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Who’s Winning What? Oscar Predictions 2018

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After a tumultuous and historic year in Hollywood, the year’s most prestigious awards ceremony is nearing. In this article, I’ll be predicting the winners of the Oscars’ main awards based on the results of previous award shows, critic reviews, and personal opinion. Here is a list of the Oscar nominations for the Best Picture award, widely regarded as the most prestigious: Call Me by Your Name, Darkest Hour, Dunkirk, Get Out, Lady Bird, Phantom Thread, The Post, The Shape of Water, and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

 

Best Picture

Receiving the most nominations this year with thirteen, The Shape of Water will take home the evening’s most prestigious prize. Co-written and directed by Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water tells the story of a lonely, mute woman who falls in love with a sea creature being held by the government. A peculiar, but ultimately heartwarming story ensues, with performances from Sally Hawkins and Michael Shannon, along with a terrific ensemble cast. A well-acted, compelling story accompanied by beautiful cinematography and expert direction makes a winning recipe for The Shape of Water.

Best Actor

The nominees for best actor include Timothee Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name), Daniel Day-Lewis (Phantom Thread), Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out), Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour), and Denzel Washington (Roman J. Israel, Esq.). After essentially sweeping all previous award ceremonies this year, Gary Oldman looks poised to take home a long-awaited and much deserved Academy Award this year for his performance of Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour. Oldman completely vanishes in the role, in appearance, voice, charisma, and mind. He powerfully plays a leader struggling to unite and inspire his country in the face of near-destruction. While perhaps not the most nuanced performance of the nominees, Oldman is the most successful in conveying the trials and tribulations of his character, a man doing all he can to keep England and the world from defeat.

 

Best Actress

The best actress nominees are Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water), Frances McDormand (Three Billboards), Margot Robbie (I, Tonya), Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird), and Meryl Streep (The Post). Like Oldman, Frances McDormand is the strong favorite to take home this year’s best actress award. After having already won for Fargo (1996), it looks like she will add a second Oscar to her collection. She plays Mildred Hayes, a mother grieving over the rape and murder of her daughter. However, the investigation is stalling, prompting her to put up three billboards urging the police to take action. McDormand’s role is far more serious than that of her competitors, playing a role Oscar voters will surely fall in love with, and rightfully so. The audience is not just able to comprehend her pain, but feel it themselves as she takes on a town and system fighting against her.

 

Best Director

The nominees for best director are Christopher Nolan (Dunkirk), Jordan Peele (Get Out), Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird), Paul Thomas Anderson (Phantom Thread), and Guillermo del Toro (The Shape of Water). Believe it or not, Christopher Nolan has never been nominated for Best Director, despite such smash hits as Interstellar and Inception. This year his first nomination will result in his first victory in the category for Dunkirk. Assuming Dunkirk does not win Best Picture, (although it does have the best chance), I find it hard to believe that such a filmmaking achievement will go completely unrecognized by the Academy. Nolan successfully crafted the greatest war film since Saving Private Ryan. In Dunkirk, the audience is given the most realistic and accurate portrayal of war perhaps ever seen. Minimal CGI is employed, with decommissioned World War II boats being hauled out of museums to serve as props and reconstructing Spitfires flown by the actors. The director made the bold choice of forgoing character development in order to truly convey the chaos of 400,000 men stranded on a beach, with all of this being shot in awe-inspiring IMAX.

 

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