As is tradition every Oscar season on the blog, it’s time to dig a bit deeper into the nominees for Best Picture, Director, and the four acting derbies. These are my Case Of posts where I lay out the merits for and against the 35 contenders in the aforementioned competitions. Yes, that’s 35 individual posts and we start with the 10 hopefuls in BP.
This will occur alphabetically so All Quiet on the Western Front is on deck!
The Case for All Quiet on the Western Front:
Edward Berger’s antiwar epic is the only title that’s won Best Picture before. The 1929-30 ceremony (the 3rd ever Oscars) bestowed best in show to the 1930 version of Erich Maria Remarque’s novel. If we believe BAFTA is a reliable precursor to Academy glory, Front is loaded with a leading 14 nominations. Tied with The Banshees of Inisherin with 9 nods, the pair is second only to Everything Everywhere All at Once‘s 11. This is Netflix’s one and only contender so the streamer has and will be campaigning hard.
The Case Against All Quiet on the Western Front:
The nine mentions are impressive and more than anticipated. However, a couple of misses are key. Not many films end up winning BP that are omitted in Editing and that applies here. Most importantly, Berger did not make the quintet in Director. While there have been recent examples of the directors of BP recipients not making that cut (Ben Affleck for Argo, Peter Farrelly for Green Book, Sian Heder last year with CODA), this seems like the type of project where the filmmaker needed in to have much hope of taking the biggest prize. That’s not the only chink in the armor. Quiet was widely expected to take the Golden Globe statue for foreign feature and lost in an upset to Argentina, 1985. Netflix hasn’t won a BP yet.
Adapted Screenplay, International Feature Film, Cinematography, Makeup & Hairstyling, Original Score, Production Design, Sound, Visual Effects
Quiet appears close to a lock to make noise in International Feature Film (I wouldn’t bet on an Argentina upset on Oscar night). While its haul of nine is laudable, its chances in BP are low-key.
My Case Of posts will continue with Avatar: The Way of Water!
For the other BP Case Of posts, you can find them here: