No winner in the Oscars contest

This was a tough year to guess the Oscar winners, and on January 23 I challenged readers to guess the winners in the categories of Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress, and Best Supporting Actor.  While the consensus votes weren’t bad, no individual save one even came close. And that individual, reader Dragon, guessed four of the six winners: here are Dragon’s guesses:

Film: Green Book
Director: Alfonso Cuarón
Lead actor: Rami Malek
Lead actress: Glenn Close
Supporting actor: Mahershala Ali
Supporting actress: Amy Adams

Close was thought to be a shoo-in for her role in “The Wife”, but lost to Olivia Coleman of “The Favourite”. And Amy Adams in “Vice” lost to Regina King in “If Beale Street Could Talk.” Otherwise, Dragon was nose-on.

The readers’ answers were, in the same order of categories as above, and counting the winners of the poll:

Alfonso Cuarón
Rami Malek
Glenn Close
Mahershala Ali
Amy Adams

This is close to what Dragon guessed, but that is the consensus poll, not any individual’s vote.

Anyway, congrats to Dragon, though no prize will go out this time.

I won’t analyze the Oscars as there’s a big Woke Fight about these results and I didn’t see any of the movies anyway. All I know is that I’ll have to see “Roma”.




  1. Michael Fisher
    Posted February 25, 2019 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    Apollo 11 [93 mins, release March 8? in the USA] will be a must see – “The film consists solely of archival footage shot in 70 mm film that was previously unreleased to the public, and does not feature narration or interviews. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on January 24, 2019, and will be released theatrically by Neon later in 2019” [Wiki].

    • Michael Fisher
      Posted February 25, 2019 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

      Congrats Dragon!

      • randallschenck
        Posted February 25, 2019 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

        I remember seeing First Man last year and thought it was okay. I think the critics kind of thought – underwhelming.

        • Michael Fisher
          Posted February 25, 2019 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

          Well this will be a different beast methinks – the reviews are in & it’s at 9.1 or something [Sundance]

  2. JezGrove
    Posted February 25, 2019 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

    I saw Rami Malek’s performance as Freddie Mercury on Saturday. The film certainly isn’t perfect – it plays with, amongst other things, the timeline of Mercury’s AIDS diagnosis unnecessarily, for dramatic effect – though I don’t believe it’s guilty of the “straight-washing” that it’s been accused of – the viewer is left in no doubt about the nature of Freddie’s lifestyle. That said, Malek was very good and a worthy winner IMHO. Of course, he’s currently dating the actress who played Freddie’s girlfriend in the film, so that might have helped with the chemistry in their scenes together (but that wouldn’t be a first for Hollywood)!

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted February 25, 2019 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, I saw Bohemian Rhapsody last Thursday. Malek was great.

    • eric
      Posted February 25, 2019 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

      I agree, he definitely deserved Best Actor.

      Of the nominees for best picture, I only saw BlacKKKlansmen, Black Panther, and Bohemian Rhapsody. Of the three I’d put BlacKKKlansman as best, but admittedly I didn’t see any of the more serious dramas that typically win.

    • Mark R.
      Posted February 25, 2019 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

      My wife is a huge Queen fan, and I really admire the band, so we saw the film when it opened on the big screen. To me, it’s no surprise Malek won BA. He was very believable…actually, the acting in general was very well done. I also liked the performance of Allen Leech as Mercury’s…well…leech. I’m a big fan of Downton Abbey so seeing “Tom Branson” in a substantial Hollywood role was a treat.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted February 25, 2019 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

        It was also great seeing Baltimore mayor Tommy Carcetti as Queen’s manager. 🙂

        • Katey
          Posted February 26, 2019 at 10:03 am | Permalink

          I see your HBO’s series The Wire reference 🙂

  3. BobTerrace
    Posted February 25, 2019 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

    We went to someone’s house to watch the Oscars and we picked from 11 categories. My wife got 9 of 11 correct.

  4. Ken Kukec
    Posted February 25, 2019 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    This woke BS about Green Book is all wet. It wasn’t a “white savior” film; it was a pretty standard odd-bedfellows buddy flick. A little too eager to please, you ask me, but well crafted and with great lead performances.

