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Cinema Chat: 2022 Oscar predictions, reports from the Ann Arbor Film Festival, and more

Michigan Theater
The Michigan Theater

ANN ARBOR FILM FESTIVAL - Now through March 27

The Ann Arbor Film Festival is back for in person screenings at the Michigan Theater through Sunday. This festival, combined with the State and Michigan reputation for as excellent film venues, puts Ann Arbor on the world’s map as a city with an outstanding film culture. Find the full schedule here.

OSCAR NIGHT IS SUNDAY- Predicted Winners


  • Don’t Look Up
  • Drive My Car RUSS’S FAVORITE
  • Dune
  • King Richard
  • Licorice Pizza
  • Nightmare Alley
  • The Power of the Dog FAVORITE
  • West Side Story


  • Paul Thomas Anderson (Licorice Pizza)
  • Kenneth Branagh (Belfast)
  • Jane Campion (The Power of the Dog) FAVORITE
  • Ryûsuke Hamaguchi (Drive My Car)
  • Steven Spielberg (West Side Story)


  • CODA FAVORITE (Screenplay by Siân Heder)
  • Drive My Car (Screenplay by Ryusuke Hamaguchi, Takamasa Oe)
  • Dune (Screenplay by Jon Spaihts and Denis Villeneuve and Eric Roth)
  • The Lost Daughter (Written by Maggie Gyllenhaal)
  • The Power of the Dog POSSIBLE (Written by Jane Campion)


  • Belfast POSSIBLE (Written by Kenneth Branagh)
  • Don’t Look Up (Screenplay by Adam McKay; Story by Adam McKay & David Sirota)
  • King Richard (Written by Zach Baylin)
  • Licorice Pizza FAVORITE (Written by Paul Thomas Anderson)
  • The Worst Person in the World (Written by Eskil Vogt, Joachim Trier)


  • Drive My Car FAVORITE (Japan) – RUSS’S FAVORITE
  • Flee (Denmark)
  • The Hand of God (Italy)
  • Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom (Bhutan)
  • The Worst Person in the World (Norway)


  • Encanto FAVORITE (Jared Bush, Byron Howard, Yvett Merino and Clark Spencer)
  • Flee (Jonas Poher Rasmussen, Monica Hellström, Signe Byrge Sørensen, Charlotte De La Gournerie)
  • Luca (Enrico Casarosa and Andrea Warren)
  • The Mitchells vs. The Machines (Mike Rianda, Phil Lord, Christopher Miller and Kurt Albrecht)
  • Raya and the Last Dragon (Don Hall, Carlos López Estrada, Osnat Shurer, Peter Del Vecho)


  • Ascension (Jessica Kingdon, Kira Simon-Kennedy and Nathan Truesdell)
  • Attica (Stanley Nelson and Traci A. Curry)
  • Summer of Soul FAVORITE (Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson) RUSS’S FAVORITE
  • Writing With Fire (Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh)


  • Jessica Chastain (The Eyes of Tammy Faye) FAVORITE
  • Olivia Colman (The Lost Daughter)
  • Penélope Cruz (Parallel Mothers)
  • Nicole Kidman (Being the Ricardos) POSSIBLE
  • Kristen Stewart (Spencer)


  • Javier Bardem (Being the Ricardos)
  • Benedict Cumberbatch (The Power of the Dog)
  • Andrew Garfield (Tick, Tick … Boom!)
  • Will Smith (King Richard) FAVORITE RUSS’S FAVORITE
  • Denzel Washington (The Tragedy of Macbeth)


  • Jessie Buckley (The Lost Daughter)
  • Ariana DeBose FAVORITE (West Side Story) FAVORITE
  • Judi Dench (Belfast)
  • Kirsten Dunst (The Power of the Dog)
  • Aunjanue Ellis (King Richard)


  • Ciarán Hinds (Belfast)
  • Troy Kotsur (CODA) FAVORITE
  • Jesse Plemons (The Power of the Dog)
  • J.K. Simmons (Being the Ricardos) EMU GRADUATE, RUSS’S FAVORITE
  • Kodi Smit-McPhee (The Power of the Dog)


  • Affairs of the Art (Joanna Quinn and Les Mills)
  • Bestia POSSIBLE (Hugo Covarrubias and Tevo Díaz)
  • Boxballet (Anton Dyakov)
  • Robin Robin FAVORITE (Dan Ojari and Mikey Please) RUSS’S FAVORITE
  • The Windshield Wiper (Alberto Mielgo and Leo Sanchez)


  • Ala Kachuu — Take and Run (Maria Brendle and Nadine Lüchinger)
  • The Dress (Tadeusz Łysiak and Maciej Ślesicki)
  • The Long Goodbye FAVORITE (Aneil Karia and Riz Ahmed)
  • On My Mind (Martin Strange-Hansen and Kim Magnusson)
  • Please Hold (K.D. Dávila and Levin Menekse)


