Op-Rob 2018 Best Picture Nominee Rankings

9. "Darkest Hour"

 Gary Oldman's performance is admirable, and the history behind the story is very interesting.  However, the film looks and feels like made-for-TV movie.  The scene where Winston Churchill rides “the Tube” nearly forced my eyes to roll permanently into the back of my head.  

Gary Oldman's performance is admirable, and the history behind the story is very interesting.  However, the film looks and feels like made-for-TV movie.  The scene where Winston Churchill rides “the Tube” nearly forced my eyes to roll permanently into the back of my head.  

8. "Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri"

 Though ambitious, and well made and well acted, I did not like this film for reasons explained in my full review. 

Though ambitious, and well made and well acted, I did not like this film for reasons explained in my full review. 

7. "Dunkirk"

 Reviewed over the summer, “Dunkirk” missed the mark in significant ways.

Reviewed over the summer, “Dunkirk” missed the mark in significant ways.

6. "Phantom Thread"

 Daniel Day-Lewis is perhaps the most consistently great actor alive today, and Paul Thomas Anderson is a truly skilled director.  However, this movie covers such niche subjects, it is hard to care about the final product. 

Daniel Day-Lewis is perhaps the most consistently great actor alive today, and Paul Thomas Anderson is a truly skilled director.  However, this movie covers such niche subjects, it is hard to care about the final product. 

5. "The Post"

 An entertaining historical drama directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks: this film spent too much energy fawning over its themes of journalistic integrity and feminism. Had it used more tact and simplicity, this film could have been superb.  It is easy to see the film’s issues when compared with better journalism pieces such as “All the President’s Men” and “Spotlight”.  Nonetheless, Streep is phenomenal in the lead and should be a serious contender for Best Actress.

An entertaining historical drama directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks: this film spent too much energy fawning over its themes of journalistic integrity and feminism. Had it used more tact and simplicity, this film could have been superb.  It is easy to see the film’s issues when compared with better journalism pieces such as “All the President’s Men” and “Spotlight”.  Nonetheless, Streep is phenomenal in the lead and should be a serious contender for Best Actress.

4. "The Shape of Water"

 Although I do not much care for the Guillermo del Toro aesthetic, “The Shape of Water” is a very good film.  The story has beauty and dramatic gusto.  However, the film too easily boils down to brazen prejudice vs. heroic love, with no in-between.  There are not enough nuances to the characters, and the film suffers as a result.

Although I do not much care for the Guillermo del Toro aesthetic, “The Shape of Water” is a very good film.  The story has beauty and dramatic gusto.  However, the film too easily boils down to brazen prejudice vs. heroic love, with no in-between.  There are not enough nuances to the characters, and the film suffers as a result.

3. "Call Me By Your Name"

 Set in the radiant Italian countryside, this is perhaps the most beautiful scene-by-scene film in this crop of nominees.  The acting is superb, and the themes are deeply intense and realistic.  The film is not catered to a gay audience so much as it serves anyone who has loved and lost, in the same vein as last years’ “La La Land”.  One unnecessary and ill-natured scene involving a peach holds the film back from being truly transcendent. 

Set in the radiant Italian countryside, this is perhaps the most beautiful scene-by-scene film in this crop of nominees.  The acting is superb, and the themes are deeply intense and realistic.  The film is not catered to a gay audience so much as it serves anyone who has loved and lost, in the same vein as last years’ “La La Land”.  One unnecessary and ill-natured scene involving a peach holds the film back from being truly transcendent. 

2. "Lady Bird"

 Considering the academy’s bias toward films with cultural ramifications, “Lady Bird” would probably never win Best Picture.  Nonetheless, I enjoyed every minute, and every scene, of this coming-of-age comedy/drama.  Greta Gerwig is a gem to the film world, with acting performances such as “Frances Ha” and “Mistress America”.  Her directorial work is off to a fittingly excellent start.

Considering the academy’s bias toward films with cultural ramifications, “Lady Bird” would probably never win Best Picture.  Nonetheless, I enjoyed every minute, and every scene, of this coming-of-age comedy/drama.  Greta Gerwig is a gem to the film world, with acting performances such as “Frances Ha” and “Mistress America”.  Her directorial work is off to a fittingly excellent start.

1. "Get Out"

 Reviewed earlier on Op-Rob, “Get Out” is the best picture on this list, and I don't feel the race is particularly close.  It is a seamless film from start to finish: great acting, momentous direction, and a gut-punch cultural message to boot.  Jordan Peele’s historical knowledge of the horror genre cannot be understated with this film.  It is a powerhouse directorial debut if there ever was one. 

Reviewed earlier on Op-Rob, “Get Out” is the best picture on this list, and I don't feel the race is particularly close.  It is a seamless film from start to finish: great acting, momentous direction, and a gut-punch cultural message to boot.  Jordan Peele’s historical knowledge of the horror genre cannot be understated with this film.  It is a powerhouse directorial debut if there ever was one.