Sunday, May 13, 2018

The Oscar Narrative: First 2019 Predictions - Best Picture

First 2019 Predictions
Black Panther
Boy Erased
First Man
If Beale Street Could Talk
The Incredibles 2
Mid '90s
The Irishman

Other Contenders - The Front Runner, Mary Poppins Returns, Beautiful Boy, A Quiet Place,  A Star is Born, Where'd You Go Bernadette, Deadpool 2, BlacKKKlansman, Rio, The Favourite, Peterloo, Life Itself, Bohemian Rhapsody, Everybody Knows, Wildlife, Judy, The Other Side of the Wind, Under the Silver Lake, On the Basis of Sex, The Rider, The Women of Marwen, At Eternity's Game, The Life and Death of John F. Donovan, The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, Ad Astra, Solo: A Star Wars Story, Ready Player One, Avengers: Infinity War, Ant-Man and Wasp, Lean on Pete, Paddington 2, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald", You Were Never Really There, Georgetown, The Wife, The House that Jack Built, Love Simon, Isle of Dogs, The Death of Stalin, Disobedience, Annihilation, Venom, Halloween, Creed II, Aquaman

Commentary - At this point in the race, it is so hard to narrow down. So let's start with The Irishman. Netflix is bringing Martin Scorsese and a killer cast back to the gangster drama. The last time he visited this subject (The Departed), he won his first Oscar and the film won Best Picture. Netflix proved this year with some of its Oscar successes that it can launch a successful Oscar campaign. Barry Jenkins and Damien Chazelle both return this year after their nail-biting 2016. First Man is about Neil Armstrong, and If Beale Street Could Talk is an adaptation of James Baldwin. Both look like solid early Oscar contenders. Steven McQueen returns with Widows, a thriller with an awesome cast, and Adam McKay brings us a new Dick Cheney biopic with Amy Adams, Christian Bale, and Sam Rockwell. Once again, both are two you should probably put your money on. Joel Edgerton's latest, an adaptation of Boy Erased, could be a real contender this year. He has proven his worth both in front of the camera and behind it, and the material and cast are worthy. Benh Zeitlin shocked the world when Beasts of The Southern Wild became the surprise hit of the 2012 Oscar season. After six long years, he has returned to the fold with Wendy. With little detail, it is too soon to tell, but I don't want to make the mistake of underestimating him again. Finally, I am going to once again, probably foolishly so, bet on two of the big guys. Incredibles 2 has the potential to join this race, as every couple years Pixar gets one in. Finally, Black Panther was such a cultural phenomenon that I think, if its buzz can sustain, it could go where Deadpool and Wonder Woman have come up short in recent years. In lieu of going through all of the other contenders let me list the ones I think have the best shot of joining this group: The Front Runner (Jason Reitman), Where'd You Go Bernadette? (Richard Linklater), Mary Poppins Returns (Disney is planning a big push), The Favourite, Peterloo, Life Itself, Wildlife, A Star is Born, Beautiful Boy, and Rio.

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