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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

BYOB Oscar 2018

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103 Responses to “BYOB Oscar 2018”

  1. Sideshow Bill says:

    Ranking what I’ve seen:

    Shape Of Water
    Lady Bird
    Dunkirk
    Get Out
    3 Billboards

    Even though I haven’t seen Phantom Thread I’d be thrilled if it and PTA won because I love him to death.

    Thing is I’m not 100% in love with any of the 5 I saw. They all had problems. Shape was the most satisfying but it felt a bit too long and tedious at points. Lady Bird had pacing issues and the main character got on my nerves, although as the father of two teenage girls it was an accurate portrayal I guess.

  2. Doug R says:

    Good to see Allison Janey.

  3. Bulldog68 says:

    I think Get Out winning screenplay just made the Best Pictute race a real toss up.

  4. Bob Burns says:

    agree about Get Out and the screenplay win.

    This is the best produced Oscars we’ve seen, and Kimmel every year.

  5. Stella's Boy says:

    Or are they spreading it around? Peele gets screenplay, GDT gets director, and 3BB gets picture.

  6. JSPartisan says:

    Giving Peele the BA Screenplay seemed like the end of it for the night. It’s cool he won that award though. I haven’t watched. Just can’t care anymore.

    The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences: “FISH FUCKING AND SILENT MOVIES, ARE THE BEST! PARTY ON, DUDES!”

  7. Stella's Boy says:

    Nevermind. Shape of Water wasn’t my first or second choice, but I’m very happy 3BB didn’t win.

  8. spassky says:

    Mark Bridges on the jet ski!

  9. JSPartisan says:

    Roger Deakins finally winning, is just one of those things, that makes you just happy on a cinema level, but annoyed it took 14 times of amazing work to be recognized with a statue.

  10. Sideshow Bill says:

    I’m gonna join in on this one:

    Oscars won;

    Kobe Bryant 1
    Kubrick 0
    Hitchcock 0
    PTA 0
    David Lynch 0
    David Fincher 0
    Lars Von Trier 0

    The world just doesn’t make sense sometimes

  11. leahnz says:

    “but I’m very happy 3BB didn’t win”

    ditts

    other random obvs:

    not sure about the crystal rock cave thing but some nice stage set designs this year

    deakins’ hair rock on

    why come haddish & rudolph didn’t host it all — kimmel is so vanilla, slightly-puffy, competent, boring AF (though he should play judd apatow in his life story TV movie)

    the size disparity between j foster and j law, trippin’ balls what even, like harry and hagrid

    frances mcdormand, i wanna party w/you

  12. JSPartisan says:

    The Academy is all about the Lakers. The moment Kobe was nominated. It was obvious he would win. Also, never forget, that MEMPHIS’ OWN… THREE 6 MAFIA… OSCAR WINS! TAKE THAT, STANLEY!

  13. Triple Option says:

    Did Allison Janney even mention Tonya Harding’s mom?? Should she have?

    Who was mentioning JLaw’s lack of facial expression in another thread? Granted, she doesn’t have the experience as her co-presenters but part of the lines she read coulda got her confused with fill-in.

    I thought Shape of Water was an OK movie but I wouldn’t I have picked it for Best Pic. I don’t know if I’m punishing it in my head for not being half the film Pan’s Labyrinth was.

  14. Mike says:

    I liked Shape of Water as an enjoyable little riff on monster movies. But now that it’s won BP, it’s going to be one of those things where “How did this beat Get Out!?!” And “It’s the worst winner since X.” Oh well.

  15. movieman says:

    “The Shape of Water” is the new “Birdman.”
    A really weird (Fox Searchlight) movie that apparently a lot of Oscar voters loved.
    Almost felt surreal for Best Director and Best Picture to be in sync: first time since…”Birdman”!

    Found the entire telecast groaningly predictable.
    When the only real “upset”s are in the Best Documentary Short and Best Live Action Short categories, you know you’re in for a very long night. Which it most definitely was.

    Biggest disappointment: nothing for “Lady Bird.” (Although like pretty much everything else, I predicted the snub.)

  16. PTA Fluffer says:

    Mike, no serious person will be asking how or why GET OUT managed to lose to SHAPE. In fact, if his movie hadn’t been such a financial success, this Jordan Peele moment wouldn’t be happening at all. Nice try. And I say all this as someone who thought GET OUT was pretty ok for a comedy sketch stretched out to 100+minutes by a first-time director and screenwriter.

  17. Hcat says:

    I knew Jen Lawrence was 27 but is she also 6’7? Foster looked like she was standing next to an effect from Avatar. Did Disney not feed Foster when she was young?

    Overall good production fine with all the wins though wish Lady Bird went home with something.

  18. Bob Burns says:

    “Dangerous Racist Cop Helps White Woman, as Usual” is a shorter, more descriptive title. How’d that thing get nommed? I blame the critics and the awards bloggers. A weakness for carpet chewing isn’t an excuse.

  19. Mike says:

    PTA Fluffer, I was thinking less about the serious people and the more casual film fans. It feels like Get Out is going to be one of those movies that end up on cable all the time and could actually get remembered.

  20. spassky says:

    It is absolute bullsh*t that “Icarus” won over “faces places” … we missed the opportunity to have agnes on that stage and it is absolute BS. Netflix can go right to hell with how much money they spent on their marketing blitz. netflix is a pall on the film industry.

