Precursor: 26th Critics Choice Awards (2020)

As always, this year’s winners seem like very likely to carry over to the Oscars, though Maria Bakalova is the least likely to do so. Heck, she’s the only one not assured a nomination.

Awards Tallies

(4) Nomadland
(3) Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
(2) Minari, Promising Young Woman, The Trial of the Chicago 7
(1) Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, Judas and the Black Messiah, Mank, Nomadland, One Night in Miami, Palm Springs, Soul, Sound of Metal, Tenet

The Awards

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Film Preview: Insight (2021)

Film Poster

Page Revisions:

(February 28, 2021) Original

Release Date:

March 12, 2021

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “Jian (Ken Zheng) is a counter terrorism agent who blends his skills as a martial artist and clairvoyant to bring the world’s most nefarious individuals to justice. This lone wolf is is forced to make an unexpected detour to Los Angeles upon receipt of the devastating news of a cover up surrounding his brother’s alleged suicide. With the reluctant help of LAPD detectives, Abby (Madeline Zima), Carl (Tony Todd), and Captain Duke (Keith David), the unlikely group become involved in the investigation. Jian and Abby fight against a high-tech criminal (Sean Patrick Flanery) looking to exploit the brothers’ gifts in his own quest to power.”

Poster Rating: –

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Review: There was no poster immediately available for my review. Should one become available in the future, this section will be updated.

Trailer Rating: C-

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Review: A dully crafted trailer presents a film that struggles to get its premise across. There isn’t much in terms of creative energy flowing through it either, which will make it hard for the whole to appeal to mass audiences.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer #1

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Film Preview: Trust (2021)

Film Poster

Page Revisions:

(March 7, 2021) Original

Release Date:

March 12, 2021

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “In this sexy and twisty ride, New York gallery owner Brooke and her husband Owen each face exceptional temptations, with most unexpected results.”

Poster Rating: C-

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Review: When your designers don’t quite know how to blend the various elements together, the end result is something like looks dreadfully boring and utterly milquetoast.

Trailer Rating: C+

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Review: This love quadrangle film doesn’t put its characters in a positive light, which makes them unappealing in terms of wanting to watch what happens to them. For a film like this, that’s crucial.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer #1

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Film Preview: Honeydew (2021)

Film Poster

Page Revisions:

(March 7, 2021) Original

Release Date:

March 12, 2021

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “Strange cravings and hallucinations befall a young couple after seeking shelter in the home of an aging farmer and her peculiar son.”

Poster Rating: C / C

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Review: (#1) Found in a basement drawer, this design looks old and ugly and then there’s the antiquing on it. (#2) This is a little better at tying into the film itself, but there’s still nothing of measurable importance here.

Trailer Rating: C+

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Review: The trailer has some kernels of hope interspersed with content that seems overly familiar. It looks like a cross between Texas Chainsaw Massacre and The Hitcher without either film’s finesse or energy. Somewhere herein is a film that could be better marketed.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer #1

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Film Preview: Boss Level (2021)

Film Poster

Page Revisions:

(February 28, 2021) Original

Release Date:

March 5, 2021

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “A retired special forces officer is trapped in a never ending time loop on the day of his death.”

Poster Rating: B- / B / C

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Review: (#1) This definitely has the digital feel that audiences need to make that connection, which will certainly help, but the background isn’t that interesting even if detailed. (#2) There are a lot of details here, though the backgrounds are a bit dull. It’s got enough to capture the audience’s attention. (#3) With partially the same background as the first design, this design is a noticeable step down from the prior designs. Although the numerous Frank Grillo’s at the bottom of the design is fitting, the overall blandness of the poster doesn’t quite sell the film.

Trailer Rating: C

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Review: If Mel Gibson weren’t such a large part of this, the whole thing might feel interesting, but Gibson’s past behavior is a no-go for a lot of filmgoers, especially those targeted by this film’s marketing effort. Yet, getting video gamers to enjoy your film requires it not to tiptoe around the gaming elements of the film. The title and poster certainly suggest its inspiration, but the trailer goes out of its way to play it down and for video gamers, that kind of avoidance will mostly irritate them.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer #1

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Precursor: 10th Georgia Critics Nominations (2020)

Georgia’s film critics seem to be like what every other critic group loves, so there isn’t much new here.

Nominations Tallies

(8) Minari
(7) Mank, One Night in Miami, Promising Young Woman
(6) Sound of Metal
(5) Nomadland
(4) The Father, I’m Thinking of Ending Things, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, The Trial of the Chicago 7
(3) Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, Soul, Tenet

The Nominations

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Film Preview: Cosmic Sin (2021)

Film Poster

Page Revisions:

(February 28, 2021) Original

Release Date:

March 12, 2021

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “Seven rogue soldiers launch a preemptive strike against a newly discovered alien civilization in the hopes of ending an interstellar war before it starts.”

Poster Rating: B / C-

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Review: (#1) There are a few nice details in the spacey background, but the tiered placement of actors looks haphazard and poorly ordered. (#2) The PhotoShop work done here is exceptionally bad with space marines not fitting well into either suit. The background is ok, but there’s not enough action on it.

Trailer Rating: C

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Review: The whole thing looks overly familiar without any attempt being made to create a situation that the actors look like they are having fun in. Frank Grillo might certainly be excited, but Bruce Willis looks exceedingly unimpressed by his surroundings, which doesn’t give the film much of a connection for the audience to grab onto.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer #1

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Oscar in Box Office History (Week 10, 2021)

Every week, we’ll take a look back in 5-year intervals at the box office past to explore how Oscar’s nominees were doing at the box office each weekend historically. The first section under each year is the positioning of all Oscar nominees during that weekend at the box office (as well as a section looking at the inflation-adjusted numbers). The third section is an alphabetical list of those films and the categories in which they were nominated. And to start each week off, we’ll be looking at the films releasing over the weekend that have the best chance of getting Oscar nominations and specifying the categories where we think they have the best shots at this stage of the game. If you have any suggestions for more data you’d like to see, please let us know.

This Year: Potential Oscar Nominees Releasing This Weekend

Chaos Walking (Wide)

Oscar Potential: Production Design, Costume Design, Sound, Visual Effects.

Raya and the Last Dragon (Wide)

Oscar Potential: Animated Feature, Original Screenplay, Original Score, Original Song.

The Human Voice (Limited)

Oscar Potential: Live Action Short Film.

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2020 Precursor Predictions: Critics Choice Awards

There are reasons this organization has an outsized influence on the Oscars, but those reasons are complex and could easily be considered sniping, so I’ll just leave it at this: The former Broadcast Film Critics Association has a good track record. And as one of only three televised awards shows leading up to the Oscars, they need to be seen as accurate. Here are our predictions for this year’s awards and our choices seemed to sync up quite a bit.

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