  • Audible (Matt Ogens and Geoff McLean)
  • Lead Me Home (Pedro Kos and Jon Shenk)
  • The Queen of Basketball FAVORITE (Ben Proudfoot)  RUSS’S FAVORITE
  • Three Songs for Benazir POSSIBLE (Elizabeth Mirzaei and Gulistan Mirzaei)
  • When We Were Bullies (Jay Rosenblatt)


  • Cruella FAVORITE (Jenny Beavan)
  • Cyrano (Massimo Cantini Parrini and Jacqueline Durran)
  • Dune (Jacqueline West and Robert Morgan)
  • Nightmare Alley (Luis Sequeira)
  • West Side Story (Paul Tazewell)


  • Belfast (Denise Yarde, Simon Chase, James Mather and Niv Adiri)
  • Dune FAVORITE (Mac Ruth, Mark Mangini, Theo Green, Doug Hemphill and Ron Bartlett)
  • No Time to Die (Simon Hayes, Oliver Tarney, James Harrison, Paul Massey and Mark Taylor)
  • The Power of the Dog (Richard Flynn, Robert Mackenzie and Tara Webb)
  • West Side Story (Tod A. Maitland, Gary Rydstrom, Brian Chumney, Andy Nelson and Shawn Murphy)


  • Don’t Look Up (Nicholas Britell)
  • Dune FAVORITE (Hans Zimmer)
  • Encanto (Germaine Franco)
  • Parallel Mothers (Alberto Iglesias)
  • The Power of the Dog (Jonny Greenwood)


  • Don’t Look Up (Hank Corwin)
  • Dune FAVORITE (Joe Walker)
  • King Richard POSSIBLE (Pamela Martin)
  • The Power of the Dog (Peter Sciberras)
  • Tick, Tick… Boom! (Myron Kerstein and Andrew Weisblum)


  • Coming 2 America (Mike Marino, Stacey Morris and Carla Farmer)
  • Cruella POSSIBLE (Nadia Stacey, Naomi Donne and Julia Vernon)
  • Dune (Donald Mowat, Love Larson and Eva von Bahr)
  • The Eyes of Tammy Faye FAVORITE (Linda Dowds, Stephanie Ingram and Justin Raleigh)
  • House of Gucci (Göran Lundström, Anna Carin Lock and Frederic Aspiras)


  • “Be Alive” — Music and Lyric by DIXSON and Beyoncé Knowles-Carter (King Richard)
  • “Dos Oruguitas” POSSIBLE — Music and Lyric by Lin-Manuel Miranda (Encanto)
  • “Down to Joy” — Music and Lyric by Van Morrison (Belfast)
  • “No Time to Die” FAVORITE— Music and Lyric by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell (No Time to Die)
  • “Somehow You Do” — Music and Lyric by Diane Warren (Four Good Days)


  • Dune FAVORITE (Greig Fraser)
  • Nightmare Alley (Dan Laustsen)
  • The Power of the Dog (Ari Wegner)
  • The Tragedy of Macbeth (Bruno Delbonnel)
  • West Side Story (Janusz Kaminski)


  • Dune FAVORITE (Production Design: Patrice Vermette; Set Decoration: Zsuzsanna Sipos)
  • Nightmare Alley POSSIBLE (Production Design: Tamara Deverell; Set Decoration: Shane Vieau)
  • The Power of the Dog (Production Design: Grant Major; Set Decoration: Amber Richards)
  • The Tragedy of Macbeth (Production Design: Stefan Dechant; Set Decoration: Nancy Haigh)
  • West Side Story (Production Design: Adam Stockhausen; Set Decoration: Rena DeAngelo)


  • Dune FAVORITE (Paul Lambert, Tristan Myles, Brian Connor and Gerd Nefzer)
  • Free Guy (Swen Gillberg, Bryan Grill, Nikos Kalaitzidis and Dan Sudick)
  • No Time to Die (Charlie Noble, Joel Green, Jonathan Fawkner and Chris Corbould)
  • Shang-Chi & the Legend of the 10 Rings (ChristopherTownsend, Joe Farrell, Sean Walker, Dan Oliver)
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home (Kelly Port, Chris Waegner, Scott Edelstein and Dan Sudick)



A young Finnish woman escapes an enigmatic love affair in Moscow by boarding a train to the arctic port of Murmansk. Forced to share the long ride and a tiny sleeping car with a larger than life Russian miner, the unexpected encounter leads the occupants of Compartment No. 6 to face major truths about human connection.



