Justice For If Beale Street Could Talk (And Other Reactions To The Oscar Nominations)

“Better late than never but never late is better.” – Drake

The 2019 Oscar Nominations have been announced and I have some thoughts that happen to be a day or two late. Technically, I wrote about some of the big snubs in a piece for Hidden Remote a few minutes after the announcement, but I wanted to take some time to develop my thoughts before spewing them out in this blog. That may come off as an excuse and I’m here to tell you that it is (not) an excuse.

Here are my thoughts on snubs, surprises, and general reactions to the nominations.

Snubs: I’m really have no qualms about these nominees. If I had to mention possible replacements, it would be Emily Blunt for A Quiet Place and Claire Foy for First Man.

Surprises: Marina de Tavira is the name that jumps out. To put this into terms that the kids can understand, Roma flexed on the Academy. Roma was tied with The Favourite for the most nominations (10) this year. Roma was very slow in the beginning and if you turned it off, I feel bad because the last 30-40 minutes were extremely heartwarming and beautiful.

Reaction: Regina King should win.

Snubs: More snubs come to mind in the male supporting category as opposed to the female supporting category. Timothee Chalamet is the big name that will jump out since he’s been a staple at other awards show for his performance in Beautiful Boy. I will also listen to the case for Michael B. Jordan in Black Panther because Killmonger was the best aspect of that movie.

Surprises: Sam Elliot! It’s a happy surprise. I do not care if this is a case of the Academy rewarding a veteran for their service to the film community. Elliot was amazing in A Star Is Born and I’m so happy for him. Elliot is a dark-horse to win.

Reaction: The winner is up in the air, but I’ll side with the savior of True Detective, Mahershala Ali, to pick up his second win in this category in three years.

Snubs: She was not going to get nominated, but Elsie Fisher’s performance in Eighth Grade might be my favorite performance of the year. More on Eighth Grade later, but I’m very upset it received zero nominations.

Surprises: Yalitza Aparicio is not a trained actress. In fact, I’m pretty sure she was a preschool teacher before being cast in Roma. Once Marina de Tavira was nominated in supporting, you knew Yalitza’s nomination was on the way. This is a feel good story that should be celebrated.

Reaction: Strong, strong field. Glenn Close and Olivia Colman are the favorites (pun), but I’m still pulling for Lady Gaga.

Snubs: A lot of snubs. A loud majority on Twitter are upset that Ethan Hawke did not receive a nomination for First Reformed. John David Washington, the son of Denzel Washington, in BlacKkKlansman also comes to mind. I have not seen Willem Dafoe in At Eternity’s Gate and I’m sure it’s a solid performance, but I would’ve went with Hawke or Washington for that final spot.

Surprises: See above.

Reaction: If Bradley Cooper does not hoist a trophy in any category on Oscar night, I am going to be very upset. Christian Bale and Rami Malek are the favorites.

Snubs: Barry Jenkins for If Beale Street Could Talk and Bradley Cooper (read below).

Surprises: I have not seen Cold War. I’ve heard good things, but Pawel Pawlikowski would not have been my fifth spot.

Reaction: Congratulations to Spike Lee. Unfortunately, this should’ve been his second nomination because the Academy decided to snub him for Do The Right Thing. However, I’m super disappointed that Cooper did not receive a Best Directing nominee. If you ask me about this category on the street, I will rant and scream and cry about how Bradley Cooper was snubbed in this category. Not to say the other directors did not work hard on their films, but Cooper poured his heart and soul into this A Star Is Born for over three years. Cooper taught himself to play guitar, piano, sing, speak an octave lower, direct, etc. It is a TRAVESTY that Cooper is not nominated for Best Director.

Throw out the format for this category. I know for a fact people that Best Picture is going to be VERY problematic this year if certain films win. Let’s start with the obvious film that stands out for the wrong reasons, which is Bohemian Rhapsody. When Bohemian Rhapsody first came out, it received mixed to negative reviews. Many viewers had problems with the script and the depiction of Mercury’s sexuality and health. The music is awesome (who doesn’t love Queen?) and Rami Malek shines, but other than that, it’s not something I would consider “Best Picture worthy.” I’m still shocked that it’s had such a successful awards season run (besides Malek because that was expected). I can think of A LOT of movies to replace Bohemian Rhapsody in this category. They include: If Beale Street Could TalkMission Impossible: FalloutEighth GradeA Quiet PlaceAvengers: Infinity War, Annihilation, Widows, etc. You get the idea. The box office success and the ability to move past it’s Bryan Singer problem are what’s carrying this film through awards season.

