While I wake up super early every day of my life for work, there is something special about waking up early on the official day of Oscar nominations!
It seems that, every so often, the awards circuit are faced with so many challenges with equality, and rightly so. A few years back, saw the campaign of #oscarssowhite take form. In 2018, today and now, amidst all the controversy and cultural change happening around the world, its finally time for women in the entertainment world to take their rightful place beside the men, thanks to such efforts as #metoo and #timesup.
So without further ado, here is the full list of nominees for the 90th Academy Awards (with a little commentary on my end), airing March 4th 2018 at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles, California.
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
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: While the academy has the opportunity to select up to ten films for Best Picture, this year, the Academy settled on nine. Nine is a solid number, but when you have films like The Florida Project, Blade Runner 2049 and Molly’s Game vying for a spot, one needs to really think and see if all of the films are deserving on the list. While this year’s list is nothing to argue with, I do argue why The Florida Project was NOT included in this prestigious list, especially when it should have been.
Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk
Jordan Peele, Get Out
Greta Gerwig, Lady Bird
Paul Thomas Anderson, Phantom Thread
Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: This category along with Best Original Screenplay is easily the most competitive and hardest category this year. The directing category showcases some of the best talents behind the screen this year, including the amazing Greta Gerwig and her incredible job on Lady Bird, Jordan Peele and his socially and politically aware fable Get Out and the fantastic fantastical The Shape of Water. If there was one director that I wish got a nomination this year, and it surely is not a snub by any means, but Luca Guadagnino’s Call Me By Your Name was surely the next name on that list. While Martin McDonagh was also a name I would have loved to see up there, it seems that diversity got the better of these two incredible filmmakers, although I’m sure you’ll be seeing their names on this list quite shortly.
Sally Hawkins, The Shape of Water
Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Margot Robbie, I, Tonya
Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird
Meryl Streep, The Post
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: This is Meryl’s twenty-first Oscar nomination. I don’t know what that is, but, I just wanted to leave this right here. In addition to the Oh-so-great Meryl, is the next in line, Ms. Jessica Chastain, who could have easily knocked Robbie or Streep off this list for her powerful and wrought performance of Molly Bloom in Aaron Sorkin’s electric Molly’s Game. ALSO, since Amy Adams was not nominated for her powerful role in Arrival last year, does the Academy want to include on this list, just for the heck of it?
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.
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: This is Denzel’s ninth nomination, while he faces off against the Actor who has the most wins in this category, Daniel Day-Lewis, with three wins. Oldman has only been nominated twice, which, given his filmography and acting history, is a shock in itself. Kaluuya and Chalamet are rookies in the category and both very deserving of their nominations. This year, unlike last year, which saw Ryan Gosling and Casey Affleck facing off, should be one of the easiest categories to predict.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Mary J. Blige, Mudbound
Allison Janney, I, Tonya
Lesley Manville, Phantom Thread
Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird
Octavia Spencer, The Shape of Water
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: This is one category come Oscar night that I think will be a shock. While the majority of the major awards have been going in Allison Janney’s direction for her morbid yet hysterical role in I,Tonya, the race has always been between Janney and Laurie Metcalf. NOW, with what I think is one of the most deserving surprises of the year, with the inclusion of Lesley Manville for her role in PTA’s Phantom Thread, the race is pushed wide open and the race for the winner does not seem all that certain now.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
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
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: Easily the BIGGEST SNUB and my biggest peeve this year (not as bad as last year’s Amy Adam’s snub for Arrival…but) was Armie Hammer for his magnetic turn as Oliver in Call Me By Your Name. It is was up to me, Hammer easily competes with favourites Dafoe, Jenkins, Rockwell and Harrelson. What makes the snub even more disheartening is the fact that Christopher Plummer took his only spot. While we are HUGE fans of our fellow Canadian Plummer, his turn in Scott’s All The Money in the World is not Oscar caliber acting, and it isn’t hard to see that the Academy is making a statement in so many ways in recognizing the role that once belonged to a recently discovered sex offender and sexual predator. To put the icing on the cake, if it was not enough, Michael Stuhlbarg, who plays Elio’s father Mr.Perlman in Call Me By Your Name, single handedly has my favourite moment and scene in cinema in 2017 with a closing monologue between him and Elio that will give you chills. Stuhlbarg, who is quickly becoming this decade’s John Goodman (the Best Picture Actor Good Luck Charm) currently stars in one third of the Best Picture nominations this year with Call Me by Your Name, The Post and The Shape of Water.
