2022 AFI Film Festival & Its Oscartunities

The 2022 AFI Film Festival just concluded, and it was an incredible festival filled with movies that will have their names announced throughout this award season. Today, I look at the films I saw during the festival and their Oscartunities.

Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths

Bardo floored me, as you can read in my review here. Furthermore, when you look at Alejandro González Iñárritu’s history with the Academy, you can’t ignore Bardo and its Oscartunities. He has three Best Picture/Best Director combo award nominations, winning two of them (The Revenant and Birdman). Another glaring thing is both movies garnered 21 total Oscar nominations, so we aren’t just looking at Best Director or Picture with Bardo.

In a conversation with Oscars Central editor Kenzie, she mentioned how we couldn’t ignore the correlation between Iñárritu’s and his work getting nominations for his actors. His last three feature films received six acting nominations. As a result, Daniel Giménez Cacho should be in the conversation for Best Actor, and rightfully so.

Oscar Prospects:
Likely: Best International Feature, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Film Editing, Best Cinematography
Should be Considered: Best Actor (Daniel Giménez Cacho), Best Original Score, Best Production Design


Nanny is the type of movie that the Academy will 100% not go for, which is sad because it’s worthy of praise. In a world that makes sense, Rina Yang should be a lock for Best Cinematography because this is one of the most beautiful films of the year. Another thing that should be on the awards radar is Nikyatu Jusu’s brilliant screenplay. I wrote in my review, it was witnessing this “American Dream” unfold in front of our eyes, and we watched the pitfalls of being an immigrant in this country. Of course, none of this works without the amazing work of Anna Diop in the lead role.

Oscar Prospects:
Likely: None
Should be Considered: Best Actress (Anna Diop), Best Original Screenplay, Best Cinematography

She Said

I can’t really add much to what Kenzie said here because She Said is that movie. It’s brilliant in every aspect and stands on its own for the type of film it is. If I were a voting member of the Academy, I would certainly vote for She Said for Best Picture.

Oscar Prospects:
Likely: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Supporting Actress (Carey Mulligan)
Should be Considered: Best Original Score, Best Actress (Zoe Kazan), Best Supporting Actress (Jennifer Ehle)

Women Talking

There is a reason why this movie is at the top of everyone’s Oscar Predictions. It not only seems likely to garner several nominations, but it stands a great chance at winning several awards.

Oscar Prospects:
Likely: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Supporting Actress (Claire Foy and Jessie Buckley), Best Original Score
Should be Considered: Best Film Editing, Best Makeup & Hairstyling

Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio

It took Guillermo del Toro over a decade to get this movie made which is insane to think that an Oscar-winning director struggles to get his scripts green-lit. However, I believe patience and determination paid off for del Toro and for Netflix, who said yes. If I had a choice at one lock today at the Academy Awards, it would be Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio winning Best Animated Feature.

The Academy overlooks voice acting work every year and will continue to do so until either they make their own category or finally have the courage to give them the credit they deserve. Gregory Mann belongs in the conversation for Best Supporting Actor. I am still not 100% certain about its Best Picture chances, but I will say that at the screening we attended, the film played rather well. Factor that in with del Toro being the nicest human alive which can play the part throughout awards season, and he might just make it happen.

Oscar Prospects:
Likely: Best Animated Feature, Best Original Score, Best Original Song (“Ciao Papa“), Best Visual Effects
Should be Considered: Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Gregory Mann), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Film Editing, Best Production Design

Bones and All

Bones and All has your attention from the first to the last frame. It was the first time I walked out of the theater this year, and I didn’t have anything I would’ve changed in the film I saw. First, Taylor Russell gives a star-making turn that should have voters’ attention. Next, Mark Rylance should be on the shortlist for Best Supporting Actor. Last, it should be nominated in so many other categories.

Sadly, we live in a world where the Academy will probably quietly ignore Bones and All. While some may turn it on because Mark Rylance is attached to the film, they might find it too “weird.” This movie would have ten nominations in the land of Chromatica.

Oscar Prospects:
Likely: None
Should be Considered: Best Actress (Taylor Russell), Best Supporting Actor (Mark Rylance), Best Cinematography, Best Sound, Best Original Score, Best Editing

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