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Oscar Awards Previews

by Culture Staff

Photography courtesy of The Academy Twitter

The 2018 Academy Awards are just a few days away. After the Golden Globes and BAFTA awards, some nominees seem to be shoo-ins to sweep in their category, but others may win as a surprise. Without further ado, here’s our Culture staff’s picks in four major categories.

Best Director

“Dunkirk,” Christopher Nolan

“Get Out,” Jordan Peele

“Lady Bird,” Greta Gerwig

“Phantom Thread,” Paul Thomas Anderson

“The Shape of Water,” Guillermo del Toro

Del Toro has already won the Best Director nod from the Golden Globes and the BAFTA awards this year, making him a likely winner for his work directing “The Shape of Water,” a film about a deaf woman who falls in love with an otherworldly sea creature.

Best Actor

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.”

Daniel Day-Lewis received mixed praises for his role in “Phantom Thread,” but on the whole he brought a different, more personal side of his method-acting to “Phantom Thread” as a post-war dressmaker.

Best Actress

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”

McDorman is a mother hunting for justice in “Three Billboards.” Her character is violent, is demanding, is emotionally-fraught, but McDorman’s performance also seeks empathy; on the whole she is certain to win “Best Actress” (she won for the same nomination at the Golden Globe and BAFTA awards).

Best Picture

“Call Me by Your Name”

“Darkest Hour”


“Get Out”

“Lady Bird”

“Phantom Thread”

“The Post”

“The Shape of Water”

“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

The variety in this category is immense - from comedy, to science fiction drama, to two historical fiction flicks. But of all, the most certain to win is “Three Billboards,” a film about a mother seeking justice for the violent assault and death of her child. The film does not shy from the ugliness of either the issue or any of its characters -- putting racism, sexism and misogyny out in full-view, but insisting it’s for purpose, part of the message of the film.

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