It’s that time of the year when the film industry puts on its glad rags and celebrates the almighty power of cinema, sort of. Any keen-eyed film fan knows that awards season can be a mixed bag, with the odd white elephant butting up against the genuinely interesting, challenging work which has graced cinema screens over the past year. Debate is part of the fun of course, and while there are multiple ways of engaging with the pomp and pageantry of awards shows, you’ll want to catch up with the films if you want to be a part of the conversation.
Nowadays, there are so many different awards bodies each with their own set of gongs that it’s easy to lose track at this time of year. The Academy Awards are the big ones, of course, and while it sometimes seems that other prizes are valued only as far as they might indicate where the Oscars are going, we do recommend perusing some of the regional, or more niche sets of nominations. The likes of Richard Billingham’s terrific Ray & Liz, for example, is perhaps too dark for the Academy, but it’s up for a BAFTA, whilst Ali Abbasi’s horror fantasy Border won Un Certain Regard at Cannes, it’s single Oscar nom is for Makeup and Hairstyling.
To give them their due, the Academy Awards have served up their fair share of upsets in recent years. The less said about #envelopegate the better, but awards for films such as Barry Jenkins’ textured, structurally-unconventional Moonlight and Guillermo del Toro’s genuinely weird, aquatic romance The Shape of Water indicate a promising new trend. This year we’re on course for another potentially welcome anomaly, as Alfonso Cuaron’s Netflix-backed Roma emerges as a frontrunner for Best Picture, a feat which would make it the first non-English language film to win the big prize.
HOME is the place for film fans looking to catch up with awards season in Manchester. Read on for the latest contenders but be sure to book, tickets can sell out quickly.