Final Oscar Predictions

I’m not going to lie: this year’s Oscar race hasn’t been pretty.  From controversial manner in which the actual ceremony is being conducted to controversy surrounding the somewhat surprising batch of nominees, the 91st Academy Awards is shaping up to be one interesting evening.  And that’s partly because this awards season as a whole has been all over the place.  There hasn’t been any clear frontrunner emerge for many of the big awards, including Best Picture, while all the industry guilds (screen actors, directors, producers, writers, etc.) have favored different films.  But while statistics may not be as reliable this year, I have made my Oscar predictions using a combination of stats and just pure gut feeling.  You can see who I think will win, and who I think should win, below, and can click the links to read my full review of each nominated film.

Yalitza Aparicio in “Roma”

Best Picture

WHO WILL WIN: “Roma

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Roma”

NOTES: The best picture race is particularly up in the air this year—we’re less than a week away from the big day and I still wouldn’t say that any movie is a sure thing.  But Alfonso Cuarón’s “Roma,” a loving portrait of a Mexican family and their maid, is absolutely one of the year’s best films, and probably the safest bet for taking home Oscar gold.  It has been a constant favorite this awards season, including winning Best Picture at the Critics’ Choice Awards.  But there are several factors in play that could either help it or hurt it.  One is that it’s a Netflix movie, makes it easily accessible to a larger audience.  But Netflix bias could turn some Academy members against it in favor of a studio film.  The other is that the Spanish language film is also nominated in the Foreign Language Film category.  It’s entirely possible that it will win both Best Foreign Language Film and Best Picture, but it’s also possible that the vote could be split, resulting in some Academy members choosing it for Foreign Language but opting for another movie for Best Picture.  At this point, the film that is most likely to beat “Roma” is “Green Book;” not only is it the sort of crowd-pleaser that the Academy usually loves, but it also won the Producer’s Guild Award for Best Picture.

Best Director

WHO WILL WIN: Alfonso Cuarón, “Roma”

WHO SHOULD WIN: Alfonso Cuarón, “Roma”

NOTES: The Best Director category was one of the most surprising ones this year (Pawel Pawlikowski? No Bradley Cooper?) but Cuarón seems like a safe bet, especially after winning the Directors Guild Award and the Critics’ Choice.

Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury in “Bohemian Rhapsody”

Actor in a Leading Role

WHO WILL WIN: Rami Malek, “Bohemian Rhapsody

WHO SHOULD WIN: Bradley Cooper, “A Star is Born

NOTES: Lead actor has been one of the most unpredictable categories this awards season.  Christian Bale’s transformation into former Vice President Dick Cheney in “Vice” was a hit with the Critics’ Choice, while Malek won the SAG for his portrayal of Queen front man Freddie Mercury.  But I’m going to go with the latter for the Oscar, if only because I believe the Academy is going to want to honor “Bohemian Rhapsody” in some way—and I can’t for the life of me fathom them actually giving it Best Picture.

Glenn Close in “The Wife”

Actress in a Leading Role

WHO WILL WIN: Glenn Close, “The Wife

WHO SHOULD WIN: Olivia Colman, “The Favourite

NOTES: The lead actress category is particularly strong this year—in fact, at the Critics’ Choice Awards, Close tied with Lady Gaga’s much-praised performance in “A Star is Born.”  But while the movie “The Wife” may not be getting as much attention as “A Star is Born” or the female-led “The Favourite,” this seems to be the year that Close finally gets her Oscar.

Actress in a Supporting Role

WHO WILL WIN: Regina King, “If Beale Street Could Talk

WHO SHOULD WIN: Regina King, “If Beale Street Could Talk”

NOTES: If you had asked me at the beginning of awards season who I thought would win the Best Supporting Actress Oscar, I would have said Regina King, no doubt.  And I’m still saying Regina King, whose performance in “If Beale Street Could Talk” is nothing short of brilliant.  But there’s a little bit of doubt mixed in there now, as “Beale Street” hasn’t been as well-represented this awards season as was initially thought.  The fact King wasn’t nominated for the SAG and that the film overall hasn’t been a big subject of conversation could hurt her in the long run.  The best bet to beat her?  Probably Rachel Weisz from “The Favourite,” although the presence of costar Emma Stone in the same category could split the vote.

Actor in a Supporting Role

WHO WILL WIN: Mahershala Ali, “Green Book

WHO SHOULD WIN: Sam Elliot, “A Star is Born”

NOTES: Ali has been the one constant this awards season, taking home awards left and right for his portrayal of a jazz pianist in “Green Book.”  And he deserves it too—his performance, the complete opposite of his Oscar-winning role in “Moonlight,” shows his range as an actor.  But I’d love to see longtime favorite Sam Elliot take home Oscar gold, while Richard E. Grant is equally deserving for his memorable and flamboyant turn opposite Melissa McCarthy in “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”

Adam Driver and John David Washington in “Blackkklansman”

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)

WHO WILL WIN: “Blackkklansman

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Writing (Original Screenplay)

WHO WILL WIN: “The Favourite”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “The Favourite”

NOTES: I’m tentatively predicting “The Favourite” to take this category, partly because the script is so witty, and partly because it likely won’t win any of the other big awards.  But with “Roma” or “Green Book” posed to win Best Picture, it’s very likely either of those could win instead—and if “Green Book” does win for its screenplay, its chances of winning Best Picture will escalate, especially as it doesn’t have a directing nomination to fall back on.

“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse”

Animated Feature Film

WHO WILL WIN: “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse”

Cinematography

WHO WILL WIN: “Roma”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Roma”

Costume Design

WHO WILL WIN: “The Favourite”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Black Panther”

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the subject of the documentary “RBG”

Documentary Feature

WHO WILL WIN: “RBG”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Minding the Gap”

NOTES: “RBG” was a critical and commercial hit this summer, and will likely be a favorite among Oscar voters too for its timely subject matter.  But it could be given a real run for its money by “Free Solo,” the BAFTA winner that has gotten a real boost in recent months.  “Minding the Gap,” meanwhile, is a brilliant documentary on Hulu that will sadly likely be dismissed as a mere skateboarding documentary, while skateboarding is actually just the backdrop for an eye-opening look at a group of young adults trying to find their way in the world.

Documentary Short Subject

WHO WILL WIN: “Black Sheep”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Black Sheep”

Christian Bale as Dick Cheney in “Vice”

Film Editing

WHO WILL WIN: “Vice

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Blackkklansman”

Foreign Language Film

WHO WILL WIN: “Roma”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Roma”

NOTES: I mentioned before that a split vote could result in “Roma” winning foreign language film and missing Best Picture.  But it could also work the other way, with a win for the Polish romance “Cold War” happening in this category if “Roma” takes Best Picture.  Either way, “Cold War” has the best chance in this strong category outside of “Roma.”

Make-up and Hairstyling

WHO WILL WIN: “Vice”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Vice”

Chadwick Boseman as King T’Challa in “Black Panther”

Music Original Score

WHO WILL WIN: “Black Panther

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Black Panther”

Music Original Song

WHO WILL WIN: “Shallow,” “A Star is Born”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Shallow,” “A Star is Born”

Emma Stone is one of a trio of leads in “The Favourite”

Production Design

WHO WILL WIN: “The Favourite”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “The Favourite”

Short Film (Animated)

WHO WILL WIN: “Bao”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “One Small Step”

Short Film (Live Action)

WHO WILL WIN: “Skin”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Marguerite”

Sound Editing

WHO WILL WIN: “Bohemian Rhapsody”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “A Quiet Place

Sound Mixing

WHO WILL WIN: “Bohemian Rhapsody”

WHO SHOULD WIN: “First Man”

Ryan Gosling in Damien Chazelle’s “First Man”

Visual Effects

WHO WILL WIN: “First Man

WHO SHOULD WIN: “Solo: A Star Wars Story

Who do you think will take home Oscar gold?  Let me know in the comments, and be sure to tune in to the 91st Academy Awards on Sunday, February 24.

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One thought on “Final Oscar Predictions

  1. Good luck with your Oscar picks. I like your who should win, who will win layout. As you state it is very competitive and somewhat a toss up in some of the categories. I won’t pick against you! Enjoy the show. JC

    Liked by 1 person

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