February 20, 2019

The Nominees: “Capernaum” (Lebanon); “Cold War” (Poland); “Never Look Away” (Germany); “Roma” (Mexico); “Shoplifters” (Japan)


Will Win: “Cold War”

Should Win: “Cold War”

Although it would make a certain amount of sense for “Roma” to win both best picture and best foreign language film, I think some voters are going to assume “Roma” will win the big one and possibly divide the riches and favor the runner-up, the immensely deserving “Cold War,” which also incidentally was my favorite film of 2018.


Will Win: “Roma”

Should Win: “Shoplifters”

“Roma” deserves the many accolades it has received. But its lock-step awards-season sweep has obscured a tremendously good bunch of foreign language nominees, several of which — including “Cold War,” “Shoplifters” and the overlooked “Burning” — I favor. Hirokazu Kore-eda’s “Shoplifters,” which won Cannes’ Palme d’Or, is made with such delicacy that you never see its profundity coming. You might never think of family the same way again — which is, ironically, part of the message of “Roma,” too.