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
The Big Sick Get Out Lady Bird The Shape of Water Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: Easily, one of the hardest and most complex categories of the year. I won’t be making my decision on this one until the day of for sure. Here is how I would describe it; The Big Sick is the most overrated script of 2017; Get Out is the most mandatory script of 2017; Lady Bird is the most nostalgic and dreamy script of 2017; The Shape of Water is the safest script of the year, while Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is the most ballsy script of 2017. Which will the Academy reward?
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Call Me By Your Name The Disaster Artist Logan Molly’s Game Mudbound
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: While the original category is easily one of the most overwhelming categories of the year, adapted is one of the most underwhelming. While there are two easy front runners for the category, it is great to see Logan nominated for something this year, even if it doesn’t serve as a commemoration for Hugh Jackman and his contribution to the comic book film over the last two decades.
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
The Boss Baby The Breadwinner Coco Ferdinand Loving Vincent
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: Probably one of the easiest categories of the year? Or will COO of Pixar John Lasseter jeopardize this amazing cultural Mexican gem?
BEST ORIGINAL SONG
“Mighty River,” Mudbound
“Mystery of Love,” Call Me By Your Name
“Remember Me,” Coco
“Stand Up for Something,” Marshall
“This Is Me,” The Greatest Showman
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: Marshall’s Stand Up For Something is definitely this year’s Jim: The James Foley’s Story’s The Empty Chair.
BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
Abacus (Small Enough to Jail) Faces/Places Icarus Last Men in Aleppo Strong Island
BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT
“Eden and Eddie”
“Heaven Is a Traffic Jam on the 405”
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
A Fantastic Woman-Chile The Insult-Lebanon Loveless-Russia On Body and Soul-Hungary The Square-Sweden
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: Many people suspected In The Fade to be on this list, but the foreign language category has been historically known for flipping things on its head and always nominated some obscure foreign films, which is great, otherwise audience wouldn’t discover such gems, like Japan’s Departures in 2008. You can bet I will be watching all of these before March 4th.
BEST MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING
Darkest Hour Victoria & Abdul Wonder
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: I mean, does Wonder really deserve a nomination? It isn’t that bad. Its a much bigger and better step that when the Academy nominated Jackass: Bad Grandpa in this category. Yes, that was real life. If you don’t believe me, look it up!
BEST FILM EDITING
Baby Driver Dunkirk I, Tonya The Shape of Water Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: It was so great to actually see Baby Driver in this category, one of the most deserving films in this spot, easily, of course alongside Christopher Nolan’s wartime epic Dunkirk.
BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Blade Runner 2049 Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 Kong: Skull Island Star Wars: The Last Jedi War for the Planet of the Apes
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: Kong: Skull Island? Did ANYONE see that one coming?
BEST SHORT FILM — LIVE ACTION
“The Eleven O’Clock”
“My Nephew Emmett”
“The Silent Child”
“Watu Wote/All of Us”
Dunkirk Phantom Thread The Shape of Water Star Wars: The Last Jedi Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: This is easily one of the categories this year that is inherited by absolute masterclass geniuses. Bravo!
BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
Beauty and the Beast Blade Runner 2049 Darkest Hour Dunkirk The Shape of Water
Blade Runner 2049 Darkest Hour Dunkirk Mudbound The Shape of Water
Thoughts/Snubs/Surprises: With the nomination for Mudbound, this marks the first time that a woman is nominated in the Cinematography category, which is far and beyond a historical achievement, regardless of whether Rachel Morrison wins or not. Since Morrison has set the stage, history might also be made on that night for the impeccable and deserving Mr.Roger Deakins, who makes Leonardo Di Caprio’s Oscar hunger look measly in comparison. Deakins has been nominated for FOURTEEN Oscars and has yet to win one! Also just remember people, this is the same guy who shot The Shawshank Redemption, Fargo, No Country for Old Men, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, Prisoners, Sicario and of course Skyfall! If there is one man deserving of that Oscar March 4th, its him! Lets not let the man wait any longer for this deserving accolade please and thank you Academy.
BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Beauty and the Beast Darkest Hour Phantom Thread The Shape of Water Victoria & Abdul
BEST SOUND EDITING
Baby Driver Blade runner Dunkirk The Shape of Water Star Wars :The Last Jedi
BEST SOUND MIXING
Baby Driver Blade Runner 2049 Dunkirk The Shape of Water Star Wars: The Last Jedi
March 4th CANNOT come soon enough. Happy viewings in the meantime people, and stay tuned for Night Film Reviews Top Films of 2017…COMING SOON!