Godzilla is the king of the cinema now.


I am surprised. I enjoyed the movie ‘Godzilla: King of the Monsters’ but it didn’t do really well to both the box office and to the critics. I am expecting it to rule the worldwide box office with a mighty figure but it doesn’t. In the 2014’s ‘Godzilla’ film, people were complaining that the Godzilla’s screen time was too little. Now, in this sequel, Godzilla appeared so much more and yet people complained again. In this 2019 film, I think the director has already managed to strike out a balance between the human elements and the monster elements. Yet, people are still not satisfied! I really don’t understand what the critics wanted.

Yes, I think that the movie is not perfect. Parts of it are not engaging and there were some talking scenes that made me lose my focus. The visual palette for the movie is great but I am not impressed with its CGI actually. I felt that the CGI work is lazy. The CGI team relied mostly on fog or dust to cover most scenes easily (many other recent CGI-heavy films also used this tactic to reduce their workload on the visual effects). I don’t know whether you realize that too? It was quite obvious.

However, I still wouldn’t call it as a ‘huge disappointment’ as most critics said. The fighting scenes are awesome and there are some very impressive shots of Godzilla proving to the world that he is the king. The score of which part of it pays homage to the original Godzilla music from Japan is brilliantly made. The score is really beautiful and elevates the whole cinematic experience. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Godzilla: King of the Monsters’ a total of 7.1. Even Godzilla manage to defeat the powerful King Ghidorah in this film, and Kong is going to face him next in ‘Godzilla vs Kong’ next year. Sorry, Kong…you stand no chance at all. Long live the king…

‘Aladdin’, the live-action remake of the animated classic film of the same name still rules the box office this week. I haven’t watch it but earlier, I was predicting this film and ‘Godzilla: King of The Monsters’ to be somewhere near 1-billion dollar range in box office intake. I was wrong. They will cross 500 million but looking at their box office performance now, there is no way they could reach 1-billion milestone. At most, ‘Aladdin’ will probably ends with 800-million (way less than recent similar films like ‘The Jungle Book’ or ‘Beauty and the Beast’) while ‘Godzilla’ will only end with about 500 million max.

After being on cinema for so many weekends by now, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ is now less than 100 million away from becoming the new world’s highest grossing film (not adjusted for inflation). Looking at its present statistic, this movie (current grossing at $2.697 billion) is going to take the No.1 spot from ‘Avatar’ (worldwide grossing of $2.787 billion) but it will definitely not cross over the unprecedented 3-billion milestone as predicted earlier. The movie is also not going to go past ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ in domestic box office record (US and Canada) as the latter is still over 100 million ahead. Anyway, ‘Endgame’ has already performed very well and had done its job. Kudos to Marvel once again for this impressive achievement.

(Images in this post are from various online sources)

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‘Avengers: Endgame’ sank Titanic in box office, and is now certain to topple ‘Avatar’ as the new worldwide box office champion.


As of this writing, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ has grossed a total of US$2.238 billion in worldwide box office. That amount is already sufficient to get past 1997’s ‘Titanic’ to become the second highest grossing film worldwide. ‘Titanic’ grossed a total of US$2.187 billion. However, when you adjust the figures for inflation, ‘Endgame’ is still way far behind. Movie ticket price is way much lower in 1997 than the price on the present day (ticket price now is like almost 3 to 4x higher). That’s what inflation means.

Let’s not get things complicated with this inflation stuff. The official table is still on the figures not adjusted for inflation. So officially, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ is now no.2, and the movie has now just entered its third weekend. There’s still long way to go before the movie is no longer showing in cinemas worldwide. Hence, looking from the current statistic, it looks almost certain for the movie to dethrone 2009’s ‘Avatar’ as the world’s highest grossing film in history. ‘Avatar’ grossed an epic total of US$2.787 billion.

‘Endgame’ needs another US$600 million to break that record. That shouldn’t be too hard. But for now, I’m already looking at the possibility of the movie going a step further, which is to be the first ever film to gross over US$3 billion. I think it’s possible. ‘Endgame’ has like a 50% shot for that unprecedented milestone.

Recently, James Cameron who is the director for both ‘Titanic’ and ‘Avatar’ congratulated Marvel for their accomplishment in the box office as there’s a movie that finally ‘sunk’ Titanic. There has been no other movies in the past that got to do that (let along beats ‘Avatar’), with the closest being 2015’s ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ that grossed US$2.068 billion. For your information, currently there are five movies that are in the prestigious 2-billion dollar club (Avatar, Avengers: Endgame, Titanic, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and Avengers: Infinity War). Breaking into the 1-billion dollar milestone is no longer a tough challenge now as there are almost 40 movies which accomplished that goal.

