I lay awake last night when an idea came to me. What if there was an annual show where awards were given to film-makers for outstanding achievements in a variety of categories? Upon doing some research I discovered that someone had beaten me to the idea. Someone named Oscar.
After reading about Oscar and his Academy, I came across some startling information. In the wake of the recent #oscarssowhite controversy I unearthed a long history of people being dissatisfied with the Academy. Its demographics may also indicate certain, biases, shall we say. From Wikipedia:
In 2012, the results of a study conducted by the Los Angeles Times were published describing the demographic breakdown of approximately 88% of AMPAS’ voting membership. Of the 5,100+ active voters confirmed, 94% were Caucasian, 77% were male, and 54% were found to be over the age of 60. 33% of voting members are former nominees (14%) and winners (19%).
Maybe someone oughta knock these folks off their pedestal. Maybe I still have a chance to shine.
But, I thought, how could I ever hope to compete with the Oscars? With all their money and resources, my dream was destined to failure… Then I remembered I had a blog. What a time to be alive.
I immediately set about forming a new judging committee. Unfortunately due to budgetary constraints and personnel limitations the composition of this new committee shows a similarly skewed demographic make-up, consisting of a shocking 100% white, 100% male panel, with exactly one member total. I would ask our readers to please excuse this discrepancy, and know that the committee was constructed with the best of intentions.
So folks, without further ado welcome to the inaugural episode of the Joshcars. We’re sure in for an exciting night. (Full disclaimer, I’ll only give awards to films I’ve actually seen, which means there’s undoubtedly going to be many excellent films that won’t make the cut due to the Joshcademy’s personal failings. For that I apologise.) Now on with the awards!
ACTOR* WHO WAS THE BEST AT ACTING
*Note “actor” in this context is not gendered. I don’t see any good reason to have separate categories.
Emily Blunt was great in Sicario. Tom Hardy is great in everything, including Mad Max. Rooney Mara was captivating in Carol. I thought Mark Ruffalo did really well in Spotlight too. Jacob Tremblay in Room was the best child actor I’ve ever seen. Lots of solid performances, I think it’s a tough year to pick because there was nothing particularly unique, just good dramatic acting. But if I had to give it to someone…
WINNER! Brie Larson in Room. Pretty much made the film for me. Unbelievable performance.
ACTOR WHO WAS BEST AT ACTING, BUT WASN’T THE MAIN ACTOR IN THAT FILM
Honourable mentions! Cate Blanchett did really well in Carol. Tom Hardy was easily the best thing about The Revenant. Benecio Del Toro was excellent in Sicario.
WINNER! Charlize Theron in Mad Max: Fury Road. Great Performance, great character.
PERSON WHO WAS THE BEST AT POINTING A CAMERA AT THINGS (AND OTHER IMPORTANT JOBS)
Honourable mentions! J.J. Abrams captured the look and feel of the original Star Wars really well in The Force Awakens. Lenny Arahamson used perspective really potently in Room. George Miller knocked it out of the park with Mad Max.
WINNER! You can’t take it away from him, The Revenant is a well-shot movie. Alejandro G. Iñárritu takes it.
PERSON WHO WAS BEST AT MAKING SOUNDS FOR A FILM
Honourable mentions! Honestly I’m not a big sound guy so this one is probably a bit of a mess, but I did love the scores to The Revenant and Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but not as much as…
WINNER! Mad Max again. Dem drums…
MOST SURPRISINGLY NOT SHIT FILM
Honourable mentions! No big shocks. The Force Awakens was much better than I thought it would be.
WINNER! It’s not even that I thought it would be shit, just that I really didn’t expect it to be very, very, good. Creed. Go watch it.
FILM THAT MADE ME THINK THE MOST AFTERWARDS
Honourable mentions! I thought Spotlight was powerful. The Big Short was thought-provoking. Inside Out was very poignant, with a surprising amount of maturity.
WINNER! Anomalisa. I still don’t really know what to make of it. I love Charlie Kaufman, but man, that was the most brutally nihilistic film I’ve ever seen.
Honourable mentions! The Force Awakens looked exactly how it should have. Mad Max made brilliant use of colour. The Revenant was gorgeous.
WINNER! Crimson Peak. The costumes and sets in that film were incredible. Worth watching just for the atmosphere.
PERSON WHO WAS BEST AT WRITING WORDS FOR ACTORS TO REMEMBER AND THEN SAY OUT LOUD
Honourable mentions! I couldn’t make a writing category and not nominate Charlie Kaufman. Tom McCarthy wrote a great script for Spotlight, very naturalistic with some really poignant one-liners. Taylor Sheridan did a good job with Sicario.
WINNER! Inside Out. Such a good movie. Probably the best Western animated film of the decade.
FILM THAT WAS MOST GOOD
Honourable mentions! Inside Out was the only other film I would call genuinely outstanding.
Okay this might seem like a cop out but it’s a bit silly to say one film is “better” than another without listing the actual criteria for how that decision was made. Is it the most entertaining? The most thought-provoking? Most competently made? Some arbitrary combination?
Out of all the films I saw in 2015 I thought that Mad Max: Fury Road was the film I would most watch again. Constantly. Forever. Probably the best action movie I’ve ever seen. Enough said really.
Spotlight was probably my “favourite”. It had strong performances, it was gripping, informative, accurate, a little depressing and it really tried to say something about journalism. It’s the one I would most strongly recommend.
And that about brings us to a close folks, hope you enjoyed my totally professional, totally amazing awards ceremony! Unfortunately none of the winners could make it here to accept their award, but hey, maybe next year!