The 84th Academy Awards is almost here! Leading up to the event, we’re going to put all the hours we spent watching these films to good use by giving our thoughts on all the categories, big and small. We may not be experts on everything, but I daresay that’s never stopped anyone from blogging before. On the (very remote chance) you disagree with us or the (much more likely chance) you want to applaud our picks, please chime in below.


The nominees are:

  • Albert Nobbs, Martial Corneville, Lynn Johnston, and Matthew W. Mungle
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, Nick Dudman, Amanda Knight and Lisa Tomblin
  • The Iron Lady, Mark Coulier and J. Roy Helland


The Iron Lady


I like the mix here for Best Makeup. You’ve got some classic fantasy work, some classic period-spanning and aging work, and some classic identity-altering work. I have no qualms with any. I know Glenn Close doesn’t really look like a man in Albert Nobbs but she does look potentially masculine, which I think is a better effect than being caked under layers of makeup. Janet McTeer was a bit more convincing, particularly with that haircut.

The Iron Lady is my winner. It’s a good physical transformation, turning Meryl Streep into a recognizable figure without making the effect too eerie, which is what I think sank J Edgar in this category. She’s Margaret Thatcher-ish and Streep-ish, but you don’t find yourself thinking “That’s Meryl Streep dressed up as Thatcher and in weird old age makeup.” Speaking of which, the aging makeup is quite good. Referring back to J Edgar again, I liked the aging work on Leonardo DiCaprio but Armie Hammer and Naomi Watts ended up with weird, stiff faces, particularly around their mouths. This doesn’t happen in The Iron Lady. Finally, hairstyling is within the purview of this category and the film does a nice job of marking the passage of time by tweaking Thatcher’s hairstyle. I understand they had quite a wig collection on this film!


Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2


I don’t really have any criticisms here.  I think the people behind Albert Nobbs did a good job making Close and McTeer believable as men while not obscuring the fact that they were Glenn Close and Janet McTeer.  A whole lot of The Iron Lady focuses (inexplicably) on an old Margaret Thatcher.  The makeup team did a great job keep the audience in the moment by making Meryl Streep actually look like an elderly Margaret Thatcher.

But I’ll give the hardware to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 2.  The team obviously did so much more, but I think making Ralph Fiennes virtually unrecognizable was really cool and extremely impressive.