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3 major potential upsets tomorrow at the Oscars.

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 25, 2017 by vincentloy

The 89th Academy Awards is finally just around the corner. It will take place tomorrow and to watch it live, I have to purposely wake up early on Monday morning (time difference). Fortunately, I don’t have any class to attend on Monday for this semester. I have been staying closely with the awards season this year and it gets more exciting day by day as the Oscars gets nearer. I had in the past posted the full nomination list of this coming Academy Awards alongside my predictions on who should and who will win on that evening.

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Just a day before the ceremony, I’m here to write on 3 major potential upsets that may happen tomorrow in the Oscars.

First one would be ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ winning the Best Animated Feature over the frontrunner, ‘Zootopia’. ‘Zootopia’ has been leading the race in this category ever since with wins in many precursor awards including some major ones like Annie Awards, Golden Globe Awards and Critics’ Choice Awards. However, do not look down on ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ that has been in the second place to many people’s predictions in winning the best animated film. The movie has also won multiple precursor awards including the BAFTA which is a strong indicator of Oscar winner in animated film category. I myself love ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ much more than ‘Zootopia’ and I would love it if it really takes home the award tomorrow. In my opinion, it has a much more better story, better visual, better style, better characters, better animations, and better effort than ‘Zootopia’ and the remaining three other nominees; ‘Moana’, ‘The Red Turtle’ and ‘My Life as a Zucchini’. I would love this upset to happen. It’s time to reward Laika, the production company behind this work. Their past works are three also great stop-motion animated films (all were nominated but didn’t win); ‘Coraline’, ‘Paranorman’ and ‘Boxtrolls’.

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Next major upset will be in Best Actress category. The frontrunner now is Emma Stone from her wonderful performance in ‘La La Land’, a film that has been getting a lot of love as shown from the 14 nominations it gets in this Academy Awards. She has won best actress in Golden Globes (musical and comedy), Screen Actor Guild and BAFTA. She is great in that movie. However, her performance is not the strongest compared to the other nominees in this category. It is very obvious. People are just voting her because it is Emma Stone and she is likable, and is not voting based on performance in the film. I would like to see Natalie Portman to win this as a major surprise of the evening. Her performance as Jackie Kennedy in ‘Jackie’ is tremendously good. People just think that it is too fast to award her the second Oscar since she won it few years back from her performance in ‘Black Swan’. Hey…stop that mentality. If she deserves it, then she deserves it..no matter how many she has won before. Another ‘dark horse’ contender will be Isabelle Hupert from ‘Elle’. Deep down in my heart, I still think Natalie has a shot at it because Academy usually loves people who acts as a real-life historical figure and Natalie nailed that role effectively and with a lot of effort. Seen as the early favourite as Natalie won best actress at the Critics Choice, her momentum went downward because the movie ‘Jackie’ is not getting a lot of attention unfortunately.

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The last major potential upset I foresee is in best supporting actor. Currently, Mahershala Ali is the one to beat from his performance in ‘Moonlight’. I didn’t see that movie. He has been also sweeping many precursor awards and hence many see him as a lock in this category, up until when he lost the award surprisingly in Golden Globes (to Aaron Taylor-Johnson in ‘Norturnal Animals’) and in BAFTA (to Dev Patel in ‘Lion’). Mahershala is still in the lead position to win supporting actor as he did won at Critics Choice and at Screen Actors Guild. However, Academy usually love to award Best Supporting Actor to someone many didn’t see it coming. Hence, get ready to watch some drama when the name in the envelope tomorrow is not stating ‘Mahershala Ali’. I’m thinking that all the other nominees has a chance for it except Lucas Hedges since he is too young for it, and I’m wishing for Dev Patel to win it. It’s because I watched ‘Lion’ and I’m amazed by his performance in there.

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These are my last opinions before the Academy Awards tomorrow. What do you think? My biggest wish is still to see ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ winning Best Animated Feature. It totally deserves it way more than the others. ‘Zootopia’ has the edge just because of its right timing to the current political situation in USA. It’s just an ordinary animated film, and no where near the excellence delivered by ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ in nearly all aspects.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

 

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Nomination list for the 89th Academy Awards.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 24, 2017 by vincentloy

Here below is the full nomination list for the 89th Academy Awards alongside with my predictions and thoughts. The awards ceremony will take place on February 26, 2017.

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BEST PICTURE
Arrival
Fences
Hacksaw Ridge
Hell or High Water
Hidden Figures
La La Land
Lion
Manchester by the Sea
Moonlight

Predicted to win: Moonlight

My choice: La La Land

Opinion: 9 nominees for best picture this year. Academy voters love to vote for movies dealing with serious or heartfelt issues, and to cope with strong criticism last year for being pure White in their nomination list, I’m quite confident the Academy this year will award their most prestigious best picture prize to a movie about Black people. Deep down in my heart, I still wish ‘La La Land’ to win as it is a musical masterpiece.

