2015 Academy Award Winners on Blu-ray - AVS | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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Official AVS Blu-ray Disc Reviews > 2015 Academy Award Winners on Blu-ray
Scott Wilkinson's Avatar Scott Wilkinson 07:02 PM Yesterday


Many of the 2015 Oscar-winning movies are available on Blu-ray; check out our reviews before you buy.

Last night, the 2015 Academy Awards were handed out at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, CA. As usual, it was a star-studded, glitzy affair with amazing set design, though I was not impressed with host Neil Patrick Harris, who tried to do wry, dry humor that fell pretty flat in my opinion. On the other hand, there aren't many in Hollywood who would be willing to come onstage wearing nothing but tighty whities, socks, and shoes in a spoof of Birdman.

As you might expect, the opening production number was completely self-aggrandizing—movies are great, rah, rah, rah!—except when Jack Black interrupted to patter about how movies these days are all sequels, prequels, superheroes, and nothing really new, a sentiment shared by many moviegoers. That may be true in large part, though interestingly, many of the 2015 nominees do not follow that pattern. And I have no problem with the Academy Awards show tooting its industry's own horn—after all, movies are an important part of our culture and the reason many AVS members have a home theater in the first place.

Overall, I was disappointed in the audio mix—most of the lead vocals in the musical numbers were mixed too low. My favorite performance was Lady Gaga singing excerpts from The Sound of Music. She was channeling Julie Andrews perfectly with a gorgeous voice, demonstrating that she has an incredible stylistic range, and that mix was better than most of the others. Also, I have to give props to the live orchestra, which was playing in a studio at Capitol Records a few blocks away—their performance was wonderful, and the technology to get their sound over to the Dolby Theatre and coordinated with the performers on stage is amazing.

The award results were a bit surprising—many people thought that American Sniper and Boyhood would win big, but they garnered only one Oscar each (Best Sound Editing for American Sniper, Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Boyhood). Birdman flew away with four big wins, while The Grand Budapest Hotel booked four of its own, and Whiplash drummed up three.

Thanks to ever-shrinking release windows, many of the winning movies are now available on Blu-ray. Even better, AVS Forum's own Ralph Potts has reviewed them already—in fact, the only ones he hasn't posted are those that aren't yet released. That guy is a movie-reviewing machine!

If you haven't seen some of the winning movies, I recommend you check out Ralph's reviews first. Not only does he discuss the movie itself, but he also talks about the audio and video quality of the Blu-ray, which lets you know if it's worth buying or only renting—or perhaps bypassing it altogether and go with streaming.

Here are the 2015 Oscar-winning movies that Ralph has reviewed on Blu-ray:

Birdman



This unusual movie claimed many of the most important Oscars, including Best Picture, Cinematography, Directing, and Writing (Original Screenplay).

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The Grand Budapest Hotel



A wonderfully quirky movie, this one garnered Oscars for Best Costume Design, Makeup and Hairstyling, Music (Original Score), and Production Design.

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Whiplash



This intense movie about an ambitious drum student and his sadistic teacher won Oscars for Best Supporting Actor, Film Editing, and Sound Mixing.

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The Theory of Everything



Eddie Redmayne scored the Oscar for Best Actor in a Lead Role for his incredible portrayal of Stephen Hawking in this amazing true story.

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Boyhood



Twelve years in the making, this bold moviemaking experiment took the Oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

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Big Hero 6




This heartwarming tale of an inflatable robot designed to be a health assistant snagged the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film.

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chirpie's Avatar chirpie 08:29 PM Yesterday
For once, I had no idea what to expect for winners. Not sure I buy the 'Sniper was snubbed' line, as Eastwood has won in the past and those past films were better.

A shout out for the animated film nominee, The Tale of Princess Kaguya, which had a great english dub no less if you can't do subtitles. (Not bad, James Caan. ^_^) One of my favorites of last year. It'll be slow for some people, but my family appreciated it immensely. Not a happy movie by any means, but it was a wonderful experience to have with my seven year old daughter who got to talk about the much more complex emotions on display in the film. (And the much more realistic spin on being a princess...)
NorthSky's Avatar NorthSky 08:38 PM Yesterday
Comedies won big time this year; Birdman & Budapest. ...And that is perfect by me.
...And Big Hero 6.

* My personal favorite part of the overall entire ensemble of everything: The Audio Soundtrack on Birdman. ...The Drummer.
...High-end well recorded quality music with panache.
mark haflich's Avatar mark haflich 09:24 PM Yesterday
Nice reporting Scott. What display did you watch it on? At the end there was a credit for the digital projectors used during the awards, nothing I recognized though. do you know anything about that. Amazing dress worn by Lopez showing an amazing body, actually more revealing than the underwear only outfit worn by the host.
wuther's Avatar wuther 09:29 PM Yesterday
When will CitizenFour be on BD? Eastwood loved it when CitizenFour was announced the winner.
Orbitron's Avatar Orbitron 09:53 PM Yesterday
A poor audio mix, and from the Dolby Theatre. I set my pre pro to 5.1 Mono and turned on closed captioning.
Best moment - Julie Andrews walking out.
Dave Vaughn's Avatar Dave Vaughn 11:45 PM Yesterday
I agree about the audio mix...had to turn my pre/pro up to -4 in order to have clear voices, which is abut 16 "clicks" higher than I normally watch. Also, the acoustics were horrible...lots of echo.

The show itself was quite boring with only a couple of one liners that made me laugh ("wearing that dress takes balls" was the line of the night IMO). Overall it was much too long and the speeches were mostly horrible with the exception of the kid who won best adapted screenplay (about suicide...straight from the heart), the best actor winner, and Simmons (how can you not love his advice to call your parents!).
thehun's Avatar thehun 03:15 AM Today
Wow worst Oscars ever mostly due to that untalented Neil Patrick Harris, the guy just sucks. Luckily it was a recording so I could FF most of the boring stuff.
Definitely wanna see the Imitation Game, and The Theory of Everything.
6athome's Avatar 6athome 04:50 AM Today
I stopped watching the A hole Awards! American Sniper should have won best picture,best Actor and Director!Money talks and bull should! People spoke by sitting in the seats to watch the movie! Maybe the black actors are right in that the academy awards are prejudice!
JWhip's Avatar JWhip 04:59 AM Today
Just because one film has a bigger box office doesn't mean it is the better film. Sorry.
BNestico's Avatar BNestico 05:14 AM Today
I didn't think NPH was too bad. Better than Anne Hathaway and James Franco. Lady Gaga knocked my socks off though, leaps and bounds better than any performance of the night.
bargervais's Avatar bargervais 05:34 AM Today
I can't believe Birdman won best picture I would have thought American Snipper, The Imitation Game and Grand Budapest were way better. Maybe they voted Birdman best picture I thought it was the worst picture of the bunch nominated. Bizarre... yes... annoying drum beet.... yes... wanted to watch something else 15 min into the movie....yes... seeing Michael Keaton in tidy whites ....yes.... I could go on.
Mattopotamus's Avatar Mattopotamus 06:13 AM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by thehun View Post
Wow worst Oscars ever mostly due to that untalented Neil Patrick Harris, the guy just sucks. Luckily it was a recording so I could FF most of the boring stuff.
Definitely wanna see the Imitation Game, and The Theory of Everything.
you sir are in the minority. I love that dude!
ozar's Avatar ozar 06:23 AM Today
Thanks for posting this, Scott!

I stopped watching the Academy Awards presentation on TV about 12 years ago because so many participants were using them as their political platform, but I am always eager to hear who won in each category, and this year was no different. I have most of the winning films on hand in blu-ray format already and the others will be arriving soon, so I'm eager to see them all and to form my own opinions about each of them.


EDIT: just wanted to add that I always read Ralph's reviews right here on avsforum.com before buying my blu-ray movies...
Ralph Potts's Avatar Ralph Potts 06:33 AM Today
Greetings,

Thanks for putting this article together Scott!

As for the event and outcome, I didn't have any real complaints about the show itself. I happen to like Neal Patrick Harris and thought he did a decent job as MC. I enjoyed the musical performances but would agree that the sound mix during them could have been better.

Having seen all but Selma and Imitation Game, I honestly didn't feel that any one of those that I saw was a runaway for Best Picture. I will say that Birdman wouldn't have been my pick though. I liked it but there were better among the bunch. I was happy to see Big Hero 6, Grand Budapest Hotel and Whiplash take home honors. I was equally surprised that American Sniper only took home one statue (sound editing).

I think that everyone has to remember that the members of the Academy that vote on these selections aren't simply comprised of a three person committee but are made up of a voting body. Here is a brief overview: Oscars Voting

I agree that it can be frustrating as often times we find ourselves at odds with some of the final outcomes.

I will say that I believe that they got Best Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and several others right.


Regards,
ozar's Avatar ozar 06:46 AM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by BNestico View Post
Lady Gaga knocked my socks off though, leaps and bounds better than any performance of the night.
Glad to hear she put on a great show! I've never purchased any of her stuff, but agree she's quite talented.
Jet Jockey's Avatar Jet Jockey 07:33 AM Today
Surprise of the night for sure and she blew me away was Lady Gaga. I can't believe how good her performance was and I never thought she could sing that well. I believe Ms. Andrews was also blown away and genuinely impressed.

