2019 Movie Fantasy Part 2: December Check-in

The 2019 Awards season is in full swing, and now that the Golden Globe Nominations have been announced, it’s time to check-in and see which movies are scoring the most movie fantasy points.

So far, the awards race is a close one between Noah Baumbach’s “Marriage Story” with 155.5 points and “The Irishman,” with only 1.5 points separating them. These two films sit well ahead of any other film this year. “Marriage Story” solidified its frontrunner status by leading the Golden Globe nominations with 6, including Best Motion Picture – Drama. The film has been recognized in all facets. It has received a lot of awards recognition, being nominated at 16 of 21 possible critic organizations, the most of any film this year. In acting, the film has received recognition with Adam Driver, Scarlett Johansson and Laura Dern earning a combined total of 39 nominations, also the most of any film this year. Its nominations range from these acclaims to more below the line awards for score and editing. That last precursor is notable because the Best Editing Oscar and Best Picture Oscar are extremely closely related. Since 1981, only once (in 2014) has the eventual Best Picture winner not been nominated for the Best Editing Oscar. While an Editing nomination does not necessarily mean the film will win Best Picture, a film rarely wins the top prize without it. The only thing working against “Marriage Story” is that it missed out on the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) ensemble award. Only three movies have ever gone on to win Best Picture after missing the SAG ensemble award. However, two of those movies were in the past two years, so that trend may not be too certain. 

Hot on the heels of “Marriage Story” is “The Irishman,” Martin Scorsese’s latest film. The film has almost the same number of nominations in Picture, Directing and Screenplay but is falling just short because of the lack of nominations for Robert De Nero’s lead performance has not been widely recognized, including being snubbed at the Globes. The film is being kept in the thick of the race by having two candidates for Best Supporting Actor in Al Pacino and Joe Pesci. While it seems Pesci has a slight edge, having won three times so far, both names are regularly showing up in various groups’ nominations. Last year a double nomination in supporting acting helped “The Favourite” to a comfortable points lead, so it will be interesting to see if we will the same thing happen with this film. It is also worth pointing out that these two top point-getters are both Netflix releases. After last year’s success with “Roma,” the studio seems to have solidified itself as an awards season contender with these two films as well as “The Two Popes” and “Dolemite is My Name” being nominated for their respective Best Picture awards at the globes.

While not quite as high on the points total as these top two films, “Parasite” has been taking critical organizations by storm. “Parasite” has won the most Best Feature awards by far, with a whopping seven wins so far. Director Bong Joon Ho has won Best Director five times. The only thing holding this film back is that it is a foreign film, being from South Korea. A foreign language film has never won Best Picture at the Oscars. “Parasite” does not really have a well-defined main character, so it has only been nominated for three acting awards so far, all in Supporting. In addition, the whole ensemble was nominated for the SAG ensemble award, the first foreign film to do so since 1998. There seems to be a lot of love for “Parasite,” but will it be enough to turn into Oscar gold?

There have been a few big surprises this season. The most notable is probably the immense success that Lupita Nyong’o has had receiving recognition for her performance is Jordan Peele’s “Us.” Nyong’o has won the Best Actress award at five different critic organizations so far, more than the assumed frontrunner Renée Zellweger in “Judy.” Despite good reviews, few have seen her as a real Oscar threat this year, and her snub at the Globes does not make her chances look good, but her critical run has been notable. Another surprise has been the rise of “Joker.” Director Todd Phillips shocked most Oscar pundits with a Best Director nomination at the globes and the film has received plenty of recognition in categories such as lead actor, screenplay and score. It seems this box office hit is also shaping up to an awards contender. 

Below is shown the full top ten for total points:

As far as the fantasy teams go, the orange team is off to a huge lead on the strength of having both of the top two teams on its roster, along with a few other films adding a few points here and there. On the other end of the spectrum is the green team, over 350 points away from the lead, with its biggest hitters “Little Women” and “The Two Popes” on the outside looking in.

The full spreadsheet can be found here (hyperlink) to see the totals for every film. The spreadsheet has been updated to include running updates of which awards bodies have been included and how many wins each film has in the major categories. Also, follow me on twitter @bensmovietweets for more frequent updates. Until then, happy awards season.

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