Friday, December 12, 2014

A Look at the 79 Candidates for the Best Original Song Category

Left to right: Mark Ruffalo and Keira Knightley in Begin Again
As stated a few weeks ago, I have been long overdue to talk about the Best Original Song category. With the Golden Globe nominations recently released, it was only time until the discussion would turn to one of Oscars' least predictable categories. Today marks the release of the 79 titles that will be eligible for the award. While they do not include the name of the artists, I will do my best to decipher which ones are worth noting and what exactly we should make of them all. More after the jump.

Here are the nominations. The song title precedes the film.

"It's On Again" - The Amazing Spider-Man 2
"Opportunity" - Annie
"Lost Stars" - Begin Again
"Grateful" - Beyond the Lights
"Big Eyes" - Big Eyes
"Immortals" - Big Hero 6
"The Apology Song" - The Book of Life
"I Love You Too Much" - The Book of Life
"The Boxtrolls Song" - The Boxtrolls
"Quattro Sabatino" - The Boxtrolls
"Ryan's Song" - Boyhood
"Split The Difference"- Boyhood
"No Fate Awaits Me" - The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them
"Brave Souls" - Dolphin Tale 2
"You Got Me"- Dolphin Tale 2
"All Our Endless Love" - Endless Love
"Let Me In" - The Fault in Our Stars
"Not About Angels" - The Fault in Our Stars
"Until The End" - Garnet's Gold
"It Just Takes A Moment" - Girl on a Bicycle
"Last Stop Paris" - Girl on a Bicycle
"Ordinary Human" - The Giver
"I'm Not Gonna Miss You" - Glen Campbell...I'll Be Me
"Find A Way" - The Good Lie
"Color The World" - The Hero of Color City
"The Last Goodbye" - The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
"Chariots"  - The Hornet's Nest
"Follow Me" - The Hornet's Nest
"Something To Shoot For" - Hot Guys with Guns
"For The Dancing And The Dreaming" - How to Train Your Dragon 2
"Afreen" - The Hundred-Foot Journey
"Yellow Flicker Beat" - The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1
"Heart Like Yours" - If I Stay
"I Never Wanted To Go" - If I Stay
"Mind" - If I Stay
"Everything Is Awesome" - The Lego Movie
"Call Me When You Find Yourself" - Life Inside Out
"Coming Back To You" - Life of an Actress The Musical
"The Life Of An Actress" - Life of an Actress The Musical
"Sister Rust" - Lucy
"You Fooled Me" - Merchants of Doubt
"Million Dollar Dream" - Million Dollar Arm
"Spreading The Word/Makhna" - Million Dollar Arm
"We Could Be Kings" - Million Dollar Arm
"A Million Ways To Die" - A Million Ways to Die in the West
"Way Back When" - Mr. Peabody & Sherman
"America For Me" - A Most Violent Year
"I'll Get You What You Want (Cockatoo In Malibu)" - Muppets Most Wanted
"Something So Right" - Muppets Most Wanted
"We're Doing A Sequel" - Muppets Most Wanted
"Mercy Is" - Noah
"Seeds" - Occupy the Farm
"Grant My Freedom" - The One I Wrote for You
"The One I Wrote For You" - The One I Wrote for You
"Hal" - Only Lovers Left Alive
"Shine" - Paddington
"Still I Fly" - Planes: Fire & Rescue
"Batucada Familia" - Rio 2
"Beautiful Creatures" - Rio 2
"Poisonous Love" - Rio 2
"What Is Love" - Rio 2
"Over Your Shoulder" - Rudderless
"Sing Along" - Rudderless
"Stay With You" - Rudderless
"Everyone Hides" - St. Vincent
"Why Why Why" - St. Vincent
"Glory" - Selma
"The Morning" - A Small Section of the World
"Special" - Special
"Gimme Some" - #Stuck
"The Only Thing" - Third Person
"Battle Cry" - Transformers: Age of Extinction
"Miracles" - Unbroken
"Summer Nights" - Under the Electric Sky
"We Will Not Go" - Virunga
"Heavenly Father" - Wish I Was Here
"So Now What" - Wish I Was Here
"Long Braid" - Work Weather Wife
"Moon" - Work Weather Wife

Before I continue, I want to state upfront that I haven't heard most of these songs. However, here's a brief rundown of the ones that I have.

While I had a conflicting opinion on The Boxtrolls, I do think that "The Boxtrolls Song" is actually quite enjoyable from a kitschy standpoint. It has an old time feel, probably due to the inspired collaboration by Mark Orton and Eric Idle. Even then, I don't think that it is necessarily a front runner. This isn't necessarily because the film failed to capture attention, but because it is a little too novelty and doesn't work outside of a narrative context. True, Best Original Song nominees before have had a narrative-driven song before, but I just don't think that The Boxtrolls is the film to break this.

I honestly don't want this year to become just like 2011. For anyone that remembers, it was an uninspired race between Rio and The Muppets. That was it. Two song nominees. It was frustrating, especially since one was clearly more memorable and enjoyable than the other. With both of them releasing their first sequel this year, there's a bigger chance that they can achieve a second go around, though I'd like to think that there's more going on this year than that. I also don't want The Lego Movie to make the cut because I do feel like "Everything is Awesome" is a rather awful song.

I want to maintain my love for Big Eyes. While Lana Del Rey only has one potential nomination out of this list, I do think that the Golden Globe nomination does help its chances. I don't know how well it will do otherwise, but I just want Lana Del Rey to get nominated at some point in her career. The Great Gatsby's "Young and Beautiful" would have been a great starting point.

I don't know the song from Unbroken, but I feel like that one will be pushed because of the film's potential reputation, even though it is greatly shrinking with each and every week. Among the others, I think that Begin Again's "Lost Stars" is one to look out for. While the film isn't that good, the song has a kitschy and enjoyable vibe. Also, it is from the creator of Once, who won in this category years ago. Also, The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 had a pretty good song, though I feel like it is too much of a radio hit to actually bit anything but. While Lorde has blown up on the scene in the past year, I don't know that her song has staying power for the Oscars. Also randomly, I liked Lucy's "Sister Rust." It is a strange song that I doubt will get anywhere, but it is quite enjoyable.

I apologize for the brief overview. It is hard to analyze these songs. However, it is great to see the final list on here. Now to see how the race will go.

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