If Rotten Tomatoes were the judge, the Oscar for best picture would go to Get Out or Lady Bird.
Those critical darlings scored the highest among the nine best picture nominees for the 2018 Academy Awards with critics on the movie-review aggregator. Both films received positive, or “fresh” reviews from 99% of critics who reviewed them on the site, and only a handful—one, in the case of Lady Bird—of negative reviews.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, which hands out the awards, announced the nominees today. Here’s how the others fared among critics and audiences on Rotten Tomatoes.
We’ve seen over the past year that Rotten Tomatoes can influence the box office. We’ll see if it can predict award winners, too.
Get Out, which was attracting Oscar attention all the way back in February when it was released in the US, was the first breakout hit of 2017. Director Jordan Peele’s debut social thriller, about a young black man who is preyed upon by his white girlfriend’s suburban family, was made on a modest $4.5 million budget and went on to gross nearly $176 at the domestic box office. Peele, who never thought the movie would get made, let alone become a cultural touchstone, was emotional after the nomination.
If Get Out wins the Academy’s top award, it will join a statistically rare subset of films including Casablanca and The Godfather that were released in the first few months of the year and won Best Picture. The vast majority of Best Picture winners are released between June and December, like the other nominees in the category this year.
The Californian coming-of-age story Lady Bird also made waves this year when it briefly broke the Toy Story 2 record for a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes. The drama Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri was labeled an Oscar frontrunner after it swept at the Golden Globes earlier this month. And Christopher Nolan’s masterpiece Dunkirk, an epic World War II drama, is the biggest movie in the bunch, with $188 million in box office returns in the US and Canada.
The Academy pushed the number of nominations in the Best Picture category from five up to 10 possible films in 2010, after Nolan’s The Dark Knight was snubbed, to give mainstream movies and other films that are not typical Oscar fare better odds at competing against the esoteric indie titles that usually dominate the awards show. So far, the change has mostly benefited arthouse films; few blockbusters like Avatar, Up, and Mad Max: Fury Road have made the cut in the years since.
The Big Sick, which earned a 98% positive score on Rotten Tomatoes, was one the best-reviewed movies that didn’t land a nomination. The romantic dramedy, about a up-and-coming comedian who’s on-again, off-again girlfriend is in a coma, was also liked by 89% of viewers who reviewed it.