The Oscars


Tristan Medd, Staff Writer


The 95th Oscar Awards Ceremony will take place in March of this year, the culmination of a very successful twelve months for the films. We pray that this year nobody slaps anybody, though the Academy might hope otherwise, seeing how high Will Smith spiked their ratings last year.

The big news this year for the Oscars is that they will be adding a new category. “Outstanding Achievement in Popular Film” is a fan favorite category, encouraging the public to vote on their favorite movie of the year, and it will be very interesting to see how fans and critics differ in opinion when it comes to the best movie of the year.

The nominees for “Best Picture” this year are:

All Quiet on the Western Front; directed by Edward Berger

Avatar: The Way of Water; James Cameron

The Banshees of Insherin; Martin McDonagh

Elvis; Baz Luhrmann

Everything Everywhere All At Once; Daniel Kwan, Daniel Scheinert

The Fablemans; Stephen Speilberg

TÁR; Tod Field

Top Gun: Maverick; Joseph Kosinski

Triangle of Sadness; Ruben Östlund

Women Talking; Sarah Polley

The other categories are very important, obviously, but the “Best Picture” category generates by far the most interest. The fan-favorite films for this year will most likely be Everything Everywhere All At Once or Top Gun: Maverick. While each nominee for this category excels in one way or another, these two struck the perfect balance between box office success and mutual high praise, Everything Everywhere having made $107.4 million with an 88% (audience score) on Rotten Tomatoes, and Top Gun with a whopping $1.4 billion with a 99% RT rating. After reading the statistics, many people will probably conclude that Top Gun will win the popular vote. Unfortunately, this also means that Top Gun may very well win the critics’ award based solely on its popular status since every award show becomes more and more of a popularity contest.

That being said, CODA won “Best Picture” last year, although it was far less popular than other nominees, so maybe the Oscars haven’t fallen to social corruption the way the Grammy’s have. Here’s hoping that the new category will filter out the need to pander completely, as the modern generation can hardly be trusted to decipher peak cinema for themselves (I blame the Avengers). Whether the Academy can is the subject of a whole different debate.

The third movie that might have a chance would be All Quiet On The Western Front, being comparable to Saving Private Ryan in quality and emotional impact, and certainly a contestant for best war movie of all time. All Quiet could very well take home “Best Picture” as one of the most emotional and devastating of the year. 

Tár and Women Talking have ample chance to win as well, as they are the two most relevant and important movies of the year. Avatar, while very, very popular and marvelous in its own right, does not have substance enough to win the “Best Picture”. A movie needs great visuals and a groundbreaking story to triumph over its competitors, and Avatar 2 certainly does not have a groundbreaking story.

No matter which movie you root for this year, I think it would be beneficial for everyone to watch the nominated films in some capacity. If viewership continues to drop, the Academy may fall to the dark side, as so many award shows before (again, looking at you, Grammies), and pander to the popular pick. So strap-in on March 12, because while I can’t promise they will be as entertaining as last year, they are just as important.