The Academy Awards: Who Will Win and Who Should Win
Well, another year, another batch of Oscars for me to snit over. I think this year has been a substantially better year for movies than the last couple of times I’ve written these articles-but I still have some bones to pick with the major categories, because what’s life without a little snark? On with the predictions!
Hell or High Water
La La Land
Manchester by the Sea
What Will Win: La La Land, AKA, How White People Saved Jazz Music. How this trash, unoriginal musical has become this generation’s Return of the King (with no less than fourteen nominations) is beyond me, but after what feels like six months of tantric nominating, not having Damien Chazelle’s chintzy romcom scoop the biggest win of the year would probably leave the Academy voters feeling pretty unfulfilled.
What Should Win: Silence. Yes, that’s right- Martin Scorcese’s magnificent, sweeping religious epic that you’ll have to bribe yourself into sitting through because it’s almost three hours long but will be glad you did. Considering that it somehow missed a nomination here (and in all the other major categories), I’d go with Arrival or Fences.
Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
Ryan Gosling, La La Land
Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic
Denzel Washington, Fences
Who Will Win: Casey Affleck, probably, for being artily sad. If Ryan Gosling wins, I’ll cut my eyes out- no, worse, I’ll watch him sing City of Stars for the thousandth fucking time, because that would be worse.
Who Should Win: Andrew Garfield, but for Silence instead of the bafflingly bad-looking Hacksaw Ridge. Out of the actual nominees, Denzel Washington, obviously.
Isabelle Huppert, Elle
Ruth Negga, Loving
Natalie Portman, Jackie
Emma Stone, La La Land
Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins
Who Will Win: Emma Stone- she deserves an Oscar, but I’m just not sure whether it should be for this. Also, where the fuck is Amy Adams in this list?
Who Should Win: Natalie Portman in Jackie, probably, though I’ve yet to see it- I’d also love to see the supremely talented Ruth Negga (of Preacher fame) get some concrete recognition for her talent.
Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea
Dev Patel, Lion
Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals
Who Will Win: This is a hard one to call, actually- I could see it going to the exquisitely brilliant Mahershala Ali, but I wouldn’t rule out Dev Patel or Michael Shannon (who I was delighted and kind of surprised to see get a nod for his screen-dominating turn in the trashy Nocturnal Animals, considering that the awards bodies seem to have been fascinated in Aaron Taylor-Johnson and the fact we saw his poo on-screen).
Who Should Win: Mahershala Ali. Fight me on this.
Viola Davis, Fences
Naomie Harris, Moonlight
Nicole Kidman, “Lion”
Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures
Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea
Who Will Win: If Viola Davis doesn’t win, we riot. So it’ll probably go to Michelle Williams.
Who Should Win: Viola Davis, pretty much the finest actor walking the face of the Earth as I write this. I was out at the cinema last week and a trailer for Fences came on, one where she has about two lines versus Denzel Washington’s entire monologue; she was the best thing about that entire cinema trip (I was seeing La La Land).
Damien Chazelle, La La Land
Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge
Barry Jenkins, Moonlight
Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea
Denis Villeneuve, Arrival
Who Will Win: I don’t care, really. I’m just here to remind you: fuck Mel Gibson, fuck him and his dumb fucking movies, fuck him so hard (but no literally). Also, Damien Chazelle will win, because people seem enamoured with his at-best mediocre films no matter how far below mediocre they dip.
Who Should Win: Denis Villeneuve. Arrival is a gorgeously shot film full of striking set-pieces, so that’s the main reason, but he also snuck a genre movie into the Oscar noms this year which I have to thank him for.
Right, well, those are my initial reactions; I’ll get down on some more Oscars chat nearer to the time. I’d just like to leave you with this: La La Land has been nominated for two awards in the Best Song category, and neither of them are actually for it’s best song (which was the actually bearable Another Day of Sun). Ponder on that for a minute. What are your predictions (and hopes) for the Academy Awards this year?