The 5th Annual Jammies – Celebrating the Year in Cinema

The Jammies hit the fifth year milestone, and it’s a joy to bring you The Jam Report’s little slice of awards season fun for another year. After another sublime 12 months for cinema, it’s been a tough challenge to pick this year’s nominees and winners, but we always get there in the end.

If you’ve been following The Jammies for the last few years, you may notice a few new categories have been added and a few have been cut. With so much negativity already permeating everywhere online, it was decided to eliminate those categories that were, shall we say, a little nasty, bar one. It’s better to keep this a positive event and focus on the great achievements of the year.

So without further ado, let the 5th Annual Jammies commence!

Biggest Surprise
This award is given to the film which managed to delight without any prior warning or hype OR defied expectations to become something completely unexpected. And the nominees are:

Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Eighth Grade
Game Night
Lean on Pete
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

And the winner is…

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (full review) for proving the doubters wrong (including myself) that an animated Spider-Man film needed to exist, and, in an even bigger surprise, ultimately standing as the greatest superhero film of the year. There was simply no bigger shock this year than this film. It defied the odds and delivered something unexpected, refreshing, and downright stunning.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Eighth Grade

Biggest Disappointment
This award is given to the film which held such great promise, but ultimately and crushingly failed to deliver on that potential. And the nominees are:

Bohemian Rhapsody
The Cloverfield Paradox
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Gigglebiggle (or whatever it was called)
The Nutcracker and the Four Realms
Ready Player One
Solo: A Star Wars Story

And the winner is…

Ready Player One (full review) for having every element possible to be something absolutely sensational and instead gave us a conflated, overbloated mess of a film that is easily one of Steven Spielberg’s worst efforts. This will be a contentious award, as the film has plenty of fans. For me, nothing went right in this movie, bar the impressive special effects. It hurts me to give this award to one of my all-time favourite filmmakers, but Spielberg is better than this.

Dishonourable mention/runner-up – Solo: A Star Wars Story

Best Supporting Male Performance
No explanation needed for this one. And the nominees are:

Richard E. Grant – Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Adam Driver – BlacKkKlansman
Sam Elliott – A Star Is Born
Michael B Jordan – Black Panther
Daniel Kaluuya – Widows
Alex Wolff – Hereditary

And the winner is…

Richard E. Grant for his scene-stealing turn in Can You Ever Forgive Me? (full review)that demands to win an Oscar this season. Grant captures your attention from his very first scene and keeps it for the rest of the film, without ever stealing focus from our glorious leading lady in Melissa McCarthy. The pair has dynamic chemistry that’s elevated by Grant’s terrific and deeply layered performance. It’s a remarkable performance that has finally earned the veteran actor the kudos he’s long deserved.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Michael B Jordan

Best Supporting Female Performance
No explanation needed for this one. And the nominees are:

Elizabeth Debicki – Widows
Danai Gurira – Black Panther
Regina King – If Beale Street Could Talk
Margot Robbie – Mary Queen of Scots
Rachel McAdams – Disobedience
Michelle Yeoh – Crazy Rich Asians

And the winner is…

Regina King for her career-best performance in If Beale Street Could Talk. King has limited screentime in the film, but makes every single moment count. As a beleaguered mother, she’s fierce and strong, vulnerable and broken, warm and endearing, and fiercely determined to do anything to help her young daughter. King has been a dependable actress for years now, and this may finally be the role to make people pay attention.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Elizabeth Debecki

Best Lead Male Performance
No explanations needed for this one. And the nominees are:

Christian Bale – Vice
Bradley Cooper – A Star Is Born
Ben Foster – Leave No Trace
Ryan Gosling – First Man
Ethan Hawke – First Reformed
Charlie Plummer – Lean on Pete

And the winner is…

Bradley Cooper for his sensational performance in A Star Is Born (full review) that really should be leading to an Oscar, even if it’s looking like it won’t. Working as writer, director, producer, and songwriter, Cooper does it all here, but it’s his acting that’s on another level. In a career of amazing work, this is the best he’s ever done, by far. Finding deep pathos in his fractured and broken character, Cooper digs deep to create a performance that’s both captivating and heartbreaking.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Ethan Hawke

