Academy Award ballots are secret, of course, closely monitored by an accounting firm that hardly ever accidentally names the wrong movie Best Picture. But the average Oscar voter is an elderly white man, so it’s pretty easy to get them to talk. Here’s our no-holds-barred chat with one Academy member who will remain anonymous to protect his ongoing access to screeners.
I admire Christopher Plummer for stepping in at the last minute to replace Kevin Costner, but All of the Money in the Whole World was boring. An old millionaire doesn’t want to give his money away? What’s the problem? William Dafoe being nice in Florida Projects was too unbelievable. I’ll be honest, I never watched The Shapes of Water. I assumed it was in Spanish. My vote is for Sam Rockwell in The Three Billboards because he’s a racist but he gets away with it.
Well, first of all, the Netflix movie, Mudhouse, that’s not even eligible. Is “Netflix” a movie theater? I didn’t think so. I don’t know how that movie got on the list. I liked Roseanne’s sister in The Lady Bird, but I didn’t think she portrayed LBJ’s wife very well. My vote is for Allison Jennings in I’m Tonya because of the wig and the bird. Ha ha! What a crazy story!
Oh, it’s Gary Oldman in The Darkest Hours. Did you see how much makeup he was wearing?! Incredible. Timothy what’s-his-name in the gay movie is probably good, but he just looks like himself. Same with Daniel Kahlua in Getting Out. Where’s the artistry? Where’s the prosthetic nose?
I didn’t see The Shapes of Water, but I understand Sally Hawke doesn’t even talk in it? How is that nominated? You didn’t see the Academy giving awards to actresses in the silent era. Margot Roberts is good in I’m Tonya, but I don’t like how the movie rewrites history by making me attracted to Tonya Harding. And the Lady Bird girl? Sore-see something? Get outta here. Come back when you’re older and have a better screen name. I’m voting for Meryl Streep because she represents something I’m passionate about: giving awards to Meryl Streep.
Christopher Nolan has never made a movie I understood, and I’m a smart man who’s been coddled by an insular industry ever since I graduated from high school 50 years ago. If I don’t understand him, how could anybody else? Jamal Peele is too new, and Getting Out really ruffled a lot of feathers by implying racism was bad. The little gal who made The Lady Bird, she’s a pip! Met her at an Academy luncheon. Just a delight. She could be a great director once she makes a movie about something important, like a war or men. Paul Anderson is another director I don’t really understand, but he’s the only white American man on the list, so what am I supposed to do?
You and I both know I didn’t watch any of these, but I’ll vote for whichever one is about terrorism.
Dunkirk? I didn’t understand Dunkirk! It’s very, very confusing. They constantly switch between night and day. I wasn’t familiar with Dunkirk in my history, and I didn’t know it’s in France, and they never explained it. If you’re gonna make a movie about some obscure war that nobody remembers, you should make it easy to understand.
I never figured out who The Phantom Thread was. Entertaining movie, though. Why did the girl keep putting up with that persnickety gay man and his mean wife? Only in America, am I right?
Getting Out was OK, but some parts made me uncomfortable, which is just bad filmmaking. If movies were supposed to be uncomfortable, they wouldn’t put cushiony seats in the theaters, would they?
I already told you why I didn’t see The Shapes of Water. I didn’t see Call My Name, either. I’m sure I don’t need to explain why.
I liked The Darkest Hours because, unlike Dunkirk, they kept telling us where Dunkirk is. It’s in France. “France, France, France,” Gary Oldman kept saying. I like a movie that explains where things are.
The Post was an amazing fantasy. I love the idea of a woman controlling a newspaper and using journalism to take down powerful men. Imagine if it happened in real life! Boy, that’s what Hollywood is all about, isn’t it? The dream factory.
But for me it all comes down to The Three Billboards from Missouri. I don’t really know what the movie is saying, but it seems like it’s saying a lot, and that the things it’s saying are important. You try not to be too political in your Oscar votes, but in times like these we need to send a message about the importance of making movies that say things.
Eric D. Snider lives in Portland and puts his name on things. Yes, dummy, this was satire.