    Do see Roma, Jerry. I saw four of the five foreign-language entries over the past coupla weeks — Shoplifters, Cold War, and Capernaum, in addition to Roma — and all of them were excellent, though Roma‘s in a class by itself.

    • Mark R.
      Posted February 25, 2019 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for this critique…I wasn’t going to watch Green Book because I might have been manipulated by the Woke. I’ll watch based on your objective critique. I also enjoyed Crash, though I was surprised it won Best Picture. Humans are unpredictable, but that’s a feature, not a bug. 🙂

      yes, everyone should watch Roma.

      • Posted February 26, 2019 at 7:11 am | Permalink

        My feelings on Crash were identical to yours.

        The job of a movie, IMO, it to move the viewer, emotionally (or intellectually). It’s absurd to criticize a movie for doing its job.

    • Posted February 26, 2019 at 6:43 am | Permalink

      I have not seen it, but would like to. My question is does it fit this narrative:
      1. White person who is prejudiced is tasked with transporting a talented black musician through the Jim Crow south. He must protect this musician, and some would see this as fitting the white savior narrative. However
      2. Over the course of their travels the two develop a friendship and the white person ‘grows’. He becomes more woke. In this way it also has a ‘black savior’ narrative.

      • Kirbmarc
        Posted February 26, 2019 at 7:03 am | Permalink

        On the surface, yes, but I don’t think the movie is as simplistic as that. There’s an element of personal growth for the black musician, too.

        It’s the story of a friendship, and of how people need and may sometimes wish to see from each other’s perspective, even though social norms keep them apart.

    • Kirbmarc
      Posted February 26, 2019 at 6:51 am | Permalink

      Yeah, the woke polemic about Green Book is shallow and counterproductive. Then again, that often happens with the wokes.

    • Posted February 26, 2019 at 7:20 am | Permalink

      Hi Ken,

      I saw Roma and I can’t say I liked it. (Obviously, this is all À chacun son goût; but …) I’d like to hear your enumeration of its points of excellence.

      I found:
      1. Interesting cinematography
      2. (Likely) true depiction of 70s Mexico
      3. Sympathetic performance by Yalitza Aparicio
      4. Totally depressing story

      The whole thing seemed very flat to me. A trudge through the bummer of a life lived by the lead character.

      I just felt crappy after watching it.

      (And I can enjoy tragic movies and downbeat movies. And I like foreign films and films with subtitles (I much prefer subtitles to dubbing).)

      • darrelle
        Posted February 26, 2019 at 9:08 am | Permalink

        I agree. I can acknowledge the quality of certain aspects of the film but I did not “like” it. As a documentary, of sorts, of life in that time and place it may be important, but as a movie? Not appealing to me.

      • Simon Hayward
        Posted February 26, 2019 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        “A trudge through the bummer of a life lived by the lead character” seems like a reasonable summary to me. It had some touching moments but how much cleaning up dog shit do I need to watch (it seemed like the only function of the dog was to make a mess for the maid).

        I saw all of the best pic entries except for Vice. Green Book on Sat, Bohemian Rhapsody the Sat before and Blackkklansman recently too, so those are the freshest in my mind. My best picture selection would have been Blackkklansman, but I liked Green Book, too. I certainly don’t think it deserves the vitriol it has received, and the two protagonists were both well played, the supporting actor Oscar seemed appropriate. I didn’t think The Favourite was the best picture, although it was a fun film and there were great individual performances. Didn’t see The Wife so can’t comment on whether Glenn Close was robbed, but the three acting nominations seemed fine to me.

        Of the best picture nominees, the only one that I didn’t enjoy was Roma. That doesn’t mean it’s not worth seeing, a good movie doesn’t have to be enjoyable, but it helps.

        One of the refreshing things his year was the huge variety of styles. And btw, the lack of a host at the awards ceremony was, imo, a huge improvement.

        • Posted February 26, 2019 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

          I liked BlacKKKlansman and I feel it had some great performances. But, try as I might, I am just not a fan of Spike Lee’s style.