An escaped prisoner seeks refuge in the predominantly African-American town of Tatesville, Georgia, by passing himself off as the Rt. Reverend Isaiah T. Jenkins. He is joined in town by a fellow criminal, and the pair scheme to swindle the phony reverend's congregation of their offerings. Jenkins falls in love with a young member of his congregation, Isabelle Perkins, even though she is in love with a poor young man named Sylvester, who happens to be Jenkins’ long-estranged identical twin brother.

A 1925 silent film produced, written, directed, and distributed by Oscar Micheaux and starring Paul Robeson in his motion picture debut. In 2019, the film was selected by the Library of Congress for inclusion in the National Film Registry for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant. The original version of Body and Soul was a nine-reel production. Micheaux was forced to re-edit the film twice before the commission New York Film Commission approved the film, which was reduced from nine to five reels. The surviving copy of Body and Soul is based on this edited version. Body and Soul is one of three surviving silent films created by Micheaux, who is credited with making 26 silent productions. Body and Soul holds an 80% approval rating on aggregate film site Rotten Tomatoes.

The film was originally released to cinemas catering to an exclusive African-American audience, and for many years the film was unknown to white moviegoers. In 2000, Body and Soul was presented at the New York Film Festival.

About Oscar Devereaux Micheaux (January 2, 1884 – March 25, 1951)

He was an author, film director and independent producer of more than 44 films. Micheaux is regarded as the first major African-American feature filmmaker, a prominent producer of race films, and has been described as "the most successful African-American filmmaker of the first half of the 20th century". He produced both silent films and sound films.

Micheaux decided to concentrate on writing and, eventually, filmmaking, a new industry. He wrote seven novels.

In 1918, his novel The Homesteader, dedicated to Booker T. Washington, attracted the attention of George Johnson, the manager of the Lincoln Motion Picture Company in Los Angeles. After Johnson offered to make The Homesteader into a new feature film, but Micheaux wanted to be directly involved in the adaptation of his book as a movie. Johnson resisted and never produced the film. Instead, Micheaux founded the Micheaux Film & Book Company in Chicago; its first project was the production of The Homesteader as a feature film. Micheaux had a major career as a film producer and director: He produced over 40 films, which drew audiences throughout the U.S. as well as internationally. Micheaux contacted wealthy academic connections from his earlier career as a porter, and sold stock for his company at $75 to $100 a share. Micheaux hired actors and actresses and decided to have the premiere in Chicago. The film and Micheaux received high praise from film critics. One article credited Micheaux with "a historic breakthrough, a creditable, dignified achievement".[3] Some members of the Chicago clergy criticized the film as libelous. The Homesteader became known as Micheaux's breakout film; it helped him become widely known as a writer and a filmmaker.

In addition to writing and directing his own films, Micheaux also adapted the works of different writers for his silent pictures. Many of his films were open, blunt and thought-provoking regarding certain racial issues of that time. He once commented: "It is only by presenting those portions of the race portrayed in my pictures, in the light and background of their true state, that we can raise our people to greater heights." Financial hardships during the Great Depression eventually made it impossible for Micheaux to keep producing films, and he returned to writing.

We will be doing two additional Oscar Micheaux films:

  • "The Exile" (1931) – Tuesday, 4/5 at 4:30 PM 
  • "Birthright" (1938) – Tuesday, 4/12 at 4:30 PM



At an elite New England university built on the site of a Salem-era gallows hill, three women strive to find their place. Navigating politics and privilege, they encounter increasingly terrifying manifestations of the school's haunted past...and present.

"The Outfit" 

From the Academy Award-winning writer of The Imitation Game (Graham Moore) comes The Outfit, a gripping and masterful thriller in which an expert tailor (Academy Award winner Mark Rylance) must outwit a dangerous group of mobsters in order to survive a fateful night.

"Jujustu Kaisen 0: The Movie"

When they were children, Rika Orimoto was killed in a traffic accident right before the eyes of her close friend, Yuta Okkotsu. Rika became an apparition, and Yuta longed for his own death after suffering under her curse, but the greatest Jujutsu sorcerer, Satoru Gojo, welcomed him into Jujutsu High. There Yuta meets his classmates, Maki Zen'in, Toge Inumaki, and Panda, and finally finds his own determination. "I want the confidence to say it's okay that I'm alive!" "While I'm at Jujutsu High, I'll break Rika-chan's curse." Meanwhile, the vile curse user, Suguru Geto, who was expelled from the school for massacring ordinary people, appears before Yuta and the others. While Geto advocates for creating a paradise for only jujutsu sorcerers, he unleashes a thousand curses upon Shinjuku and Kyoto to exterminate all non-sorcerers.


