Here are the 2018 Oscar Nominations for Best Picture (for the casual movie goer):
Blade Runner: 2049
Fans of the Blade Runner series have been calling this film a disappointment. People who have never been exposed to the series have been calling this film confusing. Not only has this film started a dialogue, but the conflicting opinions prove that it is just too high-concept to understand; a true sign of an Oscar nominee.
What do you get when you take a superhero and rid them of both their physical and supernatural identities? The answer: a thought provoking look at man’s struggle with his sense of self in an increasingly unfamiliar and violent world. Be sure to watch for a Best Supporting Actor nod for Jeff Goldblum as well.
To address the elephant in the room, this movie did in fact come out in 2016. However, it was released to Netflix in 2017. This animated, cultural homage to native Hawaiians just barely meets the deadline, but has all the makings of an Oscar contender. Like any Oscar-worthy film, people sang praises of Moana, but did not actually get around to seeing it until months later.
The Disaster Artist
The only thing more ironic than a fan base sarcastically praising an objectively terrible movie for almost 15 years is a silver screen adaptation of the failed director’s ex-best friend’s tell-all book going on to gross 24.8 million dollars (13,000 times the box office haul of the source material), not to mention winning a Golden Globe for another actor’s portrayal of said failed director.
A Bad Mom’s Christmas
Set in Chicago. Strong, star-studded female cast. Heart wrenching and diverse socio-economic, platonic, and familial relationships. This film checks just about every box on the Oscar wish list this holiday season.
It is a warm summer’s day in colonial America when the founding fathers decide that the ratio of taxation to representation is way off. So, like an angst-filled teenager, the founding fathers write the most famous running away letter of all time. Meanwhile, across the pond King George catches wind of this and cannot believe what a bunch of prima donna amateurs he has to deal with. Who do these so-called “founding fathers” think they are? A bunch of day-dreaming desk jockeys finally getting the stones to quit their jobs and sail to the soon-to-be-colonized Galapagos Islands? One can only imagine how cathartic it must have been to draft a break-up letter to England, but those boys clearly missed the part of that old saying where you write the angry letter, but do not send it.
Let us pretend that Thomas Jefferson and co. weren’t a bunch of whiny nerds. Just think about how much innocent tea could have been saved. A little self-control can go a long way, fellas. Colonial America is the kid in the grocery store screaming because they didn’t the Snickers bar they wanted. England is the parent who wants to run errands just one time without their spoiled, shitty kid making a scene. On the drive home England can only think about how they never even really wanted kids, but just kind of had kids anyway because all their friends were having kids. Hey England, if the Dutch, Spanish, French, and Portuguese told you to colonize off of a cliff would you do it? In the wise, immortal words of Kanye West, “Eighteen years, eighteen years, the Queen’s got your colonies, got you for eighteen years.”
Just think of how much greater life would be if America had not moved out of their parents’ house (often referred to by historians as “The Revolutionary War”). We would have used the Euro for a spell which is stronger than the U.S. dollar. That would admittedly be short-lived in the grand scheme of human history since England will eventually do that whole Brexit thing and effectively “America” themselves. Everyone knows that the most important step to becoming a successful actor is to be able to speak with a British accent. Congratulations colonial America! Y’all better get yourselves down to Ye Old Home Depot so you can build a trophy case to hold all the Oscars. Opposite of congratulations to Eddie Redmayne, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Rupert Grint, the “Big 3” of British actors.
“Looks like it’s going to be one of those days, fellas” the ill-tempered man bellyaches to his nearby coworkers. It is 7:22 AM on a cold Tuesday morning in December. The day has only just begun, but Mark has already reached his boiling point, set off this time by an uncooperative copying machine. “I’ve had to reset my default printer every day this week, thanks a lot IT” he whines in a sarcastic tone. After pacing back and forth between the copier and his computer muttering obscenities Mark returns to his cubicle with the elusive contracts in hand. The papers crumple as he balls his hands into fists and climbs onto his desk.
“My fellow coworkers, will we just stand idly by as this company destroys our livelihoods? How many infinitesimally minor inconveniences must we endure? I for one say no more! No more to the upstairs conference room being too cold in the winter and too hot in the summer. No more to the defunct toaster oven in the breakroom that either leaves food frozen or melts the contents into a plastic puddle at the bottom. No more to the tyrannical and oppressive rule of IT over our default user settings.
Who among you can say you are content with the current state of affairs? We are allowing ourselves to be subjected to inhumane treatment. The batteries in my wireless mouse died last week and there was only one AA battery left in the supply closet. I was forced to use my spare mouse with a USB cable for an entire day like a Neanderthal. At what point will someone do something about these blatant violations of the Geneva Conventions? When will the United Nations intervene?
I drive forty miles to and from work in a 1997 Honda Civic through stop-and-go, bumper-to-bumper traffic every day because I am the best goddamn dairy salesman in the greater Madison area, NOT because I want to role-play living in a third-world work camp. This is no way to live!”
Emily in customer support snaps her gum and rolls her eyes as her neighbor finishes proclaiming his latest manifesto. Mark, expecting a standing ovation from his peers, can only hear muffled coughs and the clacking of keyboards over the otherwise piercing silence. He takes a deep breath and hangs his head dejectedly as he comes to notice one of his shoelaces is untied. He throws up his hands, exasperated, and cries out, “Oh jeez, would you look at this. Honestly, what else can POSSIBLY go wrong?” The desk wobbles as Mark leans over to tie his shoe causing him to lose his balance, desperately grasping at the air as he plummets off of his desk. Mark lands headfirst, snapping his neck with a sickening crunch, and then lay motionless on the floor. Dead.