Something still rubs me wrong about a lifetime achievement speech securing someone’s nomination (or that person’s nomination spot being itself locked down in perpetuity), regardless of the slings and arrows of loathsome creatures descending on her. The year was so rich in female roles that called out for voters who pay attention. Probably none of them even saw Huppert’s other great performance in “Things to Come,” which had all of the delicate characterization and none of the dicey gender politics that repelled many with “Elle.”
The biggest problem I see this year, though, is one film having everything sealed and delivered before the contest seemingly even began. Does Chazelle really need to win both Director and Screenplay? This is why the year of “Lord of the Rings” was one of the most boring ceremonies, even if it fared well with ratings. The same thank-yous (and same theme music as they walk on stage) get so monotonous, and the other contenders wonder why they bothered to show up. It feels so….. Darwinian. Spread the love!
Lastly, I agree vigorously that they should set a number, any number, for Best Picture nominations and stick with it. This system has vast appeal for statisticians, but not much else going for it.