BEST DIRECTOR
Denis Villeneuve, Arrival
Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge
Damien Chazelle, La La Land
Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea
Barry Jenkins, Moonlight

Predicted to win: Damien Chazelle (La La Land)

My choice: Damien Chazelle (La La Land)

Opinion: This one looks like a lock for Damien Chazelle who has been sweeping all precursor awards for his directing work in ‘La La Land’. Since I think it is unlikely for ‘La La Land’ to emerge as best picture winner, it is highly likely that Damien will take this best director award as a consolation.

BEST ACTOR
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
Ryan Gosling, La La Land
Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic
Denzel Washington, Fences

Predicted to win: Casey Affleck (La La Land)

My choice: Casey Affleck (La La Land)

Opinion: Casey Affleck is the clear frontrunner as he has been winning multiple best actor prizes for his subtle yet strong performance in ‘Manchester by the Sea’. Denzel Washington is a dark horse contender here. It’s good to see Andrew Garfield on his first nomination here as he is one young good actor. However, this is not the time yet but I’m sure he will be rewarded in near future.

BEST ACTRESS
Isabelle Huppert, Elle
Ruth Negga, Loving
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Emma Stone, La La Land
Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins

Predicted to win: Isabelle Huppert (Elle) / Natalie Portman (Jackie)

My choice: Natalie Portman (Jackie)

Opinion: This is a very competitive and tough race. I’m surprised to see Amy Adams get snubbed for her solid work in ‘Arrival’. That slot has been given to Ruth Negga. I think this will be a three-way fight between Isabelle (Globes best actress-drama), Emma (Globes best actress-comedy or musical) and Natalie (Critics Choice best actress). And Meryl Streep may just take that advantage and sneak in to clinch her historic 4th win. This is also her record-breaking 20th Oscar nomination.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea
Dev Patel, Lion
Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals

Predicted to win: Mahershala Ali (Moonlight)

My choice: Mahershala Ali (Moonlight)

Opinion: Mahershala, Jeff, Lucas and Dev are the four lock-in for this nomination. The fifth slot goes to Michael Shannon. Hugh Grant from ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’ and Aaron-Taylor Johnson from ‘Nocturnal Animals’ (Globes best supporting actor) couldn’t snatch that fifth slot unfortunately. Academy will certainly vote for Mahershala Ali since they are now determined to make sure their awards are as diverse as possible.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Viola Davis, Fences
Naomie Harris, Moonlight
Nicole Kidman, Lion
Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures
Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea

Predicted to win: Viola Davis (Fences)

My choice: Viola Davis (Fences)

Opinion: For the diversity reason mentioned earlier and also to compensate for Viola Davis for losing few years ago, this is certainly the year for her. The other four nominees are simply here just to fill in the remaining slots and to be audiences for the ceremony next month.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Hell or High Water
La La Land
The Lobster
Manchester by the Sea
20th Century Women

Predicted to win: Manchester by the Sea

My choice: Hell or High Water / The Lobster

Opinion: I don’t really find any greatness in ‘Manchester by the Sea’ for its script. I would then prefer for ‘Hell or High Water’ to win since it would stand no chance in other categories or ‘The Lobster’ since this is the only category it is nominated in.

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Arrival
Fences
Hidden Figures
Lion
Moonlight

Predicted to win: Fences

My choice: Arrival

Opinion: ‘Fences’ will win here because there is no other categories for it to shine and I feel that this movie must be rewarded for Academy to achieve their diversity objective. My prefered choice would be ‘Arrival’ for its unique approach to an extraterrestrial-themed film and also for its briliant plot with deep subject and mind-fucked plot twist.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Arrival
La La Land
Lion
Moonlight
Silence

Predicted to win: Arrival / La La Land

My choice: Arrival

Opinion: Hard to choose from this 5 nominees. I pick ‘Arrival’ because I do think this is the only category in high possibility for this particular movie to get rewarded.

BEST FILM EDITING
Arrival
Hacksaw Ridge
Hell or High Water
La La Land
Moonlight

Predicted to win: La La Land

My choice: La La Land

Opinion: All the way for ‘La La Land’. The brilliant editing work in ‘La La Land’ is very obvious from the start (continuous shot of musical sequence on a congested highway) to the end (alternate reality of the two leads over the years) of the movie.

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Deepwater Horizon
Doctor Strange
The Jungle Book
Kubo and the Two Strings
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Predicted to win: The Jungle Book

My choice: Doctor Strange

Opinion: ‘The Jungle Book’ is predicted to win due to its realistic talking animals and the beautiful scenery throughout the whole movie. My own choice would be ‘Doctor Strange’ for its exceptional and out-of-this-world visual treatments.

