Category Archives: Thought

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Thought – 2020 Oscar Preview

Category : Thought

Of course it’s too early to make Oscar predictions; the nominees are months away from being announced.  Some of what may be the best films of the year haven’t even come out yet.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about it anyway and make guesses based on almost nothing.  At the very least, here is a list of movies that deserve a watch, as they might be in the Oscar conversation soon.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. 1917
  2. The Irishman
  3. Marriage Story
  4. Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
  5. Harriet
  6. Parasite
  7. The Report
  8. The Farewell
  9. Jojo Rabbit
  10. Ford v Ferrari
  11. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
  12. A Hidden Life
  13. Motherless Brooklyn
  14. Little Women
  15. Ad Astra
  16. The Two Popes
  17. The Goldfinch
  18. Queen & Slim
  19. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
  20. Honey Boy
  21. Knives Out
  22. Booksmart
  23. Pain & Glory
  24. Just Mercy
  25. Ordinary Love
  26. Avengers: Endgame
  27. Us
  28. Cats
  29. Clemency
  30. The Peanut Butter Falcon

Snubbed: Downton Abbey, How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World, Ready or Not, JokerThe Invisibles, Lady J, Arctic, High Life, I Am Mother, Rocketman, Spider-Man: Far from Home, Shazam!, Long Shot, Toy Story 4, Good Boys.

 


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Thought – 2019 Oscar Picks

Category : Thought

Sunday February 24th, 2019, the Academy Awards!  I’ve very excited about this year’s Oscars; there are a ton of excellent films represented, as well as the annual snubs left out.  It should be a great show (although with no host this year and a few misjudgments by the Academy along the way) and I’m sure I’ll be reacting live during the event on Twitter (@OlieCoen).  You can check out my Oscars page for a complete listing of the nominees in the six major categories, but here are both my predictions and my picks for the best films of 2018:

Best Actor

Best Supporting Actor

Best Actress

Best Supporting Actress

Best Director

  • WinnerAlfonso CuaronRoma
  • Runner-upSpike LeeBlacKkKlansman
  • My choiceAlfonso CuaronRoma

Best Picture

 


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Thought – 2019 Oscar Update

Category : Thought

Three months ago I posted a list of 30 potential Best Picture Oscar contenders, plus a list of snubbed films that deserved consideration.  Since then, I’ve updated the list with reviews as I’ve seen the movies, including any personal favorites that hadn’t previously made the list.  As the Academy Awards draw closer, let’s take a look at an updated watchlist, a list that has taken into consideration those undervalued films that have risen up the ranks and those over-hyped movies that have taken a tumble.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. A Star is Born
  2. Green Book
  3. If Beale Street Could Talk
  4. Roma
  5. BlacKkKlansman
  6. The Favourite
  7. Mary Poppins Returns
  8. Black Panther
  9. First Man
  10. Can You Ever Forgive Me?
  11. Vice
  12. Eighth Grade
  13. First Reformed
  14. Boy Erased
  15. On the Basis of Sex
  16. Crazy Rich Asians
  17. All is True
  18. Cold War
  19. A Quiet Place
  20. Widows
  21. Mary Queen of Scots
  22. The Wife
  23. The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
  24. Ben is Back
  25. Leave No Trace
  26. The Hate U Give
  27. The Mule
  28. Capernaum
  29. Bohemian Rhapsody
  30. Stan & Ollie

Snubbed: Outlaw King, Ralph Breaks the Internet, The Sisters Brothers, Sorry to Bother You, Private Life, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, Mid90s, Goldstone, Mary and the Witch’s Flower, Journey’s End, Free Solo, Avengers: Infinity War, Mission: Impossible – Fallout, Game Night, The Kindergarten Teacher, The 12th Man, Three Identical Strangers, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Solo, A Futile and Stupid Gesture, The Polka King, Annihilation, What Will People Say, The Rider, Lean on Pete, 7 Days in Entebbe, Don’t Worry He Won’t Get Far on Foot, Incredibles 2Science Fair.

Bumped Off: Beautiful Boy, The Front Runner, Destroyer, Peterloo, Ad Astra, The Happy Prince, At Eternity’s Gate, The Old Man & the Gun, Wildlife.


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Thought – 2019 Oscar Preview

Category : Thought

Of course it’s too early to make Oscar predictions; the nominees are months away from being announced.  Some of what may be the best films of the year haven’t even come out yet.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about it anyway and make guesses based on almost nothing.  At the very least, here is a list of movies that deserve a watch, as they might be in the Oscar conversation soon.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. A Star is Born
  2. If Beale Street Could Talk
  3. Roma
  4. The Favourite
  5. Beautiful Boy
  6. Green Book
  7. First Man
  8. BlacKkKlansman
  9. The Front Runner
  10. Capernaum
  11. Black Panther
  12. Boy Erased
  13. Vice
  14. Destroyer
  15. Mary Queen of Scots
  16. Widows
  17. Can You Ever Forgive Me?
  18. Peterloo
  19. The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
  20. Ad Astra
  21. Eighth Grade
  22. The Happy Prince
  23. At Eternity’s Gate
  24. Mary Poppins Returns
  25. Bohemian Rhapsody
  26. The Old Man & the Gun
  27. On the Basis of Sex
  28. Crazy Rich Asians
  29. Wildlife
  30. A Quiet Place

Snubbed: Outlaw King, Ralph Breaks the Internet, The Sisters Brothers, Sorry to Bother You, Private Life, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, Mid90s, Goldstone, Mary and the Witch’s Flower, Journey’s End, Free Solo, Avengers: Infinity War, Mission: Impossible – Fallout, Leave No Trace, Game Night, The Kindergarten Teacher, The 12th Man, Three Identical Strangers, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Solo, A Futile and Stupid Gesture, The Polka King, Annihilation, What Will People Say, The Rider, Lean on Pete, 7 Days in Entebbe, Don’t Worry He Won’t Get Far on Foot, Incredibles 2Science Fair.

 


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Thought – How Will The New Category Change The Oscars?

Category : Thought

The Academy made major news this summer with the announcement of a brand new category for the future of the Oscars. The ceremony widely viewed as the most prestigious in the cinematic world will now recognize “Outstanding Achievement in Popular Film”, which is being boiled down to “Most Popular Film” across the internet. It’s the biggest change made regarding the show in years, and while reactions have been largely negative, it’s going to shake things up in interesting ways.

A Bigger Audience

It would seem that the entire point of the shake-up of the Oscars is to bring in a bigger audience for TV viewership. Despite some compelling film lineups and excellent hosting performances by Jimmy Kimmel, ratings have been down in recent years. And one logical explanation as to why is that not that many people have seen the award contenders, relative to more “popular” films. That is, more people tend to watch spring and summer superhero movies, sequels, and comedies than films like The Shape Of Water and Moonlight (the two most recent Best Picture winners) – to say nothing of past winners like Birdman and The Artist. It just stands to reason that if more popular films are being recognized, there are more potential audience members.

A More Active Betting Market

If you don’t personally like to wager you may not realize it, but the Oscars actually make for a relatively active betting market. Because of the prevalence of opportunity online, betting sites offer strategy and tips for a range of activities that fall outside the bounds of traditional sports, and include things like the Oscars (or, you know, what color hat a celebrity might wear at a Royal Wedding, etc.). Betting seems to be what draws some people to the Oscars to begin with, but as with the above points about a bigger audience, there figure to be more people wagering if there are movies being recognized that more people have seen. It should add some extra buzz to the proceedings.

More Attention For Popular Movies

Maybe this seems blindingly obvious, but the point here isn’t just that popular movies will get a category of their own. It’s that in all likelihood this one category will elevate the films in additional ways. For instance, let’s say Creed had been nominated for Most Popular Film a few years ago. Might Sylvester Stallone have had a better shot at the Best Supporting Actor nomination people felt he deserved? Might we just have seen more clips from the movie, or presenters related to it, throughout the night? Major nominees get attention in more ways than one, and that will be the case for the movies in this category as well.

More Obscure Best Picture Selections

The Academy has made it clear that Most Popular and Best Picture aren’t mutually exclusive, meaning a film can be nominated to both categories. If we assume this is somewhat unlikely to happen often, however, there’s a chance that as more popular films split off into their own category, more obscure or “artsy” films could flood Best Picture. Looking at last year’s nominees for instance, imagine that Dunkirk, Get Out, and The Post had been nominated for “Most Popular” and not for “Best Picture”. That would leave three spots open for more films to join what would at that point be a fairly obscure lineup – relatively speaking – of candidates. This is something that may well happen as a sort of unintended consequence of the new category.

More Competitive Acting Categories

This goes hand-in-hand with the idea mentioned above about more attention being given to popular movies, even beyond the new category itself. There’s a lot of great acting that happens in popular, but not “Oscar-y” movies. And there’s a chance that more consideration of popular projects could force Academy voters to weight such performances more heavily. We could see more examples like Johnny Depp earning a Best Actor nomination for Pirates Of The Caribbean, which at the time was something of an aberration (and, for the record, a thoroughly deserving nomination).


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Thought – 2018 Oscar Picks

Category : Thought

Sunday March 4th, 2018, the Academy Awards!  I’ve very excited about this year’s Oscars; there are a ton of excellent films represented, as well as the annual snubs left out.  It should be a great show, with Jimmy Kimmel hosting, and I’m sure I’ll be reacting live during the event on Twitter (@OlieCoen).  You can check out my Oscars page for a complete listing of the nominees in the six major categories, but here are both my predictions and my picks for the best films of 2017:

Best Actor

Best Supporting Actor

Best Actress

Best Supporting Actress

Best Director

Best Picture

 


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Thought – 2018 Oscar Update

Category : Thought

Three months ago I posted a list of 30 potential Best Picture Oscar contenders, plus a list of snubbed films that deserved consideration.  Since then, I’ve updated the list with reviews as I’ve seen the movies, including any personal favorites that hadn’t previously made the list.  As the Academy Awards draw closer, let’s take a look at an updated watchlist, a list that has taken into consideration those undervalued films that have risen up the ranks and those over-hyped movies that have taken a tumble.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. The Post
  2. Dunkirk
  3. Lady Bird
  4. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
  5. The Shape of Water
  6. Call Me By Your Name
  7. Mudbound
  8. Darkest Hour
  9. Phantom Thread
  10. The Florida Project
  11. Blade Runner 2049
  12. I, Tonya
  13. Get Out
  14. Last Flag Flying
  15. Detroit
  16. Battle of the Sexes
  17. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  18. Coco
  19. Molly’s Game
  20. Downsizing
  21. Stronger
  22. Wonderstruck
  23. Mother!
  24. Victoria and Abdul
  25. The Beguiled
  26. Logan
  27. The Greatest Showman
  28. All the Money in the World
  29. Wind River
  30. Wonder Wheel
  31. The Big Sick
  32. Hostiles
  33. Wonder Woman
  34. War for the Planet of the Apes
  35. The Disaster Artist
  36. Novitiate
  37. The Meyerowitz Stories
  38. Beauty and the Beast
  39. Breathe
  40. First They Killed My Father

Snubbed: The Current War, Frantz, Split, A Cure for Wellness, The Killing of a Sacred Deer, Good Time, The Square, Brad’s Status, BPM, A Ghost Story, Cars 3, Wakefield, The Glass Castle, From the Land of the Moon, Jane, It Comes at Night, Okja, The Little Hours, The Lovers, The Foreigner, Thor:Ragnarok, Betting on Zero, Take Me, The Lost City of Z, Berlin Syndrome, Crown Heights, Lucky, Baby Driver, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Graduation, Win It All, The Trip to Spain, War Machine, Life (2017), The Boss Baby.

Bumped Off: Suburbicon, Goodbye Christopher Robin, Mary Magdalene, Murder on the Orient Express.


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Thought – 2018 Oscar Preview

Category : Thought

Of course it’s too early to make Oscar predictions; the nominees are months away from being announced.  Some of what may be the best films of the year haven’t even come out yet.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about it anyway and make guesses based on almost nothing.  At the very least, here is a list of movies that deserve a watch, as they might be in the Oscar conversation soon.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. The Post
  2. Downsizing
  3. Darkest Hour
  4. Mudbound
  5. Dunkirk
  6. Phantom Thread
  7. Blade Runner 2049
  8. Last Flag Flying
  9. Battle of the Sexes
  10. Call Me By Your Name
  11. Detroit
  12. Suburbicon
  13. The Shape of Water
  14. Wonderstruck
  15. Goodbye Christopher Robin
  16. Coco
  17. Mother!
  18. The Greatest Showman
  19. Wonder Wheel
  20. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
  21. The Beguiled
  22. The Florida Project
  23. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  24. Molly’s Game
  25. Victoria and Abdul
  26. Wind River
  27. War for the Planet of the Apes
  28. Logan
  29. Mary Magdalene
  30. Murder on the Orient Express

