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The Oscars 2019

This years Oscars have surprised me with many, many snubs and a lot of odd choices in certain categories. There have been a lot of magnificent films that haven’t got any, much or only very few recognitions from the nominations. Below is each category and all the nominations for those categories. You will find my prediction for each win (In Red), who I want to win (In Blue) and after the night who actually won (In Bold) with a short note on the winner if applicable.

Apologies for missing opinion for some categories as it wasn’t possible to watch everything this year and to that end some guessing work had to be done using reviews for films to gauge their potential.

 

Best Picture

BlacKkKlansman
Black Panther
Bohemian Rhapsody
The Favourite
[Winner] Green Book
Roma
A Star Is Born
Vice

By far the biggest shock of the night for me. Green Book was plagued with controversy and it seems as though it would not pick up anything at all. To be frank I wouldn’t have picked this over The Favourite or Roma as Best Picture but it is well deserved. Green Book is an all-rounder and appeals to every kind of moviegoer. Perhaps that’s what won out in the end. Still some talk whether the fact Roma was a Netflix film has anything to do with this loss, maybe the academy doesn’t want to encourage internet releases over theatrical.

 

Best Director

[Winner] Alfonso Cuaron (Roma)
Yorgos Lanthimos (The Favourite)
Spike Lee (BlacKkKlansman)
Adam McKay (Vice)
Pawel Pawlikowski (Cold War)

Another Oscar directors win for Cuaron. This could have easily gone to any of the top three contenders. Yorgos missing out on some major recognition for The Favourite but also Spike Lee who has a catalogue of films that still prove relevant today.

 

Best Actress

Yalitza Aparicio (Roma)
Glenn Close (The Wife)
[Winner] Olivia Colman (The Favourite)
Lady Gaga (A Star Is Born)
Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)

While most Americans might be wondering who and how she won, as they might have favoured some recognition for Glenn Close or the underdog of Melissa McCarthy. The Brits know Colman’s long, varied and demonstratively powerful career. In my mind, she was the sure-fire winner as she is just a staggering performer to watch.

 

Best Actor

Christian Bale (Vice)
Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born)
Willem Dafoe (At Eternity’s Gate)
[Winner] Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody)
Viggo Mortensen (Green Book)

This is what I believe to be the toughest category this year, and it is not because there were so many ground-shattering performances but simply because no one performance stood taller than the rest. Still, I believed Viggo Mortensen to have given the most captivating and chameleon-like performance of this lot. Malek was truly spectacular but I think when playing someone of Mercury’s level of fame, there is always a bit of a feeling akin to that of an Elvis impersonator.

 

Best Supporting Actress

Amy Adams (Vice)
Marina de Tavira (Roma)
[Winner] Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk)
Emma Stone (The Favourite)
Rachel Weisz (The Favourite)

A disappointing category for me, I still think Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz gave the most incredible performances. Thinking Weisz might just pull ahead a little and take the win. But Regina King is also excellent, but I do believe that her role didn’t have as much impact as Stone and Weisz did to their narratives.

 

Best Supporting Actor

[Winner] Mahershala Ali (Green Book)
Adam Driver (BlacKkKlansman)
Sam Elliott (A Star Is Born)
Richard E. Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)
Sam Rockwell (Vice)

You cannot help but feel gutted for Sam Elliot, I can concede that Mahershala Ali had much more impact on his narrative, supplying a terrific and moving performance that defines the film as much as the main role. But, I still find myself thinking about that scene from A Star Is Born with Sam Elliot and how its an image I always go to quickly, when thinking of that film. So much breath of character and emotion is told in a single scene with Elliot.

 

Best Original Screenplay

The Favourite (Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara)
First Reformed (Paul Schrader)
[Winner] Green Book (Brian Hayes Currie, Peter Farrelly and Nick Vallelonga)
Roma (Alfonso Cuaron)
Vice (Adam McKay)

Green Book was my pick for this, despite the controversies around its screenwriter I found it to be full of razor-sharp wit, dialogue, character and nuance. Truly a magnificent screenplay that shines through on screen.

 

Best Adapted Screenplay

Courtesy of Mary Cybulski/Twentieth Century Fox
A Star Is Born (Bradley Cooper, Will Fetters and Eric Roth)
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Joel Coen and Ethan Coen)
[Winner] BlacKkKlansman (Spike Lee, David Rabinowitz, Charlie Wachtel and Kevin Willmott)
If Beale Street Could Talk (Barry Jenkins)
Can You Ever Forgive Me? (Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty)

Also cannot help but having a large grin pulled across your face at watching Spike Lee win this award. A filmmaker that has consistently proven himself, with challenging topics and nuanced layered into easy dialogue. What I mean by this is the way in which scenes can come across so straight forward and as smooth as milk but under the surface, there is so much being said. Glad to see Lee finally pick up an Oscar.

