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2018 Oscar Nominations

Let's get the major gaps out of the way: I have not seen the following list of films that were nominated for Oscars, excluding short films, of which I have seen none:

  • Call Me By Your Name
  • Darkest Hour
  • The Post
  • Roman J. Israel, Esq.
  • All the Money in the World
  • The Boss Baby
  • The Breadwinner
  • Ferdinand
  • Loving Vincent
  • Abacus: Small Enough to Jail
  • Faces Places
  • Icarus
  • Last Men in Aleppo
  • Strong Island
  • A Fantastic Woman
  • The Insult
  • Loveless
  • On Body and Soul
  • The Square
  • Marshall
  • The Greatest Showman
  • Victoria and Abdul
  • Wonder
  • Kong: Skull Island

With that out of the way, here is what I would like to have happen at the 90th Oscars:

  • Best Picture - Lady Bird
  • Lead Actor - Daniel Kaluuya, Get Out
  • Lead Actress - Sally Hawkins, The Shape of Water
  • Supporting Actor - Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project
  • Supporting Actress - Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird
  • Director - Paul Thomas Anderson, Phantom Thread
  • Animated Feature - Coco
  • Adapted Screenplay - Logan
  • Original Screenplay - The Big Sick
  • Cinematography - Roger Deakins, Blade Runner 2049
  • Documentary - I've seen none of the nominees.
  • Foreign Language Film - I've seen none of the nominees.
  • Editing - Lee Smith, Dunkirk
  • Sound Editing - The Shape of Water
  • Sound Mixing - Dunkirk
  • Production Design - The Shape of Water
  • Original Score - Jonny Greenwood, Phantom Thread
  • Original Song - "Remember Me," Coco
  • Makeup and Hair - I've seen none of the nominees.
  • Costume Design - Mark Bridges, Phantom Thread
  • Visual Effects - War for the Planet of the Apes

This is what I think will happen:

  • Best Picture - Get Out
  • Lead Actor - Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour
  • Lead Actress - Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
  • Supporting Actor - Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project
  • Supporting Actress - Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird
  • Director - Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water
  • Animated Feature - Coco
  • Adapted Screenplay - James Ivory, Call Me By Your Name
  • Original Screenplay - Jordan Peele, Get Out
  • Cinematography - Roger Deakins, Blade Runner 2049
  • Documentary - Faces Places
  • Foreign Language Film - The Square
  • Editing - Lee Smith, Dunkirk
  • Sound Editing - Dunkirk
  • Sound Mixing - Dunkirk
  • Production Design - The Shape of Water
  • Original Score - Alexandre Desplat, The Shape of Water
  • Original Song - "Remember Me," Coco
  • Makeup and Hair - Darkest Hour
  • Costume Design - Mark Bridges, Phantom Thread
  • Visual Effects - Star Wars: The Last Jedi

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Gates, "Bloom & Breathe"

I subscribe to Apple Music. One of the pleasures of having unlimited music available to stream is that I discover new songs, bands and albums via their Best of the Week playlist, which updates every Friday, I believe. One of the bands I discovered is a New Jersey-based rock group called Gates, who released a new album called Parallel Lives in June. I haven't focused as much as that, their sophomore album, as I have on their first LP, called Bloom & Breathe, which came out in 2015.

I described this album to a friend as a "throwback" to the early-to-mid-2000s of emo rock, although you would never confuse this band for New Found Glory or even the Used. Gates, in fact, reminds me more of one of my favorite bands, the now-defunct Anberlin, who completed their farewell tour in late 2015 (the timing is almost as if Anberlin was reborn as Gates). The main difference between them is their singers; they both have an affinity for soaring vocals that sacrifice intelligibility for emotion and expressiveness. Anberlin's Stephen Christian has an inimitable cadence that puts it a notch above Gates' singer, whose name is not easily discoverable via the Internet. Nevertheless, Gates is able to convey that ineffable center of pure, roiling emotion that lies in every one of us, regardless of age.

Bloom and Breathe is an album that I tend to listen to when I work. This is due to its post-rock origins; its instrumentation would not be out of place on a record by Explosions in the Sky. I'm not positive about the lyrics, as I have not read into them terribly closely, but they're besides the point: if you want aural catharsis on the double, Gates is a good place to start.

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