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Three On Thursday, But Not Really

We interrupt our regularly scheduled Three On Thursday to share this post on a very timely subject . . .

You know what’s coming up this Sunday, right? It’s THE OSCARS! Yes! All the months of movie going and popcorn eating and list keeping are finally coming to a conclusion with this glorious day that’s all about the movies. Well, and the fashion. But mostly the movies and I love me the movies.

I have seen all of the best picture nominated films as well as The Big Sick, I, Tonya, and Mudbound and I plan to see The Florida Project by Sunday. I have seen all but one of the best actor nominated performances and two out of five of the best supporting actor performances. I have seen all of the best nominated actress and supporting actress performances. And that’s a lot of movie watching!

Here’s my ranking of the Best Picture Nominated Films, from most to least favorite.

  1. The Shape of Water
  2. Darkest Hour
  3. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, MO
  4. The Post
  5. Lady Bird
  6. Call Me By Your Name
  7. Get Out
  8. Phantom Thread
  9. Dunkirk

The prediction of a Best Picture win is rough this year. Some critics are predicting a win for the outlier Get Out but most come down to choosing either The Shape of Water or Three Billboards. I’m going to hope for The Shape of Water to win but I won’t be surprised if it’s Three Billboards instead.

I didn’t see all of the Best Actor performances but even without seeing them all I can’t imagine anyone could have done a better job than Gary Oldman did with Winston Churchill in The Darkest Hour. I often think it’s more difficult to recreate a well known personality than it is to create a character from scratch (think Jamie Foxx as Ray Charles and Joaquin Phoenix as Johnny Cash) and Oldman portrayed Churchill beautifully. Timothee Chalamet is very good in Call Me By Your Name and Daniel Kaluuya is terrific in Get Out. Daniel Day-Lewis is okay in Phantom Thread but it’s not like his performance as Lincoln and so I come back to Oldman every time.

I’m torn between Richard Jenkins from The Shape of Water and Woody Harrelson from Three Billboards for the performance I think is most deserving of the Best Supporting Actor award. They both gave great performances of very unique characters. Woody Harrelson’s voice overs are wonderful and heart breaking and Richard Jenkins’ misunderstood, bumbling artist who rises to the role of hero is fabulous.

All of the Best Actress nominees are excellent. My wish is for Sally Hawkins (Shape of Water) to win because, really, she gave an amazing performance without speaking but I have a feeling Frances McDormand will be taking home the statue on Sunday night. She is wonderful as the angry, vengeful and resourceful mother in Three Billboards. Meryl Streep is epic in The Post but I can’t say that the role felt like a stretch for her. Margot Robbie is crass and funny in I, Tonya and Saoirse Ronan is truly believable as a teenager with angst in Lady Bird and, even though Sally Hawkins is my favorite, my money is on McDormand.

My pick for Best Supporting Actress is a tough one because I think Allison Janney in I, Tonya and Laurie Metcalf in Lady Bird are both fabulous as misunderstood mothers who have difficult relationships with their daughters. My personal choice is Laurie Metcalf because I think her character’s heart is in the right place, at least, but I think Janney has a lock on this win. Octavia Spencer is a great sidekick to Sally Hawkins in The Shape of Water but it was like watching her in The Help all over again. Lesley Manville is creepy and weird in Phantom Thread but that whole movie is creepy and weird and Mary J. Blige in Mudbound didn’t do much for me – that whole movie didn’t really do much for me, in fact.

And there you have it – my summation of the major categories for The Oscars. Now that the movie watching is out of the way it’s time to start planning the party!

If you wrote a post for Three on Thursday please include your link below. And forgive me for going off course this week!

This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. I’m not much of a movie-goer, but your predictions seem quite similar to those from a couple of my friends who are avid movie buffs. It will probably be a while before The Shape of Water shows up on Netflix, but that is one I’ve got to see!

  2. My favorites are Shape of Water and Lady Bird this year! I liked Three Billboards also. (I think it was the first of the Best Picture movies we saw this year, and it’s still sticking with me — and that doesn’t always happen.) I think you’re right about Gary Oldman (he was just terrific), and I’d love to see Sally Hawkins or Saiorse Ronan win (but would bet on Frances McDormand). The movies were great this year — so very different and unique. I’m excited for the Oscars! 🙂

  3. Confession time… I have not seen one of these movies. But, I really am looking forward to seeing Darkest Hour when it shows up on Netflix or On Demand. Good luck with your list!

  4. I can’t wait to see Darkest Hour & The Shape of Water! I agree with your statement about actors recreating a well known personality. I can’t wait for Sunday night!!

  5. I agree about Shape of Water. We loved it. I hope Lady Bird does well! For the first time ever, I’ve seen four of the best Oscar movies. Frances McDormand was amazing and I think she’ll take the award. We’ll be watching (for the first time in a long time), too!

  6. I’ve only seen 3 Billboards but am doing everything in my power to get Ladybird or Shape of Water in this weekend!

  7. For the first time in my lifetime, I believe, I’ve actually seen two of the movies …”Darkest Hour” and “The Post.” Clearly, Daniel Day-Lewis gave a sterling performance! Enjoyed reading your reviews and comparisons…now I will be intrigued to see who/what actually do walk away with the prizes…

  8. We haven’t seen too many of the movies – only Dunkirk and The Darkest hour. Shape of Water is on our list. I’ll watch this space to see how you did with your predictions.

  9. Thank you, Carole, for this comprehensive run-down. I have only tried to watch one of the movies this year so far, but I didn’t make it all the way through it. I tried to watch Mudbound, and it was the most depressing movie without (IMHO) any redeeming characters or plotline. I didn’t like the any of the characters, and I was not particularly moved by the story. About halfway through, I gave up. I am looking forward to seeing all the others. I hope you have a fabulous partay!

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