Oscars 2018: SFI Faculty Picks

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The Oscars are almost here! With the red carpet rolling out on March 4, Seattle Film Institute has decided to cast our own votes in each category. This year’s nominees include a number of great films, notable actors, novel musical compositions, and more to the big screen. The following are SFI’s picks for this years Oscar’s, according to a poll of SFI’s teaching faculty!

Category: Best Picture

Nominees:

Call Me By Your Name

Darkest Hour

Dunkirk

Get Out

Lady Bird

Phantom Thread

The Post

The Shape of Water

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Our Pick: Get Out

Why? “This film ZAPPED me! It's a cultural phenomenon!”

Category: Leading Actor

Nominees

Timothée Chalamet, “Call Me by Your Name”

Daniel Day-Lewis, “Phantom Thread”

Daniel Kaluuya, “Get Out

Gary Oldman, “Darkest Hour”

Denzel Washington, “Roman J. Israel, Esq.”

Our Pick: Gary Oldman, “Darkest Hour”

Why? “This is a stunning performance --it's hard to find Oldman in this character!”

Category: Leading Actress

Nominees

Sally Hawkins, “The Shape of Water”

Frances McDormand, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Margot Robbie, “I, Tonya”

Saoirse Ronan, “Lady Bird”

Meryl Streep, “The Post”

Our Pick: Sally Hawkins, Shape of Water

Why: “Her silent performance is a cornerstone to what makes this film work! No dialogue but this actress is the most expressive.”

Category: Supporting Actor

Nominees

Willem Dafoe, “The Florida Project”

Woody Harrelson, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Richard Jenkins, “The Shape of Water”

Christopher Plummer, “All the Money in the World”

Sam Rockwell, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Our Pick: Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project

Why: “Such an empathetic part for one of our greatest actors.”

Category: Supporting Actress

Nominees

Mary J. Blige, “Mudbound”

Allison Janney, “I, Tonya”

Lesley Manville, “Phantom Thread”

Laurie Metcalf, “Lady Bird”

Octavia Spencer, “The Shape of Water”

Our Pick: Laurie Metcalf, “Lady Bird”

Why: “The mother-daughter relationship is the through-line of this film, and Laurie Metcalf holds it down.”

Category: Best Director

Nominees

Dunkirk,” Christopher Nolan

“Get Out,” Jordan Peele

Lady Bird,” Greta Gerwig

Phantom Thread,” Paul Thomas Anderson

“The Shape of Water,” Guillermo del Toro

Our Pick: “Get Out,” Jordan Peele

Why: “Amazing imaginative development of theme and content”

Category: Animated Feature

Nominees

The Boss Baby,” Tom McGrath, Ramsey Ann Naito

“The Breadwinner,” Nora Twomey, Anthony Leo

Coco,” Lee Unkrich, Darla K. Anderson

“Ferdinand,” Carlos Saldanha

“Loving Vincent,” Dorota Kobiela, Hugh Welchman, Sean Bobbitt, Ivan Mactaggart

Our Pick: Coco,” Lee Unkrich, Darla K. Anderson

Why: “Pixar knocks it out of the park again. Stunning visuals and amazing story, music, and cultural content.”

Category: Animated Short

Nominees

“Dear Basketball,” Glen Keane, Kobe Bryant

“Garden Party,” Victor Caire, Gabriel Grappero

“Lou,” Dave Mullins, Dana Murray

“Negative Space,” Max Porter, Ru Kuwahata

“Revolting Rhymes,” Jakob Schuh, Jan Lachauer

Our Pick: Equal votes for “Dear Basketball” “Garden Party” and “Negative Space”

Category: Adapted Screenplay

Nominees

Call Me by Your Name,” James Ivory

“The Disaster Artist,” Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber

“Logan,” Scott Frank & James Mangold and Michael Green

“Molly’s Game,” Aaron Sorkin

“Mudbound,” Virgil Williams and Dee Rees

Our Pick: “Logan,” Scott Frank & James Mangold and Michael Green

Why: “A nuanced sensitive script originally in comic book form, brilliant. The best "superhero" film I've seen!”

Category: Original Screenplay

Nominees

The Big Sick,” Emily V. Gordon & Kumail Nanjiani

Get Out,” Jordan Peele

Lady Bird,” Greta Gerwig

“The Shape of Water,” Guillermo del Toro, Vanessa Taylor

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Martin McDonagh

Our Pick: Get Out,” Jordan Peele

Why: “Touched the pulse of so many current themes and issues, while a great entertainment.”

Category: Cinematography

Nominees

“Blade Runner 2049,” Roger Deakins

“Darkest Hour,” Bruno Delbonnel

“Dunkirk,” Hoyte van Hoytema

“Mudbound,” Rachel Morrison

“The Shape of Water,” Dan Laustsen

Our Pick: “Blade Runner 2049,” Roger Deakins

Why: “The visual style and lighting in Blade Runner 2049 created such an unique and mysterious world, both beautiful and terrifying - I would be pleased to see him finally get his recognition with this one.”  

Category: Best Documentary Feature

Nominees

Abacus: Small Enough to Jail,” Steve James, Mark Mitten, Julie Goldman

“Faces Places,” JR, Agnès Varda, Rosalie Varda

“Icarus,” Bryan Fogel, Dan Cogan

“Last Men in Aleppo,” Feras Fayyad, Kareem Abeed, Soren Steen Jepersen

“Strong Island,” Yance Ford, Joslyn Barnes

Our Pick: “Faces Places,” JR, Agnès Varda, Rosalie Varda

Why: “Celebrates art and breaking rules, and giving dignity to the overlooked.”

Category: Best Documentary Short Subject

Nominees

“Edith+Eddie,” Laura Checkoway, Thomas Lee Wright

“Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405,” Frank Stiefel

“Heroin(e),” Elaine McMillion Sheldon, Kerrin Sheldon

“Knife Skills,” Thomas Lennon

“Traffic Stop,” Kate Davis, David Heilbroner

Our Pick: Equal votes for “Heroin(e),” Elaine McMillion Sheldon, Kerrin Sheldon and “Edith+Eddie,” Laura Checkoway, Thomas Lee Wright

Category: Best Live Action Short Film

Nominees

“DeKalb Elementary,” Reed Van Dyk

“The Eleven O’Clock,” Derin Seale, Josh Lawson

“My Nephew Emmett,” Kevin Wilson, Jr.

“The Silent Child,” Chris Overton, Rachel Shenton

“Watu Wote/All of Us,” Katja Benrath, Tobias Rosen

Our Pick: “DeKalb Elementary,” Reed Van Dyk

Why: “The topic of dealing with a school shooter is so perfect and timely.”

Category: Best Foreign Language Film

Nominees

“A Fantastic Woman” (Chile)

“The Insult” (Lebanon)

“Loveless” (Russia)

“On Body and Soul (Hungary)

“The Square” (Sweden)

Our Pick: “The Insult” (Lebanon)

Why: “Wit that translates.”

Category: Film Editing

Nominees

“Baby Driver,” Jonathan Amos, Paul Machliss

“Dunkirk,” Lee Smith

“I, Tonya,” Tatiana S. Riegel

“The Shape of Water,” Sidney Wolinsky

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Jon Gregory

Our Pick: “Dunkirk,” Lee Smith

Why: “Amazing how Lee Smith worked with Nolan to balance such a rhythmic film. The editing was essential to its success.”

Category: Sound Editing

Nominees

“Baby Driver,” Julian Slater

“Blade Runner 2049,” Mark Mangini, Theo Green

“Dunkirk,” Alex Gibson, Richard King

“The Shape of Water,” Nathan Robitaille, Nelson Ferreira

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Ren Klyce, Matthew Wood

Our Pick: “Blade Runner 2049,” Mark Mangini, Theo Green

Why: “Such an extreme auditory future-scape. Score and sound design combine to create a whole different world.”

Category: Sound Mixing

Nominees

“Baby Driver,” Mary H. Ellis, Julian Slater, Tim Cavagin

“Blade Runner 2049,” Mac Ruth, Ron Bartlett, Doug Hephill

“Dunkirk,” Mark Weingarten, Gregg Landaker, Gary A. Rizzo

“The Shape of Water,” Glen Gauthier, Christian Cooke, Brad Zoern

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Stuart Wilson, Ren Klyce, David Parker, Michael Semanick

Our Pick: “Dunkirk,” Mark Weingarten, Gregg Landaker, Gary A. Rizzo

Why: “Amazing acoustic environment that is almost music.”

Category: Production Design

Nominees

“Beauty and the Beast,” Sarah Greenwood; Katie Spencer

“Blade Runner 2049,” Dennis Gassner, Alessandra Querzola

“Darkest Hour,” Sarah Greenwood, Katie Spencer

“Dunkirk,” Nathan Crowley, Gary Fettis

“The Shape of Water,” Paul D. Austerberry, Jeffrey A. Melvin, Shane Vieau

Our Pick: “The Shape of Water,” Paul D. Austerberry, Jeffrey A. Melvin, Shane Vieau

Why: “Every space shot in it had meaning and emotional weight.”

Category: Original Score

Nominees

Dunkirk,” Hans Zimmer

“Phantom Thread,” Jonny Greenwood

“The Shape of Water,” Alexandre Desplat

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” John Williams

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” Carter Burwell

Our Pick: Equal Votes for “Shape of Water” and “Phantom Thread”

Category: Original Song

Nominees

“Mighty River” from “Mudbound,” Mary J. Blige

“Mystery of Love” from “Call Me by Your Name,” Sufjan Stevens

“Remember Me” from “Coco,” Kristen Anderson-Lopez, Robert Lopez

“Stand Up for Something” from “Marshall,” Diane Warren, Common

“This Is Me” from “The Greatest Showman,” Benj Pasek, Justin P

Our Pick: “Mystery of Love” from “Call Me by Your Name,” Sufjan Stevens

Why: “I’M CRYING”

Category: Makeup and Hair

Nominees

“Darkest Hour,” Kazuhiro Tsuji, David Malinowski, Lucy Sibbick

“Victoria and Abdul,” Daniel Phillips and Lou Sheppard

“Wonder,” Arjen Tuiten

Our Pick: “Darkest Hour,” Kazuhiro Tsuji, David Malinowski, Lucy Sibbick

Category: Costume Design

Nominees

“Beauty and the Beast,” Jacqueline Durran

“Darkest Hour,” Jacqueline Durran

“Phantom Thread,” Mark Bridges

“The Shape of Water,” Luis Sequeira

“Victoria and Abdul,” Consolata Boyle

Our Pick: “Phantom Thread,” Mark Bridges

Why: “A film about fashion that excels in detail.”

Category: Visual Effects

Nominees

“Blade Runner 2049,” John Nelson, Paul Lambert, Richard R. Hoover, Gerd Nefzer

“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” Christopher Townsend, Guy Williams, Jonathan Fawkner, Dan Sudick

“Kong: Skull Island,” Stephen Rosenbaum, Jeff White, Scott Benza, Mike Meinardus

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Ben Morris, Mike Mulholland, Chris Corbould, Neal Scanlan

“War for the Planet of the Apes,” Joe Letteri, Dan Lemmon, Daniel Barrett, Joel Whist

Winner: “Blade Runner 2049,” John Nelson, Paul Lambert, Richard R. Hoover, Gerd Nefzer

Why: “Subtle and integrated, they didn't even feel like effects. Outstanding. Beautiful combination of models and CGI.”

These are our top choices for Oscar’s for the 2017-2018 season! Which of these Oscar nominated films do you think should win this year? Tell us about it on Facebook! Best of luck to all of the Oscar nominees.