For such a popular series – maybe even one of their most popular? – the Hollywood Reporter sure has taken to publishing their Brutally Honest Oscar Ballots kind of late. We talked about Ballot #1 last week, and it was the anonymous male director who stans Spike Lee. Ballot #2 is a “female member of the Academy’s 506-person sound branch.” Interesting diversity to include a sound-department Oscar voter, I think. This woman doesn’t really think like most of the Oscar voters – she seems immune to the way Oscar campaigns are run and she goes with her gut. And her gut loved The Favourite and A Star Is Born, which is weird. You can read the whole piece here. Some highlights:
She didn’t like Black Panther: “I did not care for Black Panther — I appreciate what the film represented to people, but I just thought it was pretty mediocre.”
Her thoughts on Green Book: “I’m not a fan of Green Book, either — it felt kind of retrograde and borderline offensive with all the cliches, and then I read what the family [of Don Shirley] was saying and that didn’t help. My son said to me, “That movie is trash”; I wouldn’t go that far.”
Roma was beautiful but boring: “I wanted to love Roma, but in the end I just thought it was boring, albeit beautiful to look at. I kept waiting for something to happen…There are so many people that liked it, and it’s winning everything, but for me it did not work.”
Her three picks for Best Film: My number three is Bohemian Rhapsody, which I liked a lot — I didn’t like how they handled Freddie Mercury’s homosexuality; they just more or less avoided it, but Rami Malek was terrific and I loved the concert scenes. I put A Star Is Born at number two — a really entertaining Hollywood movie; the acting was great and everything worked for me except the ending. I liked The Favourite a lot — not the cinematography, but everything else about it. I guess it was the one of the eight nominees that I liked the most, but I can’t say it was a favorite film of mine. There was no Phantom Thread for me this year.
Her pick for Best Director: “I know this is blasphemous, but I thought that [Roma’s Alfonso] Cuaron just borrowed a lot from Fellini — I guess you could call it an homage — and, hello, just because you can have a tracking shot that goes three blocks doesn’t mean you should. She [Yalitza Aparicio’s character] has got to get somewhere — at the end of it, something’s gotta happen! I thought the direction of BlacKkKlansman [Spike Lee] and The Favourite [Yorgos Lanthimos] were both great, but I just liked The Favourite more. My Vote: Yorgos Lanthimos.
She voted for Bradley Cooper for Best Actor: “Rami [Malek of Bohemian Rhapsody] was great, but — this is going to sound awful — he was so short, and Freddie Mercury was so tall, that it just kind of bothered me. I liked [A Star Is Born’s] Bradley [Cooper] the best — I totally bought him as a drunk rock-star, I believed every moment he was on screen and every moment of him was perfect. I mean, the fact that he sang and he played and he directed himself — I was just astounded by how good he was.
Glenn Close is a sure thing: “Glenn [Close of The Wife] is going to win, and I voted for her — because of [the 1988 film] Dangerous Liaisons. She was so great in that — I remember that scene where she’s staring into the mirror and has just that little bit of a shudder; she was just so wonderful in that. I thought The Wife was okay — I saw her on TV the other night, and even she has said she was kind of surprised at the attention this little movie has gotten her — but sometimes you do vote for an accumulation of work, and she’s of a certain age, and I think it’s just time. You know what I learned recently? All the gays love her. I have gay friends and members of my family, and they’re all on my case to vote for her — I never saw Glenn Close as a big gay icon, but they all love her! [A Star Is Born’s Lady] Gaga was really good. I loved [The Favourite’s] Olivia Colman and would have voted for her. But I just think it’s Glenn’s turn.
She also voted for Richard E. Grant and Regina King in the supporting categories, which makes me remember that the anonymous director also voted for Grant. Is there going to be a surprise in the Best Supporting Actor category? Richard would happy-sob if that happened, and I kind of think Mahershala would be happy with it too. Also: I too feel that there should be a JUSTICE 4 PHANTOM THREAD movement because holy god was that an incredible movie and it did next to nothing during last year’s awards season. What else? I’m shocked that this woman voted for Bradley Cooper. I’m also shocked that she didn’t know that Glenn Close is utterly beloved by the LGBTQ community.
Photos courtesy of IMDB.