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
Arrival
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Hail, Caesar!
La La Land
Passengers

Predicted to win: La La Land

My choice: Passengers

Opinion: No one has predicted ‘Passengers’ to get nominated at all in the Oscars and yet it does. I enjoyed that film and I’m glad it receives a nomination here eventhough I think it is unlikely for the movie to win. The heavy favourite ‘La La Land’ is going to take this award home but I actually don’t think the production works for ‘La La Land’ are that amazing.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Allied
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Florence Foster Jenkins
Jackie
La La Land

Predicted to win: Jackie

My choice: Jackie

Opinion: If Natalie Portman didn’t win best actress, then this is the only category for ‘Jackie’ to win. The movie shown to us some great costumes in 1960s.

BEST MAKEUP & HAIRSTYLING
A Man Called Ove
Star Trek Beyond
Suicide Squad

Predicted to win: A Man Called Ove

My choice: Star Trek Beyond

Opinion: Academy doesn’t like blockbuster movies that much, hence ‘A Man Called Ove’ suddenly stand a strong chance to win. I’m also surprised that ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’ and ‘Deadpool’ didn’t get nominated here.

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
Jackie
La La Land
Lion
Moonlight
Passengers

Predicted to win: La La Land

My choice: La La Land

Opinion: Also surprised to see ‘Passengers’ get another nomination here. It looks like ‘Passengers’ is getting surprising love from the Academy and I’m fine with it. But I don’t think it will win anything. At least getting some nominations is already a great news for this under-rated movie. ‘La La Land’ is certainly going to win this for its beautiful and inspiring background music.

BEST ORIGINAL SONG
“Audition (The Fools Who Dream),” La La Land
“Can’t Stop the Feeling,” Trolls
“City of Stars,” La La Land
“The Empty Chair,” Jim: The James Foley Story
“How Far I’ll Go,” Moana

Predicted to win: ‘City of Stars’ (La La Land)

My choice: ‘City of Stars’ (La La Land) / ‘How Far I’ll Go’ (Moana)

Opinion: Two nominations for ‘La La Land’ in this category alone. Would it be harmful to the movie as the votes are split to the two songs in it? Probably. ‘How Far I’ll Go’ from ‘Moana’ may just sneak in and take this award.

BEST SOUND EDITING
Arrival
Deepwater Horizon
Hacksaw Ridge
La La Land
Sully

Predicted to win: Hacksaw Ridge

My choice: Hacksaw Ridge

Opinion: This is the only category that ‘Hacksaw Ridge’ has high chance of winning. Let it win then. The sound work in the movie is brilliant.

BEST SOUND MIXING
Arrival
Hacksaw Ridge
La La Land
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi

Predicted to win: La La Land

My choice: Hacksaw Ridge

Opinion: ‘La La Land’ should win this without any heavy competition. ‘Sound mixing’ and ‘Sound editing’ will be distributed equally to ‘La La Land’ and ‘Hacksaw Ridge’. I still think the Academy should just combine ‘sound editing’ and ‘sound mixing’ into one award.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
Kubo and the Two Strings
Moana
My Life as a Zucchini
The Red Turtle
Zootopia

Predicted to win: Kubo and the Two Strings / Zootopia

My choice: Kubo and the Two Strings

Opinion: ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ gets nominated in best visual effects’ category too and also shortlisted last time for best costume design category eventhough didn’t get nominated in the end. So, this movie stands a higher chance now to win this one, giving a strong competition to earlier frontrunner ‘Zootopia’. ‘Zootopia’ still has the chance to win due to the appeal from its box office success.

No predictions and comments for the remaining 4 categories above.

BEST DOCUMENTARY
Fire at Sea
I Am Not Your Negro
Life, Animated
O.J.: Made in America
13th

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Land of Mine
A Man Called Ove
The Salesman
Tanna
Toni Erdmann

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT
Extremis
4.1 Miles
Joe’s Violin
Watani: My Homeland
The White Helmets

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT
Ennemis Entreniers
La Femme et le TGV
Silent Nights
Sing
Timecode

BEST ANIMATED SHORT
Blind Vaysha
Borrowed Time
Pear Cider and Cigarettes
Pearl
Piper

What do you think of the nomination list? Do you agree to my predictions and thoughts? You may post your comment and it is very welcomed.