  21. MarkVH says:

    This was without a doubt the weirdest Oscar ceremony of my lifetime. It felt like a 4-hour SNL skit. A celebration of diversity and wokeness brought to you by your corporate overlords at Disney and Walmart. An industry that spent years hiding and enabling rapists and harassers honoring its history while patting itself on the back for progressiveness, all within the confines of the anachronistic award show format. The #MeToo movement reduced to…an Oscar montage. It was all so strange and uncomfortable.

    Stray observations:

    Emma Stone’s comment re: Gerwig was both unoriginal (hey Natalie Portman) and also bush league. Want to honor Gerwig? Lobby your friends to give her the damn award. Don’t undermine the achievements of the other nominees. Not helpful.

    Last year’s slate of winners was more diverse and inclusive.

    Nothing says “celebrate Mexico!” like multiple cuts to Guillermo from Kimmel. “See, we even invited a Mexican guy here!”

    I loved how they invited the hardest-working and most recognizable Native American actor in movie history to introduce a montage about…war movies. WTF?

    I ride for Del Toro, but The Shape of Water is the worst Best Picture winner since The King’s Speech, maybe even Crash.

    Kimmel was great and should host every year.

    In all, this was the most Hollywood Oscar ceremony I can recall – tons of lip service and self-congratulation for change and diversity without having to actually do anything. I guess it’s inevitable that the industry would still be struggling with how to reconcile its past and its future, but they couldn’t have done it more awkwardly if they tried.

  22. brack says:

    Oscars 2018: a night with no frontrunners led to unexpected milestones

    https://www.vox.com/2018/3/5/17078360/oscars-2018-milestones-firsts

    Interesting headline, since The Shape of Water was the “front runner” in nominations, but I liked the write up and the history that I haven’t seen all together until this article.

  23. Nick says:

    Shape of water was just a horrible fucking movie. Objectively speaking just fucking awful. What are the chances the moment Jenkins finds out his crush is homophobic a black couple walks in for the first time and he also learns his crush is a bigot. What are the chances.

    Also, the monster was not an actual character.

    Also, the whole plagiarism thing.

  24. palmtree says:

    Shape of Water was like Birdman in its celebration of Hollywood too. Also, 3BB would have been a threat but Fox Searchlight handled both films so that probably neutralized it.

    I called the Shape win, although I hardly see it as surprising. And would have preferred some of the other films, but definitely not 3bb.

  25. Chucky says:

    Just wait for next weekend’s theater bookings. Theaters are not going to play Academy Award Winner this or that. They’re going to play Black Panther and the new releases.

  26. Sideshow Bill says:

    I like Shape Of Water the more I think I about it. I’m Ok with it winning. As I say to people every year, it’s essentially meaningless because Boogie Nights was still the best movie of 1997 even though it won jack squat. I don’t return to movies because of awards they won. Awards are nice. The shows are fun. But I love the movies. I’m sure most if not all of you agree in some respect.

    Now, as a horror fan I kind of expected Tobe Hooper to not be in the In Memoriam montage. Powers Boothe, however, is fucking inexcusable. Never fails to astonish me.

  27. MarkVH says:

    As always, TCM’s In Memoriam montage for this year was a million times better than the Oscar one.

  28. JSPartisan says:

    Those TCM In Memoriams are amazing. Why the Academy doesn’t just use them, or copy them, is another one of those head scratching moments. They also do stupid crap like forget Adam West, because they will scream, “TV!” Like that matters with a career like his.

  29. movieman says:

    If the majority of Oscar winners weren’t already on DVD or arriving imminently: (“Shape of Water,” “I, Tonya,” “Disaster Artist” and “Call Me by Your Name” are all slated for release on March 13th), they’d definitely be heading back into theaters this weekend. Old habits die hard.

  30. palmtree says:

    “Theaters are not going to play Academy Award Winner this or that. They’re going to play Black Panther and the new releases.”

    I get your whole Oscar-schilling argument, but…

    Why would you assume Black Panther won’t be up for Oscars next year? Not saying it will be, but you saying categorically it’s not an Oscar-winner…well we won’t really know until we get to this time next year.

  31. Triple Option says:

    The only thing more predictable than the winners is the inevitable trashing of what won & the ceremony the next day. Yikes, I need to curtail the negativity.

    Eva Marie Saint looked saintly. Genetic rarity but great argument for not going under the knife.

    Thought Eddie Vedder did a great job. Good song choice. I thought the slides of those who passed went a lot quicker than previous years.

    I thought the nominees for best song made up the strongest field of deserving candidates in a long time.

  32. Bender says:

    Has anybody seen this? Get Out and The Skeleton Key are basically the same movie. I’m sure you could do this with many movies but….

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNl0MLGKil0

    Wondering how he got Best Original Screenplay.

  33. GSpot 3000 says:

    I find it strange that nobody’s talking about how nobody fricken showed up to this thing. I get why all the male stars would want to hide. Not much upside in attending with a huge potential downside… but it sure felt weird to me. Am I the only one?

  34. Stella's Boy says:

    The same? That’s a stretch. Get Out is also vastly superior.

  35. palmtree says:

    It’s not weird at all that Get Out won screenplay. It was the most talked about movie for a year and became a metaphor for race relations. So much so that it was still relevant a year later.

