The wait is over.
With the 2018 Oscar nominations out, we checked in with our friends at Ogden 6 for some insight into who could be heading home with Academy Awards this year. In a departure from previous years, there are very few clear frontrunners, making the major categories a genuine sprint to the finish line rather than the perfunctory coronation sometimes inflicted on millions of viewers around the world. If you recall a year ago, there were some people like Brie Larson who stood there and did not applaud his victory.
Greta Gerwig became only the fifth woman in history to be nominated for Best Director, while Jordan Peele became only the fifth black man to be nominated for the award. “Mudbound” put worries of an anti-Netflix bias to rest with its four nominations: supporting actress and original song for Mary J. Blige; adapted screenplay for Rees and Virgil Williams; and cinematography for Morrison.
So, Regal Cinemas’ Best Picture Film Festival should be well met. It might have a strong chance to win Best Director and Best Score and have a strong chance in the Actress category. Or that the ultimate message of Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is that compassion ultimately triumphs over ignorance, anger, prejudice, and violence? Is Wonder Woman better than Logan, which is the best super hero movie ever and one of last year’s top-five best films? No. After all, “Lady Bird” has won various critics’ awards. Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf’s stunning portrayals of a daughter and mother constantly at odds with one another earned them nominations in the lead actress and supporting actress categories, respectively.
Nominations for this year’s Academy Awards (the 90th) were announced January 23.
Their movies – Lady Bird and Get Out respectively – were also nominated in the Best Picture category. I found these films to be two of the year’s best as they not only tell stories about characters not often highlighted, but they are also both incredibly entertaining.
What’s important about these instances, and why Gary Oldman’s take on Winston Churchill in “Darkest Hour” will be yet another, is that it’s not the make-up and costuming or physical adjustment that make the difference.
Sally Hawkins plays a mute cleaner with a passionate love life, Frances McDormand is a grieving woman in a fury about the shortcomings of the men around her, and Margot Robbie turns the tale of disgraced 1990s ice skater Tonya Harding on its head.
Best Supporting Actor will be a toss-up between Sam Rockwell and Willem Dafoe for “The Florida Project”, and it might go to the latter.
Veteran actor Meryl Streep received her 21st Oscar nomination for her portrayal of Katherine Graham in Steven Spielberg’s newspaper drama, “The Post” in the Best Actress category. The other nominated directors include Peele, Gerwig, del Toro, and “Phantom Thread’s” Paul Thomas Anderson.
For just the fifth time ever, a woman is nominated for best director.
For once, an Oscar nominations list is being celebrated, not ridiculed, and that’s great to see.