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There are some surprises in the nomination list as expected since the Academy likes to give us some shock every year. But the shock this year is not that much as most of the list are predicted from earlier on. ‘La La Land’ gets the most love from the Academy with most number of nominations at 14. The movie sets the record for film with most Oscar nominations and ties with ‘Titanic’ (1997) and ‘All About Eve’ (1950). ‘Arrival’ and ‘Moonlight’ each gets 8 nominations. ‘Hacksaw Ridge’, ‘Manchester by the Sea’ and ‘Lion’ each gets 6 nominations. Surprising entries into the list with multiple nominations include ‘Deepwater Horizon’ (didn’t expect it to be nominated at all in any categories), ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’ (only expected it to be nominated in one category – animated feature film), ‘Passengers’ (didn’t expect it to be nominated at all in any categories) and ‘A Man Called Ove’ (only expected it to be nominated in one category – make-up and hairstyling) with two nominations each. ‘Deadpool’ is snubbed as I expect this movie to get one or two nominations.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games officially began with a splendid opening ceremony.

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 6, 2016 by vincentloy

I purposely woke up before 7am this morning to watch the live broadcast of the opening ceremony of the 31st Summer Olympic Games, Rio 2016. The ceremony which took about four hours in Maracana Stadium, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil saw attendance of over 78 000 spectators and also audiences from around the world watching from television or from the internet. This is the first time the Summer Olympiad is held in South America.

Before the start of the games, the organizers had mentioned that they would spend very little on the ceremonies due to the financial crisis of their country in recent years. And because of that, I have very little expectation since this kind of ceremonies should not be taken lightly as it is a very strong platform to showcase the best of the host nation that can offer and present to the world. But in the end, I still insist to watch the opening ceremony to see what they can do with limited budget. And surprisingly, the outcome is that I’m quite impressed with the opening ceremony that had just concluded an hour ago.

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While it is expected that the organizers would still be depending on light projection on the floor for most part of the performances’ segment, the ceremony also shined from some very creative concepts presented. The first presentation that led to the countdown to mark the commencement of the opening ceremony was a bit of a letdown when there is no connection between the 10-second timing display to the performers on the stage. Fortunately, things get better soon with brilliant presentation to display the history and the multicultural state of Brazil. However, I find that the performances’ segment was a bit too short and the parade of nations kicked in so fast.

Over 200 countries are participating in this games and this is the first time a team for the Refugee is created to compete in Olympics. Not to forget to compliment Brazil to have this ceremony as a platform to create awareness on climate change and global warming issues. Even the Olympic rings were presented from artificial trees and they are all green (of course) which also coincides with the main colour of Brazilian flag. As for the Olympic flame arrival and cauldron lighting section, it’s a bit underwhelmed because it was done like without much thought (my impression was ‘like that only?) and I also find the animated mechanism behind the floating cauldron a bit awkward eventhough it still looks beautiful. The fireworks display at the end from the stadium was also a bit plain.

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Rio de Janeiro did delivered a grand and fabulous opening ceremony and I’m quite amazed of how they can do this with small budget (it doesn’t look cheap at all). However, it could not match the greatness we have seen from London 2012 (lesser ‘wow’ but very meaningful and touching) and of course the Beijing 2008 (full of ‘wow’ and grand). This Rio 2016 opening ceremony still delivered some ‘wow’ factors but appeared less energetic and vibrant despite all the iconic and colourful Brazilian costumes and dances. So now the Rio 2016 games has officially begins and will continue till 21st August 2016. There will be over 2 weeks of intense and interesting competitions from various sports to watch, contested by the best of the athletes from across the world.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

My personal top 10 best English films in year 2014

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 4, 2015 by vincentloy

Awards season for the English films released in the previous year (2014) had concluded with the 87th Oscars held not long ago in late February. I have watched all the films released last year that I’m looking forward to. The total number of English films in 2014 that I have watched now stands at 50. That’s not a very massive figure, but it’s considered a lot compared to normal movie-goers. I can consider myself someone who loves and craze for movies. For me, they are not only a form of entertainment, but also a type of visually moving arts that move and capture our thoughts and feelings.

After a time of analysis and recalling, here are my personal top 10 best (or you can say, most favourite) English films in year 2014 and along with each, is my brief summary of that particular film:

1. The Theory of Everything

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A moving story on science, romance and commitment, accompanied with superb performances by the two leads in this Stephen Hawking’s biopic told from his divorced first wife, Jane’s perspective.

2. Birdman of The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance

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Not only incredible from its scenes that appeared to be in one continuous shot, Birdman marked an overwhelming comeback of a veteran actor to Hollywood. The film is masterful, and came with great cast, making it a deserved pick as Oscars’ Best Picture.

3. Whiplash

Watch Whiplash (2014) English Full Movie Online Free

Energetic, exhilarating, exciting, and astounding! What more can I say. I’m definitely in tempo with this one. Certainly enjoyed every way from the harsh yet rewarding relationship between a merciless music professor and a never-give-up drummer.

4. Interstellar

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An epic science-fiction masterpiece that not only impressed us with cutting-edge visuals and scientific happenings at the outer space, but also moved us with heartfelt touching story back on the polluted Earth from a father separated with his two kids. A grand production equipped with excellent acting and heart-stopping score.

