Started working my way through the shorts. They’re almost all legally available online already.
Sister is my pick for best animated short, closely followed by Memorable.
Also watched Learning to Skateboard in a War Zone (If You’re a Girl). It’s a short documentary about a school in Afghanistan that teaches girls to skateboard, alongside their regular studies. Bit of an insight into women’s oppression in Afghanistan and how it’s one of the worst places in the world to be born as a girl. Worth checking out.
I actually haven't seen that one yet, I'll have to check it out! Did you not like the host, or have you not seen it? I'm really into monster movies and it ended up being one of my all time favorites in the genre. Great cast, great writing, and just super FUN the whole way through.
I think it just wasn’t for me. I didn’t really buy into the monster concept from the start, for whatever reason, and then couldn’t look past it.
yeah the CGI was really bad but I thought the monster was pretty itself was pretty cool, and I am always down when directors immediately commit to having the monster eat people.
I finished watching all the shorts in the live action category. It's hard to pick a favourite - they're all really strong contenders (perhaps with the exception of A Sister). I'd probably cast my vote for Nefta Football Club if I had to. It made me smile.
I've watched all the short documentaries with the exception of St Louis Superman, which isn't available anywhere yet. I'll hold off until picking a favourite until I've seen it, but it feels like a slightly weak category of nominations this year.
Costume Design WANNA WIN: Little Women, Jacqueline Durran -- I mean, c'mon, costume drama to the max. GONNA WIN: Once upon a Time...in Hollywood, Arianne Phillips -- I see a lot of craft awards going to this film just out of sheer "Hollywood" love. I can't complain and I'd be okay with this.
Sound Mixing WANNA WIN: Ad Astra, Gary Rydstrom, Tom Johnson and Mark Ulano -- I was blown away by the sound mixing in this amazing film and it was unparalleled in the theatre. GONNA WIN: Ford v Ferrari, Paul Massey, David Giammarco and Steven A. Morrow -- I think this movie and 1917 will split these two awards.
Sound Editing WANNA WIN: Ford v Ferrari, Donald Sylvester -- A film that would be mediocre to poor if you didn't see it at the cinema. GONNA WIN: 1917, Oliver Tarney and Rachael Tate -- I think this movie and Ford v Ferrari will split these two awards.
Original Score WANNA WIN: Joker, Hildur Guðnadóttir -- The award I am pulling for Joker more than any of them, her score was utterly incredible and my favorite thing about this very flawed film. GONNA WIN: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, John Williams -- Nostalgic "career" Oscar for Williams here, unfortunately.
Original Song WANNA WIN: “Stand Up” from Harriet, Music and Lyric by Joshuah Brian Campbell and Cynthia Erivo -- Of all the awards for feature films, this is the category I care about the list. So I'm just hoping for Erivo to get the EGOT here! GONNA WIN: “(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again” from Rocketman, Music by Elton John, Lyric by Bernie Taupin -- The only fair thing to do for this snubbed film is to just give Elton and Oscar. I wouldn't be upset.
Documentary Feature WANNA WIN: For Sama, Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts -- Ah yes my wheelhouse y'all. This is one of the two best films of the year, of any genre. Absolutely incredible and gut-wrenching. It NEEDS to win. GONNA WIN: For Sama, Waad al-Kateab and Edward Watts -- And I think it's actually going to!! It's gotten so much coverage, and won many important other awards elsewhere, I think it's really going to happen.
Documentary Short Subject WANNA WIN: Learning to Skateboard in a War Zone if You’re a Girl, Carol Dysinger and Elena Andreicheva -- I didn't see any of these but I heard this one was fantastic. Plus I love the title. GONNA WIN: Learning to Skateboard in a War Zone if You’re a Girl, Carol Dysinger and Elena Andreicheva -- It won a BAFTA, so, sure, why not.
International Feature Film WANNA WIN: Parasite (South Korea) -- Parasite is legitimately one of the best films I've seen in my life. It destroys the other nominees here. Only Pain & Glory even comes close. GONNA WIN: Parasite (South Korea) -- Landslide.
Production Design WANNA WIN: Parasite, Production Design: Lee Ha Jun; Set Decoration: Cho Won Woo -- It would be an absolute shocker and a game-changing moment if this one, I am pulling for it so hard. GONNA WIN: 1917, Production Design: Dennis Gassner; Set Decoration: Lee Sandales -- 1917 will clean up some of these craft awards as well.
Editing WANNA WIN: Parasite, Yang Jinmo -- Again, this would be absolutely unthinkable in another time but there is some momentum here. It may happen. The film is cut so brilliantly that I can't wait to watch it again to analyze this in particular. GONNA WIN: The Irishman, Thelma Schoonmaker -- Not gonna be upset in the least of the living legend Schoonmaker wins another Oscar here. I'm watching this movie again tonight.
Cinematography WANNA WIN: 1917, Roger Deakins -- Is there any world were Deakins doesn't win this? Honestly? GONNA WIN: 1917, Roger Deakins -- After more than a dozen nominations with no wins, can he finally get his second in three years? Yes.
Visual Effects WANNA WIN: Avengers: Endgame, Dan DeLeeuw, Russell Earl, Matt Aitken and Dan Sudick -- I really think the effects in Endgame are astounding, and were just bonkers on the big screen. It deserves an Oscar. GONNA WIN: 1917, Guillaume Rocheron, Greg Butler and Dominic Tuohy -- Again, I see this film winning a bunch of these craft categories. I'm not sure which ones, but several.
