A Best Actress 2019 Hot Take

A Best Actress 2019 Hot Take

so I was researching for a totally different video when something kind of unexpected happened Olivia cold maybe a lot of people asked me to break down this year's Best Actress race because the result came as kind of a surprise even to Olivia Colman I know I was pretty confident Glenn Close to win I mean look at these tweets but since then I've done my best to map out how I think all of this played out because while I don't think Olivia Coleman's win was necessarily predictable it wasn't without logic or precedence so we're gonna get into it admittedly in a less academic serious way than usual because I want to get my personal thoughts on paper so to speak and that way we can have a conversation about a season we all just witnessed together for me the goal and the reason I'm interested in this isn't to compete or to say who's better than Who it's to understand how Hollywood looks at women and at their careers votes indicate value so what at any given point does Hollywood value how do women navigate an industry that is only now consciously striving to make a space for them making sense of the Oscars is one way to approach these questions so when we ask how or why did someone win we have to pull back and think not only about their films but also about their narratives this year specifically we saw a lot of familiar patterns would it be a legend gone too long on rewarded and underappreciated a breakthrough newcomer who broke hearts on her first try a pop goddess turned actress whose vocal skills stunned audiences a British powerhouse is exploding in America or maybe a comedian showing a more serious side there's an argument and a precedence for all of them but like most years you have to read the room and see where the winds are blowing when you're thinking about who's going to win and as far as I could tell the race realistically came down to three individuals Lady Gaga Glenn Close and Olivia Colman in theory the Oscars should award the best performance of a given year in practice it almost never does one because art is subjective and therefore a hierarchical ranking is practically impossible to determine and to because voters are acutely aware of factors beyond a performance which inevitably affects how they view it as individuals that could be anything hey she seemed like a nice person on Fallon to my cousin said she was mean on set but as a group the voting body can become something of a hive mind particularly attuned to its past errors and oversights the Academy often takes corrective measures to atone for these past mistakes which is why you might see someone win for quote unquote the wrong film or for less significant works in their filmography on this channel for example we've seen how Betty Davis who failed to win an Oscar for a gritty breakout role in of Human Bondage was awarded the following year for a relatively weaker role and film dangerous another corrective measure is the Career Award for actors who have accumulated enough Oscar caliber performances and nominations but for one reason or another just haven't taken one home yet the Academy tends to nod say it's time and finally throw them a bone again usually but not always for less significant works Julianne Moore for example wanted her fifth nomination Kate Winslet on her sixth Shirley MacLaine did too and didn't want anyone to forget it because the show has been as long as this kind of Oscar happens a lot going into the 91st Academy Awards it's stood to reason that it was Glenn Close his turn – here it's time her nomination for the wife was her seventh certainly she's clocked enough oscar caliber performances fatal attraction Dangerous Liaisons I mean 101 Dalmatians plus many of the typical indicators of an Oscar win followed the Critics Choice tie with Lady gaga the Spirit Award and then the Golden Globe where she gave honestly one of the best acceptance speeches I've heard in a long time she seemed poised and ready but you know who else won that night Olivia Colman if you're British or you watch a lot of British TV you've known for a long time about Olivia Colman broadchurch fleabag Peep Show the night manager she's been a fixture at the BAFTAs since 2012 and not for nothing Olivia Colman works in subtleties you aren't even aware exists until she shows them to you and yet she's equally capable of extreme expression that overwhelms her being if you see in season two of broadchurch you know exactly what I'm talking about so yes Olivia has been around and a thing for a long time but it's not like American audiences have ever had a full scale Olivia Colman moment until the favorite and if you saw the favorite you probably understand why that conversation is happening full disclosure I am obsessed with Olivia Coleman's performance in the favorite like it slapped me across the face and I said thank you and I offered it a ride home I don't think I'm alone in this given that she literally just won an Oscar for it and at least anecdotally