5. The Imitation Game

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A very solid and beautifully produced film on biopic of Alan Turing, whom is considered as the Father of Computers. Captivating plot and mesmerizing acting made the film a must-see.

6. The Grand Budapest Hotel

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An interesting story between a head concierge and his lobby boy that made you follow closely on their adventure with a visually ornate environments that came real from the brilliant, creative and unique designs in its production, costume, make-up, hair-styling, etc.

7. Fury

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Not a big-scale or epic war film, but this movie managed to keep momentum going without pushing over the top or dragging things slowly with nothing. It focuses into only a single war tank with the members inside as great friends and right things came along despite the ‘only one survived’ ending.

8. Nightcrawler

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A new and interesting idea of a man goes out of law and morality in videotaping accidents or crime scenes on the first hand to earn cash. And the idea was put into a movie with excellent acting.

9. The Lego Movie

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The only one animated film in my top 10 list here, and it’s seriously snubbed in the Oscars. The Academy is so wrong. A story about a Lego minifigure prophesied to save their Lego universe from the villain, and it’s not just that. The ‘twist’ in the ending is surprisingly good and made it stands out among the rest. ‘Everything is awesome’!

10. Boyhood

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Couldn’t get myself engaged to the film, but I’m totally with everyone else on the huge admiration on the making of the film that took 12 years for a more realistic outcome to this coming-of-age film about the growth of a small kid to a young adult.

What’s your top ten? Share it in comments below.

Fun fact: 9 out of 10 movies listed here are nominated for at least a single category in the 87th Academy Awards (Oscars). Only ‘Fury’ didn’t make it, of which I find that the film is underrated. 8 of the 10 movies above also won at least a single Oscars. ‘The Lego Movie’ and ‘Nightcrawler’ did received nominations but did not win anything.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

My predictions for Hollywood awards season for 2014 films.

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 11, 2015 by vincentloy

There are about 10 different awards presentation to honour the best of Chinese films in Asia Pacific every year (from critics society, guilds or organizations, as well as the main ones like Asian Film Awards, Hong Kong Film Awards, and Golden Horse Awards). But that figure is no comparison to Hollywood awards season that has about 50 or more of such awards given to recognize the best of films in the previous year. The three major from those are no other than BAFTAs (British Academy Film Awards), Golden Globes and the prestigious Academy (Oscars).

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So, I’ll just pretend to be an expert in movie critics for a day and contribute my personal predictions to who will get nominated and win in few important categories in awards selection. This is the right time to do so before the three major awards mentioned earlier (Golden Globes to take place tonight, BAFTAs as usual on early February, and Academy on late February).

Best Film / Motion Picture :

Top 5 : Boyhood (70%), The Theory of Everything (50%), Selma (50%), The Imitation Game (40%), Birdman (40%)

Next five to make it to the list but with very little chance of winning: Whiplash, Nightcrawler, Gone Girl, Foxcatcher, The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Next five that may even get into the list: Interstellar, Unbroken, American Sniper, Wild, Into the Woods.

Will win : Boyhood.

My pick : The Theory of Everything.

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Best Director :

Top 5 : Richard Linklater – Boyhood (80%), Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu – Birdman (70%), Ava Duvernay – Selma (50%), Morten Tyldum – The Imitation Game (40%), David Fincher – Gone Girl (30%)

Will win : Richard Linklater (Boyhood).

My pick : Richard Linklater (Boyhood).

Richard Linklater at the premiere of "Boyhood," a Linklater film, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Best Leading Actor :

Top 5 : Michael Keaton – Birdman (70%), Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything (60%), Benedict Cumberbatch – The Imitation Game (50%), David Oyelowo – Selma (40%), Steve Carell – Foxcatcher (20%)

Wish to include in Jake Gyllenhaal – Nightcrawler (20%)

Will win : Michael Keaton (Birdman)

My pick : Eddie Redmayne (The Theory of Everything)

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Best Leading Actress :

Top 5 : Julianne Moore – Still Alice (80%), Reese Witherspoon – Wild (50%), Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl (50%), Felicity Jones – The Theory of Everything (40%), Jennifer Anniston – Cake (20%)

Wish to include in Amy Adams – Big Eyes (20%)

Will win : Julianne Moore (Still Alice)

My pick : Julianne Moore (Still Alice)

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Best Supporting Actor :

Top 5 : J.K. Simmons – Whiplash (90%), Ethan Hawke – Boyhood (40%), Edward Norton – Birdman (40%), Mark Ruffalo – Foxcatcher (30%), Robert Duvall – The Judge (20%)

Will win : J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)

Should win : J.K. Simmons (Whiplash)

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Best Supporting Actress :

Top 5 : Patricia Arquette – Boyhood (90%), Meryl Streep – Into the Woods (40%), Emma Stone – Birdman (40%), Laura Dern – Wild (30%), Keira Knightley – The Imitation Game (30%)

Will win : Patricia Arquette (Boyhood)

Should win : Patricia Arquette (Boyhood)

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Best Animated Film :

Top 3 : The Lego Movie, How To Train Your Dragon 2, Big Hero 6.

