Oscars 2019 Best Picture: All You Need to Know About the Nominees

‘Roma’ and ‘The Favourite’ lead the pack with 10 nominations each, followed by ‘A Star is Born’ and ‘Vice’ with 8.

7 min read
Stills from <i>The Favourite</i>, <i>A Star Is Born</i> and <i>Roma</i>.

The nominations for the 91st Annual Academy Awards were unveiled on Tuesday, 22 January by actors Kumail Nanjiani and Tracee Ellis Ross, who hosted the live announcement of nominees from the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Los Angeles.

Roma and The Favourite lead the pack with 10 nominations each, followed by A Star is Born and Vice with 8 nominations. BlacKkKlansman, Black Panther, Bohemian Rhapsody and Green Book are the others in the race for the Best Picture award. Here’s a look all the eight Best Picture nominees:



Summary: Written and directed by the maker of 'Gravity' and ‘Children of Men’ –Alfonso Cuarón – Roma is set in Mexico city between 1970-71 and tells the story of an upper middle class family and their relationship with a domestic worker and a nanny. One of Netflix's most critically acclaimed movies, Roma depicts the upbringing of Cuarón himself.

IMDb Rating: 8.1/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 96%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • Cuarón has done more than break through walls of language, culture and class to craft the best movie of the year. – Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
  • “Roma” is one of the best movies I’ve ever seen, and one of the most moving. – Joe Morgenstern, The Wall Street Journal
  • Pairing thrilling technical prowess with profound artistic vision, Alfonso Cuarón has made a masterpiece, at once understated and otherworldly. We need more filmmakers like him. – John Nugent, Empire
  • Alfonso Cuarón's masterpiece Roma, an autobiographical movie set in Mexico City in the 1970s, uses both intimacy and monumentality to express the depths of ordinary life. – Manohla Dargis, The New York Times
  • The film has a very simple plotline – it’s about two women dealing with life and all that it throws at them. But the myriad lenses it’s viewed through are tremendous, and they’re what makes Roma so powerful and so moving. – Janaki Viswanathan, The Quint

The Favourite

Summary: Set in early 18th century England, The Favourite is centred around the relationship between two cousins vying to be court favourites of a frail Queen Anne (Olivia Colman).

IMDB Rating: 7.9/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 93%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • Though mostly twaddle as history, Yorgos Lanthimos’s The Favourite is wonderful, nasty fun, a period drama (wigs, breeches, beauty spots) that holds the screen with gnashing teeth and slashing nails. – David Edelstein, Vulture
  • The Favourite is a wildly entertaining, bracingly cynical comedy of royal manners directed by Yorgos Lanthimos. It's a farce with teeth. – AO Scott, The New York Times
  • Best of all, he makes us care about this women warriors who, without compromising their strength, also reveal their vulnerability and sorrow (sic). – Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
  • The comedy is elegant, frequently dark and genuinely witty. The spectacle is gorgeous. The revisionism is gleeful. – Joe Morgenstern, The Wall Street Journal
  • Funny, cynical, extravagant and rapturously vulgar, “The Favourite” puts the lie to such well-heeled dramas as “The Crown.” – Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post

A Star Is Born

Summary: A Star is Born is a story of an ageing and alcoholic musician (Bradley Cooper) going downhill while he tries to help a young singer and actress (Lady Gaga) find fame – even as he ends up falling in love with her. This is the the fourth remake of the original 1937 film by the same name, after the 1954 musical, the 1976 musical, and the 2013 Bollywood film, Aashiqui 2.

IMDB Rating: 8/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 90%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • The new A Star Is Born, directed by Bradley Cooper and starring himself and Lady Gaga, wrings tears from its romance and thrills from a steadfast belief in old-fashioned, big-feeling cinema. – Manohla Dargis, The New York Times
  • Hollywood over-indulgence at its best. – Alan Morrison, Empire
  • A total emotional knockout, but it's also a movie that gets you to believe, at every step, in the complicated rapture of the story it's telling. – Owen Gleiberman, Variety
  • A Star is Born offers a suitably jaundiced glimpse of star-making machinery at its most cynical, but also its most thrilling and gratifying. – Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post
  • This casting of Gaga is the trump card of the film. Stripped to her bare-boned beauty, she is a revelation. Cooper demystifies her pop diva persona to reveal an underside so humane that you break with Ally’s vulnerability. – Ranjib Mazumder, The Quint


Summary: The story of how Dick Cheney (Christian Bale) quietly wielded power, immense power as Vice President to George W Bush, and his role in shaping the politics of the United States in a way that is globally relevant even today.