I don't understand some of the animosity of some people when "their" movie doesn't win the Oscar. Correct me if I am wrong, but the people that are entitled to vote for the Oscars are the pros from within the movie industry's community (from all over the world) and as such I would think are better placed as professionals who really know and understand the difficulties of the business and how much blood, sweat and tears go into making such a huge project work. So I have some faith in them when they chose the winners.


Some go on a blame "Liberal Hollywood" for "their" movie losing out! Give me a break! Just because Clint Eastwood's American Sniper didn't win "best actor" or" best movie" doesn't mean it was snubbed by Hollywood.

Let us be honest here, American Sniper was a good movie but not a great movie. I, along with many other Eastwood fans was at the cinema in line on the first day of its release and really enjoyed it but came out thinking it was a sad story of a professional soldier which obviously had bigger issues when he returned home after his 4 tours in Iraq.

IMHO some of Clint Eastwood's past works were far superior; Million Dollar Baby, Letters from Iwo Jima, and Flags of Our Fathers to name a few... American Sniper does not cut it in that group.

This said I thought Bradley Cooper's acting in the movie was excellent and probably worthy of the Oscar but then I also thought Benedict Cumberbatch of "The Imitation Game" deserved it too and neither won!
pittsoccer33's Avatar pittsoccer33 08:14 AM Today
I was really pulling for Michael Keaton. Pittsburghers are really proud of him - he went to Hollywood, starred in a box office recording smashing movie as well as some lesser hits, but never seemed to get caught up in being part of that fake world. His Golden Globes speech said it all.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-09bzjJ7Ys


RLBURNSIDE's Avatar RLBURNSIDE 08:18 AM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by wuther View Post
When will CitizenFour be on BD? Eastwood loved it when CitizenFour was announced the winner.
I'll be watching it tonight, I'm nearly done catching up on all the Oscar nominees. I didn't watch the Oscars themselves, I wonder about Eastwood's reaction now.

American Sniper hardly has the same leanings as Citizenfour. I would guess that fans of one wouldn't likely be fans of the other.

IMO Interstellar was the best movie of 2014. Quite possibly one of the best sci-fi movies of all time. Definitely top 5. It had everything: stunning scope, bold vision, drama, emotion, great science, great acting.

I thought Birdman was self-congratulatory, Hollywood navel gazing drivel. I'm not surprised it won though. It wasn't particularly deep or challenging in any way, the acting was good but it was just such a pointless, masturbatory experience (and not in a good way).
RLBURNSIDE's Avatar RLBURNSIDE 08:48 AM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by ozar View Post
I stopped watching the Academy Awards presentation on TV about 12 years ago because so many participants were using them as their political platform, but I am always eager to hear who won in each category, and this year was no different.
Many Hollywood films are not-at-all subtle political platforms and quite obviously propaganda. Usually pro-war. But we excuse that because we find it entertaining. I believe all you're saying is that you don't want to be exposed to entertainer's views that differ from yours, even though you'll watch their movies. That's fine, but I personally prefer to keep my head out of the sand (and I abhor much of the world view Hollywood promotes year-in, year-out. There is plenty of ugliness in Hollywood and in its movies). I'd rather know about a director's stance on important issues when I give him/her my money, and if I have to plug my nose or merely download a movie then so be it. But ignorance is not bliss.
LmLewis's Avatar LmLewis 09:37 AM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by thehun View Post
Wow worst Oscars ever mostly due to that untalented Neil Patrick Harris, the guy just sucks. Luckily it was a recording so I could FF most of the boring stuff.
Definitely wanna see the Imitation Game, and The Theory of Everything.
Neil Patrick Harris had nothing to do with the poor ratings, people decided to not tune in long before Sunday. People are tired of watching a bunch of Hollywood type patting each other on the back and telling each other how wonderful they are all are, because they are not all wonderful.
bargervais's Avatar bargervais 10:47 AM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post
Greetings,

Thanks for putting this article together Scott!

As for the event and outcome, I didn't have any real complaints about the show itself. I happen to like Neal Patrick Harris and thought he did a decent job as MC. I enjoyed the musical performances but would agree that the sound mix during them could have been better.

Having seen all but Selma and Imitation Game, I honestly didn't feel that any one of those that I saw was a runaway for Best Picture. I will say that Birdman wouldn't have been my pick though. I liked it but there were better among the bunch. I was happy to see Big Hero 6, Grand Budapest Hotel and Whiplash take home honors. I was equally surprised that American Sniper only took home one statue (sound editing).

I think that everyone has to remember that the members of the Academy that vote on these selections aren't simply comprised of a three person committee but are made up of a voting body. Here is a brief overview: Oscars Voting

I agree that it can be frustrating as often times we find ourselves at odds with some of the final outcomes.

I will say that I believe that they got Best Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and several others right.


