I told ya!
Nobody cared about Sunday’s 92nd Annual Academy Awards. And it had nothing to do with it not having a host.
Not only were there some history-making wins, but the Oscars telecast itself made history, being the lowest-rated Academy Awards broadcast ever.
As predicted, a dearth of films that people actually loved or even watched is likely the culprit.
As with most years, the Oscars just aren’t concerned about box office popularity. “Joker” – the one picture most people probably heard of – last year’s highest-grossing film, started the night off with the most nominations (11), but ended the night with just two wins.
Nevertheless, it was a reasonably good night as it relates to my annual predictions.
For some reason, there still seems to be some surprise about the Best Picture win for “Parasite”. I’m not sure why. If you’ve watched it, then there could be no doubt.
As I wrote last week:
“Before I saw ‘Parasite’, I was all but certain ‘1917’ would be the Oscar winner. ‘1917’ is an astonishing picture, but ‘Parasite’ was the most surprising film of the year.”
And about the fact that never before has a foreign language picture won the top award, I noted:
“While (2018’s) ‘Roma’ was a great film, it certainly didn’t feel like the movie to break what has seemed an insurmountable hurdle. Plus, ‘Parasite’ has topped more critics’ lists for best movie of the year than any other film, and by a wide margin. This would be a great year for history to be made.”
My other predictions went as expected by almost everyone: Joaquin Phoenix, Best Actor for “Joker”; Renée Zellweger, Best Actress for “Judy”; Brad Pitt, Supporting Actor for “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”.
I also accurately predicted that Taika Waititi would be rewarded for his creativity for writing the adapted screenplay for the clever and touching “Jojo Rabbit”.
Even though I expected the Academy to go with Quentin Tarantino for his original screenplay for “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”, I did say Bong Joon Ho and Han Jin Won would have been my choice for their work on ‘Parasite’, the eventual winner. So, I’m still going to count that as a win for me too.
Unfortunately, despite clear signs all over the world about what was going to be the outcome, I was dead wrong about Supporting Actress. Laura Dern did win for her performance in “Marriage Story”, and deservedly so. Scarlett Johansson will have her day soon enough, though.
And while I did think that giving Sam Mendes the Best Director Oscar for the stellar “1917” would have been a way to pacify him for what I predicted would be a “Parasite” Best Picture win, the Academy went all in on the South Korean comedy/thriller, with Bong Joon Ho taking that prize as well.
So, it was an historic night for “Parasite”, now the first-ever foreign language film to win so big at the Oscars. If you haven’t seen it, don’t watch any other movies before you do. It is truly amazing.
And if you’re keeping count, that’s four years in a row I’ve correctly predicted the Best Picture winner, often going against the grain and inciting ridicule for my supposedly surprising and controversial picks, including wins for “Moonlight”, “The Shape of Water”, “Green Book” and now “Parasite”.
Let’s see if I can keep this up.