Snubbed: The Current War, Lady Bird, Get Out, Frantz, Split, A Cure for Wellness, The Killing of a Sacred Deer, The Meyerowitz Stories, I, Tonya, Good Time, The Square, Brad’s Status, BPM, A Ghost Story, Cars 3, Wakefield, The Glass Castle, From the Land of the Moon, Jane, It Comes at Night, Okja, The Little Hours, The Lovers, The Foreigner, Hostiles, Thor:Ragnarok, The Big Sick, The Disaster Artist, Betting on Zero, Take Me, The Lost City of Z, Berlin Syndrome, Crown Heights, Lucky, Baby Driver, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Wonder Woman, Graduation, Win It All, The Trip to Spain, War Machine, Beauty and the Beast (2017), Life (2017), Boss Baby.


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Thought – Republican Hero

Category : Thought

A Republican in Congress needs to step up and save our country.  That they are reluctant to do so is mind-boggling, or perhaps shows their level of fear that their constituency has not yet arrived at the place presently occupied by a majority of the country, a place of understanding that Donald Trump is the worst possible President.  He is both an erratic man and a horrendous representative of the core values that our nation is supposed to honor, a strange and dangerous combination that is exemplified every time he opens his mouth.  Most of us understand this, his approval rating reflects that, but Congressional Republicans continue to work alongside him and for his agenda, a move I quite simply can’t understand.

And then there’s Russia, which is a toxic subject at best and a treasonous one at worst.  You & I have no idea what has happened, who colluded with who, which shape the investigation into all this will take, all we can do it bob along as the lawmakers and executives of our country stumble through the briar patch and hope not to get blinded.  But something smells rotten, anyone with a functional, political nose can tell you that, and it only further convinces most of us that the man running the show needs to be replaced as soon as is humanly possible.

I consider myself a Stolid Democrat, not a Bleeding Heart Liberal by any means.  I am level-headed, I vote unemotionally, but this past year’s election was a horse of a different color.  Donald Trump is a terrible person and a threat to our world.  His lunacy and his egotism make him an unstable leader; this was clear in the primaries, the debates, and is all the more crystal now.  His immediate removal from office should be of the highest concern to us all, Democrat or Republican, and differences need to be set aside until we find the legal means with which to do so.

All we need now is a high-ranking official to take a stand.  It can’t be someone who has been fighting the GOP all along, a person with bias who could be said to be tasting sour grapes.  We need a Republican with the balls to speak out and the ability to convince Trump supporters that the man they wanted as President because he could shake up the common order has become much more than a liability, has begun to vibrate with the dark powers of racism, nationalism, and despotism.

The closest we’ve come are John Kasich’s comments and John McCain’s wagging finger, but neither is enough to veer our juvenile President from his current path, to demand accountability for his actions, to uncover the truth behind the election.  What we need is a strong Republican to plant his or her feet and to say that the charade is over.  It’s not melodramatic to say that this person could go down as a hero who saved our country from disaster, who called out loudly when others were being silent, who risked losing rural votes, who did what was right.  As a Democrat, even I would applaud this person, I would follow them if they seemed to know the way, and I think many others would too.  It seems so simple and so advantageous, I don’t understand what they’re waiting for, and I won’t believe that the majority of Republicans actually think Donald Trump is both innocent of all crimes and mentally fit for office.  It’s time for someone to be daring, it’s time for Trump’s base to open their eyes, it’s time for Democrats to help if they can instead of looking forward to 2020; it’s time for a new President.

 


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Thought – 2017 Oscar Picks

Category : Thought

Sunday February 26th, 2017, the Academy Awards!  I’ve very excited about this year’s Oscars; there are a ton of excellent films represented, as well as the annual snubs left out.  It should be a great show, with Jimmy Kimmel hosting, and I’m sure I’ll be reacting live during the event on Twitter (@OlieCoen).  You can check out my Oscars page for a complete listing of the nominees in the six major categories, but here are both my predictions and my picks for the best films of 2016:

Best Actor

Best Supporting Actor

Best Actress

  • Winner – Natalie Portman – Jackie
  • Runner-up – Ruth NeggaLoving
  • My choiceNatalie Portman – Jackie

Best Supporting Actress

Best Director

Best Picture