Academy Awards nomination for Best Costume Design

Award-winning director Joe Wright envelops moviegoers in a symphony of emotions with music, romance, and beauty in this re-imagining the timeless tale of a heartbreaking love triangle. A man ahead of his time, Cyrano de Bergerac (played by Peter Dinklage) dazzles whether with ferocious wordplay at a verbal joust or with brilliant swordplay in a duel. But, convinced that his appearance renders him unworthy of the love of a devoted friend, the luminous Roxanne (Haley Bennett), Cyrano has yet to declare his feelings for her -- and Roxanne has fallen in love, at first sight, with Christian (Kelvin Harrison, Jr.).

"Licorice Pizza"

3 Academy Award Nominations: Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Director for Paul Thomas Anderson

This film is a 2021 American coming-of-age comedy-drama film written and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson ("Phantom Thread," "There Will Be Blood," "Boogie Nights"). The film stars Alana Haim, Cooper Hoffman, Sean Penn, Tom Waits, Bradley Cooper, Maya Rudolph, and Benny Safdie. The film received acclaim from critics and received three awards from the National Board of Review, including Best Film. It was also named one of the best films of 2021 by the American Film Institute and received four nominations at the 79th Golden Globe Awards, including Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, along with eight nominations at the 27th Critics' Choice Awards, including Best Picture. The story of Alana Kane (Alana Haim) and Gary Valentine (Cooper Hoffman) growing up, running around and going through the treacherous navigation of first love in the San Fernando Valley, 1973.

"The Batman"

Batman ventures into Gotham City's underworld when a sadistic killer leaves behind a trail of cryptic clues. As the evidence begins to lead closer to home and the scale of the perpetrator's plans become clear, he must forge new relationships, unmask the culprit and bring justice to the abuse of power and corruption that has long plagued the metropolis.

"The Worst Person in the World" 

2 Academy Award Nominations: Best International Feature Film and Best Original Screenplay!

This film concludes Joachim Trier's Oslo Trilogy with a romantic comedy that delightfully subverts the genre's well-worn tropes. It is a modern dramedy about the quest for love and meaning in contemporary Oslo. It chronicles four years in the life of Julie (Renate Reinsve), a young woman who navigates the troubled waters of her love life and struggles to find her career path, leading her to take a realistic look at who she really is.

"Death on the Nile"

A mystery thriller film directed by Kenneth Branagh from a screenplay by Michael Green, based on the 1937 novel of the same name by Agatha Christie. The film is a sequel to "Murder on the Orient Express" (2017) and stars Branagh returning as Hercule Poirot, along with Tom Bateman (also returning from the first film), Annette Bening, Russell Brand, Ali Fazal, Dawn French, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Rose Leslie, Emma Mackey, Sophie Okonedo, Jennifer Saunders, and Letitia Wright round out the ensemble cast. The film is the third screen adaptation of Christie's novel, following the 1978 film and an episode of the television series Agatha Christie's Poirot broadcast in 2004. Kenneth Branagh directs and stars as Belgian sleuth Hercule Poirot, whose Egyptian vacation aboard a glamorous river steamer turns into a terrifying search for a murderer when a picture-perfect couple's idyllic honeymoon is tragically cut short.

Oscar Nominated Short Films

For more than fifteen years, Oscar© Nominated Short Films have played in theaters across the globe. This special release features the year's best short films for the big screen. Each nominee is released in one of three distinct feature-length compilations according to their category of nomination: Live Action, Animation or Documentary.

Important: Rating equivalent of R. No children should be admitted under any circumstances.

Best Animated Short

  • "Affairs of the Art" (Joanna Quinn and Les Mills)
  • "Bestia" (Hugo Covarrubias and Tevo Díaz)
  • "Boxballet" (Anton Dyakov)
  • "Robin Robin" (Dan Ojari and Mikey Please)
  • "The Windshield Wiper" (Alberto Mielgo and Leo Sanchez)

Best Live Action Short

  • "Ala Kachuu" — Take and Run (Maria Brendle and Nadine Lüchinger)
  • "The Dress" (Tadeusz Łysiak and Maciej Ślesicki)
  • "The Long Goodbye" (Aneil Karia and Riz Ahmed)
  • "On My Mind" (Martin Strange-Hansen and Kim Magnusson)
  • "Please Hold" (K.D. Dávila and Levin Menekse)

Best Documentary Short

  • "Audible" (Matt Ogens and Geoff McLean)
  • "Lead Me Home" (Pedro Kos and Jon Shenk)
  • "The Queen of Basketball" (Ben Proudfoot)
  • "Three Songs for Benazir" (Elizabeth Mirzaei and Gulistan Mirzaei)
  • "When We Were Bullies" (Jay Rosenblatt)

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Contact David: dfair@emich.edu
Russ Collins is the executive director of Marquee Arts, the nonprofit that oversees the Michigan Theater and State Theater in Ann Arbor.
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