As of now, two 2019 movies grossed over US$1 billion. They are ‘Avengers: Endgame’ and ‘Captain Marvel’ (this movie grossed over US$1.121 billion). They are both Marvel films. Three other films are expected to join the 1-billion dollar club too this year and they are ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’, ‘The Lion King’ and ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’. I’m predicting that the solo Spidey movie is finally going to gross over 1-billion due to the continuing buzz from ‘Endgame’. There are 5 other films this year that may have a chance to go past 1-billion too; ‘Aladdin’, ‘Toy Story 4’, ‘Frozen 2′, Godzilla: King of the Monsters’ and ‘Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw’. It would be insane if there a total of 10 movies in this year alone that grossed over US$1 billion respectively. Anyway, that’s seems almost impossible.

There’s another movie that I’m highly anticipating this year especially after watching its teaser trailer that has just been released a moment ago; ‘IT: Chapter 2’. The trailer looks promising and it’s cool to see the ‘Losers Club’ now being in the adults and has to take down the evil and terrifying Pennywise the Clown again. The movie which is set to release on early September this year is going to do well in box office too, but not to the level of hitting 1-billion or so as it is a horror film which does not appeal to a fairly large chunk of the general audiences.

(Images in this post are from various online sources)

 

‘Avengers: Endgame’ crushes worldwide box office with an insanely massive US$1.2 billion debut.


No one single film in history has opened with more than 1 billion in ticket sales. In fact, the record holder for world’s largest opening weekend goes to ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ at US$640.5 million last year. That record is now obviously shattered by the film’s sequel, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ by almost double.

With a massive US$357.1 million intake from US and Canada, and another US$866.5 million from other territories, ‘Avengers: Endgame’ grossed a total of US$1.223 billion in its opening weekend alone. Countless of films couldn’t even gross near to that figure in their entire run and ‘Endgame’ accomplished that in just its first five days of release.

The movie currently broke almost if not all box office records, including but not limited to largest worldwide opening weekend, largest domestic opening (US and Canada) as well as largest opening in all other countries, fastest film to eclipse US$1 billion, etc. The movie is the 39th film in history to cross the 1-billion mark, is the highest grossing film of 2019, and is currently the 17th highest grossing film of all-time.

Well, the movie is going up to move up the rank real fast. Before the movie’s release, box office analysts were predicting a 250-million opening weekend in the US and Canada, and then later raised the projection to 300-million. It ended up going even further up (over 350 million in domestic debut). Early forecast mentioned the film is going to gross around 800 million at max for its worldwide opening. What we saw now? 1.2 billion debut. That’s a huge gap and it’s a sign that this movie is massively popular and everyone from all parts of the world just wanted to watch it. Who doesn’t? It’s the finale of 21 films that spanned over a decade…and then there’s our beloved huge assembly of superheroes taking down the badass supervillain Thanos and his armies for a final showdown.

So now, how much more further will ‘Endgame’ goes in box office sales? It is no doubt the film is going to dethrone ‘Titanic’ as the second highest grossing film of all time (‘Titanic’ had 2.187 billion). But can it defeat ‘Avatar’ for the prestigious No.1 spot that has not been disturbed for about a decade (‘Avatar’ grossed 2.787 billion)? Looking from the figures now (great statistics), strong word of mouth, huge enthusiasm from audiences in repeat watching, and lack of serious competition till end of May are making it possible to gross over US2.8 billion. Perhaps, it can even be the first ever film to cross the unprecedented 3-billion milestone…

There’s the possibility. And that possibility is really there. We will see how it performs in the second and following weekend to see how big is the drop per week. For now, it is a sure thing that ‘Endgame’ will be the 5th film to cross 2-billion mark. It can even achieve that by just end of this week of early next week. It’s certainly going to be the fastest film to reach 2-billion too. Now, all that is insane. I knew the support and love for this movie is strong but like many others, I didn’t expect the scale to be this huge.

(Images in this post are from various online sources)

‘Avengers: Endgame’ concludes this huge MCU saga in a mind-blowing way!


Ever since the release of ‘Iron Man’ in 2008, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is created. Back then, no one expect that MCU would come to this far or would come to this big. Now in April 2019, that one huge story arc is finally coming to an end after 21 superhero films with the release of ‘Avengers: Endgame’.

After an explosive cliffhanger on last year’s ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ whereby Thanos had succeeded in wiping out half of the universe’s population and left the remaining Avengers team in huge sense of loss and defeat, fans across the world has been eagerly anticipating for this ‘Endgame’ to see how things get corrected. If you haven’t watched the movie, please stop from reading further as there are a lot of spoilers ahead for my movie review here.

In ‘Endgame’, some 5 years after the ‘turning-into-dust’ event, Scott Lang (Ant-man) discovered that entering the quantum realm allows for time travel and Steve Rogers (Captain America) agrees for a plan to get to the past to collect all the 6 infinity stones before Thanos did to undo the apocalypse and to bring back those that perished from Thanos’ snap alive in present. The time travel mechanism is further reinforced by Tony Stark (Iron-man) and Bruce Banner (Hulk). The remaining Avengers were then reunited and tasked to separate time zones (Romanoff (Black Widow) sacrificed herself to obtain the Soul stone in the process). They succeeded, but Thanos and his armies are brought to the present. A final battle ensues and Iron Man mortally wounded himself after using the 6-stones to disintegrate Thanos and his armies. Following Iron Man’s funeral, Thor joins Guardians of the Galaxy, and Captain America returns the infinity stones and Mjolnir (Thor’s hammer) back to their original places in time. He then remains in the past to live out the rest of his life with Peggy Carter. Returning to the present, he passes his shield to Sam Wilson (Falcon).

This movie is 3-hours long and I never felt bored for a single time. That is surprising. Although there is quite a lot of mere talking scenes in most parts of the film, but I am very engaged. Why? Because those scenes are still critical (despite lacking actions) to connect us to the characters that we first saw and loved from as early as 2008 and to get us to feel what it’s like to be on their situation. Kids may not enjoy this part but us as Marvel fans that has been following all the previous MCU films are immersed into it. Marvel also never sways away from giving us laughter from some hilarious interactions between the Avengers throughout the movie. Things then took huge turn with dramatic battle particularly at the end that got me super thrilled and excited. The scenes where Captain America successfully wielding the Mjolnir and fights Thanos, where Doctor Strange opened portals to bring in all Avengers and allies to face off Thanos and his armies and where Captain Marvel arrives and crushes through Thanos’ ship are epic!

I wouldn’t mind if the movie is even much longer than the current 3-hour runtime, hoping for a longer battle in the end. Anyway, the way it is now is already way brilliant. Things also get very emotional with the death of Black Widow and Iron Man. Before watching the movie, I already knew the plot. I assumed that I won’t get too emotional through the movie since I already knew who will die. However, I was wrong. It gets really sad to watch them die after all the things they have done to save the world.

Assembling this huge number of actors to create this finale is no easy task. The directors (Russo brothers) have delivered an epic conclusion to this huge MCU journey. The movie did whatever it takes to give us a thrilling, satisfying and heartfelt ending that we will remember for a long time. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Avengers: Endgame’ a total of 8.7. And in this movie, we got to see perhaps Stan Lee’s final cameo appearance. By the way, there is no post-credit scene for ‘Endgame’ as this is already the finale of the story. Hence, there is no need to wait till the very end of the rolling credits unless you want to just hear an audio that implies Iron Man forging his suit in his first film.

It’s really emotional to see this MCU journey concluding after a long 11 years and 22 films in total. We still have to move on and we will see how MCU progresses with the upcoming ‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’ and future Phase 4 films. Thank you Stan Lee, thank you Marvel, thank you to all the superheroes and the non-superheroes too, thank you Cap, and thank you Iron Man for this amazing entertainment for the past 11 years. Love you 3000!

This movie is going to be very massive in worldwide box office! I’m expecting it to surpass ‘Titanic’ in final grossing but still would not be able to take down the No.1 spot from ‘Avatar’ for the title of world’s highest grossing film (unadjusted for inflation). ‘Endgame’ crossing 1-billion mark is as easy as snapping a finger. Crossing 2-billion is also easy since its predecessor (Infinity War) was able to accomplish it too. The question is how far do you think it will go after the 2-billion milestone? 3-billion? The first in history to cross 3-billion? There is a chance but quite minimal at the moment. But one thing for sure now is that ‘Endgame’ is certain to score largest opening weekend ever.

(Images in this post are from various online sources)

Got rid of Monday blues with ‘Us’ and nature.


After having an exhausting and rushed weekend back home the past two days to celebrate my dad’s birthday and only being able to reach Singapore in the midnight due to the unusual congestion along the North-South highway last evening on my returning trip, I decided to grant myself a day of leave today (Monday) to get sufficient rest. This one-day off not only clears off Monday blues but also gave me time to settle some of my personal stuff.

