By: Pat Austin
SHREVEPORT — My grown son and I have a tradition where each year we go see all the Oscar nominated movies: at least those in the main categories. We don’t always master this completely. Last year I don’t think there were any we wanted to see, but Usually we see most of them before Oscar night.
Hollywood has become so politicized and everyone has an agenda so I don’t usually even watch the awards ceremony itself. I can’t stomach watching the Hollywood elite lecturing to me. But I do enjoy watching movies, so there’s that.
Anyway, we haven’t seen too many yet this year. So far we’ve seen Darkest Hour, Phantom Thread, Star Wars: the Last Jedi (is that even nominated for anything? I have no idea…), and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.
Regardless of how the movie is, the point of this, and the fun of it, is that my grown kid and I get to spend the afternoon together doing something we both enjoy.
The first movie we saw in our quest this year was Darkest Hour. I thought Gary Oldman was fabulous as Churchill and as soon as we walked out of the theater I looked at John and asked, “How is that not an Oscar winning performance?!”
He look at me as if I had two heads, blinked, and said, “Because Daniel Day Lewis.”
So the next movie we saw was Phantom Thread and I understood what he meant. But my heart is still with Oldman.
Phantom Thread was lush; the costumes were beautiful, the settings elegant, and the story engaging. And no question that Daniel Day Lewis was totally immersed in his character.
Our most recent film was Three Billboards and here I found my favorite. Frances McDormand is simply an amazing actress and while I wanted her on screen every single frame, Woody Harrelson and Sam Parkman were terrific. Parkman absolutely must win his category as supporting actor. The movie is very dark but there are comic moments; the main reason to see this one is McDormand. It’s definitely her best role since Fargo.
Next on our list is I, Tonya. We are watching these in no order whatsoever; our decisions are based primarily on what is showing where and when.
After each movie we linger over a long lunch and share our thoughts and revise our predictions.
In the end, it doesn’t matter who wins what; I’ve already won by getting to spend a few hours each week with my grown kid and I’ve seen some great movies as well.
Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport.