Tag Archive: oscars 2018


 

get-ou

Here are this year’s nominees for Best Picture:

Call Me By Your Name

Darkest Hour

Dunkirk

Get Out

Lady Bird

Phantom Thread

The Post

The Shape of Water

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Who I’m Cheering For: Come on…

Who Should Win: Last year (I think) established unless you have ‘Titantic’, nobody really knows until the envelopes are (double) checked.  ‘Dunkirk’ is the most traditional feeling Best Picture.  ‘Get Out’ is the one we’ll still be referring back to years from now.  Actors love ‘Three Billboards’ and percentage wise we have the most votes.  Take your pick…

Who Will Win: I’ll call ‘The Shape of Water’.  Across all the branches, this one feels the most respected.

Enjoy the show!

 

 

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robbie

Here are the nominees for Best Actress in a Leading Role:

Sally Hawkins – The Shape of Water

Frances McDormand – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Margot Robbie – I, Tonya

Saorise Ronan – Lady Bird

Meryl Streep – The Post

Who I’m Cheering For: I don’t know if anyone here completely ‘doesn’t belong’ this year.  I’ll go with Robbie just for proving (again) she can do more than be the sexpot.

Who Should Win: Let’s not underestimate being a leading character who’s a mute means.  I’d say Sally Hawkins here.

Who Will Win: McDormand.  The people love her and she only seems to do films now once every few years.

 

 

roman-j-israel-esq

Here are the nominees for Best Actor in a Leading Role:

Timothee Chalamet – Call Me By Your Name

Daniel Day-Lewis – Phantom Thread

Daniel Kaluuya – Get Out

Gary Oldman – Darkest Hour

Denzel Washington – Roman J Israel Esq.

Who I’m Cheering For: Multiple names I admire on this list, but looking at all the names above, I realized I’m screaming the loudest on Sunday if Kaluuya wins.

Who Should Win: If the critieria is ‘degree of difficulty within the film they’re nominated for’, it would have to be one of the kids: Chalamet or Kaluuya.

Who Will Win: Commissioner Gordon is due for his ‘lifetime achievement Oscar’.  And I’m fine with that.

 

 

octavia

Here are the nominees for Best Actress in a Supporting Role:

Mary J. Blige – Mudbound

Allison Tanney – I, Tonya

Lesley Manville – Phantom Thread

Laurie Metcalf – Lady Bird

Octavia Spencer – The Shape of Water

Who I’m Cheering For: You know how a part of you always remembers someone from the first time you saw them?  Octavia Spencer will always be ‘Lady in Alley’ from S.W.A.T (the movie) to me.  Silly I know, but it’s an ‘actor paying their dues, moving up the ranks’ thing.  I know this isn’t her year though.

Who Should Win: One of the two ‘difficult mother’ characters; their movies fall apart without them.  I think Allison has more goodwill at this moment.

Who Will Win: Allison Tanney.  Fine by me.

 

 

bsactor2018

Here are the nominees for Best Actor in a Supporting Role:

Willem Dafoe – The Florida Project

Woody Harrelson – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Richard Jenkins – The Shape of Water

Christopher Plummer – All the Money in the World

Sam Rockwell – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Who Should Win: Hmmm.  I thought the most standout of these five was Dafoe.  A completely different turn than his trademark roles.

Who I’m Cheering For: Dafoe, for the reason above.  Plummer getting nominated is already quite a ‘F*** You’ to Spacey, isn’t it?

Who Will Win: There’s a 10 percent chance that two nominations for Ebbing will split the vote for him, but based on momentum you got to thank Sam Rockwell completes his victory tour.

‘Strong Island’

 

_S2_Strong-Island

‘Strong Island’ is another film that’s compelling both for what’s on screen, and also for how perfectly timely it is with larger discussions happening in 2018 America.

Nominated this year in the Best Documentary – Feature category, the skeleton of the story is way too familiar to everyone now: a young black man is murdered, the local police look at the evidence and drift toward the attitude of ‘Well, he wasn’t an angel…’

Yance Ford (the director, the sibling of the victim, and if I’m not mistaken, the first transgender person nominated in this category) gives us enough time with all the judicial elements of the story to upset anyone with a conscience.  The true gift of the film is in the time spent (and the focus) on how a crime like this, the sudden, unnecessary death of a young man, implodes the whole family unit.  (There’s a larger metaphor in there for the black experience in America if you wanted to go there.)

