Baftas 2018: Who will win? And who should win?

From Three Billboards to Paddington 2

Jack Shepherd
Friday 16 February 2018 15:23
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Sally Hawkins and Octavia Spencer in the film 'The Shape of Water'
Sally Hawkins and Octavia Spencer in the film 'The Shape of Water'

Another year, another Baftas ceremony crowns another batch of winners. This year should make for particularly interesting viewing, not only because Joanna Lumley will be debuting as host, but because the main competition remains without a definite frontrunner.

While The Shape of Water leads the pack with 12 nominations in total, the bookies — along with many critics — have Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri pegged as the night’s eventual big winner. Martin McDonagh’s film has the second most nominations with nine, a number matched by Darkest Hour.

Come Sunday (18 February) the winners will finally be revealed. Until then, let’s have a closer look at which films are expected to win, and which should win.

Best Film:

Call Me By Your Name

Darkest Hour

Dunkirk

The Shape of Water

Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri

Who will win? Three Billboards

Who should? Call Me By Your Name

Despite the backlash against Sam Rockwell’s character, Three Billboards remains the frontrunner for the best film Bafta. The dark comedy has struck a nerve with Britons, Grenfell Tower victims borrowing visuals from the film to protest the government. However, Call Me By Your Name remains one of the greatest movies released in the last few years. The beautiful story packs an emotional punch, one that’s impeccably acted and directed. No wonder The Independent named it the best film of 2017.

Outstanding British Film:

Darkest Hour

The Death of Stalin

God's Own Country

Lady Macbeth

Paddington 2

Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri - Trailer 2

Who will win? Three Billboards

Who should? Paddington 2

Again, Three Billboards remains the frontrunner — but how can you deny Paddington 2, arguably the best family film released this decade. With a 100 percent Rotten Tomatoes rating, stellar performances from Sally Hawkins and Hugh Grant, the story of a lost bear (featuring subtle anti-Brexit themes) struck a nerve with millions of people. And while God’s Own Country and Death of Stalin makes for excellent substitute winners, there really is something extra special about Paul King’s movie.

Best Actor:

Daniel Day-Lewis, Phantom Thread

Daniel Kaluuya, Get Out

Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour

Jamie Bell, Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool

​Timothée Chalamet, Call Me By Your Name

Darkest Hour - Trailer 2

Who will win? Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour

Who should? Timothée Chalamet, Call Me By Your Name

Gary Oldman has become the de facto choice to win the best actor award. However — although Oldman’s performance is fantastic, elevating a middling film — Timothée Chalamet offers an utterly mesmerising performance in Call Me By Your Name. His chemistry with Armie Hammer, along with a stand-out emotional final scene, make Call Me By Your Name essential viewing for any cinephile.

Best Actress:

Annette Bening, Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool

Frances McDormand, Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri

Margot Robbie, I, Tonya

Sally Hawkins, The Shape of Water

Saoirse Ronan, Lady Bird

Trailer: I, Tonya

Who will win? Frances McDormand, Three Billboards

Who should? Frances McDormand, Three Billboards

One of the few times a worthy winner should take the award. Frances McDormand plays the rough-tooth, blue-collar American to perfection in Three Billboards, marking another career highlight for the already well-decorated actor. Margot Robbie also gives an incredible performance in I, Tonya.

Best Director:

Denis Villeneuve, Blade Runner 2049

Luca Guadagnino, Call Me By Your Name

Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk

Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water

Martin McDonagh, Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri

Dunkirk - Trailer

Who will win? Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water

Who should? Christopher Nolan, Dunkirk

As amazing as The Shape of Water is — and the underwater romance really is terrific — you cannot deny the spectacle that was Dunkirk. The World War II flick is an intense experience, brought to life by excellent directing and tight editing. It’s hard to imagine anyone other than Christopher Nolan could have achieved this extraordinary feat, and the director should rightly claim that victory. A shame, though, that not a single woman was nominated despite incredible work by Greta Gerwig (nominated for the Oscar) and Dee Rees for Mudbound.

Supporting Actress:

Allison Janney, I, Tonya

Kristin Scott Thomas, Darkest Hour

Laurie Metcalf, Lady Bird

Lesley Manville, Phantom Thread

Octavia Spencer, The Shape of Water

Phantom Thread - Trailer

Who will win? Allison Janney, I, Tonya

Who should? Lesley Manville, Phantom Thread

Allison Janney has picked up numerous awards for I, Tonya. However, Lesley Manville’s spellbinding performance in Phantom Thread marks another career high, the actor often dominating scenes despite Daniel Day-Lewis being in the room. Laurie Metcalf would also be a worthy winner for her emotional performance in Lady Bird.

Supporting Actor:

Christopher Plummer, All the Money in the World

Hugh Grant, Paddington 2

Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri

Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project

Woody Harrelson, Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri

The Florida Project- trailer

Who will win? Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards

Who should? Willem Dafoe, The Florida Project

Rockwell has been dominating the category this awards season and wrongly so. Willem Dafoe’s performance in The Florida Project is a remarkably emotional turn for someone better known for playing villains. The actor brings huge amounts of heart to an understated role in a clinically underappreciated movie.

Best Animated Film:

Coco

Loving Vincent

My Life as a Courgette

Who will win? Coco

Who should? My Life as a Courgette

It’s hard not to love Pixar’s latest, an emotional roller-coaster that has broken records in Mexico. My Life as a Courgette, though, really is something special. At only 65 minutes long, the wonderful stop-motion focusses on an orphaned child, known as Courgette. Featuring the voices of Nick Offerman and Ellen Page, you will be hard pushed to finish this one with dry eyes.

The Baftas take place 18 February.

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