Makeup and Hairstyling WANNA WIN: Bombshell, Kazu Hiro, Anne Morgan and Vivian Baker -- Probably the best thing about this very messy and atonal movie, the transformation of Charlize Theron into Megan Kelly is incredible. GONNA WIN: Joker, Nicki Ledermann and Kay Georgiou -- Somehow, I don't know how or why, the one about a clown will win.
Animated Feature Film WANNA WIN: Toy Story 4, Josh Cooley, Mark Nielsen and Jonas Rivera -- All these films are quite good, but nothing beats Toy Story, easily the best animated film of the year. GONNA WIN: Toy Story 4, Josh Cooley, Mark Nielsen and Jonas Rivera -- I feel confident in this pick, but mostly because the others are just all good and not great.
Animated Short WANNA WIN: Kitbull, Rosana Sullivan and Kathryn Hendrickson -- The only one I've seen. It made me cry. GONNA WIN: Hair Love, Matthew A. Cherry and Karen Rupert Toliver -- I've heard this is excellent and it's getting a lot of coverage.
Live Action Short WANNA WIN: The Neighbors’ Window, Marshall Curry -- Didn't see any of these, but I know Marshall Curry and he rules. GONNA WIN: A Sister, Delphine Girard -- Again, it's getting a lot of online buzz. But I dunno.
PART TWO: The Categories Almost No One Cares About (like, the whole show)
Original Screenplay WANNA WIN: Parasite, Screenplay by Bong Joon Ho & Han Jin Won, Story by Bong Joon Ho -- Duh, this is so obviously the best original screenplay. There's no point in discussing. GONNA WIN: Once upon a Time...in Hollywood, Written by Quentin Tarantino -- But that's exactly why I think Tarantino will get it, as this will be the his big award which he's missed out on over and over. The film's great, don't get me wrong, but it's no Parasite.
Adapted Screenplay WANNA WIN: The Irishman, Screenplay by Steven Zaillian -- This is hard, and I would be very happy if Little Women won, but just re-watching The Irishman helps me push it over the edge to my favorite of the group, three movies of which I didn't like very much. GONNA WIN: Little Women, Written for the screen by Greta Gerwig -- I would be thrilled with this, and maybe it's a reach, but there's a lot of buzz about Gerwig getting this award as make-up for the Best Director nomination for which she was snubbed.
Actress in a Leading Role WANNA WIN: Saoirse Ronan, Little Women -- Very tough, as I thought all these were excellent performances. I think this was bestowed upon Zellweger from the get-go and she's great, but Ronan is remarkable in her film and I just loved her in it. GONNA WIN: Renée Zellweger, Judy -- Still sticking with the conventional wisdom here for the Hollywood biopic and the turn-around for her career. Plus, she's gonna give a great speech and some people honestly vote because of that. Really.
Actor in a Leading Role WANNA WIN: Antonio Banderas, Pain and Glory -- A sentimental pick for one of the greatest unheralded actors alive today, he was so exceptionally great in Pain and Glory but too few people saw it because, you know, it's in Spanish. But Banderas is the best he has ever been. GONNA WIN: Joaquin Phoenix, Joker -- I will not at all be upset by this, flawed and messy as the film was, as Phoenix is incredible in it. Also, he will give another amazing speech.
Actor in a Supporting Role WANNA WIN: Joe Pesci, The Irishman -- Good lord Pesci was freaking unreal in The Irishman. This understated and magnificent performance is perhaps the best thing he has ever done, in a way an against-type role for him. It's one of the two or three best performances by anyone all year. GONNA WIN: Brad Pitt, Once Upon a Time...in Hollywood -- The stars are aligning for this and again, I ain't mad, but Pitt really just looks pretty and delivers some pitch-perfect lines here. It's Pitt just kinda being himself the whole movie. Yes, he's lovely, but I dunno.
Actress in a Supporting Role WANNA WIN: Laura Dern, Marriage Story -- One of the weakest categories of the bunch, this is one of the two stand-outs for sure, the other being Florence Pugh. But Dern kills it in this movie (I'm re-watching tonight) and steals every single scene. She's tremendous. And she will crush a speech. GONNA WIN: Laura Dern, Marriage Story -- I think this is close to foregone. Way too many prior awards and buzz for her not to win here.
Directing WANNA WIN: Bong Joon-ho, Parasite -- Did I even have to say it? This flawless movie is helmed by a true auteur and unparalleled cinematic mind. I will lose my shit if he wins this. GONNA WIN: Sam Mendes, 1917 -- But I won't be upset at this at all, as 1917 is a masterful film and clearly a labor of love, crafted with precision by Mendes with a story any audience can get behind.
Best Picture WANNA WIN: Parasite -- Obviously. I really don't know what more I can say. I'm going to watch it one more time before the big show. GONNA WIN: Parasite -- Let me get my heart broken, boys. I'm putting it all out there. LET'S GO PARASITE!!!
Really cool to see Parasite get so many of the big awards and how humble and absolutely jazzed they all were up on the stage. Wasn't my personal pick for best picture, but I'm not mad about it and it was definitely deserved.