Besides that, I got the opportunity to visit Bedok Reservoir today after catching a movie in a cinema nearby. It is a great alone-time for me to enjoy a very good movie and also beautiful nature at the reservoir park that I have never visited before despite me having stayed here in Singapore for almost a year by now. I certainly had a very peaceful and enjoyable time today rather than spending the usual Monday stressing on work and the long week ahead.

The film that I watched today is ‘Us’. The film is written, directed and produced by the same person; Jordan Peele. He is the man behind the very successful film ‘Get Out’ two years ago. ‘Us’ is a horror film starring Lupita Nyongo, Winston Duke, Elisabeth Moss, etc and follows a family who are confronted by a group of doppelgangers. The story is basically much more complex and deeper than that and Jordan Peele explores things beyond just the conventional horror element to create a very intelligent film that touches on various messages, comes with deeper meanings or metaphors and gave audiences room for various interpretation.

I definitely recommend people to watch ‘Us’. It is not an ordinary horror film; it looks like a home-invasion film or a game of cat-and-mouse or even a pure slasher genre, but it is actually much more than that. I’m not going to give out spoiler here. There’s also a very huge twist in the end that really got me. I have to do a bit of research after the movie to better understand the motives behind the movie and also some missed-out details from my first viewing just now. Now, I roughly got the overall picture and I really admire Jordan Peele’s talent in delivering this out. The main lead, Lupita Nyongo did fantastic job in nailing the two roles (her own character and that of her doppelganger). The same goes to the other main cast but still Lupita Nyongo outshines the rest in her performance. She may even get an acting nomination for the Academy Awards next year although it is too early to tell for now. She was really brilliant.

The suspense and build-up of scenes are good. The score is amazing and is certainly one of the highlights of the movie too. The only thing that couldn’t get this movie to its perfect score would be the several plot holes or unanswered questions at the conclusion of the film. Out of 10 points, I rate ‘Us’ a total of 8.4. An inventive, intense, thought-provoking and unconventional horror film that will certainly leaves you in questions / discussions in a good way.

(Images in this post are from various online sources)

 

‘The Favourite’ won big at the BAFTA while ‘Roma’ widen the lead to be the Oscar frontrunner for best picture.


The 72nd British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA) was held last evening with the movie ‘The Favourite’ emerged as the biggest winner with 7 wins. This is very much expected due to home advantage. Will it be able to win that many awards in the Academy Awards end of this month? I don’t think so.

Here’s the full list of winners for the 72nd British Academy Film Awards along with my opinions for several categories as usual:

BEST PICTURE
“BlacKkKlansman”
“The Favourite”
“Green Book”
“Roma” – WINNER
“A Star is Born”

Opinion: With this win, ‘Roma’ now is the frontrunner for the Oscar’s best picture race. The best picture competition is very exciting this year as each of the nominated films has their fair share of awards with no clear frontrunner like last year when it is very obvious that only ‘The Shape of Water’ and ‘Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri’ are fighting for the best picture title.

BEST DIRECTOR
Spike Lee, “BlacKkKlansman”
Pawel Pawlikowski, “Cold War”
Yorgos Lanthimos, “The Favourite”
Alfonso Cuaron, “Roma” – WINNER
Bradley Cooper, “A Star is Born”

Opinion: Anyone besides than Alfonso Cuaron winning will be the most shocking news. Cuaron is going to win his second directing Oscars end of this month for sure. He is an excellent craftsman.

BEST ACTOR
Bradley Cooper, “A Star is Born”
Christian Bale, “Vice”
Rami Malek, “Bohemian Rhapsody” – WINNER
Steve Coogan, “Stan & Ollie”
Viggo Mortensen, “Green Book”

Opinion: I don’t see any more competition from other nominees at this point. Christian Bale is no longer a threat anymore to Rami Malek. Malek should get his Oscar acceptance speech ready after winning the same gong at Golden Globes, SAG, and BAFTA.