    And those “similarities” are nothing more than plot points. Lots of horror movies have the same beats, something so prevalent it is itself covered in the Scream movies and other meta-horror movies. What Get Out is great at is theme, taking a standard plot to the next level. So yes, Get Out deserves its Oscar.

  36. Hcat says:

    I didn’t watch all the speeches but from what I could tell nobody got played off by the orchestra this year. Seems like a rarity for Oscar.

    They included Romero in the montage, and a quick clip of Chainsaw in one of the montages, they certainly should have included Hooper in the montage.

    I would say Booth as well, but is the In Memorial limited to members of the academy or do they hit the entire film industry as a whole?

    And I agree that seeing Eva Marie Saint and Rita Moreno present was a special treat. Loved that they played the clips of their perfs before they came out.

  37. Chucky says:

    Earth to palmtree: In an economy that’s becoming challenged, theaters are going to play commercial movies, not artsy-fartsy stuff. And I don’t approve of anyone putting words in my mouth.

    As to why the Academy does not use the TCM In Memoriam montage? TCM is owned by Time Warner. The Oscar show airs on a TV network owned by Disney.

  38. Hcat says:

    Chucky, maybe the fact that some of these have been out six months and have already hit video has something to do with their screen counts next weekend? At this point in their studios have more to make on impulse buys and VOD rentals than in keeping them in theaters. I am actually impressed on the BO grouping of the nominees. I would have never pegged I, Tonya to bump up against 30 Million.

  39. palmtree says:

    Earth to Chucky: I didn’t put any words in your mouth.

    I challenged the notion that Black Panther being commercial means it’s not awards worthy. Last year you could have said the same thing about Get Out but you would have been wrong.

  40. leahnz says:

    also what was the deal with kimmel’s bit trying to score weed off SS, is s-berg a stoner and i’ve never heard of this or something? it would explain some things

  41. Ray Pride says:

    Mistook him for Harrison Ford?

  42. Hcat says:

    It seemed like Kimmel was just stalling for time, but Harrelson was right across the aisle, it would have been funny if he popped over, whispered into his ear, and pretend to slid something into his pocket.

  43. leahnz says:

    maybe SS is ford’s source
    (it was kinda funny how s-berg pulled his coat tighter, like bogarting his dime bag spliffs from jimmy ‘i need to do some shrooms so maybe i’ll be marginally less boring’ kimmel)

    i think i read that harrelson has in his dotage given up the ganga, this is inexplicable to me

  44. Sideshow Bill says:

    The fact that idiot conservatives (is there any other kind) got sand in their vaginas because a movie where a woman has sex with a fishman makes me hope every Oscar movie next year includes fantastical beastiality. Conservatives can rot.

  45. leahnz says:

    GANJA, not the river in india! (my tablet’s weird autocorrect is my nemesis, my personal skynet)

  46. spassky says:

    i read some story about how he was hittin a vape behind the scenes at the oscars. don’t know what kind though.

  47. leahnz says:

    who, spassky?
    (can you legally vape weed ‘in public’ in Cali now? i know the law changes have been rolling out since ’16 but even after googlizing it’s unclear to me if vaping indoors somewhere is legal or not)

  48. YancySkancy says:

    Hcat: I believe the orchestra started playing over the Special Effects winners as they were wrapping up.

    Biggest In Memoriam snub by far: Dorothy Malone, Best Supporting Actress winner for 1956. She died in January of this year, so no excuse.

  49. palmtree says:

    Maybe Kimmel’s go-to crowdwork joke was weed, because that’s exactly the joke he used when he went to the Chinese theatre next door.

  50. leahnz says:

    yes maybe so, a cringey attempt to be a hip cat hurr durr (though i thought perhaps he was serious in a joking manner about the ‘odour du pot’ in the Chinese theatre)

    tobe hooper’s exclusion from the departed montage is inexcusable, particularly after using that image of leatherface in one of the other montages, as hcat pointed out. get yer shit together academy.
    (the year might cut off proper for the purposes of the ‘in memoriam’ re: Malone, yancy, hopefully she’ll make the 2018 cut)

    a whole lot of dog-n-pony show nonsense but i still feel a little bummed when my personal faves i’m rooting for get skunked, like ‘lady bird’

  51. Pete B. says:

    RE: Sideshow’s mini-rant

    Not sure where I saw it or else I’d give credit where it’s due, but I laughed when I read that one of the rejected titles for The Shape of Water was…
    Grinding Nemo.

  52. Poet says:

    Those ratings…yikes.

  53. spassky says:

    Powers Booth, Tobe Hooper, Dorothy Malone, and probably a lot more — yeah, it’s sad.

    RE: Lady Bird. I would’ve been sad for Ronan other years, but I thought Hawkins and McDormand (questionable film notwithstanding) had great perfs. Metcalf on the other hand… clearly the best work in her category (besides manville who was never going to win).

    Biggest upset for me is still in documentary… God I wanted to see Agnes get a standing ovation.

    http://www.indiewire.com/2018/03/oscars-2018-inside-ceremony-paul-thomas-anderson-guillermo-del-toro-1201936102/

    “Woody Harrelson stood a few feet away, somehow managing to inconspicuously puff on a vaporizer in tight quarters, until someone next to him asked for a hit.”

    You can’t smoke e-cig anywhere that cigs are banned, but… yeah I had a friend who told me he fell asleep with a pen in his mouth at a screening of Bladerunner 2049 in Jersey, so take that for what it’s worth.

