Last week Entertainment Weekly‘s Joey Nolfi and Piya Sinha-Rpy suggested 15 Oscar contenders thus far (“Oscars 2019: From Black Panther to Hereditary“). Here they are alongside HE reactions:
1. Spike Lee‘s Black Klansman for Best Picture. HE response: A partly illogical but reasonably decent procedural about an actual undercover FBI operation again the Ku Klux Klan that happened in the ’70s. Great anti-Trump finale but it’s just not stellar enough to rank as a Best Picture contender. Not happening.
2. Ethan Hawke for Best Actor in First Reformed. HE response: Yes! Great performance, superb film, great Schrader comeback. If there’s a God, it’ll happen.
3. Glenn Close for Best Actress in The Wife. HE response: Definitely. Close’s performance stands tall on its own, but the role (gidted writer married to best-selling author) and the film synch perfectly with the #MeToo zeitgeist, and Close is totally owed after six Best Actress noms. She’s not only a Best Actress lock, but she really might win. Hell, she probably will.
4. Ryan Coogler‘s Black Panther for Best Picture. HE response: It’ll be nominated, yes, but don’t forget that only the last hour of Black Panther is really good — the rest is just okay. It’ll get the nomination because of (a) the huge grosses ($699,747,193 domestic, $1,346,344,642 worldwide) and (b) the fact that representational identity politics matter to the New Academy Kidz.
5. Toni Collette for Best Actress in Hereditary. HE response: Agreed, she’s great in this, but when was the last time that the Academy nominated a performance in a horror film? This said, HE totally supports Collette and Hereditary.
6. Daveed Diggs for Best Actor in Blindspotting. HE response: Not a chance.
7. Brad Bird‘s Incredibles 2 for Best Animated Features. HE response: Probably, but it’s not as good as the original and the Academy knows this.
8. Natalie Portman for Best Actress in Annihilation. HE response: Forget it.
9. Wes Anderson‘s Isle of Dogs for Best Animated Feature. HE response: SURE!! What does Justin Chang know?
10. RBG for Best Documentary Feature. HE response: Definitely!!
11. Sicario: Day of the Soldado for Best Original Screenplay (Taylor Sheridan). HE response: Sounds good to me, but while youre at it, keep Benocio del Toro and Isabela Moner in mind for Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress.
12. Tully for Best Original Screenplay (Diablo Cody). HE response: Seriously? Not happening.
13. Morgan Neville‘s Won’t You Be My Neighbor? for Best Documentary Feature. HE response: Yup!
14. Emily Blunt for Best Actress in A Quiet Place. HE response: Nope.
15. Joaquin Phoenix for Best Actor in You Were Never Really Here. HE response: Rock-solid Phoenix performance, but it’s a little too internal and probably a little too hammery to win a Best Actor nomination.