“Roma” predicted to win big at Oscars

Phil Boulware, Staff Reporter

Phil Boulware | Staff Reporter

Rami Malek stars in his Academy Award-nominated role of Freddie Mercury in “Bohemian Rhapsody”. Photo Courtesy | Alex Bailey via press kit

This year, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) will host their 91st Academy Award ceremony in Los Angeles, CA on Feb. 24. There is certainly a great deal of films that stood out last year, but there were only a select few that are chosen.

The competition for the Best Picture category finds eight of the most critically and/or commercially successful films of the 2018 against each other for several groundbreaking, historic moments.  Nominees include comedy-dramas such as “BlacKKKlansman” follows the real-life Ku Klux Klan infiltration of Colorado’s first black detective, while “Green Book” is about the true friendship of pianist Don Shirley and his bouncer, Tony Vallelonga.

While those films both dive into the reality of social injustice and racial tension amid the 1960’s and 70’s, some biopics take a different approach like “Bohemian Rhapsody”, which is the highest-grossing biopic ever, and “Vice” which follows a dark, comedic interpretation of former Vice President Dick Cheney.

Other interesting films in this category are: “Roma”, a foreign-language Netflix film; Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut, “A Star is Born” , period comedy “The Favourite”, and 2018’s highest-grossing U.S. film and the first superhero film to receive the honor, “Black Panther.”

As far as the acting is concerned, there were several great leading and supporting performances recognized from these featured films, but there are still more movies to consider. Films “If Beale Street Could Talk” and “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” both received acting nominations, accompanied by Best Adapted Screenplay nominations as well.

Leading the pact in solo nominations, is Oscar-winning actress Glenn Close for “The Wife” and Willem Dafoe in the Vincent van Gogh biography, “At Eternity’s Gate.” Lastly, there is the best animated feature which has both sequels of “The Incredibles” and “Wreck-It Ralph” respectively competing against “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.”

There is always talk about who’s snubbed and who should walk away with the trophy on the big night, Feb. 24. While I admire the Academy wanting to honor several outstanding bodies of work, they only create a more wide and complex voting process. This is where we give you our picks on what will win.

I can see “Roma” walking away with trophies for the categories: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Foreign Language Film, and Best Original Screenplay. Typically, the Academy recognizes the film that will win Best Picture by gifting the directing trophy to that same film. While there have been exceptions in the past, I don’t see it panning out well going against director Alfonso Cuaron (“Gravity’’, “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”), who looks to win his second directing trophy.

Marvel superhero films will also shine this year. “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’’ will walk away with the win for the animated features. While I don’t think “Black Panther” will win anything massive, I definitely feel it will walk away with something for sound mixing, sound editing, original score, or production design.

When it comes to the acting categories, I see Christian Bale winning for his performance as Dick Cheney over Rami Malek’s portrayal of Freddie Mercury. With the criticism of “Bohemian Rhapsody” over its historical inaccuracies and lack of direction due to the abrupt departure of its initial director Bryan Singer amid past sexual assault charges, the film is too misleading and misguided to be taken seriously.

Best Actress should certainly go to Lady Gaga in her first leading motion picture role. She carried the film every time she graced the screen. Her performance allows you to see a versatile approach to her many talents in “A Star is Born” in this musical drama that tackles some pretty difficult personal turmoil. If all else fails, she is a shoo-in for Best Original Song for “Shallow.”

And for the supporting nominations, I predict a repeat from 2017’s ceremony where the show saw two black actors receive awards for both respective categories, for the first time Ever. This year is no different with 2017 Best Supporting Actor, Marshala Ali, who looks to go two for two with his role in “Green Book.”

For the women comes what I feel will be an inaugural win for veteran actress Regina King (“Friday”, “Seven Seconds”, “American Crime”). As she has already received the Critics’ Choice Award and Golden Globe for this same category, one would only be wise to bet on her walking away with her first trophy.

Below is the Roma trailer.