Alfonso Cuaron’s Mexican drama Roma continued its precursor love today as the Los Angeles Film Critics Association awarded it Best Film. While that’s certainly a feather in the cap for something that’s a near lock for a Best Picture nod, it’s not necessarily a harbinger of what’s to come. Only once in this decade have the LAFCA and the Academy agreed on their top race – 2015’s Spotlight.
While Cuaron’s effort got the big prize, the filmmaker himself came in second in directing to a surprise selection of Debra Granik for Leave No Trace. Her name hasn’t surfaced much for Academy consideration and I currently do not have her in my top 10 possibilities. Ironically, only two directors this decade have shared the Oscar and this category. One is Guillermo del Toro for The Shape of Water last year. The other? Cuaron for 2013’s Gravity.
Three of the acting winners are seen as strong players for the Oscars: Ethan Hawke (First Reformed) in Actor, Olivia Colman for The Favourite in Actress, and Supporting Actress victor Regina King in If Beale Street Could Talk. In Supporting Actor, Steven Yeun won for his work in the South Korean mystery Burning. He’s been nowhere on Oscar’s radar and likely won’t be.
With Roma taking Best Film overall, the LAFCA had a tie in their Foreign Film race between Burning and Shoplifters.
Can You Ever Forgive Me? got some attention, taking Screenplay over runner-up The Favourite. That could help its already decent chances at an Adapted Screenplay nod down the road.
Another surprise came in their documentary pick – the Netflix release Shirkers from Singapore. It has not been discussed much in what’s seen as a crowded field of selections.
Spider–Man: Into the Spider–Verse took Animated Film, further positioning itself as the main rival to Pixar front-runner Incredibles 2.
My updated Oscar predictions will be up Thursday!