Billy Porter’s Scarlett O’Hara attire at the Oscars thrilled fashionistas and depressed me, so it’s the lead entry in tonight’s illustrated edition.
2018 Oscar Predictions
The Closet Conservative Critic
(Brief recap of who the Closet Conservative Critic is….C.C.C. is a 50-something “person of interest” who occasional writes on the Bookworm Blog, under the guise of the “Closet Conservative Critic”, reviewing Hollywood movies, and giving opinions with the perspective of a conservative. C.C.C. has worked in Hollywood and rubbed elbows with some of the most Liberal of the bunch. C.C.C. now lives in Marin County, and secretly lays low as a minority, in a bastion of limousine liberals)
Last year I made predictions for eight categories in the Oscars and correctly predicted five of them… given THAT as your barometer, consider your chances on using my predictions for any Las Vegas bets…
My predictions have nothing to do with my personal feelings about the movie… it’s simply an objective opinion based on 40 years of following the Oscars, 30 years of working in show biz, countless Oscar parties attended where the guests play the “WHO WILL WIN” pool, and just a gut feeling of the timing and sense of how the majority of the Academy will vote.
My personal picks however are clearly a subjective opinion, often times based on a political angle of how the filmmakers spun their stories or characters in this modern day media world of “Conservatives are bad …. We hate Trump”
SHOULD WIN: Darkest Hour
PREDICTION: The Shape of Water
The Darkest Hour was not my favorite movie of the year. (Coco was, followed by A Dogs Purpose, I Tonya, and Wonder) Yet, of the nominees it’s clearly my personal favorite. Winston Churchill saved England from the Nazis and did so with a great deal of in-house fighting with other politicians of Great Britain at the time. He was vilified as much as he was beloved. History has treated him much better than did his political opponents at the time. Add to that, among the many great quotes credited to him, one of my favorites is … “If you’re not Liberal at age 20 you don’t have a heart. If you’re not conservative at age 40, you don’t have a brain.” (* This quote has frequently been questioned as to having been said by Churchill, but it’s great fodder, and it sounds like something he could have said…)
I just saw The Shape of Water this week. It’s overrated, really quite silly and very bizarre. Yet, it’s the darling of the critics. It’s produced by a very talented Mexican filmmaker. Look for the Academy to give the Oscar this year to Shape of Water, and they’ll be just hoping this Mexican producer comes up on stage and will wave the Mexican flag, and rag on Trump.
SHOULD WIN: Greta Gerwig – Lady Bird
PREDICTION: Guillermo de Toro – The Shape of Water
Greta Gerwig directed a charming, heart-warming movie that’s a bonding story of a mother and daughter. In spite of a few digs at President Regan, it’s quite fair and gentle toward the Catholic religion. More than a few Nuns and Priests are portrayed as very sympathetic characters and as real humans in the movie. Greta could win, given that Hollywood would love to see a woman director win. However, in the fight for victimhood status, the Mexican director will win over the woman. Guillermo will win for the same reasons mentioned above about the Shape of Water for best picture.
SHOULD WIN: Margo Robbie – I, Tonya
PREDICTION: Frances McDormand -Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.
How does one make Tonya Harding remotely likable? Margo Robbie’s performance is flawless. Playing the role of the trailer trash, foul-mouthed Olympic Ice Skater, Robbie plays down her own good looks, and plays up the low-life, brain-dead Tonya Harding. She may win, but my money is on Frances McDormand for Three Billboards. Her role as the heartbroken mother of a murdered daughter is terrific. While we sympathize with her in one scene, we are cringing in the next for some downright mean or immoral action her character will take.
SHOULD WIN: Gary Oldman: Darkest Hour
PREDICTION: Gary Oldman: Darkest Hour
Each year there is one category where the actor is considered a lock to win. He/She plays the role of a character that they BECOME and follow (generally) a very well written script that allows them to push the envelope. Gary Oldman, in a very DeNiro like way, BECOMES Churchill. He looks, sounds, and probably smells like Winston Churchill. A great performance, in a great movie, about a great man.
Best Supporting Actress
SHOULD WIN: Allison Janney – I, Tanya
PREDICTION: Allison Janney – I Tanya
Again, like my pick and prediction for Oldman in Darkest Hour, my thoughts on Allison Janney as Tonya Hardings mother are similar. My personal favorite, AND my pick to win. Playing the role of the worst Mother of the Year, she never comes off as sympathetic, yet every moment she’s on the screen you can’t take your eyes off her. You are continually shaking your head that a mother could be so cruel and so nasty, both emotionally and physically. Janney often plays roles where her characters have a snarky edge. She was born to play this roll as Tonya’s mother.
Best Supporting Actor
SHOULD WIN: Sam Rockwell: Three Billboards
PREDICTION: William Dafoe: The Florida Project
Like Robbie in I, Tanya, Rockwell takes on the roll of a charming scumbag. One minute he’s an evil racist, and the next a charming nim-whit. For a movie that had very few people to “like”, he, McDormand, and Woody Harrelson bring flawed humans, with complex emotions to the screen. Rockwell or Harrelson could win, yet I see their votes being split, leaving room for the long-shot, underdog, William Dafoe to win. His roll in the Florida Project is under sung, and under-rated.
