Bong Hive rise, we have reached the end of awards season 2019/20 and Parasite is officially the Academy’s Best Picture. It was definitely Parasite’s night at the Oscars in what proved to be a historic and incredibly satisfying night, and while the Oscars are still the stand out awards show, there is much more than just them to awards season and I want to give a quick overview of the big winners and losers from the overall season (out of the films nominated for best picture), culminating with the Oscars.
While it had a bad night on Sunday, this film has swept most of the other awards shows despite it’s late release and unveiling, and has also become a huge box office hit, which is the perfect combination for any studio.
The ‘one take’ World War One epic has been awarded around the board as a technical marvel, giving Roger Deakins his second cinematography Oscar in three years, following such a long wait for his first.
It won Sam Mendes the Best Director awards at the BAFTAs, Golden Globes, and it also won the main prize at the PGA awards, which essentially means it was close to doing a clean sweep of the season.
However, the most impressive thing is that it managed to is transfer awards attention into box office gold, and without any movie stars in the lead roles, become a huge hit, ensuring a large audience has been able to experience Sam Mendes’ epic.
The film everyone is talking about and rightly so. It won the major prize at the SAG awards and won in it’s category at the WGA awards, but other than that had mainly had to play the role of underdog through the season behind 1917. However, just like the film itself, a huge twist occurred at the Oscars as the film won Best Original Screenplay, Best International Feature, Best Director, and Best Picture.
It was a historic win, making Parasite the first foreign language film in the Academy’s 92 year history to win Best Picture, and launching the films of South Korea into the public eye for arguably the first time, despite the fact that the country has been making unique and impressive films for years.
Parasite is already a worldwide box office success but this win seems set to send it into the stratosphere, with huge interest in the film set to make the film into an unbelievable box office hit.
It is undeniable that the two main winners of this awards season have been 1917 and Parasite.
One of the most controversial movies in recent history in the ‘film twitter’ space, but in general society it was a much liked cultural sensation, becoming the most profitable comic book film of all time and grossing over 1 billion dollars. It won the prestigious Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival and became the most nominated film at this years Oscars, with 11. It was another step forward for comic book films in the awards race, after the progress films like Black Panther and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse had already made in recent years. It also finally gave Joaquin Phoenix his much deserved first Oscar for Best Actor, and gave Icelandic composer Hildur Guðnadóttir an Oscar to add to the Emmy and Grammy awards she has won, all within the last 6 months. We could have another EGOT on our hands folks.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Despite initially seeming like an awards front runner, you would still say that overall this film was a success. It was a huge box office event, grossing nearly $400 Million worldwide and proving a big win for old school, star driven movies.
It also was one of the most nominated films of awards season, picking up multiple wins along the way, including at the Oscars for Production Design and winning Brad Pitt his much deserved first acting Oscar.
Much was made of Greta Gerwig’s snub in the best director category (I personally think she should’ve been nominated, despite the category being very strong, but the film did get 6 Oscar nominations, and won one for costume design (and narrowly lost out in Adapted Screenplay, a category I personally think Gerwig should’ve won).
It was also another big box office success, and fully cemented Gerwig as one of the premiere directors of our generation, which can only be a positive sign.
Ford v Ferrari
The ‘dad movie’ of the season got very few people excitedly talking but what it did do was deliver a thoroughly enjoyable movie, with strong technical aspects and impressive movie star turns from Matt Damon and Christian Bale, and was another box office success for the old school movie. James Mangold is one of the most reliable directors in the industry, and his film won two Oscars (Editing and Sound Editing) which should not be glossed over.
One of Netflix’s crown jewels of 2019 and arguably the most meme’d movie of the year, should not be overlooked, as it was one of the best of the year. It had the most single acting nominations for one film at this years Oscars, and it got a win for Laura Dern in the Supporting Actress category.
Losers (Within reason)
While undeniably an impressive film from one of the greatest of all time, starring one of history’s most distinguished ensembles, this film was a large nominee without any wins at most major awards shows.
It had an insane budget and awards campaign that absolutely no studio but Netflix could’ve afforded, but they may still see it as a success as they brought lots of attention to the streaming service and again showed they are willing to invest in filmmakers.
Overall, while some of the categories were disappointingly predictable, on the majority this was a very satisfying awards season with most of the successful films being varying levels of good to great and a lot of deserving people getting their first taste of Oscar glory. Hopefully Parasite’s win is a sign of a new academy going forward, and I will do a post in the next few days taking a brief look at what films to keep an eye out for in next years awards race.