    Side note: I am intrigued by Gal Gadot, but the same way i am intrigued by the peacocks at a zoo — there is this unnatural otherworldliness to her… I really don’t think she can play any role but Diana. But man I love her doing that so whatever! Give the woman a hot dog cannon (first wrote “hot dog canon”… freudian slip?).

  54. Hcat says:

    My go to response for when people speak about Gadot (and I agree fully with what you said except about only playing the one role) is that if Keanu Reeves could carve a decent career while possessing many of the same ethereal qualities I think Gadot has got a decent shot. I don’t think she will be winning an Oscar, but I would have said the same thing about Kidman at one time, or Theron right up until 15 minutes into Monster.

    If we use Kidman as a correlative timeline I would say Gadot is at about Far and Away. Gadot just needs to find her To Die For or Election.

  55. SOMB says:

    I am shocked that Carson never mentioned how this script only works because it goes all in on the cliches. The girl is intransigent because of her mother”s death (seen that before). The professor is terminally ill so he decides to hate himself along with the entire world (seen that before too, and unfortunately, a 2016 Nicholl”s winner Talking About The Sky had a similar cancer stricken protagonist as well!). Everything about this script is cliched along with the storyline. And, as others mentioned, the dialogue covers up all that stink which is usually a sign of poor writing. I do think the dialogue is snappy and entertaining but there is no rhyme or reason to what the character”s are saying. Where”s the subtext in the scene you referenced? Simply writing witty things is not good writing if anything it”s lazy writing. There is a reason why this script hasn”t been picked up by anyone yet.

  56. JSPartisan says:

    The Academy, now has the president of the united states, going on about their not being any stars. The ratings were terrible, and why are they terrible? Let’s go back to 2009, and start from there. If the Academy wants to keep on nominating niche films. If they want to keep dealing with the fringes, then guess what? It’s going to be a fringe show, because that’s where they are heading.

    I’m not stating throwing a Marvel Studios film in there would help things. It will next year, but I doubt they recognize Black Panther at all. Seeing as the older Academy members have spatial distortion. Nevertheless, the Oscars are in a sorry state, because they continue to not understand who their audience is. It’s young people, who have watched movies they love be snubbed all of their lives. If the Academy doesn’t want to turn into a streamed ceremony on Netflix. They better get their heads out of their collective backsides, and start nominating what matters. Not films that are supposed to matter.

  57. Stella's Boy says:

    I have many questions JS. Will young people actually watch a nearly 4-hour awards show if movies they like are nominated? Why didn’t Get Out help the ratings? Young people saw that movie in droves. Did they just not like it? What if a movie “matters” but voting members just don’t think it’s one of the very best movies of the year? Did none of this year’s Best Picture nominees matter? I thought the consensus was that at least a few of them mattered.

  58. amblinman says:

    Maybe just maybe the Acadamy Awards is a legacy media deal that increasingly no one cares about except all the Olds?

    Some things just die out. It’s called “change.”

  59. Bulldog says:

    If it were treated like the Superbowl for movies and you had the promise of new never before seen movie trailers debuting that could help a little.

  60. Ray Pride says:

    Commercials were only allowed as of a few years ago, and now only one per studio.

  61. Hcat says:

    The ratings are down because it is on television and the ratings are down for everything on television. This is not a referendum on movies or the academy or the metoo movement. Anyone who pitches that is trying to sell you on their narrative.

    Television is dead, it just doesn’t know it yet.

  62. JSPartisan says:

    “I have many questions JS.” Shoot.

    “Will young people actually watch a nearly 4-hour awards show if movies they like are nominated?”

    This isn’t totally about millennials. It’s about a large group of people, who love movies, and go see movies that they love never get nominated. This is a multi-generational thing. People also watch the Superbowl every year, and 4-hours flies by, when it’s fun.

    “Why didn’t Get Out help the ratings?”

    If it were IT…

    “Young people saw that movie in droves.”

    They saw IT more. They saw Wonder Woman more.

    “Did they just not like it?”

    See above.

    “What if a movie “matters” but voting members just don’t think it’s one of the very best movies of the year?”

    SB, there’s one movie every year, that’s good enough, and zeitgeisty enough, that it should be nominated. That’s the problem with this award show, but I will save it for the next part.

    “Did none of this year’s Best Picture nominees matter?”

    Outside of Get Out? No. Not one of them mattered as much as Wonder Woman, and that’s why there is no easy solution here. Grace Randolph summed it up correctly, when she stated the Academy was a little scummy having Gal there. They won’t nominate the movie, but they will have her there, the Avengers there, and probably the women from Black Panther there next… except they won’t nominate any of these films (and does anyone seriously think the Academy will show the love, 13 nom love, to Black Panther?). They will vote for a lot of fringe stuff, seen by hardly anyone, and that’s why there’s no easy fixes. They used to recognize the zeitgeist. Now? They gleefully ignore it.

    “I thought the consensus was that at least a few of them mattered.”

    Go look at the nominees for the last ten years, and you will see a handful of films we still care about today. That’s mattering. Get Out, is only going to grow in popularity as years go by… no one is going to care about woman has intercourse with fish man movie.

    Again, you and others on here, seem to think this argument is about ME, when it’s NOT ABOUT ME or MY TASTE. It’s about the same argument I’ve been putting out there since The Dark Knight debacle, and guess right? It seems like I have a point. The Academy, needs to find away to matter to people again, and if they don’t… they will fade away.

