Monday, December 10, 2018

Monday Oscar Odds

With the Golden Globes announcing their nominations this past Thursday and the Critics Choice list coming out this morning, we’re starting to get a real picture of the Oscar race. I’ve seen so much more than I ever have at this point in the season, and I’m working up the courage to see the two horror films that are performing better than expected (at least by me) and making plans to see the few remaining films either in theaters or on DVD. SAG nominations are announced Wednesday, and then we get tons of shortlists for technical categories next Monday, before many more precursors in the new year. Here’s a look at what’s happened and what it might mean. I’m offering visual effects predictions from a twenty-wide shortlist before the narrowed ten-wide one is publicized next week.

I looked back over Critics Choice nominees from previous years to see whether they included new contenders not recognized at the Golden Globes and how much they diverged from the eventual Oscar list. Only “Phantom Thread” really burst forth at the Oscars without much notice ahead of time last year. Especially with last year when, statistically, no film could win Best Picture because of historical necessities that had not been met, it’s most important to remember that it doesn’t actually matter what happened previously. What does seem clear, sad as it is to me, is that “Widows” is not going to be a major player. It missed out entirely at the Globes, and the Critics Choice list only features it in ensemble (a decent get), editing, and action movie, with Viola Davis missing out in a seven-wide field. “First Man” seemed like it was fading with only two Globe bids but then rallied with ten this morning, including picture, director, actor, and screenplay, plus a healthy dominance of the technical races. “First Reformed,” which to date has racked up eight critics’ prizes for star Ethan Hawke, doesn’t appear to be getting into the top race, but Hawke made up for his Globe miss with a mention today, and the film also showed up in the screenplay race. While critics love it, it may have to settle for those two Oscar nominations.

Though it’s ineligible for Best Motion Picture – Drama at the Golden Globes because it’s an international foreign language film, “Roma” still picked up director and screenplay bids, and it took home Best Picture prizes from critics’ groups in Philadelphia, Chicago, Toronto, Los Angeles, and New York (online) yesterday, making it, in my mind, the firm frontrunner for Best Picture even if it has the Netflix affiliation and its non-English nature going against it. “Vice” is also showing up strongly, netting the most Globe bids and a healthy Critics Choice take too. The review embargo ends this week, so I’m curious to see whether its prospects will change once thoughts on the film are public. Adam McKay is picking up nominations as its director while Barry Jenkins keeps missing out for “If Beale Street Could Talk,” which is a shame. I’m personally waiting to see “Mary Poppins Returns,” which is doing very well across the board. New predictions below – comment with your thoughts!

Best Picture
Black Panther
The Favourite
Eighth Grade
Green Book
If Beale Street Could Talk
Mary Poppins Returns
A Star is Born

Best Director
Spike Lee (BlacKkKlansman)
Yorgos Lanthimos (The Favourite)
Alfonso Cuaron (Roma)
Bradley Cooper (A Star is Born)
Adam McKay (Vice)

Best Actor
Christian Bale (Vice)
Bradley Cooper (A Star is Born)
Ethan Hawke (First Reformed)
Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody)
Viggo Mortensen (Green Book)

Best Actress
Emily Blunt (Mary Poppins Returns)
Glenn Close (The Wife)
Olivia Colman (The Favourite)
Lady Gaga (A Star is Born)
Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)

Best Supporting Actor
Mahershala Ali (Green Book)
Timothee Chalamet (Beautiful Boy)
Adam Driver (BlacKkKlansman)
Sam Elliott (A Star Is Born)
Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)

Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams (Vice)
Claire Foy (First Man)
Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk)
Emma Stone (The Favourite)
Rachel Weisz (The Favourite)

Best Original Screenplay
Eighth Grade
The Favourite
First Reformed
Green Book

Best Adapted Screenplay
Black Panther
Can You Ever Forgive Me?
If Beale Street Could Talk
A Star is Born

Best Animated Feature
Incredibles 2
Isle of Dogs
Ralph Breaks the Internet
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Best Documentary
Of Fathers and Sons
On Her Shoulders
Three Identical Strangers
Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

Best Foreign Film
Capernaum (Lebanon)
Cold War (Poland)
Never Look Away (Germany)
Roma (Mexico)
Shoplifters (Japan)

Best Visual Effects
Avengers: Infinity War
Black Panther
First Man
Ready Player One
Solo: A Star Wars Story

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