The Oscars, Analysed, Part Five, Best Cinemtography


Next up on my list is the always fascinating category of Best Cinematography.

The Nominees:  Janusz Kaminski  ‘Lincoln’;  Claudio Miranda  ‘Life Of Pi’;  Robert Richardson  ‘Django Unchained’; Roger Deakins  ‘Skyfall’  and  Seamus McGravey  ‘Anna Karenina’.

Like with most categories this year, all 5 nominated works are great. But of course, snubs are abound, and no snub baffled more this year than the one ‘The Master’ got in this category. Filmed in 65mm by Romanian Cinematographer Mahai Malaimaire Jr., the first film since Hamlet (1996) to use 65mm. The film looked gorgeous on the screen, with its lavish, wide landscapes and perfect period details (The film has been snubbed in the Art-Direction category, strangely as well).

Other visually masterful films this year include ‘Zero Dark Thirty’, ‘Beasts Of The Southern Wild’, ‘Prometheus’ and ‘Cloud Atlas’, who all could’ve been nominated. But the final 5 provide healthy competition, still.


Who should win: Claudio Miranda  ‘Life Of Pi’. Last year, Robert Richrdson (who’s nominated this year) won deservedly for “Hugo”.  I think this year another 3D film, the best of them all, deserves to win for best Cinematography. The film was visual pleasure, and the way it utilized colours, the medium of water and the lighting used to illuminate the water tank that was used in the movie is a complete work of art. The images from this film are ridiculously beautiful. Having said that, for sentimental reasons, I wouldn’t mind seeing Roger Deakins take it for ‘Skyfall’, after all, he is due an Oscar (He should’ve won in 2010 for ‘True Grit’).

life of pi

Who will win: I’m unsure about this, I think the Oscars gave it a 3D film last year, so are they open to giving it to another one this year? I think they might look favourably over films like ‘Skyfall’ and ‘Lincoln’ here, or even ‘Django Unchained’, and I wouldn’t be surprised if ‘Skyfall’ and ‘Lincoln’ did win, but Miranda’s work for ‘Life Of Pi’ is good it’s hard to ignore. So ‘Life Of Pi’ it is.

Yazen Al Samen

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