Will win : The Lego Movie.

Should win : The Lego Movie.

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That’s it. I didn’t watch all of the listed films above. Hence, the outcome above is from my research on various critics or polls online, as well as from my personal judgement particularly on the films that I did watched. Do you agree with my predictions above? I believe the result of those upcoming awards will be something like this unless the awards’ organizers wanted to give us a big surprise.

Best actor is a very tight race this time. Everyone able to be qualified into that category is very strong on their own. Now, mostly are saying Michael Keaton, but I think that Stephen Hawking is much harder to portray in ‘The Theory of Everything’. Eddie Redmayne nailed the role brilliantly and so I chose him. As for best actress, everyone is saying that Julianne Moore is long overdue for this award. I agreed. She is a great actress, and I believe this is the time for her, since she did amazingly in ‘Still Alice’ too. I think most are very sure that supporting actor and actress shall be given to J.K. Simmons and Patricia Arquette respectively. Both stay far ahead on their race. As for best director, I’m totally impressed with the idea of shooting the ‘Boyhood’ film in over 12 years for the more realistic outcome of that coming-of-age film. Hence, Richard Linklater deserved the recognition. Lastly, best animated film shall be no other than ‘The Lego Movie’, but ‘How To Train Your Dragon 2’ may be a dark horse. This is it. No comments on other smaller categories of the awards (screenplay, cinematography, editing, score, song, visual effects, sound effects, production design, etc).

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

TVB Star Awards Malaysia 2014’s Full Result and My Opinions.

Posted in Miscellaneous with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 23, 2014 by vincentloy

TVB Star Awards Malaysia 2014 (TVB馬來西亞星光薈萃頒獎典禮2014) was held successfully just now at Arena of Stars, Genting Highlands on 23rd November 2014 (Sunday) from 8pm to 10.30pm. This is the second year the awards with this new name (previously called Astro Wah Lai Toi Drama Awards, then My Astro On Demand Favourites Awards) being held in Malaysia to honour the best of TVB actors, actresses, series and programmes in the particular year. The results are based on the public voting by the Malaysians that accounted to 70% of final outcome while the remaining 30% is based from professional judges. Official website of the awards: http://www.tvbstarawards.com.my/2014/en. logo

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List of attending Hong Kong artistes: Charmaine Sheh, Ruco Chan, Kenneth Ma, Tavia Yeung, Linda Chung, Roger Kwok, Kate Tsui, Bosco Wong, Selena Li, Him Law, Nancy Wu, Sharon Chan, Benz Hui, Sammy Shum, Samantha Ko, Fred Cheng, Joyce Cheng, Mag Lam, Bob Lam, May Chan, Jinny Ng, Lai Zi San, Lau Kong, Law Lan, etc. Also to all surprise, the superstar, Andy Lau came to present the Lifetime Achievement Awards. If I knew earlier that he will come, I will not abandon my tickets. Since I voted daily to this awards, I won two tickets to the awards presentation but I couldn’t manage to go. Hence, I have sold my tickets and I think it’s better to cover the event by watching it on TV. So, without wasting any more time, hereby are the full result of the awards ceremony alongside with my personal opinions:

My Favorite Top 15 TVB Drama Characters

1. Bosco Wong (The Ultimate Addiction)

2. Nancy Wu (The Ultimate Addiction)

3. Kate Tsui (Tomorrow is Another Day)

4. Roger Kwok (Black Heart White Soul)

5. Sharon Chan (Line Walker)

6. Charmaine Sheh (Line Walker)

7. Benz Hui (Line Walker)

8. Michael Miu (Line Walker)

9. Raymond Lam (Line Walker)

10. Him Law (Tiger Cubs 2)

11. Tavia Yeung (Storm in a Cocoon)

12. Ruco Chan (Outbound Love)

13. Linda Chung (All That Bitter is Sweet)

14. Kenneth Ma (Ghost Dragon of Cold Mountain)

15. Selena Li (Ghost Dragon of Cold Mountain)

Comment: Very much agree to most in the list above. Very happy that Selena Li is finally being at least acknowledged after her many years in acting industry. She is not bad in Ghost Dragon Cold Mountain. The only one I find not really that deserving is Him Law. He won it just because of his huge fanbase in Malaysia, as his role is just an ordinary one. Would prefer Steven Ma from ‘Storm in a Cocoon’ to take over that place. Sad that Steven Ma is being left out again. He is great in that series. Also prefer Sharon Chan and Michael Miu’s slots to be replaced by Wong Cho Lam and Wayne Lai. There’s too many characters from ‘Line Walker’ winning.

