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The 91st Academy Awards



The 91st annual Academy Awards are almost upon us!

Hosted by Kevin Hart absolutely no one and emanating from the Dolby Theatre in LA, this year’s awards ceremony has been dogged by confusion and indecision from the Academy.  From their inability to find a host, to their announcement of a Best Popular Movie category which they eventually decided to scrap, to announcing that the Editing and Cinematography awards would be handed out during the ad breaks, which they also went back on, its been a strange and bumbling lead-up to Hollywood’s premiere awards ceremony show.

When I look at the nominees for this year, I think the Academy has taken some small steps forward but there are still some major and baffling omissions overall.  I’m pleased to see Black Panther get a Best Picture nod.  It was one of my favourite films of last year and the action/super hero genre is traditionally overlooked at these shows.  On the other hand, Toni Collette getting snubbed for her performance in Hereditary was hugely disappointing, as was the lack of recognition for [takes out a list] Three Identical Strangers, Won’t You Be My Neighbour?, Sorry To Bother You, Eighth Grade and Searching.  Instead they were overlooked for tired Oscar-bait content like Green Book, a clunky biopic about jazz pianist Don Shirley which has been condemned by his family as grossly misleading and lead actor Mahershala Ali described his performance as “I did the best I could with the material I had.”

I’ve been banging on the same drum for years but I wish the Academy was more open minded about recognizing great films in overlooked genres like horror (Hereditary) and animation (Spider-man: Into the Spider-verse).

My favourite film of 2018 was BlackKklansman and happily its in the mix for the Best Picture category and I fancy its chances.  A Star Is Born and Black Panther are in the “its an honour just to be nominated” box and I don’t think anyone wants to touch Bohemian Rhapsody because of its connections to Bryan Singer.

Other than tuning in to see Spike Lee hopefully get his due, there isn’t much else I’m excited about for this year.  I guess I’m a little curious what a show hosted by No One looks like though.

Anyway, with that said, here are my predictions for the 91st Academy Awards.


liloscar BEST PICTURE liloscar


Nominees:  Black Panther, BlackKklansman, Bohemian Rhapsody, Green Book, Roma, A Star Is Born, Vice, The Favourite

Who Should Win

There’s a number of external factors that can influence why a film can and should be awarded Best Picture.  It can be the ‘belated thank you’ award to an actor or director who has made fantastic films over a number of years with little recognition.  It could be a film that is particularly innovative or influential to the rest of the industry.  Or maybe its a film that accurately captures the zeitgeist of the times.

I liked a number of films in the Best Picture category but the standout film that deserves to win is definitely Spike Lee’s BlackKklansman.  Lee has been making incredible and influential films for decades and at the age of 61, he has arguably made his best film yet.  BlackKklansman is an entertaining and taut thriller with fine performances from John David Washington and Adam Driver.  It is not only a captivating production of the incredible true story of how a black man infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan, but as the film’s breathless final act plays out, it also is a searing polemic that directly ties the senior figures of the Klan to politicians that represent the modern day white supremacist movement.


Who Will Win

In a traditional Oscar year, you’d like the chances of The Favourite and Roma, two well-made and well-reviewed drama productions.  Or if we’re going full Oscar-bait stupid, Green Book is basically 2018’s Crash.  But I have a feeling that the Academy will mix it up this year with a more unconventional choice.  I’m not quite sure they’d go as far as giving it to Black Panther (although I’d welcome it).  I do think there’s a smidgen of a chance that Spike Lee finally gets his moment in the sun.  I hope I’m right.


liloscar BEST DIRECTOR liloscar


Nominees:  Alfonso Cuaron (Roma), Pawel Pawlikowski (Cold War), Yorgos Lanthimos (The Favourite), Spike Lee (BlackKklansman), Adam McKay (Vice)

Who Should Win

Its kind of nuts that the guy who gave us Do The Right Thing, Malcolm X and The 25th Hour had zero Academy Award nominations until this year.  If anyone deserves a ‘thank you for your whole body of work over the last thirty years’ Oscar, it’s Spike.

Spike Lee (BlackKklansman)

Who Will Win

One of the interesting stories that will unfold at the Oscars this year is how willing the Academy voters will be to recognize and reward productions like Roma which chose Netflix over theatrical distribution as its primary means of finding an audience.  Influential film makers including no less than Steven Spielberg have spoken out against what Roma‘s producers have done, insisting that it is damaging to the long term health of cinemas.

I thoroughly enjoyed Cuaron’s Roma and I think it is probably the most personal and introspective film on this list but I’m not sure the Academy will give such a high profile award to a guy directing a ‘Netflix movie’.  So instead, I’m going with the well-reviewed period drama The Favourite.

Yorgos Lanthimos (The Favourite)

liloscar BEST ACTOR liloscar


Nominees:  Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody), Willem Dafoe (At Eternity’s Gate), Bradley Cooper (A Star Is Born), Christian Bale (Vice), Viggo Mortensen (Green Book)

Who Will Win and Should Win

Rami Malek has been scooping up awards left and right for his performance as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody.  It’s an incredible rise to stardom for a guy who three years ago featured in the Playstation horror game Until Dawn.  It’s an improbable rise to the top for a performance in a scandal plagued film that was in development hell for seven years and came out to mixed reviews.