I hardly read a negative word about her performance this entire award season this speaks to one of Olivia's very real and probably most significant advantages her role was juicy as hell and checked virtually every Oscar bait category imaginable a period piece about a queer monarch who was essentially in a love triangle in the middle of a war and is on the verge of a mental breakdown caused in part by the trauma of losing multiple children oh and she has gout the role gives her a lot to do and Olivia Colman being Olivia Colman she can make the most out of a subtle realization and a not-so-subtle realization the script well the film as a whole became another of Olivia's advantages the favorite tied with Roma for the most nominations this year at 10 and while it's true that it didn't win anything other than Best Actress it technically had a stronger showing than both the wife and a star is born Glen represented the wife's only nomination the film's only point of conversation during award season it's not impossible to win for a film's only nomination most recently Julianne Moore did it but it's not exactly likely either the wife sold itself as a story for the me2 era a story about a woman emerging from the sidelines to reclaim her power I would argue that the favorite in its own absurd way also captured this moment because it's about women wielding and enacting power and especially at a time when there's a sort of loosening grip on reality and a deterioration of traditional power structures like wow totally relatable a star is born began this season as a likely winner for Best Picture but as time progressed its favorability seemed to falter to the point that some pretty serious snubs occurred come nomination time my sense is that audiences began to feel that a star is born didn't add anything particularly modern to its previous iterations not like the films that gathered steam and instead said anything particularly new or significant either but that is a conversation for another day now speaking of a star is born I think this brings us to another of Olivia's advantages she couldn't be awarded by other means so if you love Lady Gaga's performance and a star is born you could feasibly choose to reward her work via the best song category thereby freeing yourself to vote another way for Best Actress you could also conceivably award her twice for her work in one night but Hollywood doesn't exactly do that unless you're a man Edith Head or Kathryn Bigelow as the season went on and Lady gaga began to consistently take home Best Song and more frequently began to lose Best Actress the cards seemed to signal that they'd fall that way at the Oscars the cards also signaled that they were in Glenns aver Olivia missed some red carpets and press while filming the crown nobody was really sure she was in the right category although if we're being honest a majority of Best Actress nominations have been for supporting roles Glen had the narrative that we discussed earlier and she was winning awards and then the thing is as often as the Academy likes to take corrective measures they also don't there are plenty of frustrating examples of overlooked women who never had a shining moment or if they did they only got one in the form of an honorary Oscar a non-competitive award affectionately referred to by Marlena Dietrich as the death-bed award because you usually get one at the last minute when the Academy wants to apologize for its neglect and quote that's how you know you're dying it blows my mind how many incredible actors just never made it to the stage maybe they didn't have studio backing maybe the rules weren't flashy enough maybe there wasn't really a good explanation at all or what if there was a breakout performance what if there was a record at stake what if you're up against one of the most famous women in the world or what if you're up against a groundbreaking gender-bending role the point is sometimes a performance isn't enough sometimes a narrative isn't enough it can be pure bad luck the confetti is still falling from the 2019 Oscars I don't think there's enough distance to know precisely what occurred I believe probably some variation of this tweet happened that people assumed other people would take care of Glenn for them and voted for a performance they really liked and a song they really liked on a personal level I feel torn on the one hand no one I ever want to win actually wins so it was pretty cool to see that happen especially to a woman whose character work to find her campaign on the other hand nobody likes to see very talented legends lose over and over and over again right now Glenn Close has the most Oscar nominations of any actor alive without wins word came out recently that the Sunset Boulevard movie musical is happening so do yourself a favor go watch Glenn Close sing as if we never said goodbye on YouTube and get ready because we're going to have a long conversation about her Oscar season and universe as my witness it won't be about a loss

