Oscars 2023: Kenosha.com’s Brian Hogan gives his predictions and analysis among the nominated

95th Academy Awards to be held Sunday, March 12


Born and raised in Kenosha, Hogan graduated from local schools and earned a bachelor’s degree from UW-Parkside, and has been a CPA for over 25 years. He enjoys golfing, going to the movies and theater, reading, and is a big fan of the Brewers and Packers, but mostly he loves being with his large, extended family.

As I am writing this article, the snow is blowing outside my window. It is mid-February, which means it is the dog days of winter. The groundhog saw his shadow, and so we have another 4-6 weeks of misery until spring arrives. It also happens to be the tail end of the awards season, which means the annual Academy Awards are on the horizon (Sunday, March 12).

I have watched all but one of the contenders in the major categories, and will present to you my predictions of the winners, my personal preferences among the nominees, and my list of the 10 best films I saw that were released in 2022.

In each of the categories below, I will list the nominees in my order of preference, and then note which is the favorite to win, which one I predict will be the winner, and some suggestions of others that were overlooked in the category.

Best Supporting Actor

  1. Barry Keoghan, The Banhees of Inisherin
  2. Brendan Gleason, The Banshees of Inisherin
  3. Judd Hirsch, The Fabelmans
  4. Brian Tyree Henry, Causeway
  5. Ke Huy Quan, Everything Everywhere All At Once

Favorite to win: Quan

I predict to win: Quan

Overlooked: Paul Dano, The Fabelmans; Eddie Redmayne, The Good Nurse;  Brad Pitt, Babylon; Jeremy Strong, Armageddon Time

What can I say? The Academy, and apparently everybody else, loved “Everything Everywhere All At Once” which got more nominations (11) than any other film. The best I can say about this mash-up of “The Joy Luck Club” and “The Matrix” is that it was never dull. As for Quan, I don’t recall anything of his performance that struck me as award worthy. Of the nominees, I prefer Keoghan because he does a remarkable thing with this inherently annoying character — he takes this simpleton and infuses him with simple humanity in one remarkable scene. But if I were voting, the award would go to Dano. I knew he would never get nominated for such an understated performance, but he was for me the emotional linchpin of “The Fabelmans.”

Best Supporting Actress

  1. Kerry Condon, The Banshees of Inisherin
  2. Angela Bassett, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
  3. Hong Chau, The Whale
  4. Stephanie Hsu, Everything Everywhere All At Once
  5. Jamie Lee Curtis, Everything Everywhere All At Once

Expected to win: Bassett

I predict to win: Bassett

Overlooked: Mariana Trevino, A Man Called Otto; Nina Hoss, Tár

Condon should win the Oscar, but I think veteran Bassett will win. You might be tempted to call this a career Oscar, and you wouldn’t be wrong, but there is no denying that she gives a powerful performance in the “Black Panther” sequel. But I think Condon is even better, playing a sister caught in the middle of a disintegrating friendship between her brother and his best friend. Her innate spirit and desperation are captured beautifully by Condon.

Best Actor

  1. Austin Butler, Elvis
  2. Bill Nighy, Living
  3. Colin Farrell, The Banshees of Inisherin
  4. Paul Mescal, Aftersun
  5. Brendan Fraser, The Whale

Favorite to win: A toss-up between Fraser, Butler and Farrell, with the slightest of edges to Fraser

I predict to win: Butler

Overlooked: Tom Hanks, A Man Called Otto; Tom Cruise, Top Gun: Maverick; Will Farrell, Spirited; Felix Kammerer, All Quiet on the Western Front; Ralph Fiennes, The Menu; Nicolas Cage; The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent; Adam Sandler, Hustle

This is a real close call for me. I absolutely loved “Living,” and Bill Nighy’s quiet, heartbreaking performance is the main reason. I think in any other year this would have been a no-brainer for me. But I have to give the nod to Butler for taking on arguably the greatest larger-than- life figure in American pop culture — Elvis Presley — and absolutely nailing him. As for my list of overlooked, there are some names here that probably don’t pop up on any critic’s list, but I don’t care. Hanks and Cruise are classic Hollywood stars appearing in what could be formula fare, but elevate them as prime examples of great movie-movies that Hollywood used to excel in making. Farrell is perfection in “Spirited,” playing this character with just the right combination of innocence and sass, and he sings and dances pretty darn well. Sandler gives a great dramatic performance as a basketball scout who risks it all promoting a raw, undiscovered talent. And Cage is literally playing Cage as only Cage could, in a wonderfully entertaining action farce poking fun at his career choices.

Best Actress

  1. Cate Blanchett, Tãr
  2. Michelle Williams, The Fabelmans
  3. Andrea Riseborough, To Leslie
  4. Michelle Yeoh, Everything Everywhere All At Once
  5. Ana de Armas, Blonde

Favorite to win: Yeoh

I predict to win: Blanchett

Overlooked: Danielle Deadwyler, Till; Viola Davis, The Woman King; Daisy Edgar-Jones, Where the Crawdads Sing; Jessica Chastain, The Good Nurse; Jennifer Lawrence, Causeway

There is only one performance this year that could have given Blanchett a run for her money, and that was Deadwyler’s, but the Academy in its infinite wisdom decided not to nominate her, in one of the most head-scratchingly ridiculous omissions that I can ever remember. Clearly, de Armas should not have been included here for the rancid “Blonde.” The big “scandal” of course was the grass roots campaign to nominate Riseborough; laughable considering the hundreds of thousands of dollars spent by the big studios to get their films a nomination. The fact is that Riseborough is magnificent in “To Leslie” and deserved her nomination.

Best Director

  1. Steven Spielberg, The Fabelmans
  2. Todd Field, Tãr
  3. Martin McDonough, The Banshees of Inisherin
  4. Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, Everything Everywhere All At Once
  5. Ruben Ostlund, Triangle of Sadness

Favorite to win: Kwan and Scheinert

I predict to win: Spielberg

Overlooked:  Oliver Hermanus, Living; Joseph Kosinski, Top Gun: Maverick; Chinonye Chukwu, Till; Edward Berger, All Quiet on the Western Front

I honestly can’t see how Spielberg doesn’t win the Oscar. Most forecasters predict it will be Kwan and Scheinert, but to me the stars are in alignment for Spielberg. He is one of the most acclaimed directors of all time, coming near to the end of an illustrious career, making his most personal and intimate film to date, which also happens to be one of the best films he has ever made. I don’t see how he misses. I also don’t understand why Kosinski is not on this list. I loved “Living,” but I’m a realist and I know this small, understated tear-jerker was never going to seriously contend for Best Picture or Best Director. But Kosinksi made the film that brought people of multiple generations back to the movie theaters! It cannot be overstated just how huge “Top Gun: Maverick” is to the film industry, and to not nominate the guy who directed it to me seems a travesty.

Best Picture

  1. The Fabelmans
  2. Top Gun: Maverick
  3. Tãr
  4. Elvis
  5. Avatar: The Way of Water
  6. All Quiet on the Western Front
  7. The Banshees of Inisherin
  8. Everything Everywhere All At Once
  9. Triangle of Sadness
  10. Women Talking

Favorite to win: Everything Everywhere All At Once

I predict to win: Top Gun: Maverick

Overlooked: Living; A Man Called Otto; Till; Spirited; Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery; The Menu

No question in my mind that the best film on this list is “The Fabelmans,” Spielberg’s valentine to the art of making movies, and memorial to his parents who shaped him. I think “The Fabelmans” has only an outside shot at winning, though. Based on the number of nominations it received, and the speculation surrounding it, “Everything Everywhere All At Once” seems unstoppable. But something tells me that “Top Gun: Maverick,” the movie that saved Hollywood, is going to pull the surprise. The only film on this list I did not see was “Women Talking,” which has yet to play in the area and is not available on pay-per-view or streaming.

Ten Best Films I Saw Released In 2022:

  1. Living
  2. The Fabelmans
  3. Top Gun: Maverick
  4. A Man Called Otto
  5. Till
  6. Tãr
  7. Elvis
  8. Spirited
  9. Avatar: The Way of Water
  10. All Quiet on the Western Front

Honorable mention: Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery; The Menu; The Northman; She Said; Where The Crawdads Sing

Three Worst Films I Saw Released In 2022:

  1. Blonde
  2. The Whale
  3. Moonfall

I only chose three because these three really set the standard. “Blonde” is one of the worst films I have ever seen, and certainly one of the most offensive. “The Whale” was as depressing a movie experience as I have had in quite some time. And “Moonfall” makes the list because it is a perfect example of a movie that is so stupid it makes you wonder what the studio executive was smoking when he okayed that script.