Oscars 2019: Independent Spirit Awards

Just to finish off the last of these articles, the Independent Spirit Awards were announced today. They changed the voting so that all the big studio Oscar stuff doesn’t make it on and dominate the competition anymore. So now it’s truly independent stuff, which is both nice but also makes the awards show a bit of an afterthought. Mostly I love that it’s people getting together in a tent on the beach in Santa Monica and getting absolutely day drunk. That’s really why we have this show, isn’t it?

Anyway, here are your winners (which you basically could have called a month ago just by looking at the nominees. But hey, it’s not about the winners, it’s about the day drinking):

Best Feature


The Farewell

A Hidden Life

Marriage Story

Uncut Gems

Winner: The Farewell

Oh, that’s awesome. I’m glad it just wasn’t Marriage Story or Uncut Gems. Good for them.

Though that does beg the question, what allowed Marriage Story to get on Best Picture but prevented Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson from being nominated in the acting categories? Because you can’t tell me that people just didn’t vote for them. They had to have deemed them ineligible. But how did the distinction get made? The nominees were announced over a month before Oscar nominations and at least a week before all the other Oscar precursors. Plus, does Netflix scream independent? Wondering how that one went down.

Best First Feature


The Climb


The Last Black Man in San Francisco

The Mustang

See You Yesterday

Winner: Booksmart

I don’t think anyone’s surprised there.

Best Director

Robert Eggers, The Lighthouse

Alma Har’el, Honey Boy

Julius Onah, Luce

Benny & Josh Safdie, Uncut Gems

Lorene Scafaria, Hustlers

Winner: Benny & Josh Safdie, Uncut Gems

No real surprise there, either. Theirs was the only film nominated for Best Picture.

I still don’t really know how voting goes for this, but clearly certain things have to not be allowed. Because what allows Terrence Malick to get nominated for Best Picture but prevents him from getting on here? Because you can’t tell me you voted for a Terrence Malick film for Best Picture and didn’t think he was one of the best directors. Plus, it’s TERRENCE MALICK. Clearly there are some sort of measures in place where either people can’t be voted for or just get taken off if they seem like too high profile a choice.

Do they sit there in the room and debate who got the most votes and just remove the ones that might skew the category?

Image result for too jewish gif

Clearly something’s going on, because there are too many possibilities for stuff to get on

Best Female Lead

Karen Allen, Colewell

Hong Chau, Driveways

Elisabeth Moss, Her Smell

Mary Kay Place, Diane

Alfre Woodard, Clemency

Renée Zellweger, Judy

Winner: Renée Zellweger, Judy

Fucking really.

Best Male Lead

Chris Galust, Give Me Liberty

Kelvin Harrison Jr., Luce

Robert Pattinson, The Lighthouse

Adam Sandler, Uncut Gems

Matthias Schoenaerts, The Mustang

Winner: Adam Sandler, Uncut Gems


Best Supporting Female

Jennifer Lopez, Hustlers

Taylor Russell, Waves

Zhao Shuzhen, The Farewell

Lauren “Lolo” Spencer, Give Me Liberty

Octavia Spencer, Luce

Winner: Zhao Shuzhen, The Farewell

The best female supporting performance of the year. I’m glad she won. Taylor Russell also would have been a great choice. But Zhao Shuzhen was so fantastic in that movie.

Best Supporting Male

Willem Dafoe, The Lighthouse

Noah Jupe, Honey Boy

Shia LaBeouf, Honey Boy

Jonathan Majors, The Last Black Man in San Francisco

Wendell Pierce, Burning Cane

Winner: Willem Dafoe, The Lighthouse

Fuck yeah. And also, of course. Shia had a shot, but Willem Dafoe as an old sailor, how could you not go there?

Best Screenplay


High Flying Bird

Marriage Story

To Dust

Uncut Gems

Winner: Marriage Story

It’s the only nominee nominated for the Oscar, and all things considered, is the best script in the bunch. Uncut Gems had a case to be made for it, but Marriage Story is the one that feels like it worked more fully on the page and wasn’t required to have had the editing and pacing and all that in it to work as well as it did. And again… nominated for the Oscar. Kind of a ‘big fish, little pond’ scenario. Granted, we didn’t know the size of the fish until after nominations, but still.

Best First Screenplay

Blow the Man Down


Greener Grass

See You Yesterday

The Vast of Night

Winner: See You Yesterday

FANTASTIC choice. I’m glad that won.

Best Editing

Give Me Liberty

The Lighthouse

Sword of Trust

The Third Wife

Uncut Gems

Winner: Uncut Gems

Well, yeah. That movie is basically a two-hour panic attack.

Best Cinematography

Honey Boy


The Lighthouse


The Third Wife

Winner: The Lighthouse

That’s the only nominee here nominated for an Oscar. Is anyone surprised by that outcome?

Best International Film

Invisible Life

Les Miserables


Portrait of a Lady on Fire


The Souvenir

Winner: Parasite

No shit.

Best Documentary

American Factory

Apollo 11

For Sama


Island of the Hungry Ghosts

Winner: American Factory

Not surprising. I’m sure it’ll win tomorrow as well.

John Cassavetes Award

Burning Cane


Give Me Liberty


Wild Nights with Emily

Winner: Give Me Liberty

That felt like a true independent movie. Granted, I’ve only seen two movies on this list, but that one did feel deserving of the what the award stands for. So good for them.

The Bonnie Award

Marielle Heller

Kelly Reichardt

Lulu Wang

Winner: Kelly Reichardt

Cool, but did she need the support more than, say, Lulu Wang did? There’s money attached to this award. I feel like maybe give it to the person who is probably gonna struggle most to get their next movie made. Maybe have given this to Kelly Reichardt nine years ago (yes, I’m aware the award it didn’t exist nine years ago).

– – – – –

So yeah, those are the Indie Spirit Awards. Tomorrow’s the Oscars, guys. The giant picks article will be up bright and early tomorrow. East Coast time, even. Mostly because I finished it Monday and have had to wait five days to be able to post it.

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