25 thoughts on “A Best Actress 2019 Hot Take

  1. I really enjoy 😉 your videos.. I thought i was the only one who loves this stuff.. keep them coming 😀😀👍

  2. Glenn really should have won for either Fatal Attraction and/or Dangerous Liaisons. She was robbed. The Favourite was one of my favorite films in many a year and Olivia Coleman was B-R-I-L-L-I-A-N-T!

  3. omg I know this is old as hell but could you please make a video that thoroughly explains why Bohemian Rhapsody got so many nominations???

  4. I know the 2 women after the Marlene Dietrich comment are Greta Garbo and Barbara Stanwyck, who are the other 2 in the black and white clips?

  5. Poor Yalitza, i loved her in Roma. Then again I also loved Catalina in Maria full of grace. This channel has talked a lot about Black Actresses, I would like to see some on Latina, Asian and Indian women……hmm….has an Indian woman ever been nominated? time to google 😀

  6. Problem is to determine the winner they compare apples to oranges. Like a comedy role to a heart wrenching dramatic role. Plus acting can be amazing in a sucky movie. Its a lot about luck. If a movie is great but it happened to come out the same time as Bohemian Rhapsody or Titanic, the actors get screwed.

  7. I think for us Brits, we're just glad that our national treasure has finally got the international recognition she deserves.

  8. I'm tired of straight people winning awards for playing queer characters, especially when studios still won't cast queer actors. 3/4 Oscar acting wins were straight people playing queer characters. Ugh. I loved Roma and I think Yalitza was my favorite to win this year, but with the current anti-"mexican" political climate she never really stood a chance.

  9. I am surprised you did not address or acknowledge that it was straight identifying people playing non-straight people and winning awards

  10. I feel like unless the Academy is in a giving mood aka it's her turn, a musical remake of an old Hollywood film will go the way of A Star is Born 2018. But Glen Close is the perfect casting decision for that movie and I'm looking forward to it.

  11. We live in a world where Sigourney Weaver never got an Oscar, so… Anyway, even though I'm sad about Glenn Close loss, I'm glad Olivia Colman got the Oscar! Kind of remind me 1993. I was rooting for Catherine Deneuve, but was freaking happy Emma Thompson won.

  12. I'm so glad you mentioned 101 Dalmatians XD it was better than any of these current live action Disney adaptations.

  13. I think this is a good analysis. I actually predicted Colman would win in my Oscar pools (admittedly, I lost because I also thought "Bohemian Rhapsody" would win, but I prefer to focus on the positive). I had three main reasons:
    – The narrative behind Glenn Close was factually accurate but not really "true". There was this push, "She's been nominated seven times in the last thirty-something years, therefore the Academy will feel that they owe her this." But looking at the actual numbers, she was nominated 5 times in the 1980s. As of "Albert Nobbs", she hadn't been nominated for 20 years. The "make-up award" has a shelf life — I haven't thoroughly analyzed the data, but I'm gonna say five years is probably the ceiling, certainly less than 20. There's a whole generation of voters who never had a chance to shun her, so they didn't have much to make up for. I'm not sure I can put my finger on exactly why, but the narrative seemed to be coming from outside of Hollywood, rather than the actual sentiment from potential voters. You could argue that it wasn't a "make-up", it was a "lifetime", but the problem is, Glenn Close doesn't seem anywhere near (as you put it) her deathbed, so the lifetime narrative also seemed weak to me.
    – Oscar voters love to be surprised by a performance. This isn't a requirement to win, but it can be a big boost. The more nominations you get without a win, the less surprising your next great performance is, because every actor no matter how great only has so many tricks. I'm not remotely saying that Glenn Close's performance in "The Wife" was bad, or even that she didn't deserve an Oscar for it, but few voters would be surprised to see her give it. Colman, on the other hand, was practically unknown in Hollywood.
    – You allude to this one a bit in your video, but being the only nomination from a movie is a disadvantage because the voters don't watch every movie. They're going to start with stuff like "The Favorite" (if they haven't seen it already) because that covers a whole bunch of categories. But this isn't just about the win, you can use the nominations to guess… When Jeff Bridges was nominated, the voters were excited that he had his big shot, and made a point of watching "Crazy Heart", so much so that Maggie Gyllenhaal got a nomination too. In this very year, Melissa McCarthy had enough of a push that she got Richard E. Grant nominated just for playing Richard E. Grant. The fact that Grant got nominated over Jonathan Pryce seemed like a tip-off that people weren't excited to be voting for Glenn Close, as roundabout as that seems.

    I should note, this was an odd year for me, I didn't see a bunch of the nominated movies, and honestly not having my own subjective opinion of the films interfere helped me with my predictions. If only I hadn't seen "Green Book", I might've gotten Best Picture right too!

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