on Thursday, and “Lincoln” was awarded best picture. Courtesy