Regards,
Ralph I think you would enjoy The Imitation Game hope you get a chance to give us your review of it. I wasn't going to see it, because the cover picture didn't spark my interest but after seeing it I highly recommended it to everyone of my friends and family, you have to see this film I wasn't disappointed.
I just couldn't get into Birdman... Hollyweird... I can't believe it won out over the other nominations.
bargervais's Avatar bargervais 10:53 AM Today
FINAL BALLOTING PROCESS
Finals voting is also conducted via online and paper ballots.

During finals, all Oscar categories are on the ballot for voting members.

After final ballots are tabulated, only two partners of PricewaterhouseCoopers know the results until the famous envelopes are opened onstage during the Oscars telecast
Why was Michael Keaton and his gang sitting in the front row. Very curious to me
Ralph Potts's Avatar Ralph Potts 11:00 AM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by bargervais View Post
Ralph I think you would enjoy The Imitation Game hope you get a chance to give us your review of it. I wasn't going to see it, because the cover picture didn't spark my interest but after seeing it I highly recommended it to everyone of my friends and family, you have to see this film I wasn't disappointed.
I just couldn't get into Birdman... Hollyweird... I can't believe it won out over the other nominations.
Greetings,

I haven't received the press announcement for its home video release yet but do plan on covering it. I am looking forward to the opportunity...


Regards,
mark haflich's Avatar mark haflich 01:16 PM Today
Hey Ralph. Long time. According to several publications and Amazon, its release date is scheduled for March 31.
Ralph Potts's Avatar Ralph Potts 01:22 PM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by mark haflich View Post
Hey Ralph. Long time. According to several publications and Amazon, its release date is scheduled for March 31.
Greetings,

Hey Mark, good to hear from you.

Yes, I am aware however until I hear from the studios's press handler for the home video release I can't request for coverage. I will try and see who is handling it.

Thanks for your post and don't be a stranger.


Regards,
Cal1981's Avatar Cal1981 01:22 PM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Wilkinson View Post

Overall, I was disappointed in the audio mix—most of the lead vocals in the musical numbers were mixed too low. My favorite performance was Lady Gaga singing excerpts from The Sound of Music. She was channeling Julie Andrews perfectly with a gorgeous voice, demonstrating that she has an incredible stylistic range, and that mix was better than most of the others. Also, I have to give props to the live orchestra, which was playing in a studio at Capitol Records a few blocks away—their performance was wonderful, and the technology to get their sound over to the Dolby Theatre and coordinated with the performers on stage is amazing.
Gaga was the absolute highlight of the show. When she opened with Sound of Music in a very clean low soprano, everyone stood up and took notice. Beneath all of the showy costumes and quirky/kinky stage presentions, Gaga/Stephanie Germanotta has one hell of a great voice. She was early admitted to NYU's Tisch School of the Arts when she was 17 and while she didn't finish and get a degree, clearly she was a major talent. I was never much for the bigger than life Gaga persona but over the last year or so, she has transitioned into more mainstream projects. Her duet show with the still great Tony Bennett last year was outstanding and I've heard her sing on Howard Stern accompanying herself on the piano only and she sounded great. I suspect that her Oscars performance will lead to more major solo and joint projects with other great singers (maybe Harry Connick Jr. and/or Michael Buble for example) and hopefully we'll get to see them on TV.
Briguy65's Avatar Briguy65 01:40 PM Today
Quote:
Originally Posted by RLBURNSIDE View Post
Many Hollywood films are not-at-all subtle political platforms and quite obviously propaganda. Usually pro-war. But we excuse that because we find it entertaining. I believe all you're saying is that you don't want to be exposed to entertainer's views that differ from yours, even though you'll watch their movies. That's fine, but I personally prefer to keep my head out of the sand (and I abhor much of the world view Hollywood promotes year-in, year-out. There is plenty of ugliness in Hollywood and in its movies). I'd rather know about a director's stance on important issues when I give him/her my money, and if I have to plug my nose or merely download a movie then so be it. But ignorance is not bliss.
I wouldn't say that films are usually pro-war. Of course there are many war movies, but that's because of the conflict that war brings. Therefore, I would say films are pro-conflict, but that's to be expected, without conflict you tend to have a boring story.
Briguy65's Avatar Briguy65 01:46 PM Today
I think that if the academy members (filmmakers) are the ones voting for winners, then I can see why Birdman might win, or at least garner some votes. It's filming was quite innovative, at least for me. The first scene er at least 10 minutes, maybe more, was one single cut without edits. They must have had to have perfect timing in moving actors in and out of the scene and coaching the cameraman what to do and who to follow as the scene unfolded.
DDailey's Avatar DDailey 02:15 PM Today
Too bad Transformers Age of Extinction, Expedibles 3, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were not nominated as everyone here uses them for reference - Michael Bay not nominated either - what a travesty - clearly a race to the bottom!
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