Our next category is Best Cinematography.
5th Most Likely To Win: Silence
Rodrigo Prieto is the only previous nominee in this category, which he earned for Brokeback Mountain. He has a pretty impressive resumé, and maybe one day he’ll win an Oscar.
But Silence is the only non-Best Picture nominee in the category. The last non-Best Picture nominee to win in this category was Pan’s Labyrinth, and that was a decade ago. Plus, this is the only nomination that the film earned. I have to wonder how many Oscar voters have even seen it.
4th Most Likely To Win: Moonlight
This movie has a lot of support, but it seems to be losing some of its buzz. James Laxton does an amazing job with how he shoots this movie, showing us the world from Chiron’s eyes. But I don’t feel that it has enough support to win.
The academy usually likes big and bold choices in their cinematography winners, and I can’t help but feel that this only got nominated to show their support for the film.
3rd Most Likely To Win: Arrival
With this nomination, Bradford Young becomes the first black cinematographer to be nominated by the Academy. A great step forward for sure, and there is a small possibility that he pulls off a shocking upset win.
But I don’t think that’s gonna happen simply because the cinematography in this film is too subtle compared to most big space movies. It does what it’s supposed to do, and it’s fine cinematography. But the composition of the frame doesn’t call attention to itself like some of the other nominees.
2nd Most Likely To Win: Lion
After several years of strong work, Greg Frasier earns his first nomination. I’m not gonna lie, when I first put this article together I had this film in last place. But after Frasier’s shocking win at ASC, he’s starting to look like a real contender.
But I don’t think that it will win. Don’t get me wrong, it’s definitely very good work. But the film in question seems too low-key. Plus, there’s a formidable threat waiting in the wings…
AND MY PREDICTED WINNER IS;
This is Linus Sandgren’s first nomination. He’s a relatively new cinematographer, with his most notable work prior to this being American Hustle. He sure knows how to pick those big Oscar movies.
This film includes both singular beautiful images and incredible tracking shots, and that one-two punch simply cannot be ignored. Especially when the film in question is an Oscar juggernaut. Sure, it lost at ASC, but given the fact that Lion lost at BAFTA even though they clearly loved the movie, I think La La Land is a pretty safe bet.