BEST ACTRESS
Glenn Close, “The Wife”
Lady Gaga, “A Star is Born”
Melissa McCarthy, “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”
Olivia Colman, “The Favourite” – WINNER
Viola Davis, “Widows”

Opinion: I’m not surprised that Olivia Colman won and not Glenn Close. Colman has a huge home advantage and she also did a great job in ‘The Favourite’. However, Glenn Close is still the one to beat for best actress in the Oscar end of this month due to the huge overdue factor and she has won more important precursor awards (Golden Globes, SAG, Critics Choice) than Colman. It’s a pity that Close couldn’t make a clean sweep after this loss.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Adam Driver, “BlacKkKlansman”
Mahershala Ali, “Green Book” – WINNER
Richard E. Grant, “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”
Sam Rockwell, “Vice”
Timothee Chalamet, “Beautiful Boy”

Opinion: I would have prefer Richard E. Grant or Timothee Chalamet to win. Now, it is a lock for Mahershala Ali to claim his second Oscar.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Amy Adams, “Vice”
Claire Foy, “First Man”
Emma Stone, “The Favourite”
Margot Robbie, “Mary Queen of Scots”
Rachel Weisz, “The Favourite” – WINNER

Opinion: With Regina King and Emily Blunt missing in the nominees here, many are saying that Amy Adams may have a chance. But then, she lost again. Vote splitting isn’t enough to take out Rachel Weisz (as she share same film with Emma Stone who is also nominated here). It’s now Regina King vs. Rachel Weisz for the Oscar.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Janusz Glowacki, Pawel Pawlikowski, “Cold War”
Deborah Davis, Tony Mcnamara, “The Favourite” – WINNER
Brian Currie, Peter Farrelly, Nick Vallelonga, “Green Book”
Alfonso Cuaron, “Roma”
Adam McKay, “Vice”

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Spike Lee, David Rabinowitz, Charlie Wachtel, Kevin Wilmott, “BlacKkKlansman” – WINNER
Nicole Holofcener, Jeff Whitty, “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”
Josh Singer, “First Man”
Barry Jenkins, “If Beale Street Could Talk”
Bradley Cooper, Will Fetters, Eric Roth, “A Star is Born”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
Newton Thomas Sigel, “Bohemian Rhapsody”
Lukasz Zal, “Cold War”
Robbie Ryan, “The Favourite”
Linus Sandgren, “First Man”
Alfonso Cuaron, “Roma” – WINNER

Opinion: Deserving win for ‘Roma’ as the movie is really excellent especially in its technical aspects including cinematography.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN
“The Ballad of Buster Scruggs”
“Bohemian Rhapsody”
“The Favourite” – WINNER
“Mary Poppins Returns”
“Mary Queen of Scots”

Opinion: No surprise here. Actually, no surprise to all the categories of which ‘The Favourite’ is winning. Home advantage it is. I don’t really get the critical love to this movie. I like it but I don’t see it being a spectacular film.

BEST FILM EDITING
“Bohemian Rhapsody”
“The Favourite”
“First Man”
“Roma”
“Vice” – WINNER

Opinion: I like the editing in ‘Vice’ but I still see huge competition in this category from ‘First Man’ and ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’.

BEST MAKE UP & HAIR
“Bohemian Rhapsody”
“The Favourite” – WINNER
“Mary Queen of Scots”
“Stan & Ollie”
“Vice”

Opinion: Another obvious win due to home advantage. ‘Vice’ is definitely better in make up and hair. ‘Vice’ will still win in the Oscar for this category.

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
“Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald”
“The Favourite” – WINNER
“First Man”
“Mary Poppins Returns”
“Roma”

BEST SCORE
“BlacKkKlansman”
“If Beale Street Could Talk”
“Isle of Dogs”
“Mary Poppins Returns”
“A Star is Born” – WINNER

Opinion: Now this is a joke. While I enjoyed and is very fascinated by the songs in ‘A Star Is Born’, its score doesn’t stood out at all. Poor choice from the voters.

BEST SOUND
“Bohemian Rhapsody” – WINNER
“First Man”
“Mission: Impossible – Fallout”
“A Quiet Place”
“A Star is Born”

Opinion: Great to see ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ getting win on other category other than just the lead actor. The movie certainly has great sound work in it. Deserving win.

BEST SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
“Avengers: Infinity War”
“Black Panther” – WINNER
“Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald”
“First Man”
“Ready Player One”

Opinion: Another joke! Visual effects in ‘Black Panther’ is just average. ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ or ‘Ready Player One’ has much better VFX.

BEST ANIMATED FILM
“Incredibles 2”
“Isle of Dogs”
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” – WINNER

Opinion: The clear frontrunner for best animated feature. No more competition. ‘Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse’ stood out easily among the rest of the animated films last year.

BEST DOCUMENTARY
“Free Solo” – WINNER
“McQueen”
“RBG”
“They Shall Not Grow Old”
“Three Identical Strangers”

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
“Capernaum”
“Cold War”
“Dogman”
“Roma” – WINNER
“Shoplifters”

BEST BRITISH FILM
“Beast”
“Bohemian Rhapsody”
“The Favourite” – WINNER
“McQueen”
“Stan & Ollie”
“You Were Never Really Here”

Opinion: Expected although I prefer ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ to win.