    And Man, how many things have they stated would die, because of a different generation, but they are still here? The Academy Awards will fade away. If they don’t stop acting like they are more important than people’s taste and opinion. Doesn’t mean either is more right or wrong, but one gives away an award. They should, maybe, try to please the people some of the time.

    Again, my point has been proven, and I don’t care about this Award or the Academy anymore. They are doing a great job, or making themselves irrelevant.

    HC: that’s the most out there thing, because TV is far from dead. The Globes get solid ratings. The Academy, when they remember to nominate films people love, get ratings. TV is the most important medium we have. It’s just evolving.

  63. palmtree says:

    Black Panther has to score a few nominations at least, such as costume, score, song, visual effects, sound mixing/editing, production design, etc…not to mention it could get one for screenplay like Logan did or director. Keep in mind Star Wars earned noms for picture, director, and screenplay back in the day. Were they just more with it back then?

    I’m sure the Black Panther victory lap will have some viewers tuning in, especially if you have someone cool like Tiffany Haddish hosting and representing the next generation.

  64. JSPartisan says:

    Palmtree, Black Panther has to get more than technical noms. It has to be treated with respect, because it’s a milestone in cinema. I simply do not see these people, who blame comic book movies for all of their woes, treating the King with respect.

  65. palmtree says:

    JS, I totally agree, and said as much too.

    A big question for me is whether the Academy will ever award the MCU in a similar way it was okay with fantasy because of the achievements of LOTR. Eventually, the MCU will reach its undeniable masterpiece (Black Panther is a strong candidate), and the superhero stigma will relax, at least for one year.

  66. Poet says:

    I’m not the biggest fan of Get Out, but I was glad to see it nominated, if only to make the Oscars more culturally relevant. If it (or Dunkirk) had won, it would be too late to help this year’s ratings, but it might have prompted the general public to take more interest next year. The last decade of Best Picture winners have sold the fewest movie tickets in Hollywood history. Are you surprised that the general audience of any age no longer sees the Oscars as relevant to their lives?

  67. Stella's Boy says:

    But you don’t think It deserved a Best Picture nomination do you? I don’t know that I agree with your claim that only Get Out mattered. Lady Bird and Call Me By Your Name also seemed to matter, even if they made less money.

  68. JSPartisan says:

    SB, out of that lot of films? Get Out should have won best picture. Get Out, is some genre bending, redefining shit. It’s the movie that mattered the most, out of the ones that were nominated.

    Lady Bird, is a movie in a genre that has happened before. The same with Call Me by Your Name. Get Out is the stand out, and it’s the one people will be shocked never won an Oscar. This, of course, depends on the Academy Awards still being viable ten years from now.

    Palm, you would hope, but I would bet against it.

  69. palmtree says:

    JS, didn’t read your long response above before I posted mine, so you comment makes more sense now.

    What do you think of a category for Best Big Budget Film or something like that? I know it immediately sounds like a lesser than award, but it would still have the end result of getting culturally important films nominated. And there are precedents for this all over Oscar history too.

  70. Stella's Boy says:

    I would have preferred Get Out over The Shape of Water. Haven’t you not seen Get Out though?

  71. Bulldog says:

    If Avatar can be nominated, why not Wonder Woman, or Black Panther, or Logan for Best Picture. I’d watch those three over Avatar any day.

  72. Stella's Boy says:

    Oh same here Bulldog, without question.

  73. Hcat says:

    JS, the globes dropped 5 percent 11 in the demo and they had freakin’ OPRAH and a set runtime. Also hits before all the awards fatigue sets in. The majority of networks are seeing declines year over year over year and even with counting multiple viewing opportunities the top shows are drawing audiences whose numbers would have gotten them canceled in the nineties. And the industry is answering this decline by making more expensive and just plain more more more. Peak TV will collapse under its own weight.

    But that’s just my grumpy old man rant, lets get back to yours. Cinecom and early Miramax sent some shots across the bow, but when SPC, Gramercy, and Disney/Miramax got set up the long shift started and eventually all the slots were filled by boutiques and true indies (heralding what would happen with television and cable channels). This did not result in a loss of relevance, or a cratering of ratings. Instead it lead people to see Juno and Black Swan and The English Patient. Look at the 2000s, Gladiator, Beautiful Mind, Return of the King, those were giant hits, relevant to their time, pretty much ignored today.

  74. spassky says:

    can we use some bloody qualifiers here? I’m tired of hearing “this is that” and “everyone does this” “… will do this”… these are opinions. show some humility, for fucks sake. I liked “Get Out” the second time around quite a bit, but not sure how well it will hold up down the line. “CMBYN” “Phantom Thread” “Ladybird” all seem like movies I will revisit multiple times in the future… “Get Out” works its charms the first two viewings (mediocre horror film firs time around, incisive satire second time around), not sure how much mileage it actually has. Having said that Best Original Screenplay is very much deserved, and I got goosebumps thinking about Peele’s future career.

    Can’t help but feel I’m in a sequel to “Get Out” hearing all the passively racist white people talk about their love for “Black Panther”… Marvel movies, black film do not need white people’s charity. Having said that, I’m down for giving these films oscars for the sake of them having oscars, for “firsts” to be knocked down, because Oscars mean fuck all in the larger scheme of things. Give an oscar to rachel morrison, dee rees, superhero movies, whatever…

  75. movieman says:

    “Phantom Thread,” “Lady Bird” and “Call Me By Your Name” were the Best Picture nominees that mattered most to me.
    I think “PT” will be recognized as one of Anderson’s most sublime and enduring works 50+ years from now.
    People will laugh (ironically?) when they learn it only won an Oscar for costume design.

    P.S.= I actually prefer “Darkest Hour” to “Dunkirk,” “Three Billboards,” “The Shape of Water” and (most def) “The Post.” But I’ve always felt that Joe Wright was an underrated director.

  76. Hcat says:

    I would not have had a problem with WW being nominated, was pulling for it. But the whole idea of the Oscars since the beginning has been a symbiotic exercise where the industry promotes what it sees as the best they have to offer to highlight that they just don’t make shiny B movies and the studios use the PR push to sell their quality projects. Now WW and BP represent more than simply shiny B movies but every year we get the argument that Oscar ratings are down because they didn’t nominate Force Awakens or Avengers when ratings have been slipping across the board for nearly everything on broadcast television for the last two decades.

    You want the Oscars to be irrelevant, nominate a Fast and Furious movie.

  77. YancySkancy says:

    JS wrote: “They used to recognize the zeitgeist.”

    The zeitgeist was different back when the major studios were making enough money off acclaimed dramas and comedies made for adults (or at lest multiple quadrants), before they started ceding to the blockbuster mentality (and resulting profits). Now most of the “award-worthy” stuff is from the indie sector, which only rarely coughs up an across-the-board hit. For the Oscars, or any award, to mean anything, it must reflect the taste of its voters. If enough voters think Wonder Woman is one of the 8 or 10 best films of the year, it gets in. But I think those who care about the art of film balk a bit at spending their cultural capital on films that have already been amply rewarded at the box office, when more critically appreciated fare struggles for attention. The fact that their choices are still often middlebrow or favor transparent “Oscar-bait” is beside the point. It’s their taste, their awards. Not the People’s Choice Awards, as is often pointed out in such discussions. That may contribute to the ongoing ratings erosion, but if they start “democratizing” the process (however one might achieve that), they might save their ratings but lose their reason for being. And let’s face it, they probably wouldn’t save the ratings anyway, because of other factors at play.

  78. palmtree says:

    movieman, I don’t know if I prefer Darkest Hour to Dunkirk, but I definitely think it’s an excellent film. The second time around I could see it was more than just a great Gary Oldman performance, but also well-written and well-paced and engaging.

    The Oscars are relevant not because of what they nominate, but because of who does the nominating, namely Academy voters. That’s why after decades of sometimes horrendously embarrassing choices, they still remain the awards gold standard. With all their prestige, I think they can afford to throw a bone to critically-acclaimed commercial tentpoles like WW or BP without sacrificing their brand. After all they did nominate Toy Story 3 and Avatar and Mad Max Fury Road, so it’s not really a stretch in my mind.

  79. JSPartisan says:

    Yancy, when people throw out the People’s Choice award. You lose the script. This isn’t about nominating a film that just makes money, but isn’t a critical darling. This is about recognizing films, that critics love, make money, and really move people. This doesn’t happen all the time, but look at those ratings. No one cared about those movies, sans Get Out, and folks knew Get Out wasn’t going to get much anyway, so they didn’t watch.

    Like I’ve stated for close to ten years: this isn’t as easy as nominating films Wonder Woman or IT, and everything is magically fixed. The reason why the Academy are no longer the “gold standard,” is because they spent the last 14 years crapping all over the films people love. When they do nominate the films that have moved people. They never reward them, and when they do… it’s one a token award. It’s not one of “the” awards. It’s the Doctor Doolittle problem, and it doesn’t seem to stop.

    How you get the Academy to understand what matters to their audience, and en masse vote for it enough to nominate it. I have no clue. The way things are going. The Academy will be streaming this thing in ten years, or just have someone announce the winners at a press conference.

    However… you know how you overcome nominating films people do not like, or didn’t see? Loosen the Oscars up, and treat them like one of the after parties. Let them have fun, and people might want to watch, and it will stick it to the Globes!

  80. YancySkancy says:

    I agree with loosening the Oscars up. The presenters’ remarks are usually a dull, by-the-numbers, interchangeable string of tired adjectives.

    But if the voters change the way they vote for the sake of the broadcast, it’s the tail wagging the dog. If I were a member, I’d nominate what I like best and vote for my favorite of the nominees. I wouldn’t consider box office or what anyone else liked. I suspect most voters do this, at least the ones who actually see the films and mark their own ballots rather than giving them to spouses or housekeepers. Older members may still consider how the Academy’s legacy will look if mass-appeal blockbusters get nominated, but more likely they just prefer other types of films. Nothing will change until the voting body changes, and that’s in progress now, so we’ll see how the next few years play out.

  81. Sideshow Bill says:

    The lady fucking a fishman movie will matter to me years from now because I loved it.A lot of people love it. Not everybody but not everybody loved Moonlight. Lightly dismissing TSOW is not wise whether you liked it or not.

    Just sayin’

    I would suspect Black Panther has a great shot at a best Picture nod next year, unless we get a massive flood of great stuff. I said after the movie that I think Jordan deserves the first acting nod for a Marvel movie.

    And can I just say that another problem with the awards is the obligatory acting nods that go to people like Streep and Denzel. They are wonderful, yes, but not every performance is award worthy. Especially this year. Streeps spot should have gone to Aubrey Plaza or Gadot. Not only are they stuck in a pattern with best picture but with acting nods. Hell, Plummer’s nod was obligatory too. I love the man but why not Jeff Goldblum in Thor Ragnarok? Bill Skarsgard?

    I’m just riffing at this point.

  82. Triple Option says:

    People have their preconceived notions about what an Academy Award type film should be. Stuffy, arty movies have been winning for decades and people accepted it. While very few people across the country have gone to film school, I think the level of sophistication about films has risen to the level where people want to know why a popular film like Wonder Woman that seemed to have a lot of technical merit would not get a nod. It’s not just Wonder Woman but fill in the blank for whatever film for the past 10-15 years. They want articulated, understandable reasons, like they do in every other facet of life, like what constitutes a catch, what is perjury, or it just becomes all bunk.

    If people start saying, “I don’t get why Dark Knight wasn’t nominated” or “I never even heard of Moonlight” too frequently w/out explanation, (which, is there anyone who can do that??), then it shouldn’t be too surprising that people will tune out.

  83. brack says:

    Why doesn’t anyone talk about how the awards season has changed over the past 25 years or so? It’s a rarity for a movie released early in the year will get multiple nominations, and rarer to even win. Hate him all we want, but Harvey Weinstein helped change how the awards season goes and also what’s likely to be nominated each year.

    Also, there’s too many Best Picture nominees. Go back to five, Academy. Expanding on the number hasn’t really helped one bit.

  84. Hcat says:

    One of the things that isn’t mentioned when we talk about the good old days where Oscar nominated films from the ‘zeitgeist’ is that the nomination is what actually put them in the cultural conversation. With the shortened theatrical window movies are almost entirely played out by Oscar time, while something like the Sting would win the Oscar with three quarters of its run still ahead of it.

    Its not that the Academy nominated hits, its that it created hits with the nominations and wins.

  85. movieman says:

    Bill- Funny you should say that. I thought Jessica Chastain should have received Streep’s knee-jerk nomination.

    Is it just the fuddy-duddy in me, or have the Oscars become less fun in the post-internet era? The endless online build-up to the awards has become so relentless and fatiguing that the actual ceremony now feels like an afterthought.
    And with the new spotlight on guild awards (each has their very own TV special!) which used to be Inside Baseball stuff for Variety subscribers, it’s become increasingly easy to predict the winners.
    Almost zero potential for suspense or surprising upsets anymore.

  86. Stella's Boy says:

    They do feel anti-climactic movieman. It feels too late, like December-early January is when everyone was really seeing and talking about these movies, and by early March we’re thinking about the summer movie season.

  87. movieman says:

    Yep, SB.
    The Oscars should never air later than Valentine’s Day.
    Asking us to wait until March is asking too much in this instant gratification (thanks to the internet) era.

  88. leahnz says:

    wasn’t there talk of moving the telecast way earlier in the new year to knee-cap all the many, many ‘precursor’ awards that make the oscars so predictable and dull and thus restore a slight air of mystery around the voting/awards ceremony? or was that a fever dream

  89. YancySkancy says:

    leah: I think there’s been talk like that, but I don’t if it was official talk. It should be. I know some of the supposed precursors have backed up all the way into November to steal a little thunder, which is patently ridiculous, but the Academy could probably force a couple of these groups out of February if they really wanted to. I’m guessing the stumbling blocks involve making sufficient time for the voters to catch up on the films and mounting the huge TV production in a timely fashion.

  90. leahnz says:

    remember when the BAFTAs were always held after the Oscars?
    i had to look up the year they changed it to precede the AA’s: 2002
    is that when this whole ‘AWARDS SEASON’ scam really got into gear with an entire industry built around this embarrassing dog-n-pony shit or is that just wishful thinking, i’m too lazy to educate myself.

    “I know some of the supposed precursors have backed up all the way into November to steal a little thunder”

    haha good grief the desperation, why not October? October is the new november

  91. JSPartisan says:

    Brack, those are solid points all around, and why Harvey broke the Oscars. He absolutely broke them, and they haven’t been working right for what? 21 years or so?

    You are also right with the best picture noms, because it’s never done what it was really supposed to do, and that’s include more mainstream films. Sure. Once or twice, but for the most part? It’s been used for art house darlings, and bigger films still get left in the cold.

    HC, makes really good points about how the noms used to work, but everyone else who has counted with the obvious answer which is: these films are played out by December/January. The Oscars are anti-climatic, for the most part, by the time the noms arrive.

    If you pay attention to this stuff like we do. We know what the guild nominations mean for the Oscars, we know the HFP doesn’t mean jack and squat for the Oscars, and the hype for the OSCAR BAIT PICTURES starts at Telluride, then Tiff.

    This leads me to just one conclusion: the Oscars should just be a literal celebration of the year of film, but also be a tease for the Summer movie going season. It should, and probably needs to be a ginormous party at this point. Not a Globes affair, but something that’s festive.

    My favorite Oscars ever, is the 2000 Oscar. I’ve brought up MC Keys for almost 20 years, because that ceremony felt fresh and different, and every ceremony has felt the same for years now. Take the Oscars outside. Move them to a venue where actual movie fans can also attend. Heck. Move the Ceremony up, or use it to start Summer movie going season.

