Unless it is the tireless Woody Allen, not many world-renowned, well-respected, and most importantly Oscar affiliated directors, are able to pop out a movie every year. Most wait and develop and film for about two to three years on average before taking their feet on that prestigious carpet once again. So just when legend Quentin Tarantino decided this was his lucky year, Paul Thomas Anderson, Peter Jackson, Kathryn Bigelow, Tom Hooper, and more just felt in their bones as well -- that 2013 was going to give them that longing prize. Bad timing.
For the audience though, it's spectacular timing. Starting this month, we will either be spoiled with groundbreaking film after film from name after name or suffer from anxiety trying to pick between all of them. Come February though, the feeling of movie ecstasy will be diluted by the scary big gold man -- unless of course you have zero appreciation for the Oscars. It can be argued that the awards season is superficial and does not properly represent the best in film, but I know that I can't help but feel gypped when my favorite doesn't get the honor it deserves. For the hardworking, Oscar-kissed directors of 2012, one cannot help think that this could be the unluckiest Oscar season yet.
Quentin Tarantino, somebody we perceive as a cinematic legend has only ever won one Oscar: Best Original Screenplay for his cult masterpiece Pulp Fiction. Then, the movie he sweeps the entire award show with has to be the one that exceeds all limits of controversy he has not yet passed with the first film to focus and examine what Tarantino believes to be one of America's greatest shame: slavery. Unfortunately, the year that Tarantino decided to push those last remaining boundaries is the year that a movie about bin Laden's killing and a biopic of Abraham Lincoln also decided to get in the race.
The follow up to Academy Award-winning director Kathryn Bigelow and writer Mark Boal's suspenseful thrilling war drama The Hurt Locker is a film that details the most talked about, current American political episode -- the assassination of Osama bin Laden. The talented duo break down the most exciting and notorious manhunt of all time with access to some of the White House's top secret unpublished information, and with the face of 2012 Oscar fave, Jessica Chastain to tell it.
Also feeling patriotic is Steven Spielberg, releasing his arguably most anticipated film since Schindler's List, Lincoln, starring the master of character acting himself, Daniel Day Lewis. I can guarantee you that Spielberg will have more success giving the Academy and the American public audience schmaltz about America's arguably greatest president than schmaltz about a horse.
Lewis' last win at the Oscars was for There Will Be Blood, directed by the next prolific director to join this year's Oscar fun with The Master. Paul Thomas Anderson has left no room for error in his latest tour de force, which focuses on the controversial, extremely intriguing and historically significant subject of Scientology. The film was on 65mm to recreate the feel of 1950s cinema and also stars some of Hollywood's greatest actors -- Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams -- and marks the return of the talented and acclaimed Joaquin Pheonix. If that isn't enough reason to compete for gold, it's also getting four stars everywhere.
Tom Hooper, who is hot off his Academy sweep with The King's Speech from only two years ago is similarly to Bigelow, taking a bold step with his elaborate follow-up, the first feature length adaptation of the most haunting musical of all time, Les Miserables. Shouldn't be too emotional. Another master of Academy acclaimed period pieces is Joe Wright, best known for Atonement and Pride and Prejudice. Just when he thought he was taking an interesting career turn with his lauded action film Hanna, he goes back to his métier with Anna Karenina, so opportunely for the 2012 race.
Of course we cannot forget about The Hobbit, due out this December. The die-hard fans of Academy Award-winning Peter Jackson, J.R.R. Tolkein's epic tales, and of Jackson's perfected Lord of the Ring series will surely account for at least part of the large Academy. It wouldn't shock me if The Hobbit took literally everything on the night of February 24.
The most unheard of flick to join this year's list is Cloud Atlas, a film that received a 10-minute standing ovation at the Toronto International Film Festival, is based off a groundbreaking bestseller, and revolves around the theme "Everyone's lives are connected and affected by each other." So pretty light. It's directed by the Wachoski siblings (formerly known as the Wachoski brothers), who gave us The Matrix and the director of Run Lola Run, and has what defines the term "stellar cast." Since, the five-minute trailer of the film went viral immediately. It's likely the excitement will travel through the esteemed Academy as well.
So, after years untouched by anybody who possesses anything close to the level of talent these film legends have, comes an unplanned fight to the death. Let's not forget films from less Academy-experienced directors like Silver Linings Playbook, Argo and Cloud Atlas. The end result will be a highly enjoyable few months for movie-watchers but also a night of disappointment for some gifted people. Or maybe everyone can share and be happy? Anne Hathaway could take Best Actress, Daniel Day Lewis wins Best Actor, Anna Karenina takes Best Supporting Actor for Jude Law, Tarantino could take Best Original Screenplay, Silver Linings Playbook wins Best Adapted Screenplay, Amy Adams wins Best Supporting Actress, Kathryn Bigelow wins Best Director, Cloud Atlas wins for Special Effects and The Hobbit takes the title prize. Stranger things have happened at the Oscars.