BEST DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER
Daniel Kokotajlo (writer/director), “Apostasy”
Michael Pearce (writer/director), “Beast” – WINNER
Chris Kelly (writer/director/producer), “A Cambodian Spring”
Leanne Welham (writer/director), Sophie Harman (producer), “Pili”
Richard Billingham (writer/director), Jacquie Davies (producer), “Ray & Liz”

BEST BRITISH ANIMATED SHORT
“I’m OK”
“Marfa”
“Roughhouse” – WINNER

BEST BRITISH LIVE-ACTION SHORT
“73 Cows” – WINNER
“Bachelor”
“The Blue Door”
“The Field”
“Wale”

RISING STAR AWARD
Barry Keoghan
Cynthia Erivo
Jessie Buckley
Lakeith Stanfield
Letitia Wright – WINNER

So now, we are all waiting for the final moment, the final and most important report card for 2018 films; the 91st Academy Awards on 24th February 2019.

(Images in this post are from various online sources)

After winning big in Golden Globes last weekend, Bohemian Rhapsody goes home empty handed in Critics Choice.


Here comes the second out of five major Hollywood film awards honouring the best of 2018 films; Critics Choice Awards 2019. After a shocking major win by Bohemian Rhapsody in Golden Globes in the last weekend, the film wins nothing in Critics Choice, cementing the fact that critics (Broadcast Film Critics Association, BFCA) really do not like the movie as much as Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA).

Here below is the full list of winners (only for film categories) for the 24th Critics Choice Awards along with my opinions:

BEST PICTURE

Black Panther

BlacKkKlansman

The Favourite

First Man

Green Book

If Beale Street Could Talk

Mary Poppins Returns

Roma (WINNER)

A Star Is Born

Vice

Opinion: Ahhaa…a foreign film wins the top honor and that is very unusual. It means that ‘Roma’ is really an excellent film and is now the strong frontrunner for the Academy Awards next month. Usually, whichever film wins Critics Choice for best picture will win the Oscars for the same. Seeing Bohemian Rhapsody not even nominated for the 10 slot here is a strong sign that the film isn’t appealing to critics. The critics are all wrong. On the other hand, ‘A Star Is Born’ is losing some strength. It will still pose a big risk to Roma for best picture win in the Oscar though.

 

BEST ACTRESS

Yalitza Aparicio, Roma

Emily Blunt, Mary Poppins Returns

Glenn Close, The Wife (WINNER)

Toni Collette, Hereditary

Olivia Colman, The Favourite

Lady Gaga, A Star Is Born (WINNER)

Melissa McCarthy, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Opinion: A tie, seriously?! Just ignore Lady Gaga and hand this to Glenn Close only. Now, it shows that Lady Gaga is still in position to grab the Oscars and it now makes the best actress race much more exciting with a three-way fight (Glenn Close, Lady Gaga and Olivia Colman). Lady Gaga is good in ‘A Star Is Born’ but isn’t impresssive enough for best actress honour. For me, she is just acting as her own self (a person who can sing as required for the film) with some added emotion in to make it work. It’s nothing difficult especially for her whom is a talented singer.

 

BEST ACTOR

Christian Bale, Vice (WINNER)

Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born

Willem Dafoe, At Eternity’s Gate

Ryan Gosling, First Man

Ethan Hawke, First Reformed

Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody

Viggo Mortensen, Green Book

Opinion: Rami Malek is robbed. Best actor should easily goes to Rami Malek for his marvelous performance as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody. No one could top that. Christian Bale is just doing something so similar with Gary Oldman last year (portraying as a fat politician). The exact same formula and you get to win best actor again. The critics just love to see actors transformed literally with huge makeup and gave them best actor honour. Christian Bale is good in Vice but Rami Malek is a step ahead clearly. Now, it depends on SAG (Screen Actors Guild Awards) end of this month to determine who will be the frontrunner for the Oscars next month. It’s now between Christian Bale and Rami Malek. Others have all lost their momentum especially Bradley Cooper. He just seems doesn’t have luck for awards every year.

 

BEST DIRECTOR

Damien Chazelle, First Man

Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born

Alfonso Cuarón, Roma (WINNER)

Peter Farrelly, Green Book

Yorgos Lanthimos, The Favourite

Spike Lee, BlacKkKlansman

Adam McKay, Vice

Opinion: This is a lock in. Alfonso Cuaron had been snatching all the precursor awards for best director for his work in Roma. He will went on to win Oscars, taking that award twice which is an impressive achievement.

