Guide To This Year's Oscar Films

Eight films will be fighting it out to be named best picture at this year's Academy Awards - here is a brief bit of information about each of them.

American Sniper

Bradley Cooper plays Chris Kyle, the 'most lethal sniper in US military history', in this film directed by Clint Eastwood. The Navy SEAL can save lives with his pinpoint accuracy on the battlefield but struggles to cope with home life with his wife (Sienna Miller) and children when he returns from his tours of duty in Iraq.

Birdman

Michael Keaton plays washed-up actor Riggan Thomson who walked away from a role in the superhero franchise Birdman. Thomson is tormented by the voice of Birdman and hopes to revive his career with a Broadway show which he wrItes, directs and stars in. As opening night approaches his attempts to be more selfless with his friends and family become more difficult. Also stars Edward Norton, Naomi Watts and Emma Stone.

Boyhood

Director Richard Linklater filmed the cast of Boyhood over 12 years in this coming-of-age drama. It tells the story of growing up through the eyes of Mason (Ellar Coltrane) with his divorced parents (Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke) and sister Samantha, played by Lorelai Linklater. The children live in Texas with their single mother and the film follows visits from their father over the years and the adults' new relationships.

The Grand Budapest Hotel

This film recounts the adventures of legendary concierge Gustave H (Ralph Fiennes) from the fictional Republic of Zubrowka between World Wars One and Two. Fiennes teams up with his lobby boy Zero to prove his innocence after he is framed for the murder of one of his oldest and richest guests.

The Imitation Game

Benedict Cumberbatch plays the famous code-breaker Alan Turing who is in a race against time to crack the Nazi Enigma code at Bletchley Park to help the Allies win World War Two. The film explores three periods in his life; his school days, time at Bletchley and the years after in the 1950s when he was convicted of homosexuality. Cumberbatch is joined by Keira Knightley, Rory Kinnear and Mark Strong.

Selma

Ava DuVernay's film looks at the three-month period in 1965 when Martin Luther King Jr took his campaign for equal voting rights to Selma, Alabama. The epic march from Selma to Montgomery culminated in President Johnson signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most significant victories for the civil rights movement. British actor David Oyelowo takes on the role of the campaigner.

The Theory Of Everything

Eddie Redmayne transforms himself into Professor Stephen Hawking for this film which covers his academic career and motor neurone disease diagnosis. Felicity Jones plays Hawking's first wife Jane Wilde, on whose book the film is based, and her struggle to care for him as his health declines but career takes off.

Whiplash

A young, talented drummer Andrew Neyman (Miles Teller) is taken under the wing of an aggressive professor called Terence Fletcher (JK Simmons) at a music academy who is on a mission to achieve perfection. But the music teacher's methods could drive Andrew to madness before he is able to reach his full potential.

Cover art for When Will I See You Again

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