    Any way you shake it. These awards, the award seasons, and the ceremony itself, need a new take for a new time. You don’t have to make it low rent or trashy. Just make it fun, and pay attention to what Triple wrote above. Movie fans are more literate these days about film. If you are going to ignore larger films, then there needs to be some reasoning other than, “Comic book movies are ruining everything!”

    People want to feel like they have some skin in the game, and the Academy and their award show, have totally removed that feeling for millions of people.

  92. movieman says:

    Gotta feeling that next year–with “Black Panther” up for a dozen or more awards–will be the most watched Oscar telecast since 1998 (aka “the year of ‘Titanic'”).

  93. Hcat says:

    Agree with all the points above, they should be moved up, too many awards prior to the big show. But the comments about inside baseball and how we can figure out the alchemy of the guilds and how the GG and BAFTA falls (though BAFTA didn’t match this year did it?) are entirely related to how the web has allowed us all to nerdily dive into the minutia of EVERYTHING, and there are thirty different takes everyday about the status of the race. I think its funny that I gorge myself on any piece of info I can get my eyes and then complain about “awards fatigue”. No one else I know in real life suffers from that malady.

  94. Joe Leydon says:

    It’s funny to think there was a time when the Oscarcast could air as late as April and still draw monster ratings. Of course, that was back in the pre-Internet era, when the Golden Globes still were viewed as a joke (or at least a bigger joke than they appear to be now), and there weren’t a hundred or so other awards shows and a thousand critics’ prizes to compete for attention.

  95. Hcat says:

    I know we often complain about weird scheduling logjams but I cannot imagine the reasoning for three off brand b-movies going wide the same weekend a kiddie blockbuster opens. I get counter programming but forcing the schlock audience to choose between a Strangers sequel and Hurricane Heist seems unfair.

  96. movieman says:

    One movie that definitely won’t be in play at next year’s Oscars is “A Wrinkle in Time.”
    What a train wreck. Gave me renewed appreciation for “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle,” another all-ages-friendly CGI fantasy flick.
    Its most egregious flaw–especially in an era when juvenile actors are better than they’ve ever been at any time in screen history–is how terrible the kid actors are. The lead girl is dull and inexpressive; the little boy probably wouldn’t rate a speaking role in a grade school play; and the whitebread kid looks/acts like he stepped out of a State Farm commercial.
    Found it wildly over-produced and profoundly underwhelming. 2015’s under-loved “Tomorrowland” was ten X better.
    Had acid-tinged flashbacks to George Cukor’s woebegone 1976 “Blue Bird” w/ Jane Fonda, Liz Taylor, Cicely Tyson and Ava Gardner.

  97. JSPartisan says:

    The lead actress from A Wrinkle in Time has sort of bugged me for a while, but her performances in the trailers seem fine. I think it’s those glasses. Those glasses, just kill any expression she could give as an actress, because they suck the light out of every damn scene they are in. They should have been red or purple, but black horn rims are just not the right glasses… unless Clark Kent is involved.

  98. Glamourboy says:

    Hey, so what is the general feeling about Alden Ehrenreich? Is he going to become a superstar from Han Solo or an embarrassment? Has anyone heard anything about his performance yet?

  99. spassky says:

    Actin lessons for a Han Solo movie…

  100. Hcat says:

    My general feeling towards Ehrenreich is that in the annals of prequel acting he will be closer to William Katt as Sundance than he will be to Robert Deniro as Vito.

  101. JSPartisan says:

    It has to be stated. He’ll be fine. Everything, will be fine.

  102. movieman says:

    I’ve been an Alden Ehrenreich fan since Coppola’s “Tetro.”
    Ehrenreich and Donald Glover are the major reasons I’m psyched about “Solo.”

  103. Debra Apple says:

    I get counter programming but forcing the schlock audience to choose between a Strangers sequel.

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“Ten years ago at Telluride, I said on a panel that theatrical distribution was dying. It seemed obvious to me. I was surprised how many in the audience violently objected: ‘People will always want to go to the movies!’ That’s true, but it’s also true that theatrical cinema as we once knew it has died. Theatrical cinema is now Event Cinema, just as theatrical plays and musical performances are Events. No one just goes to a movie. It’s a planned occasion. Four types of Event Cinema remain.
1. Spectacle (IMAX-style blockbusters)
2. Family (cartoon like features)
3. Horror (teen-driven), and
4. Film Club (formerly arthouse but now anything serious).

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~ Paul Schrader

“Because of my relative candor on Twitter regarding why I quit my day job, my DMs have overflowed with similar stories from colleagues around the globe. These peeks behind the curtains of film festivals, venues, distributors and funding bodies weren’t pretty. Certain dismal patterns recurred (and resonated): Boards who don’t engage with or even understand their organization’s artistic mission and are insensitive to the diverse neighborhood in which their organization’s venue is located; incompetent founders and/or presidents who create only obstacles, never solutions; unduly empowered, Trumpian bean counters who chip away at the taste and experiences that make organizations’ cultural offerings special; expensive PR teams that don’t bring to the table a bare-minimum familiarity with the rich subcultural art form they’re half-heartedly peddling as “product”; nonprofit arts organizations for whom art now ranks as a distant-second goal behind profit.”
~ Eric Allen Hatch