As the 49th annual Telluride Film Festival draws to a close this Labor Day holiday, it could once again be a festival that ignites the Oscar chances of a slew of films that have had their world premieres or theatrical releases. North America this weekend. As part of the so-called Venice/Telluride/Toronto Fall Festival Trifecta (the latter starting Thursday), this is where the six-plus-month awards season officially begins, even if the Emmy season, even longer. long, it does not conclude until a week from today.
Already in Venice, which has been running concurrently with Telluride, we’ve seen a lot of serious and justified Oscar buzz for various movies that have premiered there, including Sunday night’s. The whale, which has led to serious Oscar talk for its star Brendan Fraser in a comeback role as a 600-pound man reflecting on his life. Today’s world premiere of Martin McDonagh’s (In Bruges, three billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri) The Banshees of Inisherin It reportedly prompted a 15-minute standing ovation, the longest yet in Venice, and praise and excitement for star Colin Farrell, who could receive his first Oscar nomination. Having seen that movie in Los Angeles a couple of weeks ago, I can almost guarantee that it will happen, as well as supporting possibilities for Brendan Gleeson and actress Kerry Condon. And there are still world premieres of The son Y Blond, among others.
Some movies like Bard, Tar Y bones and all played Venice, then headed to Telluride almost immediately, where the rumor machine was also working overtime, both positively and negatively. I just saw Luca Guadagnino’s horror love story about two cute young cannibals on the road. Not typical Telluride fare, so I’m still chewing on his Oscar prospects, but Guadagnino is a true master filmmaker who also had an excellent documentary. Salvatore: Cobbler of Dreams playing here, and it was one of the best docus I’ve seen all year.
Some pundits pounced on the future possibilities of Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s three-hour game. Y very personal Bard after he garnered a mixed reaction in Venice, but Netflix notes that they’ve heard great things from fellow filmmakers, including Chloé Zhao, who moderated a Q&A with the five-time Oscar winner in Telluride and had an in-depth conversation with him at Netflix afternoon. night party in honor of the film, and there is no doubt, based on street conversation, that the film has its fans – and its detractors – here. The jury is out how far you can go, but when you already have so many Oscars, the knives in the sad world of cinema on Twitter will always be out of your reach. On the downside, the Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic scores are unusually low for a Best Picture contender. It should definitely be the main candidate from Mexico to participate in the International Film race at the very least. Oscar season is a marathon, not a sprint, so let’s see where it goes.
As in Venice, Best Actress talks to a possible third Oscar for Cate Blanchett in her impressive performance in Tar it was pretty deafening in Colorado, just as it was instantly in Venice. He received his first award of the season, as he received the festival’s Silver Medallion in a special tribute to her (twice, actually, since he had to attend two of them). She’s up for a nomination, but she’ll have competition like the world premiere in Telluride of Sam Mendes’ excellent and also very personal film. empire of light tried out in Telluride, where she was unveiled Saturday to generally very good reaction, particularly for star Olivia Colman, who appears headed for her fourth nomination in just five years (she was a winner of The favorite). Things are looking up in this race as another almost certain block from Michelle Yeoh to everything everywhere at once he also did the scene in Telluride, not for that movie but for a special screening of his 2000 classic Hidden dragon crouching tiger. His tuneful presence here did not go unnoticed, certainly among the many Oscar voters who attend this festival, and that fact was reinforced when the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences returned after a two-year absence due to the pandemic. They sponsored his packed reception on Saturday and it was a good place to be seen if you’re just starting a campaign.
New AMPAS President Janet Yang made the scene, and many stops, in Telluride commenting at a luncheon for the new Netflix movie, Lady Chatterley’s Lover sporting an award-winning twist by Emma Corrin, as well as later at a dinner for The wonder with Florence Pugh, that this is turning out to be a great year for women. In fact, it is, and if you’re in any doubt, just check out another big world premiere here, the magnificent new Orion/MGM movie from writer/director Sarah Polley, Women Talking. This powerhouse movie has been the talk of the Oscars from the moment it opened in town on Friday, not only because of Polley, who becomes a major contender in both directing and adapted screenplay, but also because of a cast that he almost certainly becomes a leading contender for the SAG Outstanding Cast Award. but she could fill all five spots for Best Supporting Actress. Veterans Judith Ivey and Sheila McCarthy, Claire Foy, Jessie Buckley and Rooney Mara are all viable. How do you choose? They are all great.