Best Lead Female Performance
Yes, there are double the number of nominees here. It’s been a bonanza year for female lead performances, and the list simply could not be cut down. And the nominees are:

Yalitza Aparicio – Roma
Emily Blunt – Mary Poppins Returns
Glenn Close – The Wife
Olivia Colman – The Favourite
Toni Collette – Hereditary
Viola Davis – Widows
Elsie Fisher – Eighth Grade
Lady Gaga – A Star Is Born
Joanna Kulig – Cold War
Melissa McCarthy – Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Emma Stone – The Favourite
Rachel Weisz – The Favourite

And the winner is…

Toni Collette for her breathtaking performance in Hereditary. In a year of remarkable work from women, it was beyond difficult to pick just one. But there is something about Collette’s performance that’s the slightest cut above all others. The Academy are going to look utterly foolish when they fail to recognise her work with an Oscar nomination. Say what you will about the film, but you cannot deny the raw power of Collette. She is a revelation here.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Olivia Colman

Best Voice-Over/Motion-Capture Performance
This award is given to the actor who managed to create a brilliant performance without appearing on-screen in a traditional manner. And the nominees are:

Will Arnett – Teen Titans Go! To the Movies
Josh Brolin – Avengers: Infinity War
Jake Johnson – Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Scott Menville – Teen Titans Go! To the Movies
Sarah Silverman – Ralph Breaks the Internet
Ben Whishaw – Paddington 2

And the winner is…

Josh Brolin for his supreme motion-capture work as Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War (full review). Stealing a comic book film when you’re the villain isn’t all that hard. Stealing a comic book film where you’re the villain surrounded by literally DOZENS of superheroes is a miracle, but that’s precisely what Brolin achieves. Brolin crafts Thanos as a multi-layered, fully-dimensional character with earnest motivations and almost empathetic intentions. It’s a nuanced performance you simply do not expect to come from a giant purple-hued alien.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Ben Whishaw

Breakthrough Performance
This award is given to the performance that blew audiences away and gave the world a break-out star. And the nominees are:

Yalitza Aparicio – Roma
Cynthia Erivo – Bad Times at the El Royale
Elsie Fisher – Eighth Grade
Thomasin McKenzie – Leave No Trace
Charlie Plummer – Lean on Pete
Letitia Wright – Black Panther

And the winner is…

Elsie Fisher for her deeply earnest and utterly captivating performance as Kayla in Eight Grade. In one of the most accurate depictions of teenagehood the screen has ever seen, Fisher perfectly encapsulates the complicated and anxiety-ridden life of a shy young girl, desperate to be one of the cool kids. It’s a relatable performance for those whose high school experience was less than perfect (which, let’s be honest, is most of us) and Fisher completely inhabits this role to create something wonderfully genuine.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Charlie Plummer

Achievement in Directing
No explanation needed here. And the nominees are:

Ryan Coogler – Black Panther
Bradley Cooper – A Star Is Born
Alfonso Cuarón – Roma
Lynne Ramsay – You Were Never Really Here
Spike Lee – BlacKkKlansman
Pawel Pawlikowski – Cold War

And the winner is…

Alfonso Cuarón for crafting a pure work of art with the masterpiece that is Roma (full review). What is there to say that hasn’t already been said about the film and Cuarón’s impeccable work? There aren’t any superlatives left that haven’t already been used, so all that’s left to say is bravo, Alfonso. Once again, you have proven to be one of the greatest directors of our time, and, cliche as it may be to give you this prize, no one else could take it home.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Pawel Pawlikowski

Best Moment
This award is given to that one special stand-out moment from a film that lives with you long after you’ve left the cinema. And the nominees are:

The finger snap heard around the universe in Avengers: Infinity War
Kayla’s father’s speech in Eighth Grade
The moon landing in First Man
The accident in Hereditary
The beach sequence in Roma
The car conversation in Widows

And the winner is…

The accident in Hereditary (full review), purely for shock value alone. I’m still coming to terms with this moment. I can’t say any more without spoiling the whole thing, but those who have seen the film know this moment and likely remember how it made them feel. It stands as one of the biggest cinematic shocks you could ever witness. There really aren’t any words except wow.