 

#SEEHER AWARD

Claire Foy

Opinion: Don’t know what’s this about. It’s something about an award to honour woman in film industry.

 

BEST COMEDY

Crazy Rich Asians (WINNER)

Deadpool 2

The Death of Stalin

The Favourite

Game Night

Sorry to Bother You

Opinion: A good recognition for ‘Crazy Rich Asians’. I would have thought that ‘The Favourite’ would win this easily. Looks like ‘The Favourite’ isn’t getting a lot of love here surprisingly.

 

BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY

Christian Bale, Vice (WINNER)

Jason Bateman, Game Night

Viggo Mortensen, Green Book

John C. Reilly, Stan & Ollie

Ryan Reynolds, Deadpool 2

Lakeith Stanfield, Sorry to Bother You

Opinion: Christian Bale again. It reminds me of Michael Keaton winning both best actor awards in Critics Choice last time but ended up losing the Oscar to Eddie Redmayne. I hope the same case applies here (Rami Malek is my pick for the Oscar). It all comes to the SAG most likely to determine the eventual Oscar winner.

 

BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY

Emily Blunt, Mary Poppins Returns

Olivia Colman, The Favourite (WINNER)

Elsie Fisher, Eighth Grade

Rachel McAdams, Game Night

Charlize Theron, Tully

Constance Wu, Crazy Rich Asians

Opinion: Yes, certainly! Olivia Colman is great in ‘The Favourite’. She still has the momentum to go for the Oscar glory (but now looks more likely that Glenn Close will prevail due to overdue factor for the Oscar).

 

BEST ACTING ENSEMBLE

Black Panther

Crazy Rich Asians

The Favourite (WINNER)

Vice

Widows

Opinion: Agreed. The best thing from ‘The Favourite’ comes from the great chemistry and performances from all the three main female leads in the film; Olivia Colman, Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz.

 

BEST SCI-FI/HORROR MOVIE

Annihilation

Halloween

Hereditary

A Quiet Place (WINNER)

Suspiria

Opinion: Agreed on this too. ‘A Quiet Place’ is an impressive film and it ranks among my top 3 most favourite films last year.

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Amy Adams, Vice

Claire Foy, First Man

Nicole Kidman, Boy Erased

Regina King, If Beale Street Could Talk (WINNER)

Emma Stone, The Favourite

Rachel Weisz, The Favourite

Opinion: Regina King won at the Golden Globe and now at Critics Choice. So is she an Oscar frontrunner? Not so fast. She had been snubbed surprisingly for even nomination at the SAG and BAFTA. It makes the supporting actress race intense this year. All the nominees in this category are incredible by the way.

 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Mahershala Ali, Green Book (WINNER)

Timothée Chalamet, Beautiful Boy

Adam Driver, BlacKkKlansman

Sam Elliott, A Star Is Born

Richard E. Grant, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Michael B. Jordan, Black Panther

Opinion: Ohh, looks like Mahershala Ali is on his way to his win his second supporting actor win at the Oscar so soon. Many would have thought that this would go to Richard E. Grant. Anyway, Grant still remains the darkhorse for the remaining awards.

 

BEST YOUNG ACTOR/ACTRESS

Elsie Fisher, Eighth Grade (WINNER)

Thomasin McKenzie, Leave No Trace

Ed Oxenbould, Wildlife

Millicent Simmonds, A Quiet Place

Amandla Stenberg, The Hate U Give

Sunny Suljic, Mid90s

Opinion: Nothing to comment here as I didn’t watch ‘Eighth Grade’.

 

BEST SONG

All the Stars, Black Panther

Girl in the Movies, Dumplin’

I’ll Fight, RBG

The Place Where Lost Things Go, Mary Poppins Returns

Shallow, A Star Is Born (WINNER)

Trip a Little Light Fantastic, Mary Poppins Returns

Opinion: Very much expected. ‘Shallow’ is a powerful and a beautiful song and is going to sweep all ‘best original song’ awards. I personally like this song a lot too.

 

BEST ACTION MOVIE

Avengers: Infinity War

Black Panther

Deadpool 2

Mission: Impossible — Fallout (WINNER)

Ready Player One

Widows

Opinion: I disagree to this choice. Fallout is good but it is just like a typical Mission Impossible movie with nothing exceptional. I would have prefer ‘Infinity War’ or even ‘Ready Player One’ to take this one.