MGM perhaps trying to separate Mara in the increasingly crowded Best Actress race? If ever there was an argument for creating a Casting category at the Oscars, it’s this movie. I suggested it to the new CEO of AMPAS, Bill Kramer, when I ran into him at the Searchlight party to Empire of Light. “You’re the third person to say that to me today,” he laughed. Could it be a category where the Oscar goes to the casting director, and maybe some kind of special certificate or award for the cast? Get going Academy. Still, with any luck, we could see at least three Supporting Actress nominees, and it would be the first time since tom jones he did it in 1963. They canceled themselves and Margaret Rutherford won instead by The VIPs
The reaction has been almost universally positive for women talking, and emotional MGM plans to release it in early December, but if ever there was a movie that should be released BEFORE the midterms, it’s this one that shows the true power of women and their vote. In fact, there is a scene that the Democrats should capture that speaks to the power of women’s voting, and the studio should give it to them and promote their movie at the same time. Just say’. This is a powerful movie about a group of Mennonite women in a compound where the men rule and a sexual assault has occurred. They have to vote if they stay or try to leave when they have an opening. It’s really convincing.
Of the openings in Telluride, I’d say the film, and Mendes’ retrospective look at the people who work in a seaside movie theater circa 1980, empire of light they have the best chance of landing in the Best Picture race. But again, it’s early days and there’s plenty to come at other festivals and beyond.
In addition to Todd Field Tar, which, aside from Blanchett and her great German co-star Nina Hoss (although the supporting actress is great, see above), could land in a few key categories. Focus also had its competition film at Cannes (sadly it didn’t win any awards there), James Gray’s excellent film Armageddon time here with stars Jeremy Strong and Anne Hathaway everywhere and at packed screenings of the movie struggling for attention against the newer toys on display. At the opening Friday Patrons Brunch high in the mountains, Strong ran into Iñárritu and went wild with him. “I would walk through fire for you,” he told the director, who laughed: “Be careful what you wish for.” Focus will campaign for both films in the coming months.
A24 began their national campaign for their poignant Cannes Grand Prix winner, Close here with director Lukas Dhont receiving praise for the acclaimed Belgian contender waiting to find out (on September 16) if he will become Belgium’s official entry to the international film Oscar race. He deserves it, and in other categories too, but this has been a great year for the country and another of his excellent films, the one by the Dardenne brothers. tori and lokita, another winner of the prize in Cannes, was also here. Mia Hansen Love Directors’ Fortnight Award Winner, a good morning she was loved here just as she was at Cannes and she and star Lea Seydoux were soaking up the accolades. It could, and should, be the entrance to France, but who knows?
A Sundance entry even made its way here, and finally to a big screen, and that’s the genius of Sony Classics. To live and its iconic British star Bill Nighy wowed everyone when he arrived in Telluride with the film for which SPC plans to launch a Best Actor campaign, and they could definitely break through a crowded career with their luminous performance and chance at a first nomination.
As I pointed out in my Telluride announcement story on Thursday, there was an unusually high number of docus in Telluride this year and they nearly cannibalized each other (sorry bones and all), but first on the list of the ones i caught have to be the honest ones from amazon and amblin Good evening Oppy, plus Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Smith’s fantastic tribute to Downey’s father, Mr. Matthew Heineman’s solid documentary on Afghanistan, Retrograde is also one to watch, and so is the right to die docu from MTV Documentary Films called last flight home which is a must-see, plus many more that our docu beat Matt Carey report has been and will continue to track.
This is a constantly changing story, but the race is on. I am now heading to Toronto this week.