2019 Oscar Predictions – Best Live Action Short Film

Best Live Action Short Film may be the single hardest category to predict. Rarely does a front-runner appear, and even when one does an upset is always a possible scenario. I have a feeling that the winners in this category generally win by slim margins, as the vote comes down to personal preference over cultural or political relevance.


The Nominees:

  • Detainment
  • Fauve
  • Marguerite
  • Madre
  • Skin

Will Win: Detainment

Could Win: Marguerite

Dark Horse: Madre


Oscar pundit paradise website GoldDerby currently has the odds in this category in favor of Marguerite and Skin. My personal bias against Skin may be swaying my opinion, but I cannot picture it winning over the other four films. Keep my bias in mind, then, as we proceed.

Marguerite, on the other hand, is a quality picture. It is sweet and simple, something that the Academy may like. The feel-good picture wins the Live Action Short category every so often, especially when the other films are more dour, glum, or angry. This is partly why I think Skin and Fauve are out of the race. Both are depressing and hard to watch.

This is not to say that Madre and Detainment are a flowery walk in the park. These are also sad, tense films. But they are, in my opinion, superior productions that stand out for their storytelling and/or technical elements. In a feel-good scenario, four films will cancel each other out in favor of Marguerite.

Otherwise, Detainment smells of Oscar contention. It is a real-life scenario that is singular and inherently dramatic. It has all the trappings, and it is less subtle than Madre. I think Madre accomplishes a lot with its gripping, single-take scene, but narratively it might be lacking to Academy voters. Detainment stands out more openly, in this regard.


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—Alex Brannan (@TheAlexBrannan)


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