Likewise there has been high praise for Bradley Cooper’s impressive double act as both director and actor in A Star Is Born.  Cooper is absolutely spoiled for talent.  He can sing.  He can act.  He can direct.  Who didn’t turn on the waterworks in A Star Is Born’s third act?

I think they’re the two front runners in this category.  Rami?  Bradley?  Rami?  Bradley?  I think I’m going Rami,

Rami Malek (Freddie Mercury)

liloscar BEST ACTRESS liloscar


Nominees:  Yalitza Aparicio (Roma), Glenn Close (The Wife), Olivia Coleman (The Favourite), Lady Gaga (A Star Is Born), Melissa McCarthy (Can You Ever Forgive Me?)

Who Should Win


Toni Collette (Hereditary)

Who Will Win

The audience will tune in for Lady Gaga but I would put the savings, the house, the kids, the car and the family dog and bet it all on Olivia Coleman in The Favourite.  A complex, nuanced performance in a high profile period drama.  Are you kidding me?  The voters have no chance resisting an act like that.

Olivia Coleman (The Favourite)

liloscar BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR liloscar


Nominees:  Mahershala Ali (Green Book), Adam Driver (BlackKklansman), Sam Elliott (A Star Is Born), Richard E Grant (Can You Ever Forgive Me?), Sam Rockwell (Vice)

Who Should Win

Look, I think my favourite performance out of this lot was Adam Driver’s excellent turn as Flip Zimmerman in BlackKklansman.  It was a multi-faceted performance that required both moments of gravitas and levity.  Driver has been on a roll in recent years with one stand out performance after another.  Give this man his reward.

Adam Driver (BlackKklansman)

Who Will Win

On a sentimental level, it would be delightful to see old man Elliott scoop the award here.  And I’d be totally fine with it.  Just imagine how good the speech would be.

Sam Elliott (A Star Is Born)



Nominees:  Amy Adams (Vice), Marina de Tavira (Roma), Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk), Emma Stone (The Favourite), Rachael Weisz (The Favourite)

Who Should Win

They need to get Amy up there and have everyone in the Dolby Theatre apologise for that year where she got absolutely nothing for The Arrival and Nocturnal Animals.

I haven’t seen Vice.

Amy Adams (Vice)

Who Will Win

I have absolutely no idea with this one.  Drawing a total blank.  I’m told If Beale Street Could Talk is amazing though so let’s go with that.

Regina King (If Beale Street Could Talk)


liloscar QUICK PICKS liloscar

Best Original Screenplay

“The Favourite,” Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara
“First Reformed,” Paul Schrader
“Green Book,” Nick Vallelonga, Brian Currie, Peter Farrelly
“Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón 
“Vice,” Adam McKay

Best Adapted Screenplay

“The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” Joel Coen , Ethan Coen
“BlacKkKlansman,” Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott, Spike Lee
“Can You Ever Forgive Me?,” Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty
“If Beale Street Could Talk,” Barry Jenkins
“A Star Is Born,” Eric Roth, Bradley Cooper, Will Fetters

Best Foreign Film

“Capernaum” (Lebanon)
“Cold War” (Poland)
“Never Look Away” (Germany)
“Roma” (Mexico)
“Shoplifters” (Japan)

Best Documentary Feature

“Free Solo,” Jimmy Chin, Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi
“Hale County This Morning, This Evening,” RaMell Ross
“Minding the Gap,” Bing Liu
“Of Fathers and Sons,” Talal Derki
“RBG,” Betsy West, Julie Cohen

Best Animated Feature

“Incredibles 2,” Brad Bird
“Isle of Dogs,” Wes Anderson
“Mirai,” Mamoru Hosoda
“Ralph Breaks the Internet,” Rich Moore, Phil Johnston
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman

Best Film Editing

“BlacKkKlansman,” Barry Alexander Brown
“Bohemian Rhapsody,” John Ottman
“Green Book,” Patrick J. Don Vito
“The Favourite,” Yorgos Mavropsaridis
“Vice,” Hank Corwin

Best Original Score

“BlacKkKlansman,” Terence Blanchard
“Black Panther,” Ludwig Goransson
“If Beale Street Could Talk,” Nicholas Britell
“Isle of Dogs,” Alexandre Desplat
“Mary Poppins Returns,” Marc Shaiman, Scott Wittman

Best Visual Effects

“Avengers: Infinity War”
“Christopher Robin”
“First Man”
“Ready Player One”
“Solo: A Star Wars Story”

Best Cinematography

“Cold War,” Lukasz Zal
“The Favourite,” Robbie Ryan
“Never Look Away,” Caleb Deschanel
“Roma,” Alfonso Cuarón
“A Star Is Born,” Matthew Libatique

Best Costume Design

“The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” Mary Zophres
“Black Panther,” Ruth E. Carter
“The Favourite,” Sandy Powell
“Mary Poppins Returns,” Sandy Powell
“Mary Queen of Scots,” Alexandra Byrne





A Star Is Born


Black Panther




Spider-man: Into the Spider-Verse


Isle of Dogs


90th Academy Awards (2018) |  89th Academy Awards (2017) | 88th Academy Awards (2016) |  87th  Academy Awards (2015) |  86th Academy Awards (2014) |  85th Academy Awards  (2013) | 84th Academy Awards (2012) | 83rd Academy Awards (2011)

About Edo

Edo currently lives in Australia where he spends his time playing video games and enjoying his wife's cooking.

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