My Favorite Most Improved Actress : Samantha Ko (Outbound Love/Line Walker/All That Bitter is Sweet).

Comment: Quite expected, but I prefer Lin Xia-wei to win this more. But anyway, Samantha Ko has many impressive characters this year, so it should be her. Happy for her too.

My Favorite Most Improved Actor : Sammy Shum (Line Walker/All That Bitter is Sweet).

Comment: Also expected, but I prefer Louis Cheung more in this category. Louis’ role especially in ‘Black Heart White Soul’ is more captivating that any roles that Sammy Shum taken this year. But people just love Sammy for being more smart and handsome. 

My Favorite TVB On Screen Couple : Ruco Chan and Aimee Chan (Outbound Love).

Comment: I definitely don’t like this outcome. I knew ‘Outbound Love’ is mostly shot in Malaysia and that Ruco has big popularity here, but Raymond and Charmaine’s on-screen chemistry in ‘Line Walker’ is undeniably the best of the year. Raymond and Charmaine are so fun and great as on-screen couple in ‘Line Walker’, much better than Ruco and Aimee in ‘Outbound Love’. 

My Favourite TVB Variety Programme : “Walk the Walk, Talk the Talk”.

Comment: Since this programme is very entertaining and mostly hilarious eventhough at some points I find it too nonsense and awkward, but in the end I had no reason to dislike this outcome.

My Favourite TVB Enrichment Programme : “Wellness on the Go 2”.

Comment: No comment on this category as I didn’t watch all the nominated programmes.

My Favourite TVB Host in Variety Programme : Nancy Sit & Wong Cho Lam (“Walk the Walk, Talk the Talk”).

Comment: Nancy Sit and Wong Cho Lam are both great and can host the show very well. So, it’s good that they won.

Most Rising TVB Star in Malaysia (new award) : Fred Cheng.

Comment: How come suddenly there is this award. Nobody is voting for this too. But no doubt, Fred Cheng is now very popular.

My Favorite TVB Drama Theme Song : 越難越愛 (Line Walker) Jinny Ng.

Comment: A very much predictable result. Nice and quite an addictive song. And wow…Jinny Ng can really do a very good live singing of the song just now. Whenever this song is playing, people will remember the ‘Line Walker’ series. Furthermore, this song is heavily promoted now in local Chinese radio stations.

My Favorite TVB Supporting Actress : Sharon Chan (Line Walker).

Comment: There isn’t any outstanding performances by any actress in supporting roles this year. I’m still fine with Sharon winning but I slightly prefer more for Elena Kong winning this. 

My Favorite TVB Supporting Actor : Benz Hui (Line Walker).

Comment: Everybody loves Benz Hui’s character as Brother Foon Hei in ‘Line Walker’ so much. So, it’s expected he will win. Agreed to this outcome too. A very exceptionally impressive performance by Benz. 

TVB Star Award Malaysia Lifetime Achievement Award (new award) : Law Lan & Lau Kong.

Comment: Also didn’t know the existence of this awards in Malaysia’s awards version. I thought this award is only available for Hong Kong only. Happy for Law Lan and Lau Kong, the two very professional veterans. Their contribution spanning at least several decades in television and also film industries is defining. Also I’m sure everyone is surprised to the max when Andy Lau is the special guest and presenter for this awards. Well, he is just returning to his wife’s home country. 

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My Favorite TVB Leading Actress : Charmaine Sheh (Line Walker).

Comment: I am very happy for this result. I love Charmaine Sheh. She is pretty and gorgeous. And her performance in ‘Line Walker’ is simply the best of the year. No question to that. Excited that she won this, becoming Malaysia’s TV Queen of the year. She also won Singapore’s TV Queen a month ago, and I believe her winning will continues to the coming TVB Anniversary Awards next month. The other top two finalists are Linda Chung (All That Is Bitter Is Sweet) and Kate Tsui (Tomorrow Is Another Day).

My Favorite TVB Leading Actor : Roger Kwok (Black Heart White Soul).

Comment: Also quite happy that Roger Kwok won it from his awesome performance in Black Heart White Soul as the main lead and also as the scheming villain. At least better than Ruco Chan winning this as I am afraid earlier that Ruco’s huge popularity in Malaysia may push him to this title despite that his role and acting is still not extremely well yet. But actually, I voted for Raymond Lam as he also contributed wonderfully in ‘Line Walker’. So, Ruco Chan (Outbound Love) and Raymond Lam (Line Walker) are the two other finalists.

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My Favorite TVB Series : Line Walker.

