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2015 Oscar Predictions: Best Documentary Feature

2015 Oscar Predictions: Best Documentary Feature

Indiewire will provide updates of our predictions for the
87th Academy Awards through February 22nd, when the winners are announced.

Another one that’s looking pretty set in stone. Laura Poitras’ film has been winning everything, and the Oscar is all but certain to make it one more for “Citizenfour.”

 Check out our predictions in other categories here.

The Nominees:
“Finding Vivian Maier”
“Last Days in Vietnam”
“The Salt of the Earth”

Will Win: “Citizenfour”
Could Win: “Virunga”
Should Win: “Citizenfour”
Shoulda Been Here: “The Overnighters”

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READ MORE: Anne Thompson’s Oscar Predictions

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Virunga was better than Citizen Four in a few ways, most importantly it had tons of heart, it made most theatergoers cry for the helpless gorillas and the people and children. Plus the issue at hand was actually more relevant, important and urgent. If enough support, charity and activism comes from people who see this film, then the beautiful region and its endangered wildlife has a shot of being saved from SOCO International, the poachers, and the chaotic warring.

William Quam

There is a false narrative in Virunga that portrays the M23 in ways that is not true! The movie pursposfully presented a false view of what happened and happens in the east of the DRC. The script is purposefully falsefied! Shameful! And shame of former President Clinton for supporting this false narrative! He of all people knows or should know by now the reality on the ground in the east of the DRC!

The truth is that M23 had an agreement with Emmanuel DeMerode to protect the park. Which they did. Despite the illusion in the movie that the M23 was attacking the Park, it was the Congo army and the UN. Here is some proof. Shells are Chinese and Russian…staples of Congo army and UN.

Georgianne Nienaber

If Virunga wins, it should be in best feature, not documentary. I am freelancer who has worked in the region and can tell you that there is a false narrative presented with respect to who was shelling the park. The film makers would never have gotten away with filming in Kivu without access provided by the Kabila regime, which wanted only one side of the story to be told. Voters beware. Thank you for listening.


Citizen Four was a snore. Last Days of Vietnam should win.

Nate Shu

"Life Itself" is the real snub this year. It was an incredibly poignant and beautiful look of a man who loved film. Yet, it still took the time to depict him as a person, never putting him on a pedestal.

Robert Maier

Can’t believe Point and Shoot isn’t here. I guess that means all these choices are A+++++. Hope you’re right


My vote "the Internet’s own boy". I want to show my kids you can change the world, you can make a difference. Just try. I loved this documentary.

Charles renner

The Internet’s own boy was absolutely the best documentary I have seen in the last 3 years. It should be standard curriculum in every school. Powerful enough to empower man against big, over reaching goverment. Must see!


Too bad Cowspiracy wasn’t on this list. Well done and perhaps has more important subject matter than any of the nominated

George Hirthler

I saw your two finalists. Life Itself was a far better film than Citzenfour, which never achieved the gripping drama or real paranoia I expected, while Steve James created a full cinematic portrait of a Roger Ebert, which touched the heart in very emotive ways. Citzenfour’s narrative broke down over anti-climatic revelations about even broader government conspiracies that led nowhere. I was disappointed. Life Itself, on the other hand, cast a spell that held me in its thrall beginning to end.


how about ‘alive inside’? "It gives me the feeling of love, romance!" to quote Henry.


Rich Hill deserves to be nominated, if not win.


"Rich Hill" should be higher on the list, and I’m surprised the Eric Schlosser film, "Hanna Ranch" isn’t mentioned. It is stunning.


No Particle Fever!? how can that be…




Red Army – all the way!!!!!!


Rich Hill was just to good for words. I hope it was my favorite by far. I am surprised not to see Tim’s Vermeer on this list


What about "Ne Me Quitte Pas", not eligible? Or just forgotten?

TC Kirkham

There are an amazingly good group of films as always. But last year, the two best docs IMHO didn’t even get nominated – "The Crash Reel" and "Blood Brother:. So I’m not holding my breath for "Rich Hill" to get a nod this year, either… although if "Life Itself" follows the Steve James snub formula, then every member of the Academy deserves to be stripped of their membership…


Last Days in Vietnam will be a serious contender. It is absolutely fantastic about a serious subject, and directed by a Kennedy. I’m surprised it was not listed. Is there a reason? As far as I can see it qualifies.


Here’s to hoping ‘Antarctica: A Year on Ice’is on someone’s radar.


You should update the list with Citizenfour if you don’t want to see the winner not even listed in your predictions.

marcy lily

Narco Cultura got utterly screwed . It did not even make the shortlist . What a shame .

marcy lily

God Loves Uganda . Absolutely devastating and a total disgrace because we , the wonderful United States , did this via " charitable " missionary work . Uganda is still recovering from Idi Amin and now is cursed with IHOP ( International House Of Prayer ) and leader Engle . Swell if they had gone in and done good but they go in and incite genocide towards the gay population causing thousands of murders .
Most Americans do not even know . I am fine with missionary work to improve lives not take them . This was all IHOP did . Thankfully people were brave enough to tell the truth on the matter . The Academy has the film on its short list . It needs to do right and make it one of the final five so more people will want to see this film .


I sincerely thought "Print the Legend" was phenomenal and Oscar worthy. The CEO of Netflix tweeted it was the best of the year for him too. Of course, it did come out days after this post, so…


You don’t have The Look of Silence in here?


Don’t forget Citizenfour, which is about to make a splash at NYFF.

Julie Grant

The Case Against Eight is completely riveting and takes the viewer on an emotional rollercoaster ride. Hope it rates well, it deserves to be widely screened.

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