Saturday

Should win/Will win
Jackie image

Always fun. (I've also updated my would-be Oscar ballot and my general 2016 lists to reflect late viewings, especially Pablo Lorraín's superlative pop-historical phantasmagoria, Jackie, about which I plan to write something soon.)

PICTURE
Should win: La La Land
Will win: La La Land
From a cultural/political standpoint, I'm pulling for Moonlight, but La La Land is the better movie.

DIRECTOR
Should win: Damien Chazelle, La La Land
Will win: Damien Chazelle, La La Land

ACTRESS
Should win: Natalie Portman, Jackie
Will win: Emma Stone, La La Land
I prefer Portman in Jackie by a hair over Huppert in Elle, but if Huppert were nominated for Things to Come (better performance and better film than Elle) it'd go the other way around.

ACTOR
Should win: Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
Will win: Denzel Washington, Fences
If Andrew Garfield were up for Silence, he'd be my pick. (I didn't see Hacksaw Ridge.)

SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Should win: Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea
Will win: Viola Davis, Fences
Davis is extraordinary in Fences, to be sure, but such egregious "category fraud" is really unfair to true supporting performances, like Williams' sparingly used, affecting turn in Manchester by the Sea.

SUPPORTING ACTOR
Should win: Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
Will win: Mahershala Ali, Moonlight

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Should win: Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea
Will win: Damien Chazelle, La La Land

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Should win: Barry Jenkins, Moonlight
Will win: Barry Jenkins, Moonlight
Is there any significant difference between August Wilson's theatrical script and the screenplay for Fences? Absent close inspection, there doesn't seem to be, which is why I'll go with Moonlight instead, from among this group. But how was Whit Stillman not nominated here?! His translation of Austen's epistolary Lady Susan into the fleshed-out (and thoroughly terrific) Love and Friendship is the most impressive example of adaptation in recent memory.

CINEMATOGRAPHY
Should win: Rodrigo Prieto, Silence
Will win: Linus Sandgren, La La Land
At least Scorsese's masterpiece is up for something.

SCORE
Should win: Mica Levi, Jackie
Will win: Justin Hurwitz, La La Land
I've only included this category here so that I can "vote" for that crazy, indelible Jackie score.
Sister, Sister
beyonce_solange

Solange interviewed by Beyoncé is a must-read. Some wonderful, excerptible moments:

BEYONCÉ: Your voice on the album, the tone of your voice, the vulnerability in your voice and in your arrangements, the sweetness and the honesty and purity in your voice—what inspired you to sing in that tone?

SOLANGE: It was very intentional that I sang as a woman who was very in control, a woman who could have this conversation without yelling and screaming, because I still often feel that when black women try to have these conversations, we are not portrayed as in control, emotionally intact women, capable of having the hard conversations without losing that control.

***

SOLANGE: Well, I find a lot of similarities in Master P and our dad.

BEYONCÉ: Me, too. [laughs]

***

BEYONCÉ: What are some misconceptions about being a strong woman?

SOLANGE: Oh my God, they're endless! [laughs] One thing that I constantly have to fight against is not feeling arrogant when I say I wrote every lyric on this album. I still have not been able to say that. That's the first time I've actually ever said it, because of the challenges that we go through when we celebrate our work and our achievements. I remember Björk saying that she felt like, no matter what stage in her career, if a man is credited on something that she's done, he's going to get the credit for it. And, unfortunately, that still rings true. It's something I've learned so much about from you, getting to be in control of your own narrative. And, at this point, it should be an expectation, not something that you're asking permission for. I feel like I'm getting closer to that, not taking on all the baggage when I have to just stand up for myself and say, "No, I'm uncomfortable with that." And I really appreciate you and mom being examples of that, being able to speak about our achievements, these things that deserve to be celebrated, without feeling bashful about it.

***

BEYONCÉ: What is the funniest text you got from our mom this week? [both laugh] That's too personal, never mind. You've got to love Mama Tina. How does it feel to have the dopest wedding photo of all time?

SOLANGE: Oh my God, that is subjective!

BEYONCÉ: What makes you laugh the hardest?

SOLANGE: The Real Housewives of Atlanta, hands-down.

BEYONCÉ: Really?! I didn't know that.

Sunday


FUCK YES.

Thursday

Antediluvian


This feels like it happened many, many years ago. How weird this memory must be now for Sia (and for Mini Nishimura, the interpretive dancer)!
In another great contribution to her "10+ Years Later" column, Teresa Nieman revisits Miike's Audition, directly pinpointing what's still so frightfully good about the film (namely, its slow-build creepiness and uneasy mood) and also what seems decidedly less jolting than it did a decade and a half ago.