Best of the Best Pictures

Ranking every Best Picture nomination

Trey Williams, Op/Ed Editor

#9: Ford v Ferrari (3/5)

“Ford v Ferrari” stars Matt Damon and Christian Bale as the two design a race car for Ford capable of beating Ferrari

WHO’S THIS FOR?: Matt Damon, Christian Bale, and racing fans, this movie is for you. If you know this story and want to see it told on the big screen, this was a pretty well done movie.

LIKED: I don’t care about racing. These racing scenes were absolutely stunning. This movie did an outstanding job making stuff like a 24 hour race seem suspenseful. I also thought the acting was pretty good.

DISLIKED: This movie took no risks. Out of all the movies here, this was the cheesiest and most “Hollywood”. It was the least interesting of all the movies for me. This movie didn’t have anything interesting to say. If you don’t care about racing or the story this is based on, watch the other nominations first.

#8: Little Women (3.5/5)

“Little Women” is directed by Greta Gerwig and stars Saorise Ronan, Timothee Chalamet, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh, and Eliza Scanlen. Based off of the classic novel of the same name, this movie is about four sisters who navigate womanhood, love, and family in the 1860s.

WHO’S THIS FOR?: This movie is adorable. This is a great family movie with themes surrounding love, marriage, and womanhood. If you haven’t read the book, you might be slightly confused. If you want a cozy movie that will tug at your heartstrings, don’t miss this one.

LIKED: This movie felt like hot chocolate. It was so cozy. This movie does an outstanding job at taking you back into this time period. I also liked the characters and I thought the themes were excellently illustrated.

DISLIKED: This movie consists of many flashes forward and backward, and it was sometimes difficult to understand what was going on. I also didn’t like Timothee Chalamet’s character, which is sort of a big deal. That being said, I haven’t read the book. You might like it way more than me.

#7: The Irishman (4/5)

“The Irishman” stars Robert DeNiro, Joe Pesci, and Al Pacino. This movie is most famous for it’s Netflix distribution, classic cast, and de-aging effects.

WHO’S THIS FOR?: This movie is grimy, cold, and anything but Hollywood. If you want to go on a long, deep journey through a complicated man’s entire life, this is the movie for you. If you want something more fun, short, and lighthearted, look somewhere else.

LIKED: This movie had a unique choice for a main character, incredible cast, and the best ending of all the movies here. I loved what this movie had to say about the brutality of crime and the brevity of life.

DISLIKED: Personally, the three-and-a-half hour runtime was a bit much for me. I also thought the de-aging was hit or miss for me.

#6: 1917 (4/5)

“1917” stars Dean-Charles Chapman and George MacKay.

WHO’S THIS FOR?: If you’re a fan of war movies, this is a new take on the genre. This movie is made to look like it’s filmed all in one shot. If you want to see a beautifully shot, intense war movie, don’t miss this one. If you want something focused more on character and less on violence, try something else.

LIKED: This movie had extreme suspense throughout the whole movie. This was a technical marvel, I thought this movie really succeeded at making the most of their premise. Seeing this in a theatre was incredible with the sound design. The sets were also outstanding.

DISLIKED: While I liked the characters, the movie didn’t give enough background to them to make this movie hit like it could have. It was an amazing visual experience, but that’s all it was.

#5: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (4/5)

WHO’S THIS FOR?: This is a Tarantino movie if I’ve ever seen one. If you’re into his dialogue heavy, raunchy, violent style and you are familiar with 60’s era Hollywood, this movie is perfect for you. If this is either your first Tarantino movie or you have no idea who any of these people are, save this one for later.

LIKED: I loved these characters, it was so entertaining to see DiCaprio and Pitt in this environment. This movie takes Tarantino’s style and uses his strengths to make a movie with an emphasis on comedy. When the comedy lands, it really lands.

DISLIKED: It didn’t feel like this movie had a plot. This isn’t necessarily bad, but it didn’t create the same satisfaction as his other movies. Also, I am not the target audience. I don’t know who any of these people are. If that would bother you, don’t watch this movie.

#4: Joker (4/5)

WHO’S THIS FOR?: This is not your typical comic book movie. This is a character study of a man slowly losing his mind. If you want to get asked disturbing questions about mental illness and society’s role in facilitating it, check this out. If you want a fun, feel good movie, don’t.

LIKED: This movie is carried by Joaquin Phoenix’s performance. It’s truly incredible how this movie differentiated this Joker from the others. I also liked the atmosphere of the movie, it contributed to this movie’s ability to conjure unease.

DISLIKED: There’s some stupid stuff that happens in this movie. There’s a twist that didn’t work for me at all, I saw it coming a mile away. I also didn’t think what was happening in the world outside of Arthur Fleck was at all realistic, which took me out of the movie.

#3: Marriage Story (5/5)

Marriage Story, released December 6th to Netflix, is a favorite for the Best Picture win.

WHO’S THIS FOR?: This movie will not be for everyone. This movie takes a deep look into many facets of divorce and explores it through hyper realistic plot, character, and dialogue. This movie is the opposite of pyrotechnics. If you want to watch a film like that, nothing could be better. If you want something to escape, this isn’t it.

LIKED: This might be the best acting I have ever seen. Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson knocked it out of the park. I also loved the details in this movie that added to the realism, such as less-than-perfectly said dialogue and even a sneeze or two. This movie was stunning.

DISLIKED: I personally wasn’t in love with the score, but that’s just me.

#2: Parasite (5/5)

“Parasite” stars Cho Yeo-jeong, Park So-dam, Choi Woo-shik, and Kang-Ho Song as the Kim family. This is the only foreign film nominated for Best Picture.

WHO’S THIS FOR?: This movie is fast-paced, exciting, unique, and extremely well made. Go in as blind as you can. The only problem people might have is that the movie is in Korean, so if you hate subtitles I guess you don’t get to experience this masterpiece.

LIKED: The story is exciting from beginning to end, the characters are super memorable, the camerawork and set design of this movie are top notch, and it has a lot to say about stuff like class and economic inequality.

DISLIKED: The credits when it was over.

#1: Jojo Rabbit (5/5)

“Jojo Rabbit” is directed by Taika Watiti and stars Roman Griffin Davis, Scarlett Johansson, Taika Watiti, and Sam Rockwell.

WHO’S THIS FOR?: For fans of dark comedy, coming of age stories, and absurdist humor. If Hitler as a goofy imaginary friend sounds like your thing, check this out. If you’re not into anything listed above, this probably isn’t for you.

LIKED: The characters were (somehow) super likable, the humor always landed, the movie was shot well, and the concept is executed masterfully. Somehow, this movie touched me the most of all the nominees.

DISLIKED: I loved everything. This is one of my new favorite movies.