Honourable mention/runner-up – The finger snap in Avengers: Infinity War

Best Music Moment
This award is given to that special stand-out moment from a film that involves music in some way. And the nominees are:

Darlene relentlessly rehearses “This Old Heart of Mine” in Bad Times at the El Royale
The Live Aid sequence in Bohemian Rhapsody
The dance sequence in The Favourite
Mary and Jack perform “A Cover is Not the Book” in Mary Poppins Returns
The “Rain On The Roof” musical number in Paddington 2
Jackson and Ally perform “Shallow” in A Star Is Born

And the winner is…

Mary and Jack perform “A Cover is Not the Book” in Mary Poppins Returns (full review). It was hard to pick just one music moment from this gorgeous musical delight. You could easily give this award to “The Place Where Lost Things Go” or “Trip a Little Light Fantastic” or even “The Royal Doulton Music Hall.” For my money, the elaborate and eye-catching performance of this ridiculously catchy tune steals the film and gives us the greatest fusion of music and cinema this year. Sorry, Gaga. Poppins pips you at the post on this one.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Jackson and Ally perform “Shallow” in A Star Is Born

Dream Team
This award is given to the duo or team that worked together in perfect harmony to create movie magic in 2018. And the nominees are:

The entire gargantuan cast of Avengers: Infinity War
Okoye and the Dora Milaje in Black Panther
Lee and Jack in Can You Ever Forgive Me?
The trio of women in The Favourite
The “family” in Shoplifters
The widows in Widows

And the winner is…

The trio of women in The Favourite (full review).You’ll notice all three women were placed in the lead category for The Jammies, and rightly so. There are no supporting turns here. Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz, and Emma Stone are co-leads here, creating an ensemble unlike few others this year. Their interactions are deliciously wicked and delightful. Each actress plays perfectly off their counterpart. Each is gifted their own individual storyline that forms an integral part of the overall narrative. Each captures focus in three performances that are amongst the year’s best. It’s a combination made in cinematic heaven.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Lee and Jack in Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Special Award of Excellence for the Criminally Underrated
This award is given to the performer who will shamefully be overlooked for nominations/wins during awards season this year, and so The Jam Report would like to give them something since no one else will. And the nominees are:

Kathryn Hahn – Private Life
Josh Hamilton in Eighth Grade
Rachel McAdams – Game Night
Charlize Theron – Tully
Cynthia ErivoBad Times at the El Royale, Widows
Olivia the Dog – Game Night, Widows

And the winner is…

Cynthia Erivo for gifting us not one, but two stand-out performances this year, marking the arrival of a new superstar of the screen. Those who knew her theatre work were already aware of the immense talent of this dazzling young actress, who has seamlessly transferred over to cinema. In two films with large ensembles containing household names, Erivo consistently steals focus and demands you pay attention. This is just the beginning for this newcomer. Erivo is set to play political activist Harriet Tubman in her next film, so expect her to make a strong play for awards contention next season.

Honourable mention/runner-up – Charlize Theron

Most Anticipated Film of 2019
This award is given to the upcoming film that The Jam Report is counting down the days until, while at the same time praying that it doesn’t wind up taking next year’s Biggest Disappointment crown. And the nominees are:

Avengers: Endgame
Downton Abbey (shut up, the show was heavenly)
The Lion King

And the winner is…

In a year where the house of mouse is expecting to dominate the box office, Dumbo stands as the one Disney property this film critic is most looking forward to. The original is a classic, so there is much anxiety surrounding this remake. But the trailers have given strong indication this could be something truly special. The visual effects work look sublime. The cast is phenomenal. Despite his recent history, Tim Burton is the right man for the job. And Dumbo himself looks utterly adorable. Please don’t screw this up.

Congratulations to the winners of the 5th Annual Jammies. I hope you’ve enjoyed The Jam Report’s piece of awards season. See you all next year.