The Groffscars ("Oscars") of 2018

Chiming once again in as the Oscars are announced with my picks for this year, which aren't always those that are nominated.

My favorite movie of the year was A Star Is Born. I left that movie in awe: the way the camera moves during the concerts makes it feel like we are on stage, and Lady Gaga, the quintessential modern pop star, comes across as a totally normal person. The story and acting had my bawling as I left the theater.

After that, I think the next-best movie of the year was Hereditary, which as a horror movie didn't stand a chance of being nominated. It's the scariest movie I've ever seen in theaters, easily, and probably the scariest I've ever seen. It draws with real-life issues as well in a way that makes it all the more unsettling.

I think after that Black Panther takes the cake for me. It's a superhero movie made into an afro-futuristic epic, and despite all its popularity, it's not a bit oversold. It draws on all sorts of pop-culture all the way from James Bond.

One movie that I think has been particularly under-rated is Sorry to Bother You. I appreciated both this and Black Panther as both take place partially in Oakland where I lived last year. (I was not a fan of the other Oakland movie, Blindspotting.) Sorry to Bother You follows a black man at a telemarketing company in Oakland who discovers that he can sell more with a ridiculous white voice that's actually the voice of Arrested Development's David Cross, and then he goes on to discover a fantastically comical scheme by an evil tech CEO.

I loved Roma and Cold War — both were stylish and classic as if from another time. Another great horror movie this year was A Quiet Place, also quite underrated.

But, let's be clear, I'm rooting for Lady Gaga tonight.

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