Comment: Quite predictable. This series is generating so much buzz, and it is very well received. For me, this is the best series of the year, and so I’m happy of it winning ‘My Favorite TVB Series’. A wonderfully crafted series that gives us so much suspense and acting performances beyond boundaries. The other two finalists are ‘Outbound Love’ and ‘Tomorrow Is Another Day’. Quite surprised that ‘Black Heart White Soul’ couldn’t even enter the top 3 despite it is another excellent drama this year.

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So what do you think of this awards’ results? Share your view. For me, I’m satisfied with most of the outcomes. Very happy for the result. The deserving wins. Great. I also particularly enjoyed the huge number of artistes attending the show to support it (also knowing that they will sure at least get an award at the night). And Andy Lau! Wow…came as a huge surprise and shock to everyone. On the other hand, I also like Benz Hui’s funny speeches when he is presenting awards and also on the segment when he is receiving supporting actor award. He is very entertaining.

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Overall, I just find that TVB hijacked the show and made it more Hong Kong feel. There is no Malaysian feel or style to the awards show. It’s all Hong Kong artistes performing and not Malaysians. The show should actually engages more to Malaysia. And besides that, the awards’ trophy looks ugly. Should be designed simple yet elegant. Well, that’s my general feedback to the show which is organized quite successfully except for the technical glitch disabling us to watch the segment when Kenneth Ma and Selena Li won two of the top 15 most favourite TV drama characters. Now, I’m looking forward to the upcoming TVB 47th Anniversary Awards 2014 scheduled to be held somewhere in the middle of next month. It’s nomination list should be out by this week.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)

2nd Summer Youth Olympic Games, Nanjing 2014 opened with a wonderful opening ceremony!

Posted in Explosive News and Results with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 17, 2014 by vincentloy

China never fails to disappoint the world in terms of delivering their opening or closing ceremonies for a particular global sporting event. Beijing 2008 Summer Olympic Games’ ceremonies stunned the world. Same goes to Guangzhou 2010 Asian Games two years later. And now, we witnessed another successful and wonderful opening ceremony,…this time for Nanjing 2014, the 2nd Summer Youth Olympic Games that will take place from 16th to 28th August 2014.

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The first (inaugural) Summer Youth Olympic Games was held in Singapore four years ago. This games organized by the International Olympic Committee, held once in every four years (similarly in Olympics’ tradition), is for athletes of age 14-18. The idea for this games is in response to growing global concern on childhood obesity and dropping participation of youth in sport activities. A youth version of the Olympic Games would be beneficial to help foster participations in the Olympic Games too. Singapore 2010. Then now, Nanjing 2014. And then Buenos Aires 2018.

Now, let’s get back to the opening ceremony of Nanjing 2014 which was held yesterday at the Nanjing Olympic Sports Center. It was watched not only by the over 60 000 people in the stadium, but also by millions of people across the globe. I’m glad that I could watch it online the next day (today). I must say that the ceremony is wonderful. I am very impressed. China delivered again. An important lesson to the West on how an opening or closing ceremony should be. I couldn’t resist from criticizing again the ceremonies that I have watched from London 2012 (Summer Olympic Games) and most recently Glasgow 2014 (Commonwealth Games). They are bad with lack of creativity or effort, not memorable, meaningless and only focus on singing. Time to learn from China (eventhough there are many other things you shouldn’t learn from China too).

The first half of the over two-hours long ceremony is dedicated to those formal stuff; singing of Olympic and China’s national anthem, athletes’ parade, oath-taking, speeches and official opening by China’s President Xi Jinping. Once the performances started, I’m thrilled despite the downpour during the ceremony that didn’t dampen the spirit of the performers and the audiences. It features a mix of China history, tradition and pop culture while not running away from the ‘youth’ theme for this games. The performances that involve amazing synchronization were done beautifully. Wonderful choreography and sequences. Eventhough delivered in a bit smaller scale or proportion compared to Beijing 2008 (should be since Olympic Games is a much bigger games), but still Nanjing 2014 offered us memorable show in its opening ceremony. The most striking segment would be the ‘aerobatics-in-the-air’. Breathtaking and creativity at its best.

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The visual effects are also stunning. Incredible light projections and technology helped to add extra dimensions to this opening ceremony. The only slight disappointment is that the lighting of the exterior and the surrounding of the stadium are not enough to pull us into the grand mood. I’m also very happy that the singing segment only took the minimum part of the show as it should be. The ceremony with the lighting of Olympic cauldron as usual. I’m quite surprised and disappointed by the very little amount of fireworks set off during the ceremony. I’m expecting a lot. China always delivered massive pyrotechnics display, but surprisingly not for Nanjing 2014. Not counting that, then the ceremony was near perfect. Fantastic, artistic, brilliant, and energetic. Looking forward to its closing ceremony to be held on 28th August 2014.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web)