Powerful film.  Now streaming on Netflix.

 

‘Icarus’

 

icarus

Nominated for Best Documentary Feature, ‘Icarus’ is one of those films where the larger implications stick with you a little more than what you see on the screen.  Especially right now…

Doing well but never really excelling as a cyclist, Bryan Fogel (also our narrator) hooks up with Girgory Rodchenkov, a leading Russian scientist in the field of ‘sports medicine’.  What starts out as a ‘wink wink nudge nudge’ light hearted relationship (with Fogel using my needles on a daily basis than I ever want to see in my life), first turns a little more serious as the Russian team (the ENTIRE Russian team) is briefly banned from competing in the Olympics, then turns legitimately scary as Grigory escapes Russia (leaving his wife and family behind), and eventually ends up in witness protection in America as he goes into detail, on the record, with how Russia has essentially, a state sponsored doping program, and uses the former KGB to make sure its athletes don’t get caught.

Fascinating for what it is, as a documentary on 21st century sports.  Interesting because of what else we’ve essentially proven about Russia bending and breaking all protocols to get what it wants and end up on top.

Now streaming on Netflix.

 

‘Call Me By Your Name’

 

call_me_by_your_name_2

Liked it.  Didn’t love it til the end.

In recent memory, ‘Brokeback Mountain’ is an excellent story of forbidden love; ‘Blue is the Warmest Color’ feels more three dimensional (and more explicit sexually).   ‘Call Me By Your Name’ is strong for what it is; a young man discovers his sexuality and comes of age in the 80s when his father’s attractive grad assistant comes to town.  But, to me at least, it’s more about their physical connection than a deep emotional one.  Timothee Chalamet is fully arrived as a kid who can own a movie, Armie Hammer unfortunately seems to be stuck in that ‘Looks like a movie star, sounds like a movie star, but is he a movie star?’ box.  It’s a solid film for 100 minutes.

Then, and I’m not the first to say this, Michael Stuhlbarg puts a button on the story of the film with a speech so perfect in expressing the unconditional love of a parent, the rareness of experiencing a white hot passionate love (and how most people settle), how love changes over time as your mind gets smarter but your body gets weaker…I was irrationally upset he didn’t get a Best Supporting Actor nomination just for that speech.  It was that good.

So worth seeing this movie just for the ending.

 

 

Darkest-Hour-Movie

First, Rest in Peace Reg E. Cathey.  From ‘Oz’ to ‘the Wire’ to ‘House of Cards’, Cathey was a fantastic, Emmy winning character actor.  More importantly, judging by the words of those who knew him and worked with him, an even better human being.  He will be missed.

Speaking of character actors.  Lee Harvey Oswald.  Commissioner Gordon. Dracula.  Gary Oldman owned these roles and numerous others in movies big and small over the years. But no Oscar.  That’s probably changing next month.

‘Darkest Hour’ benefits not just from having Gary Oldman in the leading role (barely recognizable under all that makeup), but also from living in a world where its target audience has been given ‘the Crown’ and ‘Dunkirk’ over the past 12 months.  Knowing so much more about World War II era London helps a movie we’re so much of the conflict is cerebral and hard to visualize.

None of this is to take away from what Oldman does here.  You expect dialect expertise, you expect a few outbursts of anger, you expect a great monologue from two if for no other reason than it’s Winston Churchill.  And you get all of that and a little more.

It’ll be a surprise if Gary doesn’t get his ‘Lifetime Achievement’ Oscar for this.

 

 

marlon

Funny, I was just watching this last week for acting purposes…

But since Quincy Jones felt the need to throw the 1960s under the bus this week, let me post this…

More serious people, who are more directly affected by homophobia than I, can speak to some of the uglier comments around Q’s revelations about Marlon’s bisexuality.  Brando was my acting idol when I started, so in my own research, that aspect of his life I knew about years ago.

The name dropping was new information though!

Aside from that (and on a much lighter note), among film geeks, among actors, a phrase I’ve heard more than once is, ‘I don’t swing that way, but young Marlon Brando in peak physical condition in ‘Streetcar’…I understand.’

Next Best Picture review Sunday night.

Enjoy!