IMDB Rating: 7.1/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 64%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • Vice offers more than rage-bait for liberal moviegoers. If this is in some respects a monster movie, it’s one that takes a lively and at times surprisingly sympathetic interest in its chosen demon. - AO Scott, The New York Times
  • Vice has a big structural problem, though. However fitfully inspired, the narrative doesn’t hold you, and by the time McKay arrives at the vice presidency, the audience is a little tired. – David Edelstein, Vulture
  • McKay treats the movie as a slightly cracked burlesque. He turns history into a rollicking circus for liberals, inviting us to revel in Dick Cheney's Greatest Hits Of Infamy. – Owen Gleiberman, Variety
  • Christian Bale really is sensational here. He transforms into Cheney before your eyes. – Andrew Lowry, Empire
  • As with The Big Short, mileage will vary from viewer to viewer as to how surprising or entertaining Vice is, beyond the madcap flourishes of its own self-conscious style. – Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post

Green Book

Summary: What happens when an African-American classical pianist on a concert tour in the Deep South in 1962 hires a tough-talking Italian-American bouncer? The film revolves around the deep bond between the two, despite their differences as they confront racism.

IMDB Rating: 8.3/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 82%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • On paper it sounds cringeworthy, but much of it is great fun. – David Edelstein, Vulture
  • There is virtually no milestone in Green Book that you won’t see coming from a long way off, including scenes that seem too corny or misguided for any movie in its right mind to contemplate. – AOScott, The New York Times
  • The great success of Green Book lies in its modesty, and the straightforward way it recognizes seismic change in the incremental turning of a human heart. – Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post
  • "Driving Miss Daisy" in reverse, focusing on the inevitable fireworks when an elegant black man hires an ill-mannered guy from the Bronx to drive him around the South. – Peter Debruge, Variety
  • Green Book” warms the heart, then numbs the mind. – Joe Morgenstern, The Wall Street Journal

Bohemian Rhapsody

Summary: The film is a celebration of the legendary rock band Queen, their music and their extraordinary lead singer Freddie Mercury. The journey, with all its ups and downs, ends with the band’s famous performance at Live Aid (1985).

IMDB Rating: 8.3/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 82%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • Bohemian Rhapsody winds up being giddily entertaining, first as an exercise in so-bad-its-funny kitsch, ultimately as something far more meaningful and thrilling.
    Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post
  • If you’re immune to this music, I don’t want to know you. If you’re immune to Malek, there’s no hope for you. – David Edelstein, Vulture
  • Bohemian Rhapsody, the movie about Queen, lasts more than two hours, not a very long time long by modern feature-film standards, even though it feels interminable. – AO Scott, The New York Times
  • Like Queen, Bohemian Rhapsody is three parts good but not terribly exciting, and one part absolute joyful, fabulous entertainment that makes you forget everything else around it. – Olly Richards, Empire
  • Actor Rami Malek’s stunning metamorphosis into the rock legend who prematurely died in 1991, is testimony to the actor’s vast research into Freddie’s life, persona – and very being. – Indira Basu, The Quint.

Black Panther

Summary: After the death of his father, T’Challa, heir to the hidden but advanced kingdom of Wakanda, returns home to inherit his throne even as a powerful enemy of his family from the past threatens to attack his land.

IMDB Rating: 7.4/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 97%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • Like Taika Waititi before him, Ryan Coogler gives the Marvel template a bold auteurist twist with an African extravaganza that packs a muscular intensity and challenges as much as it exhilarates. – Jimi Famurewa, Empire
  • Virtually everything that distinguishes "Black Panther" from past Marvel pics works to this standalone entry's advantage. – Peter Debruge, Variety
  • Boseman, who strides through Black Panther with unforced, charismatic ease, assumes almost Shakespearean levels of doubt as his character is challenged by an unexpected rival. – Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post
  • A jolt of a movie, Black Panther creates wonder with great flair and feeling partly through something Hollywood rarely dreams of anymore: myth.Manohla Dargis, The New York Times
  • It sweeps the entire narrative with characters of African descent, making you aware of how beautiful, how stunning the idea of black is. – Ranjib Mazumder, The Quint


Summary: Directed by Spike Lee and based on true events, BlacKkKlansman is a story of a young African-American officer from Colorado Springs Police Department, Ron Stallworth , and how he sets outs on a dangerous mission to infiltrate and expose the Ku Klux Klan with the help of a Jewish surrogate.

IMDB Rating: 7.6/10

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 95%

What the critics and reviewers say:

  • There are few filmmakers as consistently, burningly passionate as Spike Lee. This is vital and timely work that’s up there with his best, with a gut-wrenching sting in the tail. – Helen O'Hara, Empire
  • Spike Lee’s new joint, BlacKkKlansman, is his best nondocumentary feature in more than a decade and one of his greatest. – AO Scot, The New York Times
  • Lee structures BlacKkKlansman like a crackerjack procedural, punctuated by jaunty humor and Mod Squad team dynamics.Ann Hornaday, The Washington Post
  • Lee doesn’t do subtlety. But the movie is very entertaining and comes with a stupendous, lushly melodic score by Terence Blanchard. David Edelstein, Vulture
  • Spike Lee doesn’t mince words in “BlacKkKlansman.” He ignites them, revels in their combustibility and illustrates them with inflammatory images. – Joe Morgenstern, The Wall Street Journal

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