As part of our Oscar coverage we’re taking a deep dive into each individual category. Today we look at Film Editing.
Tonight is the 91st Annual Academy Awards! And all day today we’ll be bringing you a rundown of each category as well as reviews of the nominated films. Next up, we’re looking at the film editing category. We’ll explain what the category means and who the frontrunner is as of now.
The Film Editing Oscar goes to the principal editor of a feature film. It is their job to work with a team of people, alongside the director of the film (usually), and pieces together a full-length film based on the different takes a director may shoot for each scene. They help decide when a film cuts to black, when it moves back and forth between characters, and how montages work. That’s some of the simpler aspects of the job, but overall it’s a tedious and frustrating process to make sure that everything turns out right.
This year the nominees are BlacKkKlansman, Bohemian Rhapsody, The Favourite, Green Book, and Vice. The Favourite and Green Book feel like the long shots here, as those two films don’t feature any element that’s really sticks out. That’s not to say it isn’t good editing, it’s fantastic. Which is why these films are nominated. But Vice, BlacKkKlansman, and Bohemian Rhapsody all use editing to help tell the story at times.
Bohemian Rhapsody gets an edge for it sort of being a musical. BlacKkKlansman has an edge thanks to some of the tight cuts and back & forth in the calls between Detective Ron Stallworth (John David Washington) and David Duke (Topher Grace). Vice is a complex and complicated narrative that moves quickly through over thirty years of time and will go back and forth at times.
Each film this year deserves this nomination. And in a way each film does have a bit of a fighting chance. With The Favourite and Green Book potentially getting straight ticket votes for anyone that loves those films. But overall the frontrunner here has to be Vice. There isn’t a single other film where the editing doesn’t play an important characteristic in the film. Where the decision to cut quick or linger between changes makes an impact as much as this film does. It helps build the tension and boost the comedy at certain moments of levity. If Vice doesn’t win, BlacKkKlansman could steal it thanks to its extensive tension building moments, but that feels unlikely.
So as of now here’s the final word:
Film Editing: Vice