The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Locals pick Oscar favorites


March 4, 2018

The 90th Academy Awards are tonight. We asked area movie fans to tell us who they're rooting for:

Anna George, Portales

Eastern New Mexico University student

Best picture: My best picture pick is Guillermo Del Toro's "Shape of Water." I want to see it so bad. It is beautiful.

Actor in a leading role: My actor in a leading role is going to Timothee Chalamet from "Call Me by Your Name." His performance was so real and relatable that it really struck me that he did a good job. The last shot of the movie, he sits down in front of the camera and stares into the fire and starts crying, and the shot is long enough that all the credits roll over it, and he just goes and goes and goes and goes. It's amazing.

Actor in a supporting role: I'm going with Sam Rockwell from "Three Billboards (Outside Ebbing, Missouri)." Someone else told me this, and then I watched the movie and I agree, that it's like the biggest character arc ever. The kind of character he's playing is so hard, but you can see so many of your friends in that character. It's really relatable and sad, and he did a really good job.

Actress in a leading role: I'm going with Margot Robbie from "I, Tonya." This one was a hard pick, because Saoirse Ronan is on the way to being the next Leonardo DiCaprio, because she's like 22, I think, and been nominated three times already.

But, Margot Robbie's performance as Tonya Harding in "I, Tonya" was, in my opinion, absolutely unbeatable. Her performance convinced me that Tonya Harding's an American hero. She really played it well, I think, and that is not an easy character to sympathize. That's one of America's favorite people in the world to hate. She really just knocked it out of the park. I was in awe of her performance.

Actress in a supporting role: I saw "Lady Bird" and "I, Tonya" on the same day. Within an hour of each other, I saw one, went to a different theater, saw the other, so I really spent the whole movie of both of them comparing and contrasting their performances, which is how I got to my actress in a supporting role, Laurie Metcalf from "Lady Bird."

This portrayal of a mother and daughter relationship, I think, is the most honest that I've seen, because in a lot of teenage movies, the mother and daughter fight, and then at the end, they realize that they're more alike than they thought, and pair back up, and that is not what happens in this movie. I think in this movie, Laurie Metcalf really humanized being a mother instead of this picture-perfect, "love all your children." Hers was more human, and shows the way that we all react to things.

Jonathan Barr, Portales

ENMU film professor

Best picture: I saw "Lady Bird," and I thought that movie was really amazing. I would love to see "Lady Bird" win the show, basically.

Actor in a leading role: Of those, I've only seen "Get Out." I doubt that (Daniel Kaluuya) would win best actor for that role. "Phantom Thread," Paul Thomas Anderson is an amazing director, Daniel Day-Lewis is an amazing actor, and this is apparently his last role. Gary Oldman, apparently everyone was amazed by his transformation for that role as Winston Churchill ("Darkest Hour").

Pure speculation, I would give it to Daniel Day-Lewis.

Actor in a supporting role: Tipping the scales, Christopher Plummer jumping in to replace Kevin Spacey ("All the Money in the World"), I think he gets a little extra credit for that. They reshot some of that stuff just to have him in it. I'm gonna put my money on him.

Actress in a leading role: I'm gonna have to go with Saoirse Ronan in "Lady Bird." That's the one that I saw, but I also thought she was great in that.

Actress in a supporting role: I'm gonna go with Laurie Metcalf ("Lady Bird") on that.

Brendan Moore, Portales

ENMU student

Best picture: I feel like it's gonna be "The Shape of Water," but I don't know if I want it to be. "Shape of Water" is a really good movie. We actually just watched it (last week), again. Going back through it, it was like, "Yeah, this is a really good movie," but it's not the best written movie, which is probably not something most people care about.

It went places that I think most movies wouldn't think to go, and it's a really interesting story. The style of it is very appealing to Hollywood people, to academy people. It's in that older style, but also with mixes of more modern stuff. It just appeals to old movie lovers, and that's what the academy's primarily made up of.

Actor in a leading role: I haven't seen a lot of this one. I really liked Daniel Kaluuya ("Get Out"). I liked his performance, but I haven't seen "Phantom Thread." I feel like Daniel Day-Lewis is probably gonna get it. There's a lot of good actors on that list. There's also Denzel Washington, Timothee Chalamet. Daniel Day-Lewis would be my guess.

Actor in a supporting role: I haven't seen "Three Billboards..." I really wanted to, but I hope Sam Rockwell would win, because one, he's one of my favorite actors of all time. I think he deserves better.

Actress in a leading role: This is a really hard category, because all the people nominated, I love them. I don't think Meryl Streep's gonna win, just because I assume she did really good in "The Post," but I feel like nobody really took much notice of "The Post" in general.

I would want Margot Robbie ("I, Tonya") to win. I feel like for me, that was the best performance that I've seen. There's something about it, the genuineness of this villain in the '80s. I love that movie so much, and I thought her performance was just astounding.

Actress in a supporting role: This is the one I really went back and forth between Allison Janney ("I, Tonya") and Laurie Metcalf ("Lady Bird"). I think Laurie Metcalf. The performance was very genuine. The whole movie is very real. Even though I didn't have a mother like that, I was like, "Oh, I get what that feels like."

Eamon Scarbrough, Portales

Journalist at The News

Best picture: If you've seen "Lady Bird," I don't see how it isn't your favorite film of the year. Maybe it's because the conversations between the titular main character and her mother feel like carbon copies of exchanges I've had with my own mother; maybe it's because I watched it with my mom; but I think the painfully earnest portrayal of growing up really makes "Lady Bird" a shoe-in for best picture.

Actor in a leading role: Of the films in this category, I've only seen "Get Out." I would love to see a horror film win best picture, but the main reason I'm picking it is because of how deftly Daniel Kaluuya portrays personal struggles. Horror movie or not, his performance was poignant in a very real way.

Actor in a supporting role: Richard Jenkins stole "The Shape of Water," but Willem Dafoe finessed his way into "The Florida Project" just enough to give him the edge. His loving portrayal of a person who might have some answers but knows they won't change anything almost pained me to watch.

Actress in a leading role: "The Shape of Water" has been snubbed by "The Florida Project" and "Lady Bird" on a lot of my picks, but Sally Hawkins is unquestionably the role of the year. With (almost) no dialogue in the entire film, she was bar-none the most compelling part, even with a giant fisherman looming in the background.

Actress in a supporting role: If there is any justice in the world, Laurie Metcalf will take this category for her role in "Lady Bird." Since I have never been and never will be a mother, I feel like there isn't much I can say about her role while remaining genuine, but I will say that I saw a realistic and all-too human aspect I never thought any actor or actress could convey.


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