The first surprise hit of 2018 is here! ‘Game Night’ really seemed like it would be mediocre at best, but delivers a surprising amount of laugh out loud moments with an ensemble cast all getting their time to shine. What could’ve become a ridiculous amount of events getting more and more stupid actually defies these expectations and plays out a lot better than it has any right too.
It’s awards season and every film is vying to win the so-called “big one”: The Academy Award for Best Picture. Winning this can increase a films’ popularity, and therefore legacy, almost overnight. While we can all agree sometimes the awards season can be a bit nonsense, it’s still very exciting to watch and guess all the winners for film buffs. Last year was the first year I stayed up and watched the whole thing and I loved it, not only because of the infamous Moonlight/La La Land mix-up, but because you remembered just how many great films had come out. It even brings up the discussion of how many more great films were nowhere to be seen. So, with the Oscars on the horizon, I wanted to look back at winners of Best Picture from the last 5 years and ask a question, did the right film win?
No spoilers for any of the three ‘Cloverfield’ film follow!
The Cloverfield Paradox dropped in unexpectedly immediately after the Super Bowl this year and was another home run for building hype within the series. Building hype is something that is now mistaken for showing off as much of the film as humanly possible before its’ release. The ‘Cloverfield’ franchise has quelled that belief and has proven three times now how to successfully build hype in three totally different ways.
Film: Black Panther
On August 21st 2015, three American’s on holiday stopped a terrorist who attempted to open fire on a packed train. The world watched on as news as the story unfolded and it was a huge moment of pride for humanity as a whole. Clint Eastwood continues his recent run of making real life heroic actions into films, but with this one, he has cast the real life heroes to play themselves. It’s a move that was meant to get the chemistry of the real life friend to come out naturally on screen, but actually, ends up derailing the entire project.
Around this time of year, it feels as if every other film is based on a true life story. Some are uplifting, some break you down a little, then there’s the few like ‘The Mercy’, which make you question why someone would ever do something as crazy as this. By this, I mean why would you sail around the world without stopping in a hand built boat when you yourself are only an avid sailor? We are basically asked to watch a man go off to certain death, which isn’t the most appealing of topics. It’s a testament to the direction of James Marsh and Colin Firth’s performance that this never feels like a chore.
Marvel’s latest is their most unique and dynamic film to date. While not in the same regard as their best work (‘Guardians of the Galaxy’, ‘…Winter Solider’), it’s unique tone, visuals and story make it stand out above others that have come before it. From its opening scene, it’s an unapologetic reminder this is the first superhero film led by a black man and it’s not going to do things the way they’ve been done before. It’s most shocking omission is the lack of action – and that’s not a weakness in the slightest. By not being made up of “crashy, crashy, bang, bang!” moments, it gives all of the character interactions time to work and feel real, not just discussions after discussion of how to stop the bad guys.
The BAFTA rising star award is nothing but a popularity contest, the winner will always be the star who was in the most mainstream or popular film from the last year. That’s not to say they don’t deserve it, but that’s really how it always works with public votes. This year, I fully expect Daniel Kaluuya to take home the gong after starring in everybody’s favourite film from last year, ‘Get Out’ and honestly, he’s a worthy winner. But in reality, this year is possibly the strongest line-up of young talent for a long time, probably since 2011 (Tom Hardy, Gemma Arterton, Andrew Garfield, Aaron-Taylor-Johnson AND Emma Stone, wow) and here’s why.
Thirteen Oscar nominations is an incredible achievement, even more so when said nominations are for a film about a woman falling in love with a sea creature. In one of the most downright bonkers award-winning films of recent memory, Guillermo Del Toro has crafted a truly beautiful story with visuals that make even the craziest of scenes seem realisitc and a mesmerising score.