Best Original Screenplay
SHOULD WIN: The Big Sick
PREDICTION: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
I Loved The Big Sick! I’m a sucker for feel-good movies where all the characters are likeable, and they just need to fine-tune their ways so all is well in the happy-lovable universe. I don’t need complex, complicated, traumatized, demented, dark characters to enjoy a movie. Give me The Big Sick. YET, the dark side of the human character seems to appeal more to the Academy, so look for Three Billboards to win.
Best Adapted Screenplay
SHOULD WIN: Don’t care…. Did not see any of the five nominated movies…
Why Mudbound? Just a hunch…
Best Animated Picture
SHOULD WIN: Coco
This category is quite imbalanced… Two of the animated movies in this category nobody ever saw, and the other two are so light and meaningless that it will be Coco in a landslide. And, justly so. The movie was fantastic in every conceivable way. Funny, semimetal, cute, worldly, great music, culturally informative, great colors, editing, visual effects and animation movement. Pixar continues to break new ground, and their charming and FUN stories know no bounds. Will win, and should win.
Semi Final Prediction:
At least five of the winners will jump up on stage, and after thanking their wives and mothers, will offer us their annoying, and unsolicited options on the world and politics. Guaranteed the options will be Left-Wing Liberal-Drivel.
Final Prediction… it’s 100% assured that I won’t be watching the broadcast. For 35+ years I never missed. While working in the entertainment industry, it was always fun to gather with co-workers and see the glamour and excitement Oscars. Beginning in the George Bush era, there were just one too many pompous winners giving their options that half of American didn’t care about or agree with. Given Hollywood’s hysteria and hatred of President Trump, I have checked out from having any interest the Academy Awards. This Deplorable will find something else to do with his Sunday evening.
Oscar Predictions – 2016 movies
The Closet Conservative Critic
(Brief recap of who the Closet Conservative Critic is….C.C.C. is a 50-something “person of interest” who occasional writes on the Bookworm Blog, under the guise of the “Closet Conservative Critic”, reviewing Hollywood movies, and giving opinions with the perspective of a conservative. C.C.C. has worked in Hollywood and rubbed elbows with some of the most Liberal of the bunch. C.C.C. now lives in Marin County, and secretly lays low as a minority conservative, in a bastion of limousine liberals)
Here are my predictions for this Sunday’s Oscars… I’ll mention who I THINK will win, and who I WANT to win…. Please don’t use my chart to place any Vegas bets. This is purely based on gut feeling, and looking at patterns over the years…
First and foremost, my most obvious prediction. The Hollywood crowd will make this Oscar evening a “Let’s Bash Trump and the Republicans” night. Take that one to the bank. For that reason alone, I will not be watching the Oscars as they are broadcast on television. I’ll tune in later in the evening to see who won.
SHOULD WIN: La La Land: Charming, fun, romantic, innovative, emotional, colorful…. Some call it light, some call it what movies are meant to be. I loved it. It’s my personal favorite of the year.
PREDICTION: La La Land. It has the makings of the kind of movie that occasionally wins Oscars. Not the deepest or most thought provoking but makes everyone smile. A Hollywood bittersweet feel-good movie.
Best Actress (Ladies first)
SHOULD WIN: Emma Stone: La La Land. She can sing, she can dance, she can act. And, her small town charm won over my heart.
PREDICTION: Natalie Portman, Jackie. By no means a lock, but my money is on this young actress who played a role of a modern day character that all fondly rememberd, Mrs. JFK, Jackie. Ruth Negga from Loving has an outside shot so don’t count her out.
As we approach the Oscar presentation next weekend, I present my top 10-movie list of 2016. I’ll follow the listing with a little rundown of each, inserting political observations when called for…
1. La La Land
2. Hidden Figures
3. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
4. Manchester by the Sea
5. Hacksaw Ridge
6. Eye in the Sky
8. Queen of Katwe
10. 13 Hours
1 – La La Land: A schmaltzy throw-back to old-time Hollywood musicals. Fun dancing, colorful art direction, and beautiful music, with one of the great tear jerker flashbacks of all time. Opening number is fantastic fun, while the final 10 minutes of the movie are true emotional magic.
2 – Hidden Figures: Where has this story been?! A great feel-good, “We shall overcome” movie. Three black ladies of the NASA space program make a difference. This is inspiring beyond words. Should be a must see for inter-city girls to see what a difference HAS been made by three incredible black women from a time when it was tough to be black, and a woman. Hardly a story about victocracts. A story about strength and determination.
A primer for those who need to be reminded why Hillary should be incarcerated, not inaugurated. Deroy Murdock has a knack for political parables. Using the example of the “Foggy Bottom Department Store,” he makes it clear just how heinous Hillary’s conduct has been in connection with her egregious national security violations.
And a primer on foreign trade and capitalism. Larry Elder has a truly brilliant piece about the benefits that flow to America from low tariffs and foreign trade — benefits that are very real even when it seems that American jobs are going away. I urge you to read it. (This is a different issue, of course, from the Democrats and Chamber of Commerce types manipulating and violating American law to ship in cheap labor at the expense of American citizens.)
One of the things I like about Ted Cruz is the long list of people who hate him. You can know a man by his friends and by his enemies. Strong conservatives respect Ted Cruz; RINOs (and RINO’s are the majority of “Republicans” in Congress) hate and fear him. That works for me. Spengler, aka David P. Goldman, has more to say about Cruz’s well-earned Iowa victory (it was a brilliant ground game, not cheating) and about Cruz’s rejection of the Washington establishment and embrace of ordinary conservatives — core conservatives — across America.
I’m wondering how the gun-grabbing crowd is coping with the horrible news out of China: terrorists with knives killed 28 and injured 113. One can’t help wondering whether, if some of those hundreds of people trapped in the train station had possessed a legal gun, if the terror wouldn’t have stopped soon after it started.
Years ago, Dennis Prager said on his radio show that, when a couple both marry as Democrats, and then one becomes a Republican, it’s reasonable for the remaining Democrat to feel betrayed. I agree with that, but would add an addendum: What if, as Reagan said, the “converting” party did so, not because he left the Democrats, but because the Democrats left him?
This question isn’t far-fetched. In a WaPo piece, Andrew Kohut, who founded the Pew Research Center, says that the Democrats have shifted way left. If you’ve become a Republican, and your partner still gives his or her entire allegiance to the Democrats, your partner has shifted way left too. The only reason no one has remarked upon this seismic political and ideological shift is that the people leading the shift are also the people controlling information, in politics, the media, and education.
The Three Monkeys Press (aka The New York Times, which, like all media outlets, has adopted a “see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” policy during the Obama administration) has a video preparing Americans for possible outbreaks of Leftist politics at the Oscars by saying that the Oscars have a “long history” of political outbreaks. What the Three Monkeys Press fails to acknowledge is that the politicization of the Oscars started when the Left became ascendant in Hollywood. Before that, it was just an entertainment awards show. Since then, every two-bit Leftist in Hollywood starts palpitating with excitement at the thought that, if he or she can get near the microphone, he (or she) can have a bully pulpit into American homes.
Since we’re talking about American debasement, let me round out this short round-up by pointing to the fact that, with Russia poised to invade Ukraine, Obama had more important things to do than attend a national security meeting. While we’re watching the worst of the 1930s and the 1970s unfold before our eyes, Obama is happily re-living his behavior on the night of the Benghazi terrorist attack.
Will Americans ever wake up or have we slid so far down the infamous slippery slope that the Left can indeed fool all of the people all of the time?
Old Hollywood, which was owned and operated by foreign-born or first generation European Jews had aspirations. What may surprise some is that these aspirations did not usually include Art (note that capital “A”).
The aspirations — or the absence of low behavior — came about in part because of the Hayes Code and the Catholic League, both of which insisted that Hollywood movies refrain from sullying innocent youth and womanhood. This meant that movies were clean or, if they weren’t as clean as one would wish, the vulgarity was subtle or the bad girl either died or repented at the end.
Because Art since the beginning of the 20th century seems to require human degradation, it was hard for Code-bound Hollywood to head in that direction. These proscriptions, of course, were gone by the late 1960s, which meant that both middle-aged and modern Hollywood leapt upon the opportunity to plumb the depths of depravity.
But it’s too simplistic to say that Old Hollywood controlled itself solely because of the Codes. These newly wealthy immigrants also wanted to belong to the country clubs. They wanted to have social polish. They wanted people to admire how far they’d come and the best way to do that was to ape the classy, high-society manners they portrayed in their own films.
Being human, few of them could live up to their own standards, but they certainly tried. And when they or their stars deviated from these “classy” standards, they had legions of employees whose sole purpose was to keep these forays into vulgarity out of the public’s eye.
The Oscars used to reflect these aspirations. They weren’t interesting, but they were upright. Bob Hope made his clean jokes, the stars wore their fancy clothes (which used to be G-rated too), and the entertainment segments weren’t particularly entertaining, but they weren’t offensive either.
This year’s Oscar show would have appalled the Louis B. Mayers, Samuel Goldwyns, and Bob Hopes. Seth MacFarlane looked like a clean-cut, 1950s boy-next-door type, and his jokes (including the shtick with William Shatner) were as unfunny as Oscar jokes always are, but that’s the only thing the show had in common with the old days. This opened as a tawdry, vulgar, nasty, mean-spirited production (including a paean to various actresses “boobs”), made worse by being broadcast during the family hour throughout large parts of America.
I have to admit that I don’t know whether the show managed to rise up slightly after the first half-hour or if it sank even lower (assuming that was possible). I would have walked out in any event because I was bored. Instead, I double-timed out, because I was both bored and disgusted. Old Hollywood would have applauded me.