Monday, April 15, 2024

Anonymous 2024 Oscar Ballot #4

With the 96th Academy Awards coming up this weekend on March 10th, Will Mavity and I spoke to several Academy voters about what they are voting for and why. Here’s the first, second and third anonymous voters we heard from and now, here is our fourth. Always keep in mind, as you read these, that they represent only a tiny fraction of the 9,000+ people who vote on the Oscar winners. While these may help provide some insight into how voters make their selections, they are far from the be-all-end-all of what will actually happen at the Oscars.

Best Picture:
I was very disappointed about Greta Gerwig missing for Best Director. What do they say? It’s a Shanda. It’s a real shame with a little bit of evil in it. Werner Herzog said watching it was like hell, and I’m thinking, “Really? Did you see it? Did you not get it?” Everyone was expecting it to be a lot of fluff, and it wasn’t. Steering it must’ve been so hard. Most men in the industry are so egotistical that they can’t stand seeing women receive accolades for great work. Also, Margot Robbie wasn’t nominated. It’s almost like, do people resent success in others? It’s all very strange to me. I was kind of disappointed “Origin” didn’t get the focus it deserved. They had a small budget for the PR. People are going, “Well, we got one woman nominated…” Stop that. We could’ve had more than one. I must confess, and I’m not proud of it, but I didn’t see “Poor Things.” I’m also not into depressing movies, so in the case of “Oppenheimer,” I know it has all this buzz around it, but I just don’t admire Christopher Nolan’s method of making films. It’s a well-made movie. But I know how he treats his crew, and I don’t like it. So, I’m punishing him with my ballot. If we’re talking about “Barbenheimer,” I loved “Barbie.” I thought “Maestro” was amazing. And I didn’t even see it in a good theater. I thought that was just a fantastic achievement. His choice of shots really caught my attention. Shooting scenes at a party through a dirty window. Or Snoopy at the Macy’s parade, and it’s all one take—very good stuff. “The Zone Of Interest” was a very unusual film and a hard watch for me to get through, but it turned out to be very impactful by the end. I put “Barbie” first. I want a movie that moves the human spirit to win, like “It Happened One Night.” These films don’t always have to be heavy drama and explosions.

  1. Barbie
  2. The Holdovers
  3. Maestro
  4. The Zone Of Interest
  5. Past Lives
  6. American Fiction
  7. Anatomy Of A Fall
  8. Killers Of The Flower Moon
  9. Poor Things
  10. Oppenheimer

Best Director:
Justine Triet for “Anatomy Of A Fall.” I’ll admit the gender card might’ve played a bit on this one. But I also think it is a deserved choice because I loved her choice of shots and the emotion she brought to the courtroom drama.

Best Actress:
Annette Bening. I thought she did an amazing job in “Nyad” and it’s about time she finally won. At her age, she did all her own swimming and took on the complicated persona of Diana Nyad very well. However, based on others I’ve spoken to, I do think Lily Gladstone will win for “Killers Of The Flower Moon.”

Best Actor:
Bradley Cooper. Everyone’s criticizing him because of his nose or whatever. I felt like he really channeled Leonard Bernstein and disappeared in a truly unbelievable performance.

Best Supporting Actress:
America Ferrera. That monologue was incredible. Though, I also loved Jodie Foster.

Best Supporting Actor:
Ryan Gosling. He made Ken’s evolutionary change in the film believable alongside Barbie’s arc.

Best Original Screenplay:
The Holdovers.” I thought it was terrific. It’s a little slow to get into but if you stick with it, you eventually get swept up in it.
Best Adapted Screenplay:
Barbie,” even though it shouldn’t be here. I don’t understand it being in Best Adapted Screenplay. What was it adapted from? A line of dolls? How did they justify this?

Best Animated Feature:
Robot Dreams.” I’m guessing “The Boy And The Heron” will probably win because it’s Miyazaki, but it seemed so violent and esoteric to me.

Best Documentary Feature:
20 Days In Mariupol” was quite something. Really harrowing and distressing but overall brave and brilliant.

Best International Feature Film:
The Zone Of Interest.” It has the importance and an enduring power.

Best Cinematography:
Matthew Libatique for “Maestro.” I actually met him, and he told me they shot on film, which I think is a very brave choice these days. It’s stellar work all around, with the use of black and white and how the camera moves throughout. Exquisite work all around.

Best Costume Design:
I am going with “Barbie” for the design prizes.

Best Film Editing:
Anatomy Of A Fall.” That one cut back to the courtroom after that tense fight between her and her husband took my breath away.
Best Makeup & Hairstyling:
Golda.” When the film opens on that closeup, I thought I was looking at the real Golda Meir. I mean, you see every pore. It’s like a real face. Just barely edged out the work in “Maestro” for me.

Best Production Design:
Barbie” again.

Best Original Score:
American Fiction.” I know Laura Karpman, and I think she’s deserving. Why was John Williams here? Does he need another nomination? I know that’s a terrible thing to say, but that’s just how it goes, I guess.

Best Original Song:
The Diane Warren Cheetos song. I just want to see her finally win one of these days.

Best Sound:
I may not have enjoyed it, but there’s no denying “The Zone Of Interest” here. The use of not seeing the camps but hearing them was a really haunting use of sound I won’t soon forget. It created a whole other story in your mind that wasn’t provided by the visuals. It was very bold and interesting. Sometimes, constant sound can become just a drone for you. But this always got your attention. You couldn’t ignore it, and that’s the point of the movie.

Best Visual Effects:
The Creator” created this whole world on such a minimal budget relative to what most of the industry is making today. Many can say they create worlds within a computer, but not many can say they did what Gareth Edwards and his team accomplished here. I saw clips from “Godzilla Minus One,” and it looked fine, I guess. Why was the film called “Godzilla Minus One?” Was there a “Godzilla 2.0?” Anyway, I liked “The Creator” the best.

Best Animated Short Film:
“Letter To A Pig” was very beautifully animated and powerful.

Best Documentary Short Film:
Nai Nai and Wài Pó.” Those grandmas were so cute.

Best Live Action Short Film:
I abstained this year because I didn’t see any.

Please let us know your thoughts on our Twitter account and be sure to listen to our final Oscar predictions podcast episode here. Please click here for the most recent tally of awards season winners for the current year.

You can follow Matt & Will and hear more of their thoughts on the Oscars & Film on Twitter at @NextBestPicture@mavericksmovies

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Matt Neglia
Matt Neglia
Obsessed about the Oscars, Criterion Collection and all things film 24/7. Critics Choice Member.

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