 

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

The Grinch

Incredibles 2

Isle of Dogs

Mirai

Ralph Breaks the Internet

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (WINNER)

Opinion: Now, Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse is the clear frontrunner for the Oscar next month after winning also at the Golden Globe last week. Incredibles 2 has lost the momentum heavily.

 

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Bo Burnham: Eighth Grade

Alfonso Cuarón: Roma

Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara: The Favourite

Adam McKay: Vice

Paul Schrader: First Reformed (WINNER)

Nick Vallelonga, Brian Hayes Currie and Peter Farrelly: Green Book

Bryan Woods, Scott Beck and John Krasinski: A Quiet Place

Opinion: No comment as I didn’t watch ‘First Reformed’. This movie jumped out of nowhere and win this. Many didn’t expect ‘First Reformed’ to win anything. Now that is quite surprising.

 

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

Ryan Coogler and Joe Robert Cole: Black Panther

Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty: Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Barry Jenkins: If Beale Street Could Talk (WINNER)

Eric Roth, Bradley Cooper and Will Fetters: A Star Is Born

Josh Singer: First Man

Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott and Spike Lee: BlacKkKlansman

Opinion: ‘If Beale Street Could Talk’ gain back some momentum after its win here in adapted screenplay. Didn’t watch the movie.

 

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

Alfonso Cuarón, Roma (WINNER)

James Laxton, If Beale Street Could Talk

Matthew Libatique, A Star Is Born

Rachel Morrison, Black Panther

Robbie Ryan, The Favourite

Linus Sandgren, First Man

Opinion: Didn’t watch Roma but I knew it is a black-and-white film. The film must be really good in capturing lighting even when the final product is just black and white without colours.

 

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

Hannah Beachler and Jay Hart, Black Panther (WINNER)

Eugenio Caballero and Barbara Enriquez, Roma

Nelson Coates and Andrew Baseman, Crazy Rich Asians

Fiona Crombie and Alice Felton, The Favourite

Nathan Crowley and Kathy Lucas, First Man

John Myhre and Gordon Sim, Mary Poppins Returns

Opinion: Some love for Black Panther. I didn’t enjoy Black Panther like what most critics do but I do felt fine with the film winning best production design.

 

BEST EDITING

Jay Cassidy, A Star Is Born

Hank Corwin, Vice

Tom Cross, First Man (WINNER)

Alfonso Cuarón and Adam Gough, Roma

Yorgos Mavropsaridis, The Favourite

Joe Walker, Widows

Opinion: Good for ‘First Man’. Now, the movie gained back also some strength for contention of some technical awards in next month’s Academy Awards. This is one of them. ‘First Man’ does really have great editing.

 

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

Alexandra Byrne, Mary Queen of Scots

Ruth Carter, Black Panther (WINNER)

Julian Day, Bohemian Rhapsody

Sandy Powell, The Favourite

Sandy Powell, Mary Poppins Returns

Opinion: Quite surprising for a superhero film to win best costume design. It means that the critics really love Black Panther a lot. I would have picked ‘The Favourite’ or even any other nominees in this list.

 

BEST HAIR AND MAKEUP

Black Panther

Bohemian Rhapsody

The Favourite

Mary Queen of Scots

Suspiria

Vice (WINNER)

Opinion: Expected. The body and face transformation for Christian Bale in Vice alone earns the film the trophy. Same as what ‘Darkest Hour’ had done last year to Gary Oldman face and body. Boring…

 

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

Avengers: Infinity War

Black Panther (WINNER)

First Man

Mary Poppins Returns

Mission: Impossible — Fallout

Ready Player One

Opinion: Black Panther again. Boring again…I personally think that this award should goes to either Infinity War or Ready Player One.

 

BEST SCORE

Kris Bowers, Green Book

Nicholas Britell, If Beale Street Could Talk

Alexandre Desplat, Isle of Dogs

Ludwig Göransson, Black Panther

Justin Hurwitz, First Man (WINNER)

Marc Shaiman, Mary Poppins Returns

Opinion: Yes. The score in ‘First Man’ is the most outstanding aspect of the movie. Period.

 

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

Burning

Capernaum

Cold War

Roma (WINNER)

Shoplifters

Opinion: Wow…Roma taking this as well as the best picture! Roma is the biggest winner. Looks like I have to check out the movie soon to see how great it is.

Right. That’s it for Critics Choice. The next major awards (the third one) will be the Screen Actors Guild Awards to be presented on 27th January 2019 (Sunday).

(Images in this post are from various online sources)