Roma is the favorite due to its lead in overall nominations. Right behind it would be Green Book, who despite its own problems involving its director and writer, is still picking up huge wins on the awards scene. Overall, I like a lot of these movies, but I wouldn’t say they blew me away as a whole. A Star Is Born, Eighth Grade, and If Beale Street Could Talk are the three best movies I saw in 2018. I’ll go more in-depth on predictions when the ceremony inches closer. For now, what was your reaction to the nominees? Hit me up on Twitter @danny_giro.

2018 Oscar Nominations: Full List, Reaction, Surprises, And Snubs


Oscar nominations!!! After an unpredictable awards season, the 2018 Oscar Nominations are out and all I have to say is WOW. There are going to be a lot of happy people because most of the “I hope they get in” nominees did. The wealth was spread and rightfully so. One of the most diverse fields ever so I don’t expect one movie to dominate on the night of the ceremony. I’m looking over the nominations as I speak so here are my initial thoughts as I look at the nominations for the first time.

Best Picture:

“Call Me by Your Name”
“Darkest Hour”
“Get Out”
“Lady Bird”
“Phantom Thread”
“The Post”
“The Shape of Water”
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

No problems here whatsoever… except one. The movies that were predicted to get a nomination got one. Three Billboards is still the favorite with Shape of Water on its heels. It looks like the biggest surprise, if you can even call it one, was the addition of Phantom Thread. I honestly still have to see it so it’s on my list! I also would’ve loved to see the Disaster Artist in this category. My exception to the no problems is I, Tonya. I really enjoyed that movie from start to finish.

P.S. The lack of love for Wind River is astonishing. It’s one of the best movies of the year and it’s a complete afterthought. Don’t believe me? Go watch it and when you come back to me saying it was amazing, I will be there to say I told you so.

UPDATE: The Florida Project. Such a sad look at the outside of the most happiest place on Earth. This could’ve been the 10th nomination as well. I want to add a “Rising Star Award” or “Breakout Performance” role because that would easily go to Brooklynn Prince. She was 6 years old and gave one of the most emotionally riveting performances of the year. Bright, bright future.

Lead Actor:

Timothée Chalamet, “Call Me by Your Name”
Daniel Day-Lewis, “Phantom Thread”
Daniel Kaluuya, “Get Out”
Gary Oldman, “Darkest Hour”
Denzel Washington, “Roman J. Israel, Esq.”

Chalamet, Day-Lewis, and Oldman are no surprises. Denzel is Denzel so I’m not totally shocked he’s here either. However, Daniel Kaluuya is the name that people are going to remember. To think that a low budget horror film that came out in February 2017 racked up multiple Oscar nominations is so impressive. Get Out deserves all of its nominations because it was one of the most original movies I have seen in the past 10 years. The big snub is going to be James Franco. I don’t think the sexual assault allegations had a lot to do with the snub personally because the allegations came out 2 days before ballots were due. That being said, if we’re talking about the performance alone, Franco gave one of the best all year. He was Tommy Wiseau to a T. This reminds me of when Jim Carrey was snubbed for Truman Show and Man on the Moon. I would’ve swapped out Franco for Denzel.

Lead Actress:

Sally Hawkins, “The Shape of Water”
Frances McDormand, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
Margot Robbie, “I, Tonya”
Saoirse Ronan, “Lady Bird”
Meryl Streep, “The Post”

Yup, this was predicted and it happened. All great, deserving performances.

Supporting Actor:

Willem Dafoe, “The Florida Project”
Woody Harrelson, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”
Richard Jenkins, “The Shape of Water”
Christopher Plummer, “All the Money in the World”
Sam Rockwell, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

This is where people are going to be upset and I’m looking at Christopher Plummer. Woody Harrelson was going to get in. The momentum for Three Billboards was high so once he got the SAG nominee, you knew this was coming. However, it’s hard for me to put in Plummer over both Armie Hammer and Michael Stuhlbarg in Call Me By Your Name. I do think the backstory behind how Plummer took on the role helped his chances tremendously, not to take away from his performance. Hammer would’ve had my vote.

Supporting Actress:

Mary J. Blige, “Mudbound”
Allison Janney, “I, Tonya”
Lesley Manville, “Phantom Thread”
Laurie Metcalf, “Lady Bird”
Octavia Spencer, “The Shape of Water”

Still Janney’s race to lose with  Metcalf right behind her, but Phantom Thread love again! What a late surge by this movie and it will only begin to surge at the box office now as more people including myself rush to see it. Netflix got its acting nomination with the legendary Mary J. Blige. If I had to pick a snub, look right at the woman who announced the nominations, Tiffany Haddish. I don’t think she was going to get nominated, but Haddish is hilarious and has a strong following so I expect some backlash.


“Dunkirk,” Christopher Nolan
“Get Out,” Jordan Peele
“Lady Bird,” Greta Gerwig
“Phantom Thread,” Paul Thomas Anderson
“The Shape of Water,” Guillermo del Toro

The best directing category will receive the biggest ovation by far. Jordan Peele and Greta Gerwig received their nominations so we don’t have to take to Twitter to show our displeasure. I was pulling for both of them, especially Peele, to get in this category so the fact it happened to both is a HUGE win for the future of this category. Shoutout to my GOAT, CHRISTOPHER NOLAN!!!!! Finally, finally, finally, Nolan gets a directing nomination and I am at peace with the world.

Animated Feature:

“The Boss Baby”
“The Breadwinner”
“Loving Vincent”

Pixar. Pixar. Pixar.

Animated Short:

“DeKalb Elementary”
“The Eleven O’Clock”
“My Nephew Emmett”
“The Silent Child”
“Watu Wote/All of Us”

Adapted Screenplay:

“Call Me by Your Name,” James Ivory
“The Disaster Artist,” Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber
“Logan,” Scott Frank & James Mangold and Michael Green
“Molly’s Game,” Aaron Sorkin
“Mudbound,” Virgil Williams and Dee Rees

Another big win for Netflix. The Disaster Artist finally receiving some love. With Wonder Woman’s popularity, I think Logan started to take a backseat in the superhero genre even though I would argue it’s better than WW. Congrats to the Logan team. Sorkin is a writing god. HOWEVA *stephen a smith voice* this is Call Me By Your Name’s award to lose.

Original Screenplay:

“The Big Sick,” Emily V. Gordon & Kumail Nanjiani
“Get Out,” Jordan Peele
“Lady Bird,” Greta Gerwig
“The Shape of Water,” Guillermo del Toro, Vanessa Taylor
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Martin McDonagh

It seemed like The Big Sick was going to get shut out throughout all of awards season, but I’m glad voters came to their senses and showed Emily Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani some love. One of the funniest movies I saw this year. This is a STACKED lineup. Peele, Gerwig, del Toro, and McDonagh are all heavyweights this year. This might be the toughest category to predict.


“Blade Runner 2049,” Roger Deakins
“Darkest Hour,” Bruno Delbonnel
“Dunkirk,” Hoyte van Hoytema
“Mudbound,” Rachel Morrison
“The Shape of Water,” Dan Laustsen

Best Documentary Feature:

Best Documentary Short Subject:

“Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405”
“Knife Skills”
“Traffic Stop”

Best Live Action Short Film:

“Dear Basketball”
“Garden Party”
“Negative Space”
“Revolting Rhymes”

Best Foreign Language Film:

“A Fantastic Woman” (Chile)
“The Insult” (Lebanon)
“Loveless” (Russia)
“On Body and Soul (Hungary)
“The Square” (Sweden)

Film Editing:

“Baby Driver,” Jonathan Amos, Paul Machliss
“Dunkirk,” Lee Smith
“I, Tonya,” Tatiana S. Riegel
“The Shape of Water,” Sidney Wolinsky
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Jon Gregory

Sound Editing:

“Baby Driver,” Julian Slater
“Blade Runner 2049,” Mark Mangini, Theo Green
“Dunkirk,” Alex Gibson, Richard King
“The Shape of Water,” Nathan Robitaille
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Ren Klyce, Matthew Wood

Sound Mixing:

“Baby Driver,” Mary H. Ellis, Julian Slater, Tim Cavagin
“Blade Runner 2049,” Mac Ruth, Ron Bartlett, Doug Hephill
“Dunkirk,” Mark Weingarten, Gregg Landaker, Gary A. Rizzo
“The Shape of Water,” Glen Gauthier, Christian Cooke, Brad Zoern
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Stuart Wilson, Ren Klyce, David Parker, Michael Semanick

Production Design:

“Beauty and the Beast”
“Blade Runner 2049″
“Darkest Hour”
“The Shape of Water”

Original Score:

“Dunkirk,” Hans Zimmer
“Phantom Thread,” Jonny Greenwood
“The Shape of Water,” Alexandre Desplat
“Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” John Williams
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Carter Burwell

Come on Zimmer!!!!

Original Song:

“Mighty River” from “Mudbound,” Mary J. Blige
“Mystery of Love” from “Call Me by Your Name,” Sufjan Stevens
“Remember Me” from “Coco,” Kristen Anderson-Lopez, Robert Lopez
“Stand Up for Something” from “Marshall,” Diane Warren, Common
“This Is Me” from “The Greatest Showman,” Benj Pasek, Justin Paul

Remember Me will probably win, but This Is Me is a BANGER.

Makeup and Hair:

“Darkest Hour”
“Victoria and Abdul”

Costume Design:

“Beauty and the Beast”
“Darkest Hour
“Phantom Thread”
“The Shape of Water”
“Victoria and Abdul”

Visual Effects: