Oscars 2019: Best Supporting Actress Predictions

The Oscars will name their 2019 nominees in a few weeks (as of this writing), so it’s time to take a look at who the leading contenders for Best Supporting Actress are. Even though awards season has come into greater clarity recently with various precursors weighing in, there’s still a long way to go before the race is settled. One group that is starting to come into greater focus, however, is the acting categories, by virtue of the Screen Actors Guild recently unveiling their own nominations. While organizations like the Golden Globes and Critics’ Choice Awards can provide some insight, the guilds are the ones cinephiles follow most closely when trying to prognosticate the Oscars.

Like every year, there’s no shortage of outstanding performances in the running – many of whom are names quite familiar to awards voters already. In the months leading up to the Academy Awards, Best Supporting Actress looked like it would be one woman’s trophy to lose, but some twist and turns along the way have muddied up the picture a bit. Here are Screen Rant’s predictions for the 2019 Best Supporting Actress nominations.

Related: Screen Rant’s 2019 Best Actress Predictions

Amy Adams – Vice

Much like Leonardo DiCaprio prior to The Revenant, Adams is an Academy darling, but can never seem to secure the win. Over the course of her career, she’s amassed a total of five nominations, most recently for her performance in David O. Russell’s 2013 crime film American Hustle. Not only that, she has some notable snubs on her résumé as well (including 2016’s Best Picture nominee Arrival). The Oscars love rewarding an overdue veteran for their body of work, and with six-time nominee Glenn Close competing in the Best Actress field, Adams may finally take home her elusive Oscar in the Supporting category. In Adam McKay’s Vice, she delivers a strong turn as Dick Cheney’s wife, Lynne.

Vice itself turned out to be one of the more polarizing offerings of awards season, but it’s finding traction with voters. Adams has been a beneficiary of that reception, seeing that’s she’s secured nominations from the Golden Globes, Critics’ Choice, and the all-important SAG. While Christian Bale’s incredible, eerie transformation into the former U.S. Vice President has (understandably so) generated most of the media attention for Vice, Adams is as great as she’s ever been as Lynne, channeling her determined, steely demeanor. It feels like it’s inevitable Adams will win an Oscar one day, and it could be for this turn. If she starts picking up some major wins, it’ll be no contest.

Regina King – If Beale Street Could Talk

Earlier in the season, King looked like the one to beat in this category. She won Best Supporting Actress for her performance as Sharon Rivers from the National Board of Review and scored additional nominations from the Golden Globes and Critics’ Choice Awards. On top of that, she earned a plethora of other nods and wins from multiple film critics associations, making it seem as if she had the Oscar on lockdown. Nobody would have argued with that turn of events, especially since King is one of Beale Street’s most acclaimed aspects. But a funny thing happened on her way to the Oscar stage; she was snubbed by SAG. Five names were nominated in the guild’s Best Supporting Actress category and King was not one of them.

Related: Screen Rant’s If Beale Street Could Talk Review

It’s borderline impossible to overstate how significant the SAG miss is. Statistically speaking, it virtually eliminates King’s chances of winning. The last time the Oscar’s Best Supporting Actress winner did not score at least a SAG nomination was 2001, when Jennifer Connelly won for her performance in A Beautiful Mind. It’s something that’s only happened twice in history since the SAG Awards began in 1994 (Marcia Gay Harden in 2000’s Pollock is the other outlier), so King has history working against her. This isn’t to say she won’t be nominated for the Academy Award (Beale Street does have a lot of support), but King will have to buck a trend to come out on top on Oscar Sunday.

Emma Stone – The Favourite

Yorgos Lanthimos might be an acquired taste for some, but awards voters happily ate up his period costume drama, which chronicles a rivalry between Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) and Abigail (Stone) for the affections of one Queen Anne (Best Actress candidate Olivia Colman). The collected efforts of that main trio deserves a lion’s share of the credit for why the film works as well as it does, so it isn’t surprising all of them are in the running. Stone, already a winner for La La Land (and another nomination for Birdman) was afforded an opportunity to display more of her range, gleefully sinking her teeth into a darkly comedic role – and she more than rose to the occasion. With The Favourite set to be a major player across the board, Stone’s in line for another nomination.

Stone’s already been recognized for her efforts by the Golden Globes, SAG, and Critics’ Choice Awards, checking off the big boxes en route to Oscar Sunday. It’ll be interesting to see if she can pull a Christoph Waltz and win two statues relatively close to each other (Waltz won Best Supporting Actor in 2009 and 2012), which is a pretty rare feat. Since Stone earned Best Actress just two years ago, voters may decide to go a different route – especially with the long overdue Adams waiting in the wings. There’s also something else that hurts Stone’s prospects: her own co-star.

Rachel Weisz – The Favourite

Much like Stone, Weisz was also nominated for the Golden Globe, SAG, and Critics’ Choice Award for her performance as Lady Sarah. Coincidentally, she is also a former Academy Award winner, taking home Best Supporting Actress in 2005 for The Constant Gardner. Once again, Weisz finds herself back in the race, but she’s facing some stiff competition – including her plucky co-star. It seems all but guaranteed Stone and Weisz will go up against each other this year, but what does that mean for either of their chances?

Related: Read Screen Rant’s The Favourite Review

In Oscar history, 34 films have been double-nominated in the Best Supporting Actress category (two of them, Come to Stable and Pinky, were released in 1950). In 22 of those instances, the Academy Award went to someone from a completely different movie, which is roughly a 65 percent clip. Those are not insurmountable odds for the Favourite ladies to overcome, but this is still somewhat difficult to pull off. To be fair, in the two most recent occurrences of this happening, the double-nominated film did win the Oscar (Melissa Leo topped Amy Adams in The Fighter; Octavia Spencer beat out Jessica Chastain for The Help), so it’s possible someone from The Favourite emerges victorious. But voters will need to truly love one performance over the other. It’ll be fascinating to see what happens.

Page 2: Claire Foy, Emily Blunt, and Margot Robbie

Claire Foy – First Man

Damien Chazelle’s Neil Armstrong biopic entered the season as one of the on-paper frontrunners, but it didn’t live up to those lofty expectations. Floundering at the box office and failing to connect with general audiences, the film is no longer seen as a legitimate Best Picture contender and may only find itself contending in the technical categories. One of its few realistic hopes for love in the major fields is Foy’s performance as Janet Armstrong, Neil’s wife. Foy is responsible for several of the movie’s more emotional and heart-wrenching moments, particularly when she confronts the fact her husband may never come home from his incredible journey. Due to Foy’s talent, the role of Janet rises above the typical “concerned wife” cliché and stands out.

Foy was one of two Golden Globe nominations for First Man (the other being for the musical score) and also got a nod from the Critics’ Choice Awards and other film critics associations. The big miss, of course, is SAG, meaning that even if Foy finds her way into the Oscar field, she won’t be winning. It’ll all depend on how much support First Man can get from the actors branch, but Foy has gotten enough love so far to make a nomination feasible.

Emily Blunt – A Quiet Place

Blunt may find herself a double-nominee this year, given the buzz surrounding her Mary Poppins Returns performance. In A Quiet Place, she portrays Evelyn Abbott, mother of the main family trying to protect her young children. Blunt rose to the challenge of the limited dialogue and still found a way to craft a multi-faceted portrayal; she’s humorous and light-hearted in certain scenes with the kids, but will let her vulnerabilities shine through when discussing their trying ordeal with her husband, Lee (John Krasinski). Acting may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about A Quiet Place, but Blunt was excellent.

Related: The Best Horror Movies of 2018

SAG was extremely fond of Blunt’s work, making her a surprise nominee in their Best Supporting Actress category. That’s one of only a handful of nominations Blunt’s received, but it’s definitely the biggest (no offense, Fright Meter Awards) and an impressive addition to her résumé. Since history dictates one of the SAG nominees will take home the Oscar, it means one needs to seriously consider Blunt for an Academy nomination. The one thing working against her is the Academy’s perceived genre bias; it’s unknown how much support across the board A Quiet Place will receive. But after Daniel Kaluuya was nominated for Best Actor in a horror movie last year, perhaps the voters are broadening their horizons.

Margot Robbie – Mary Queen of Scots

After scoring a Best Actress nomination for I, Tonya last year, Robbie seemed poised to get more awards love with her performance as Queen Elizabeth I in this period costume drama. And that feeling was justifiable, since this is a genre the Academy tends to go for and Robbie’s a very talented actress showcasing another side of her range. Unfortunately, Mary Queen of Scots was one of the duds of the season, never gaining traction as it was hit with lukewarm reviews. Saoirse Ronan, fresh off her acclaimed turn in Lady Bird, was bypassed by every awards organization thus far, giving one an idea of how futile Mary’s chances of winning anything are.

Outside of hair & makeup and costume design (its two Critics’ Choice Awards nods), Robbie represents the film’s best chance for a nomination. Like Blunt, she was a surprise SAG nominee in Best Supporting Actress, but that remains the movie’s only high-profile nomination. It was ignored entirely by the Golden Globes, NBR, and American Film Institute, putting Robbie at a clear disadvantage when compared to the rest of the competition. It’s fair to wonder how many voters will even bother watching Mary Queen of Scots given how small its buzz is. Fortunately for Robbie, she’ll be right back at it in 2019 in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, so maybe she’ll have better luck there.

More: Screen Rant’s 2019 Best Supporting Actor Predictions

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2018-12-27 01:12:09

Oscars 2019: Best Actress Predictions

With Oscar season in full force, it’s time to take a look at who the leading contenders for Best Actress are this year. In recent weeks, the race is starting to take shape and there’s a bit of clarity as cinephiles debate amongst themselves which titles are the best. So far, we’ve heard from the National Board of Review, American Film Institute, and Golden Globes (among others), which have helped raise the prospect of some films, while sinking the chances of others. At this stage, there are no clear frontrunners yet, but people have a better idea of who’s realistically in the running.

One key category film fans like to follow is Best Actress, and as always there is no shortage of worthy performances in contention. It’s shaping up to be an exciting competition filled with plenty of big names that left a sizable impression with their work this year. Here are our Best Actress predictions as things start to heat up some more.

Glenn Close – The Wife

The veteran actress has been nominated six times in her career (most recently for 2011’s Albert Nobbs) and has never won. That’s an extraordinary statistic and definitely gives Close the classic “overdue” narrative to play up on the campaign. Historically, whenever an Academy favorite stacks up this many nods and keeps coming up short, it’s only a matter a matter of time before that changes. A recent example of this is Leonardo DiCaprio, who won his elusive first Best Actor trophy back in 2015 for The Revenant. DiCaprio had been nominated in the acting categories four times prior in his illustrious career, and it was his time.

After passing Close over a near-record number of times, the Academy may be finally ready to reward her for her excellent work in The Wife. She earned strong reviews and is doing fairly well in the precursors, picking up a Golden Globe nomination in the Best Actress – Drama category and earning other nods from the Film Independent Spirit Awards and the Gotham Awards. The Wife is fairly small in comparison to other films in the Oscar race, and isn’t expected to be much of a player across the board. But Close is too good in the movie to ignore, and she may finally get her shot to walk on the Oscar stage.

Lady Gaga – A Star is Born

Bradley Cooper’s remake of A Star is Born is the juggernaut of the Oscar season, and Gaga’s performance as rising pop star Ally is a main reason why. Gaga proved to be a perfect fit for the role, shedding her extravagant and elaborate stage image to portray a humble, down-to-Earth aspiring artist yearning for her big break. Her chemistry with Cooper felt very natural and grounded, and she of course handled the numerous musical set pieces with all the expected skill fans expected. All in all, it’s a very well-rounded performance that proves Gaga has a future in acting if she chooses. Yes, the role felt tailor-made for her, but she still knocked it out of the park.

Related: A Star is Born’s Ending Is Bad (And Always Has Been)

Oscar prognosticators can feel confident penciling Gaga in as one of the five for Best Actress. She already has a Golden Globe nod under her belt, and she took home Best Actress from NBR. But it remains to be seen if she has enough support to clinch the win. Gaga obviously doesn’t have the same overdue narrative as Close, and she’s all but assured to win Best Original Song this year (standout track “Shallow” is poised to blitz through the competition). If there’s anything working in Gaga’s favor right now, it’s that sometimes Best Actress can go to the hot industry star who’s riding waves of buzz (see: Jennifer Lawrence in Silver Linings Playbook). It’ll be interesting to see how things play out.

Emily Blunt – Mary Poppins Returns

Julie Andrews won Best Actress back in 1964 for her performance as the Practically Perfect Nanny in the original Mary Poppins, and Blunt could very well follow suit in the very belated sequel. Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns is a late arrival that’s starting to make a splash on the awards circuit, being recognized as one of the best films of the year by the NBR and AFI. It also, unsurprisingly, did very well at the Golden Globes, with Blunt earning a nomination for Best Actress – Musical or Comedy. The film is currently enjoying highly positive reactions, with many feeling Blunt’s turn is a delightful and worthy successor to Andrews. Blunt may not have watched the first film in preparation, but things seem to have turned out just fine.

Blunt’s had herself a big year, as she also earned acclaim for her role as Evelyn Abbott in A Quiet Place (which itself has earned some key notices this season). She’s never been nominated for an Oscar before, but after stringing together several strong performances in well-received films and hitting a home run as Mary Poppins in what should be one of the biggest hits of the holidays, Blunt may finally break through and find herself in the running. If she lands a Screen Actors Guild nomination, she’s likely going to the Oscars.

Olivia Colman – The Favourite

Director Yorgos Lanthimos is an acquired taste that’s definitely not for everyone, but awards voters are loving his period costume drama. The Favourite is one of the top films of the season, in large part because of the trio of excellent performances at its center. Colman stars as the frail Queen Anne, who relies heavily on her close friend Sarah (Rachel Weisz) to run the country. When Sarah’s cousin Abigail (Emma Stone) arrives to the palace in search of work, the two younger women find themselves in a competition for Anne’s affections. Critics praised it for its unique approach on a classic genre, and it’s doing well with the precursors.

Related: Read Screen Rant’s The Favourite Review

Colman’s multi-layered performance was recognized in the Globes’ Best Actress – Musical or Comedy category, and she’s picked up a handful of other awards and nominations from film critics circles and the Gotham Awards. She’s another contender in search of her first Oscar nomination, after having secured a multitude of accolades (including many for her work in television) over the past several years. With The Favourite looking more and more like one of the Oscar locks (at least, in terms of nominations), support for the film should bring Colman along for the ride.

Melissa McCarthy – Can You Ever Forgive Me?

With her typical comedy schtick falling short in critical and commercial disappointments Life of the Party and The Happytime Murders, it became clear McCarthy needed a change-of-pace to get her career back on track. Fortunately for her, such a project came out at the end of 2018 in the form of Can You Ever Forgive Me?, in which McCarthy stars as Lee Israel, an author who falls into a get-rich-quick scheme by forging letters she claims to be from famous people. The film received a lot of love during its tour of the fall festivals, with McCarthy and co-star Richard E. Grant ranking as the highlights.

Comedic actors and actresses making the leap to more dramatic fare is a tried and true Hollywood tradition that’s worked out well before (Robin Williams in Good Will Hunting, for instance). McCarthy, who received a Best Supporting Actress nomination for Bridesmaids in 2011 could be in the running for Lead Actress this time around. The film allows McCarthy to tap into her humorous sensibilities, but there’s also a lot of depth and nuance for her to explore, and she more than rises to the occasion. McCarthy is already armed with a Golden Globes nomination for her efforts, and while Can You Ever Forgive Me?’s status as a Best Picture long shot may preclude her from winning, she’s likely to earn another Oscar nod.

Page 2: Nicole Kidman, Toni Collette, and More

Nicole Kidman – Destroyer

Kidman is something of an awards darling, having earned a plethora of Oscar and Golden Globe nominations in her storied career. She won the Academy Award for her lead performance in The Hours and was most recently nominated for Lion. Voters clearly like her, so whenever she delivers a captivating performance, she’s a threat to earn another nod. Many feel her work in Destroyer, where she plays hardened police detective Erin Bell, could land her a fifth Oscar nomination. Kidman earned raves out of the festivals for her turn, which many feel is unlike anything she’s ever done before. Just based on the trailer footage, viewers can see how Kidman transformed herself and threw herself into the character.

What’s holding Kidman back from rising above our cutoff line right now is Destroyer’s reception. Kidman (and Sebastian Stan) are great in the drama, but the movie itself is something of a mixed bag, and Kidman represents its best chance at a nomination. She is armed with a Globes nomination for Best Actress – Drama, but it remains to be seen what other accolades she can pick up as the season progresses. There’s a chance Destroyer slides under the radar of many and Kidman doesn’t get enough votes.

Toni Collette – Hereditary

Horror films have enjoyed a recent period of critical and commercial success, even landing in the favor of awards voters. Remember, Get Out was a Best Picture nominee last year and won Best Original Screenplay. It’s still rare for genre films to break into the club, but it can happen, and many fans are wondering what will be the next one to gain traction. A24’s Hereditary seems like the likeliest option in 2018, judging by its widespread critical acclaim and strong box office. The film proved to be divisive amongst general audiences, but it still left an impression.

Related: Hereditary Ending Explained

Much like Destroyer, if Hereditary is going to work its way into the Oscar conversation, it will have to be because of Collette’s performance. She did a phenomenal job portraying Annie, always commanding viewers’ attention with a truly captivating (and disturbing) turn. It’s already found a bit of love on the awards circuit; Collette won Best Actress at the Gotham Awards and was nominated in that category at the Film Independent Spirit Awards. She’s also a previous Oscar nominee for her performance in The Sixth Sense, so she has a bit of history with the Academy. A24 does have a full plate this season (First Reformed and Eighth Grade are picking up steam), so Collette’s fate may be determined by how large a push it gets.

Elsie Fisher – Eighth Grade

Coming out over the tail end of the summer as another one of A24’s lauded counter-programming efforts, Bo Burnhams’s heartfelt and honest portrayal of adolescence has enjoyed a surge in the early stages of awards season. So far, Eighth Grade has picked up notices from NBR and AFI, as well as the Gothams and Film Independent Spirit Awards. One of the reasons why the film works as well as it does is because of Fisher, who perfectly embodies introverted teenager Kayla Day with a star-making performance that just about anyone can relate to.

Fisher was a pleasant surprise among the Globes’ nominees for Best Actress – Musical or Comedy, giving her an outside shot at earning an Oscar nomination. The Academy actually isn’t averse to recognizing younger talents, as there are several examples of child actors working their way into the field (The Sixth Sense, Beasts of the Southern Wild, etc.). However, typically that tends to happen only when the film itself is a major contender across the board, and it’s still unknown if Eighth Grade can go the distance. Fisher was its only Globes nomination, and NBR and AFI don’t always line up with the Oscars’ tastes. If Fisher is to make the top five, she’ll need to do well in other precursors.

Felicity Jones – On The Basis of Sex

A nominee for her performance as Jane Hawking in 2014’s The Theory of Everything, Jones may find her way back in the Oscar race for playing another famous historical figure. In On the Basis of Sex, she portrays a young Ruth Bader Ginsberg and by all accounts does an excellent job. Based on the reviews, Jones is a strong fit for the role, tapping into RGB’s strengths and weaknesses to make her a three-dimensional character. Cinephiles know biopics are a favorite genre of the Academy, and Jones clearly envisioned Ginsberg as another shot at Oscar gold.

Related: Golden Globes 2019 Snubs and Weird Nominations

Unfortunately, it seems highly unlikely she’ll hear her name called on nominations morning. This isn’t the fault of Jones, but the movie. On the Basis of Sex is widely seen as a solid, if unremarkable, memoir that doesn’t really break new ground. It hasn’t received any traction on the awards circuit thus far, being completely shut out by NBR, AFI, and the Globes. The odds are definitely stacked against Jones, and she’ll have to have an unprecedented rise in order to make it to Oscar Sunday.

Viola Davis – Widows

The Fences Oscar-winner is as stellar as she’s ever been in Steve McQueen’s heist film, leading the charge as the determined and steely Veronica. Davis has plenty of moments where she plays up her no-nonsense demeanor, but Gillian Flynn’s script also gives her opportunities to show a more emotionally vulnerable side of Veronica. It’s a strong performance enhanced by McQueen’s steady hand on the material, but it probably won’t be enough to appeal to Oscar voters.

Even though critics praised Widows for being one of the best offerings of the fall, it’s been largely ignored by the various award bodies. Its most high-profile nomination (of the five total it’s received) is for the People’s Choice Award at the 2018 Toronto International Film Festival. Davis didn’t earn any individual nods for her work, so Widows likely won’t be invited to the Oscar party, either.

Of course, this list is not meant to be all-inclusive. These are just some of the standout performances that could make a case for being Oscar-worthy. Let us know who you feel is deserving in the comments section.

More: Screen Rant’s 2019 Best Actor Predictions

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2018-12-07 01:12:06

Kevin Hart Confirms He’ll Host 2019 Oscars Ceremony

Kevin Hart has confirmed that he’ll be the host for the 91st Academy Awards on February 24, 2019. The ceremony will be held at the Dolby theater and telecast live on ABC.

Kevin Hart began his comedic career in 2001, and quickly began stealing scenes and drawing attention with his early film and television roles. Soon the supporting roles gave way to leading roles, and now he’s a consistent box office draw with hits like Ride Along (2014), Central Intelligence (2016) and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017).

Related: Kevin Hart Wants to Star in Mrs. Doubtfire Remake

Rumors began earlier today that the Academy was in talks with Hart to host the biggest night in Hollywood, and Hart took to his personal Instagram account to confirm the news, calling it “the opportunity of a lifetime.” This will mark his first time hosting the Oscars, though he does have some hosting experience; he co-hosted the MTV Movie Awards with friend and frequent co-star Dwayne Johnson in 2016. He’s been open about his desire to take on the biggest hosting event of the year since as early as 2015, when he stated he was actively campaigning for the gig on Live with Kelly and Michael (now Live With Kelly and Ryan).

The Academy is likely hoping that Kevin Hart’s mass appeal will translate into higher ratings. The last two ceremonies, both hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, have seen ratings decline, and last year’s 90th Oscars saw a record-low 26.5 million viewers. The Academy has been transparent about their many attempts to entice viewers. They have already announced they won’t televise all 24 categories as usual, and in August they announced the addition of a new category for most “popular” film. In recent years the nominated films have skewed towards more independent fare with low box office numbers (last year’s winner, The Shape of Water earned $63.9 million which is practically nothing compared to the $700 million Black Panther, which most likely would have won the “popular” Oscar, made this year). The backlash towards the idea of a popular Oscar was so swift and so ferocious the Academy shelved the idea in September – for now.

This hosting choice also harkens back to the 88th Academy Awards, and the viral hashtag #OscarsSoWhite. That year the Academy came under fire for a lack of diversity in the nominations, and (likely) in response hired Chris Rock to host. While nominations are still over a month away, there are reasons to believe this year will feature plenty of diversity thanks to new films from Steve McQueen (Widows), Barry Jenkins (If Beale Street Could Talk), Alfonso Cuarón (Roma) and even Black Panther, popular Oscar or not. Of course nominations aren’t the only place the Academy lacks diversity. Hart will be only the 5th African American to host (or co-host) the awards.

More: Oscars 2019 Best Picture Predictions

Source: Kevin Hart

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2018-12-04 06:12:48

Oscars 2019: Best Actor Predictions

Oscar season is in full force, so it’s time to take a look at who the leading candidates are for one of the top categories: Best Actor. While there are still a handful of titles waiting to premiere (such as Clint Eastwood’s crime drama The Mule), most of the expected contenders have already had their theatrical runs or screened for critics. As such, the awards race has started to come into clearer focus over the past few months. Of course, there’s still plenty of time for things to sort out before the Academy Awards ceremony in February 2019, but cinephiles have a better idea how things could play out, making it somewhat easy to make predictions.

Best Actor is typically a blood bath, and this year is no exception. Currently, there’s no “Gary Oldman in Darkest Hour” type of performance that’s the clear frontrunner, leaving things wide open as numerous actors jockey for position. The star power on display in the category is truly impressive, and it will be very exciting to see how things play out as the season goes along. Similar to what we did with Best Picture earlier this year, we’re listing the biggest contenders for Best Actor here.

Ethan Hawke – First Reformed

Paul Schrader’s drama premiered in U.S. theaters as a counter-programming option this summer, but definitely stayed in the minds of awards voters. The film follows Toller (Hawke), a New York minister dealing with questions about faith and morality as he works at a church. First Reformed recently got a much-needed boost when it was named one of the National Board of Review’s 10 best films of the year. Schrader (scribe of classics like Taxi Driver and Raging Bull) has already earned multiple accolades for his original screenplay, which impressively deals with complex subject matter. He isn’t the only one from First Reformed walking away with hardware, as Hawke is picking up key notices.

Hawke has already won Best Actor trophies from the Gotham Awards and the New York Film Critics Circle, the first necessary steps to building a case for an Oscar nomination. The actor also has a fairly lengthy history with the Academy, picking up four nominations throughout his career. Two of those were for screenwriting, but the actors branch made sure to recognize Hawke’s work in Training Day and Boyhood. He’s built up an impressive filmography over the years, and Oscar voters may want to nominate him again. And if he keeps doing well in the precursors, Best Actor could be his to lose.

Christian Bale – Vice

Bale already won Best Supporting Actor for his performance as Dicky Eklund in David O. Russell’s The Fighter, and now he could be in line for his first Best Actor win for Adam McKay’s Vice. In the upcoming dark comedy, Bale plays former U.S. vice president Dick Cheney, and in just the trailer alone, he’s deserving of a nomination. As has become typical for Bale, he completely threw himself into his craft, pulling off yet another incredible physical transformation. His Cheney is eerily authentic, nailing the politician’s appearance and mannerisms. Even those who know it’s Bale in makeup do double-takes at the footage.

Related: The Vice Trailer Song (Accidentally) Tells Dick Cheney’s Story

Vice opens in theaters on Christmas, and full reviews are embargoed until the premiere gets closer. However, the film has screened for some guild members and critics, and right now the early word is that the film (and Bale’s turn) lives up to its on-paper potential. Unsurprisingly, Bale is one of the definite standouts in the loaded ensemble, carrying Vice with one of his best outings. The fact the actor is excellent shouldn’t come as a surprise, and at this point, it feels like he’s a shoo-in for a nomination. Once other awards bodies start weighing in, he may be able to become the clear favorite.

Viggo Mortensen – Green Book

In Peter Farrelly’s real-life dramedy, Mortensen plays Tony “Lip” Vallelonga, an Italian-American bouncer who takes a job driving African-American classical pianist Dr. Donald Shirley (Mahershala Ali) through the deep South for a musical tour in the 1960s. Green Book became one of the year’s biggest Oscar surprises when it took home the People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival, basically guaranteeing it a Best Picture nomination. Some critics have taken issue with Green Book’s conventional handling of its subject matter and themes, but the general consensus is that it’s an entertaining, feel-good story for older moviegoers. It even won the NBR’s Best Film prize.

Mortensen was also a winner at NBR, securing the Best Actor award. Indeed, the performances by Mortensen and Ali are a primary reason why Green Book works as well as it does. A larger than life character, Tony Lip easily could have amounted to nothing more than just a walking stereotype, but Mortensen lends his natural skill and gravitas to the role. Balancing the comedic and dramatic aspects of the film with grace, the two-time Oscar nominee never loses sight of Tony Lip’s underlying heart and humanity, making him a fun and interesting individual to be around. And like Bale, Mortensen went the extra mile and altered his physical appearance, transforming into the role.

Bradley Cooper – A Star is Born

Cooper’s remake of the classic musical drama is one of the darlings of awards season so far, earning widespread critical praise and $191.7 million at the domestic box office. The leading Best Picture contender found tremendous success with NBR, winning Best Director (Cooper), Best Actress (Lady Gaga) and Best Supporting Actor (Sam Elliott) and earning a spot on the 10 best list. A Star is Born actually tied the record for most wins in NBR history, matching the cumulative total (four) by Best Picture nominees Up in the Air and The Social Network. This is just the beginning for Star, which is expected to do very well as awards season continues.

Related: A Star is Born’s Ending Is Bad (And Always Has Been)

With three acting nods to his name already (his last came in 2014 for American Sniper), Cooper should add to his total this year. His gritty turn as country-rocker Jackson Maine was hailed as one of his best, with critics feeling it was appropriately charismatic and sympathetic. Cooper did a fantastic job portraying Jack’s self-destructive nature, grounding it in a way that felt honest and genuine. Impressively, the actor also performed his own live vocals for the film’s standout concert sequences – a product of 18 months of training. The Oscars have a definite soft spot for old school Hollywood musicals (La La Land earned 14 nominations), so even if Cooper doesn’t win Best Actor, he’ll most likely be one of the thespians in contention.

Ryan Gosling – First Man

Speaking of La La Land, Gosling received a Best Actor nod under Damien Chazelle’s direction for that film, and the two were hoping to work awards magic again with the Neil Armstrong biopic, First Man. Unfortunately, the drama’s Oscar prospects have taken a nosedive ever since it opened in theaters. Failing to escape the shadow of blockbusters Venom and A Star is BornFirst Man floundered at the box office, totaling just $44.5 million domestically. With Chazelle demonstrating his evolving mastery behind the camera, First Man should do well in the technical categories, but it’s no longer the Best Picture threat some thought it might be after the early fall festivals.

How that impacts Gosling in the Best Actor race remains to be seen. His performance as Armstrong is very nuanced and subdued, channeling the astronaut’s introverted personality onscreen. This contributed to the common complaint First Man is too cold and emotionally distant to truly connect with wide audiences, and there may not be enough voters onboard with Gosling’s turn. It’s not the typical “showy” acting the Oscars tend to go for, as there isn’t a clear scene where Gosling essentially seals a nomination. His work in First Man is great for the film’s purposes, though there’s a chance it isn’t enough to get him across the finish line. Even if Gosling does get his third nomination, he’ll have to settle for the participation award.

Page 2: Rami Malek, Clint Eastwood, and More

Rami Malek – Bohemian Rhapsody

A surefire way for an actor to launch themselves into the awards race is to portray a beloved historical figure. Enter Rami Malek, who embodied late Queen font man Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody, which became a strong box office hit. The film itself earned mixed reviews from critics, but Malek was universally praised as its strongest aspect. Carrying himself with the necessary swagger and bravado, the Mr. Robot star is the true MVP of the piece, severely outshining the rest of the ensemble (to the movie’s detriment) and even doing some of his own singing. It’s a very impressive turn that even the Bohemian Rhapsody detractors enjoyed.

Related: Bohemian Rhapsody’s Ending Saves A Bland Queen Movie

If there’s anything holding Malek back from breaking into the top five right now, it’s the aforementioned reception for the film. It’s not going to end up on many (if any) year-end best of lists, especially those from the major awards bodies like NBR, American Film Institute, and others. Malek is going to have to overcome Bohemian Rhapsody’s critical standing and transcend the consensus, meaning it will be critical for him to pick up nominations from the forthcoming precursors, like the Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild. If he falls short there, Malek’s chances of earning a nomination will be gone.

Robert Redford – The Old Man and the Gun

A Hollywood icon for decades, Redford won an Oscar for Best Director (Ordinary People), but has only earned one nomination for acting (1973’s The Sting). Fox Searchlight is certainly hoping to add one more to Redford’s résumé, hoping his performance as aging bank robber Forrest Tucker is enough to win over voters. The film earned positive reviews earlier this year, but it never picked up substantial traction in regards to awards. Luckily, Redford was seen as one of its strongest aspects, with the veteran leaning on his natural charm to bring his latest character to life. If The Old Man and the Gun is to get any Oscars attention, Redford represents its best chance.

Though the actor has since backtracked somewhat on this sentiment, the popular belief was that The Old Man and the Gun would be his final onscreen performance, a tremendous narrative for Oscar voters to capitalize on. What better way to honor Redford’s lasting legacy than to have him in contention for his first Best Actor win? He could sneak into the race on sentiment alone, but the Best Actor field is typically stacked with lots of other worthy performances hoping to get in. Hopefully for Redford’s sake, The Old Man and the Gun doesn’t slide under the radar and his name gets called on nominations morning.

Clint Eastwood – The Mule

Coincidentally, there’s another film this year about a senior citizen who gets caught up in a life of crime. We speak of The Mule, Eastwood’s latest directorial effort that also sees him star as Earl Stone, a horticulturist who becomes a drug smuggler for the Mexican cartel. Like Redford, Eastwood is a previous Oscar winner, but never for acting. He actually has four Academy Awards on his mantle, two Best Directors and two Best Pictures (for Unforgiven and Million Dollar Baby). Eastwood was nominated in Best Actor for both of those films, but obviously lost out.

Related: Watch The Trailer For The Mule

Eastwood is another veteran who frequently flirts with retirement (this is his first main role since 2012’s Trouble With the Curve), so the Academy may not have many chances left to give him recognition in this category. If Eastwood is to earn a Best Actor nod, The Mule will need to be of exceptionally high quality. His filmography has become somewhat erratic in recent years; for every American Sniper, there’s a 15:17 to Paris or J. Edgar and The Mule sped through the pipeline (it was in production this summer). Warner Bros. is also behind A Star is Born, which is the clear juggernaut of the season. The studio won’t want to split votes, so they’re going to prioritize Cooper’s movie and not give The Mule much of a push. Eastwood will need to impress big time.

Willem Dafoe – At Eternity’s Gate

One of the industry’s most respected and accomplished thespians, Dafoe is beginning to build an overdue narrative for himself. He’s earned three acting nominations so far, with the most recent coming last year for The Florida Project. Many presumed he was the frontrunner, before Sam Rockwell’s performance in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri dominated the season. This year, Dafoe is back in At Eternity’s Gate, a biopic about famous painter Vincent van Gogh. It’s a meaty role for the actor to explore, and he earned exceptional reviews for his work.

The hurdle for Dafoe is that At Eternity’s Gate isn’t expected to be much of a contender across the board. It’ll be hard for the film to attract the attention it needs in order to make a major splash. This isn’t a movie on many people’s radars, and Dafoe will need help from the precursors in order to work his way to Oscar night. If he continues to get shut out, then he’ll have to settle for the positive reviews and hope for better luck next time.

John David Washington – BlacKkKlansman

Denzel Washington is a frequent Spike Lee collaborator, and now the auteur is making films with Denzel’s son. In BlacKkKlansman, the younger Washington plays Ron Stallworth, an African-American police officer who successfully infiltrates a local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan. Lee’s film was praised for its deft handle of its tricky subject matter and tone, as it found both the horror and the humor of Stallworth’s situation (BlacKkKlansman is based on a true story). Washington was at the center of that, delivering a magnificent lead performance and proved he definitely has a bright future ahead of him.

The problem is that BlacKkKlansman might have peaked too early. It premiered at Cannes and was out in theaters in August. At that time, it seemed like a surefire contender for nominations across the board. Now, it isn’t as much of a lock. Once the offerings from Venice, Telluride, and Toronto arrived and took over the conversation, BlacKkKlansman started to fade a bit. It’s still very much in contention for now, but it needs to start picking up some steam. After being shut out by NBR, its prospects continue to slide. Time will tell, but Washington is a long shot.

As always, our list is not meant to be all-inclusive, and these are just some of the actors hoping to hear their name called. There are several other performances that have a chance (especially now when it’s still early in the race), so let us know who you’re rooting for in the comments!

More: Oscars 2019 Best Picture Predictions

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10 Best Disney Movies According to Rotten Tomatoes (And 10 With Almost 0%)

After all these years, Disney movies remain the gold standard in family entertainment. Starting from the back of a realty office in Hollywood back in 1928, Disney is now a brand worth billions of dollars. But it’s not just money—Disney’s cultural influence is worldwide and manages to stay relevant with each subsequent generation. There’s no underestimating the power of nostalgia; chances are if someone grew up liking Disney movies, they’re probably a fan for life. Walt Disney pioneered the idea of feature-length animated movies, an idea considered ridiculous at the time. They would be too expensive to make, and what self-respecting adult would pay money to see a full-length animated film? Turns out everyone wanted to, especially those with kids. At the time, there was no such thing as a full-production studio dedicated to animated films—so with the profits of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, Walt Disney built one. From there, it was only a short period of time before Disney branched out into producing live-action films, and before anyone knew it, Disney dominated the family entertainment market.

Since then, Disney has expanded its intellectual properties to include Marvel, Star Wars, ABC, and 20th Century Fox. This makes Disney virtually unstoppable. Some meme artists have even depicted Mickey Mouse as Thanos, with its individual properties the different gems in the Infinity Gauntlet. But there were a few hiccups along the way. Disney has had tremendous success with its films, but people tend to forget that even the mighty occasionally fall. Here are the 10 best Disney movies according to the ratings on Rotten Tomatoes, along with the 10 worst.

20 Best: Pinnochio (100%)

Pinnochio was Walt Disney’s second animated feature, released shortly after the success of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. Like its predecessor, it had gorgeous visuals with a painstaking attention to every element of the production. Unlike Snow White, it initially flopped at the box office. Luckily, Walt Disney had faith in the movie and gave it a second release to recover production costs. The plan worked, and Pinocchio eventually earned enough money to put it back into the black.

The iconic “When You Wish Upon A Star” theme from the film is still synonymous with the Disney brand.

The artists of Pinnochio helped pioneered advances in effects animation, which specialized on non-character elements that move, such as water or fire. The animated ocean effects during the Monstro sequence were the most ambitious water effects ever achieved for its time.

19 Worst: That Darn Cat (13%)

If nobody remembers this movie, it’s partially because it came in and of the theatre pretty fast. A remake of Disney’s moderately successful live-action That Darn Cat from 1965, the 1997 version was not nearly as successful. Starring Cristina Ricci as Patti, the plot features a cat that becomes “witness” to a kidnapping gone wrong. Patti eventually convinces the authorities to investigate and she becomes central in helping to solve the details of the crime and eventual rescue.

The reviews of the film were dismal. One critic described it as “…a desperate dip into utter conventionality: dull car chases, explosions, inept slapstick.” Another says it is a “…disappointing, rather warmed over Disney offering.” Despite this, Cristina Ricci was nominated for two awards for her performance in the film, a Kid’s Choice Awards, and a Young Artist’s Ward.

18 Best: Mary Poppins (100%)

The mostly live-action Mary Poppins was a smash-hit. It earned 13 Academy Award film nominations and won five, including Best Actress, Best Original Score, and Best Visual Effects. It’s easy to see why. Julie Andrews brought her amazing charisma to the performance, dazzling audiences with her ability to sing, dance, and easily handle comedy intended for children. The songs are memorable, with several such as A Spoonful of Sugar and Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious becoming part of the American culture.

Disney had experimented with combining live action with animation before, but never in such an ambitious way. For many, their favorite part of the film is where Mary Poppins, Burt the Chimney Sweep, and the Banks children jump into the chalk drawing and have a little adventure in an animated world. Disney is releasing the sequel, Mary Poppins Returns, in December of 2018.

17 Worst: My Favorite Martian (12%)

Based on the 1960’s television show of the same name, My Favorite Martian tells the story of a humanoid Martian (Christopher Lloyd) that crash lands on earth. He enlists the help of a reporter in a funk to put him up while he tries to repair his spaceship and get home.

Though reviews were generally kind to Christopher Lloyd, the movie as a whole was mostly disliked by critics.

Said one reviewer on Rotten Tomatoes, “An utterly pointless and unimaginative remake based on the classic ’60s sitcom…a meteoric misfire.” Another gets right to the point: “A terrible movie. Beware.” My Favorite Martian did earn three nominations…of The Stinkers Bad Movie Awards. It was nominated for Worst Resurrection of a TV Show, Most Botched Comic Relief and Most Painfully Unfunny Comedy.

16 Best: The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (100%)

Like most Disney movies, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh was adapted from existing source material. It’s based on characters from short stories from the author A. A. Milne. The film focuses on young Christopher Robin and his stuffed bear, and a menagerie of other stuffed animals come to life. The movie is a collection of animated shorts edited together into a feature-length film.

Surprisingly, the Winnie the Pooh franchise is worth much more than one might imagine. Variety estimated the sales of merchandise related to Winnie the Pooh topped over $5 billion, which among Disney properties, is second only to Mickey Mouse. Disney released a live action movie, Christopher Robin, based on an adult Christopher Robin rediscovering Winnie the Pooh and his friends in August of 2018.

15 Worst: Cinderella II: Dreams Come True (11%)

One would think that after one of the most stereotypical happy endings of all time, writers would have a hard time coming up with a good sequel for Cinderella. One would be right. Cinderella II: Dreams Come True is actually an anthology movie that ties together three Cinderella short stories into one film. The first story describes her struggle to be herself as a new princess. The second follows Jaq the mouse feeling left out. And the third shows how Cinderella tries to teach one of her step-sisters how to smile. Seriously.

This direct-to-video sequel wasn’t liked by critics. One top critic says simply, “Do not see this film.” Another, quite dramatically, announces, “A screaming black vortex of total, irredeemable awfulness.” A quick glance through other remarks reveals similarly negative responses. Nevertheless, Cinderella II: Dreams Come True still made approximately $120 million in sales.

14 Best: Toy Story (100%)

Toy Story was ambitious in scope, it being the first animated Disney feature that was fully animated with CGI. Audiences had never seen this kind of animated film before and impressed audiences made the movie a runaway hit. Though CGI animated movies have come a long way since then, Toy Story still holds up. The interplay between Woody the Cowboy (played by Tom Hanks) and Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) is the highlight of the film. Though they have different perceptions of reality, they learn to work together to make sure they don’t get left behind in their boy Andy’s move.

Toy Story garnered three Academy Award nominations and won a Special Achievement Academy Award for being the first feature-length computer-animated film. It has two hit sequels, with a third in production.

13 Worst: Blank Check (11%)

What if a kid found a blank check that allowed him to spend a million dollars? That’s the intriguing premise behind Blank Check, a movie that didn’t really build a successful story out of this great idea. Through an implausible series of events, young Preston Waters is given a blank check to help pay for a bicycle accident involving a car. But he’s given the wrong check, and the person who gave it to him is a criminal. Preston spends the rest of the movie spending lavishly while trying to avoid the authorities and the criminal who is hot on his tail.

One top critic explains it’s “One of those smart-aleck kid adventures that manages to be entirely obnoxious with very little effort.” A Rotten Tomatoes super reviewer hilariously opined, “If you loved Home Alone, you’ll still gonna hate Blank Check!”

12 Best: Darby O’Gill and the Little People (100%)

Though many modern audiences have never heard of Darby O’Gill and the Little People, it probably remains the most successful movie ever made about Leprechauns. In the film, the aging laborer and caretaker Darby O’Gill has spent much of his life trying to catch the Leprechauns. One day, in his old age, he is actually caught by them. He spends the rest of the film strategizing how he will spend the three wishes granted upon him by Brian, the King of the Leprechauns.

The film also features a young and dashing Sean Connery as Michael McBride, the love interest to Darby O’Gill’s daughter.

Though it won no awards, it has been critically well-received over the years and had state-of-the-art special effects for its day.

11 Worst: Mr. Magoo (7%)

The character of Mr. Magoo was a successful cartoon character from the late 40’s through the 50’s. The running gag for each story was that millionaire Mr. Magoo was practically blind, which led him into comically dangerous situations. Mr. Magoo was also amazingly lucky, which seemed to save him every time.

The Disney adaptation starred Leslie Nielsen, an actor beloved for being able to handle silly comedy with a straight face. But it just wasn’t enough to save the film, which seemed to suffer from the repetitive and unfunny gags. Critics were beyond cruel to the film. One announced, “The movie is an insult to the intelligence of the entire human race.” Another agrees, “Mr. Magoo is transcendently bad. It soars above ordinary badness as the eagle outreaches the fly. There is not a laugh in it. Not one.”

10 Best: Toy Story 2 (100%)

After the runaway success of the first Toy Story, a sequel seemed inevitable. Somehow avoiding the curse of most sequels being inferior to the original, Toy Story 2 managed to be a moving story which many think is even better than the first. It also introduced a brand new character to the saga, Jesse the Cowgirl.

Toy Story 2 has one of the most heartbreaking songs in Disney’s collection, When She Loved Me, performed by Sarah McLachlan. The song describes being abandoned by the child she loved, a sequence that left hardly a dry eye in the house. It went on to become a smash hit, just like the first one. Though it won no academy awards, it won many independent awards and some argue it is the best Toy Story movie of the entire franchise.

9 Worst: A Kid in King Arthur’s Court (5%)

A Kid in King Arthur’s Court is very loosely based on Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, a story that has been adapted into several other films. Modern ’90s kid Calvin Fuller is playing baseball for his team when an earthquake hits. A chasm opens up on the field and he falls in. Calvin is inexplicably transported to England in the age of King Arthur, where he quickly wows the locals with his modern knowledge. While there, he also falls in love with the local princess.

Critics seemed to be surprised this was a Disney film. One critic laments, “Rarely do the well-financed wizards at Walt Disney Pictures cook up a movie this badly written, acted, and directed.” Another says, “Sitting through it, I found myself shuddering at what Disney may have in store for next summer.”

8 Best: Old Yeller (100%)

Old Yeller was famous for ruining many a childhood with a depressing plot twist, the on-screen demise of its titular dog. After saving his family multiple times over the years from bears, wild hogs, and wolves, Old Yeller finally seals his fate when he fought off a rabid wolf to protect his people. Not only did the the dog pass away, but its owner and best friend Travis had to put him down himself because he had been infected with rabies. This scene has become one of the most famous tear-jerking live-action scenes in all of Disney’s films.

Despite the bummer plot development, the film was still a critical and commercial hit. And it still managed to leave on a high note—by the end, Travis adopts Old Yeller’s puppy and names him Young Yeller.

7 West: Meet the Deedles (4%)

As handsome as Paul Walker was, even he couldn’t have saved Meet the Deedles. The story describes the hapless Phil and Stew Deedle, brothers who are in high school and avid surfers. Their father becomes disgusted with their lazy behavior and sends them off to a boot camp where they can learn some discipline.

In an extremely unlikely series of events, the Deedle brothers assume false identities as park rangers and…hilarity is supposed to ensue.

As with most movies received this badly, the Rotten Tomatoes reviews are hilarious to read. One critic announces dryly, “If all of this sounds ridiculous, it is.” Another is much more cruel, saying, “Dumb is one thing, but this sorry attempt at action-comedy from stuntman turned director Steve Boyum is in an intelligence-deprived class all its own.”

6 Best: Snow White and the Seven Dwarves (98%)

Snow White and the Seven Dwarves was Disney’s first animated film feature and the first animated film to gain massive success. It was actually the profits from Snow White and the Seven Dwarves that allowed Disney to build its first full-fledged production studio in Burbank, California. From there, Disney was unleashed to produce dozens of huge hits.

Early forecasters predicted Snow White would be a huge flop, but Disney had the last laugh when the film was finally released. Critics, even the ones predicting its failure, absolutely loved it. Audiences flocked to it and children adored it. Walt Disney received a special Academy Honorary Award for making a “significant screen innovation.” The Honorary Oscar came with seven little miniature Oscars. As with Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella, Disney is producing a live-action adaptation of the film.

5 Worst: Mulan 2 (0%)

Did we ever even need a Mulan 2? According to critics, the answer is a resounding “no.” The original Mulan was a hit in 1998, following the adventures of the Chinese legend of Hua Mulan, a woman who became a fearsome warrior against all odds. Mulan 2 features a convoluted plot wherein Mulan prepares to get married and go on an important mission at the same time, trying to prevent several kingdoms from collapsing against the Mongolian hordes.

The plot doesn’t sound terrible, but it didn’t deliver. Critics seemed to dislike it mainly for being bland. One explained, “If it were any more trivial, it’d be invisible. Mulan II is, rather, more conceptually offensive.” Another spoke bluntly, “It’s harmless, sure, but it’s also charmless.” Another sequel was planned but eventually shelved.

4 Best: 101 Dalmatians (98%)

With 101 Dalmatians, Disney opted to develop a somewhat obscure children’s story.  This was a bit different from the popular fairy-tale adaptations that Disney had been known for. After a bachelor and his new blushing bride get married, their respective male and female adult Dalmatians breed a large litter of puppies. An over the top villain, Cruella de Vil, steals them along with other Dalmatian puppies with plans to eventually turn them all into a fur coat. The adult Dalmatians and other animals lead efforts to rescue ALL the puppies and bring them back to safety.

101 Dalmatians cut costs by adopting a more minimal animation style but still was a critical and financial success.

The movie was adapted into two live-action movies in the ’90s and also had an animated sequel in 2003.

3 Worst: The Big Green (0%)

Not many Disney fans know this film even exists. The Big Green was released in 1995 and tells the story of a scrappy British teacher who introduces kids with low self-esteem in a small Texas town the game of soccer. Sort of a Bad News Bears for the soccer crowd, the movie follows these underdog kids as they go from losers to heroes.

However, according to critics, it’s derivative and not as good as either of those films. Perhaps the poster, which features a young kid getting hit in the groin by a soccer ball, is the first sign the “comedy” wasn’t up to par. One critic writes, “The Big Green is at its worst and most desperate when resorting to ridiculous hallucinations and silly sped-up photography to get laughs, and it’s at its best when… well, it’s over.” Yikes.

2 Best: Cinderella (97%)

It’s hard to believe, but Disney suffered a bit of a downturn during WWII and by the late 40s was financially doing poorly. Disney turned back to its classic roots and decided to produce Cinderella, an old story based on folklore and also told in a classic Grimm’s fairy tale. The movie not only brought Disney out of debt, but gave the studio enough capital to create its own film distribution company, begin production on other films, and start building Disneyland and Disney World.

The movie received critical praise not seen since Snow White and the Seven Dwarves and Pinnochio. Many noted its rich colors and backgrounds, realistic human animation, and memorable music. It was later nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Original Song for Bippity Boppity Boo.

1 Worst: Kronk’s New Groove (0%)

The Emperor’s New Groove was a unique and charming Disney film that has become somewhat of a cult classic over the years, featuring the voices of the hilarious David Spade and Patrick Warburton. Its sequel, Kronk’s New Groove was not received nearly as well. Part of the problem may be the thin plot, which has something to do with Kronk running a restaurant, falling in love with a camp counselor, and trying to impress his father. Yzma returns as a villain but doesn’t really have much to do.

Voice talents notwithstanding, the resulting film was a dud with critics.

Pointed out one, “Great voice talents, but weak storyline and frankly not much groove.” Another astutely observed, “It’s just too generic, and generic is not what we want from a sequel to a film that managed to escape the Disney mold.”

Which of these films did you love most? Let us know in the comments!

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2018-10-07 06:10:17 – Gary Gunter

Black Panther Gets Marvel’s First Significant Oscars Campaign

Black Panther will be the recipient of Marvel Studios’ first ever major awards campaign for Best Picture. Hitting theaters back in February, Ryan Coogler’s superhero epic became a worldwide phenomenon, earning widespread critical praise and raking in over $1 billion at the global box office. Even for a franchise as successful as the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Black Panther seized the zeitgeist in a way few of its fellow titles have, representing a major step forward for onscreen diversity. Its powerful themes and messages (which reflected today’s society) resonated with audiences – and it was clear Black Panther was more than just another superhero movie.

As the film continued to rewrite the record books and connect with millions of viewers, some felt Black Panther was transcendent enough to become the first superhero movie to be nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars. With this year’s crop of awards contenders ready to make a splash at the various fall film festivals, Kevin Feige is working to make sure the voters don’t forget about his acclaimed blockbuster.

Related: Working Out The Best Popular Film Oscar Winner For the Last 10 Years

According to the Los Angeles Times, Marvel has hired Oscar strategist Cynthia Swartz for the Black Panther push. They are targeting a Best Picture nomination, and not the new Best Popular Film category. Feige explained why he felt the film was deserving of such accolades, discussing Coogler’s unique, personal-driven vision:

“I would like to see the hard work and the effort and the vision and the belief of the talented filmmaker Ryan Coogler, who sat across the table from us a few years ago and said, ‘I have been wrestling with questions about my past and my heritage and I think I really want to tell a story within this movie.’ And that he did it so unbelievably well and with so much impact … seeing that potentially being recognized is what excites me the most.”

The Oscars have largely ignored superhero films in the more “prestigious” categories, save for Heath Ledger’s posthumous Best Supporting Actor win for The Dark Knight and Logan’s surprise nomination in Best Adapted Screenplay. With fans growing tired by the lack of recognition for well-received genre titles, Black Panther breaking through and earning a number of nods would be a refreshing turn of events. In addition to Best Picture, the film should be a contender in the various technical categories (as most tentpoles are). It’ll also be interesting to see if any of the acting performances get attention. In particular, Michael B. Jordan earned strong reviews for his turn as villain Erik Killmonger – considered one of the MCU’s best antagonists.

Of course, Black Panther seems like a shoo-in for the Best Popular Film Oscar, which was unveiled earlier this month. The announcement was met with heavy criticism, as several see it as a cynical attempt to pander to the masses and ensure Panther is part of the Oscars conversation. The Academy has yet to publish the criteria for the new category, and there’s some belief within the organization the Popular Film award could be either delayed or pulled completely. Regardless of what happens there, hopefully Feige’s money doesn’t go to waste and Black Panther earns a spot at the Best Picture table.

MORE: Are the Oscars Afraid of Disrespecting Black Panther?

Source: LA Times

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