 

Best Makeup & Hairstyling

Border
Mary Queen of Scots
[Winner] Vice

A strange category as it also seemed a tight fit. None the less Vice won out and it is clear to see why when looking at Christian Bale as Dick Cheney.

 

Best Costume Design

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Mary Zophres)
[Winner] Black Panther (Ruth E. Carter)
The Favourite (Sandy Powell)
Mary Poppins Returns (Sandy Powell)
Mary Queen of Scots (Alexandra Byrne)

 

Best Cinematography

The Favourite (Robbie Ryan)
Never Look Away (Caleb Deschanel)
[Winner] Roma (Alfonso Cuaron)
A Star Is Born (Matty Libatique)
Cold War (Lukasz Zal)

Of course, it had to be Roma, superb cinematography that tells its beautiful story with equally mesmerising and beautiful images. While a few films in this category put up a real challenge, Roma just couldn’t be matched.

 

Best Original Song

“All the Stars” (Black Panther, written by Kendrick Lamar, Al Shux, Sounwave, SZA and Anthony Tiffith)
Performed by Kendrick Lamar and SZA

“I’ll Fight” (R.B.G., written by Diane Warren)
Performed by Jennifer Hudson

“The Place Where Lost Things Go” (Mary Poppins Returns, written by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman)
Performed by Emily Blunt

[Winner] “Shallow” (A Star Is Born, written by Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt)
Performed by Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga

“When a Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings” (The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, written by Dave Rawlings and Gillian Welch)
Performed by Tim Blake Nelson and Willie Watson

While I really enjoy the song from Buster Scruggs and would have liked to have seen it win. No one is going to deny the majesty of Shallow. A superb song, sung beautifully and performed even better.

 

Best Original Score

[Winner] Black Panther (Ludwig Goransson)
BlacKkKlansman (Terence Blanchard)
If Beale Street Could Talk (Nicholas Britell)
Isle of Dogs (Alexandre Desplat)
Mary Poppins Returns (Marc Shaiman)

I’ll be the first to recognise that Black Panther had an absolutely mesmerising score. ‘Pray for Me’ actually topped out my list of songs listed to in 2018. That’s as high of praise as I can give, the fact that I listened to that soundtrack all year. Come to think about it, don’t know why I thought Black Panther wouldn’t win or shouldn’t. Isle of Dogs had an equally terrific soundtrack which Is why I think I had it pegged for my pick. Black Panther had better music but Isle of Dog’s score accompanied the story too well to ignore.

 

Best Documentary Feature

[Winner] Free Solo
Hale County This Morning, This Evening
Minding the Gap
Of Fathers and Sons
R.B.G.

Best Animated Feature

Incredibles 2
Isle of Dogs
Mirai
Ralph Breaks the Internet
[Winner] Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Gutted on this, Isle of Dogs really deserved more recognition. Still the best-animated feature for me.

 

Best Foreign-Language Film

Cold War (Poland)
Never Look Away (Germany)
[Winner] Roma (Mexico)
Shoplifters (Japan)

Best Sound Mixing

Black Panther
[Winner] Bohemian Rhapsody
First Man
Roma
A Star Is Born

Best Sound Editing

Black Panther
[Winner] Bohemian Rhapsody
First Man
A Quiet Place
Roma

Best Production Design

[Winner] Black Panther (Hannah Beachler and Jay Hart)
The Favourite (Fiona Crombie and Alice Felton)
First Man (Nathan Crowley and Kathy Lucas)
Mary Poppins Returns (John Myhre and Gordon Sim)
Roma (Eugenio Caballero and Barbara Enriquez)

Best Visual Effects

Avengers: Infinity War
Christopher Robin
[Winner] First Man
Ready Player One
Solo: A Star Wars Story

This is a complete miss of a category. When I think about special effects for this year, Infinity War always stands out. Not only is it strange for it not to beat out Black Panther for its spot at the Academy recognises popular movies. But it misses out here in the category it absolutely should have won.

 

Best Film Editing

BlacKkKlansman (Barry Alexander Brown)
[Winner] Bohemian Rhapsody (John Ottman)
The Favourite (Yorgos Mavropsaridis)
Green Book (Patrick J. Don Vito)
Vice (Hank Corwin)

I can see why Bohemian Rhapsody was nominated here and can also see why it won. I still think however it showed little to none editing prowess and imagination. Vice for me was a true experience and really showed off the technical editing skills of Hank Corwin.

 

Best Animated Short

Animal Behaviour
[Winner] Bao
Late Afternoon
One Small Step
Weekends

Best Live-Action Short

Detainment
Fauve
Marguerite
Mother
[Winner] Skin

Best Documentary Short

Black Sheep
End Game
Lifeboat
A Night at the Garden
[Winner] Period. End of Sentence.

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