Each year (see here) my nephew Steven, a movie buff and critic who proclaims himself a far better judge of cinema than is the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, comes up with his equivalent of the Oscars: the renowned “Golden Steve Awards”. There is no modesty here, but the proclamation of the best of last year’s cinema, bar none. (This dogmatism must run in the family!) He added this in his email:
Here’s this year’s crop. At age 96, Mel Brooks has become my all-time oldest nominee!
The award season begins with his list of nominees, some of which I present here (there are other categories as well). As he notes in his introduction below, the winners will be announced on April 1.
Presenting…the 2022 Golden Steve Awards.
Far and away the most coveted of motion picture accolades, Golden Steves are frequently described as the Oscars without the politics. Impervious to bribery, immune to ballyhoo, unswayed by sentiment, and riddled with integrity, this committee of one might be termed in all accuracy “fair-mindedness incarnate.” Over 200 of the year’s most acclaimed features were screened prior to the compilation of this ballot. First, some caveats:
1) Owing to a lifelong suspicion of prime numbers, each category comprises six nominees, not five.
2) A film can be nominated in only one of the following categories: Best Animated Feature, Best Non-Fiction Film, Best Foreign Language Film. Placement is determined by the Board of Governors. Said film remains eligible in all other fields.
3) This list is in no way connected with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences—a fact that should be apparent from its acumen. Please look elsewhere for Oscar analysis.
Winners will be announced on Saturday, April 1. And now, the worthy nominees (click the screenshot to read them all):
The nominees, by category:
Return to Seoul
Davy Chou, Return to Seoul
Terence Davies, Benediction
Alice Diop, Saint Omer
Jerzy Skolimowski, EO
Steven Spielberg, The Fabelmans
Charlotte Wells, Aftersun
Colin Farrell, The Banshees of Inisherin
Caleb Landry Jones, Nitram
Jack Lowden, Benediction
Paul Mescal, Aftersun
Bill Nighy, Living
Mark Rylance, The Outfit
Cate Blanchett, Tar
Danielle Deadwyler, Till
Rebecca Hall, Resurrection
Vicky Krieps, Corsage
Park Ji-min, Return to Seoul
Andrea Riseborough, To Leslie
Best Supporting Actor
Paul Dano, The Fabelmans
Brian Tyree Henry, Causeway
Anthony Hopkins, Armageddon Time
Alex Lutz, Vortex
Matthew Maher, Funny Pages
Ke Huy Quan, Everything Everywhere All at Once
Best Supporting Actress
Kerry Condon, The Banshees of Inisherin
Judy Davis, Nitram
Dolly de Leon, Triangle of Sadness
Nina Hoss, Tar
Stephanie Hsu, Everything Everywhere All at Once
Guslagie Malanda, Saint Omer
Best Foreign Language Film
EO (Jerzy Skolimowski)
Fabian: Going to the Dogs (Dominik Graf)
No Bears (Jafar Panahi)
Return to Seoul (Davy Chou)
RRR (S.S. Rajamouli)
Saint Omer (Alice Diop)
There are five other categories, and Mel Brooks is nominated for “Best Original Song,” “At the Automat,” The Automat. Here’s the song:
As usual, I’ve seen almost none of the nominated movies or performances. Of all the Best Picture nominees, I’ve seen only “The Fabelmans”, and I thought it was so-so. And where is “Tár”? But Steven’s nominations are not to be sniffed at, for he’s introduced me to many good movies I wouldn’t have seen otherwise (“Tokyo Story” is one).
Of the other movies mentioned for performances, I have seen “Tár”, “The Banshees of Inisherin,” “Till” (overlooked for Best Film) and “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” which I thought was a stinkeroo and couldn’t finish watching. (I did love “Tár and “The Banshees of Inisherin”.) I want to watch “EO” badly, as it’s been on many best-movie lists, but I haven’t had time.
If you’ve seen any of the nominated films, or want to weigh in on the nominations, please do so below. And, of course, come back on April 1 to see the winners, which according to Steven represent the genuine best in cinema.