      • revelator60
        Posted February 26, 2019 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

        It’s not a bummer of a life though—it has moments of pain and joy, and it ends on a transcendent note (I don’t know why you’d feel crappy after watching it). The relationship between the kids and Cleo the maid is deeper and more loving than that between the kids and their mother.

        Cleo lives a humble life, but one with its share of ups and downs, not a falsely glamorized feel-good Hollywood story. She rides out a turbulent time in Mexican history, and in the life of the family she looks after, and overcomes a personal tragedy. Far from depressing, it’s a story of endurance and tribute to Cleo’s persistence.

        • Posted February 26, 2019 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

          Obviously, everyone’s taste is different; but the only bright note in the movie, for me, was the relationship between Cleo and the kids.

          It seemed to me that, at the end, she was in exactly the same place she started, except she had (what seemed like) a bad experience with her lover, lost a child, was treated in crappy ways by many people, etc.

          It seemed a story of endurance (enduring a load of continual sh!t). Fair enough; but is was definitely not uplifting for me.

  5. Posted February 25, 2019 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    Absolutely the best movie I saw in 2018 (and I didn’t see all) was Free Solo. Glad it won an Oscar.

  6. rustybrown
    Posted February 25, 2019 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

    Who cares?

    • Posted February 26, 2019 at 7:23 am | Permalink

      Apparently you, enough to comment.

  7. Roger
    Posted February 25, 2019 at 10:26 pm | Permalink

    You can put 100 people in a room and 99 don’t vote for A Star Is Born but all it takes is one to believe in it and it still won’t get an Oscar unfortunately.

    • Posted February 26, 2019 at 7:25 am | Permalink

      I enjoyed A Star Is Born more than any of the others. (I haven’t seen Green Book yet.

      • Roger
        Posted February 26, 2019 at 11:00 am | Permalink

        Green Book is good IMO. Haven’t seen A Star Is Born but their melodramatic overly rehearsed marketing tour is getting on my nerves. Give it rest already haha.

        • Roger
          Posted February 26, 2019 at 11:06 am | Permalink

          P.S. in what universe would 99 out of 100 people think Lady Gaga would do a terrible job, and in what universe would one person out of 100 in a room be Bradley bleepin Cooper for cryin out loud. Gimme a break.

        • Posted February 26, 2019 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

          I was highly skeptical of ASIB-2018, for the reasons you note.

          However: I found it the most enjoyable movie (despite the sadness of the story) I’ve seen in a very long time.

          Cooper is amazingly good. So is Lady Gaga. (About whom I knew very little prior to the movie — as GBJames has pointed out in another recent thread: I don’t keep up with the times 🙂 )

          I rank the three ASIB movies I’ve seen (haven’t seen the 1937 one) like this:
          1. 2018
          2. 1954
          3. 1976

          But I liked them all. (And I am not into romances.) Each one had good casting for the lead roles.

  8. Dragon
    Posted February 26, 2019 at 8:10 am | Permalink

    Thank you. I didn’t see that many of the nominated films, so it was largely speculation of how the academy tends to vote.
    I did thoroughly enjoy Rami’s performance.

  9. Pierluigi Ballabeni
    Posted February 26, 2019 at 9:21 am | Permalink

    Netflix had the ridiculous idea of distributing Roma in Spain with subtitles, as if Spaniards could not understand Mexican Spanish, thus insulting both Mexicans and Spaniards. The subtitles were however removed after a few days of complaints.

    • Simon Hayward
      Posted February 26, 2019 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      I’ve seen British and Irish TV or movies on TV play with subtitles in the US when there are strong regional accents involved (my wife’s home town of Newcastle seems a particular target) – this can include dodgy “translations” of slang phrases rather than the words actually spoken. It’s irritating.

  10. Posted February 26, 2019 at 10:09 am | Permalink

    I was gonna pick Regina King but changed it to Amy Adams. I also was thinking that Roma would be a shoe-in for Best Foreign-language film but picked it instead for Best Picture.
    I’d love to see BlacKkKlansman.

  11. bobkillian
    Posted February 26, 2019 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    Vice is really good storytelling. History with surprises.

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