The LAMB Devours the Oscars 2018: Best Editing

by Jay Cluitt · February 25, 2018 · Featured, LAMB Devours the Oscars · No Comments

Every day until the Oscars ceremony we’ll be highlighting a different category or movie here on the LAMB! Here’s a link to all the posts written so far:

Today, Damien Riley from Riley On Film is here to look at the nominees for Best Editing.

The Best Film Editing category is one that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves. If you’ve ever worked with video editing software, you probably encountered some frustrating challenges. Movies in this category engage and enrapture audiences with the way they are edited. Each film nominated surely had its own challenge, we only see the final effects. Film editors sort through every scene sometimes frame by frame to get the movie right. Before digital movies, they would literally “cut” the film and the unused portions would be left “on the cutting room floor” never to be seen by the public. I’m excited Jay asked me to write a little about this category, it’s one I have the utmost respect for. Here I go through why I think each shows good editing and I make my guess as to which will win the Oscar.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri: Jon Gregory

While certainly an excellent film that really captures the images of its locale, this film had standard editing in my view. Any film is a conquest to edit, this one likely had its particular challenges. Still I would challenge anyone to leave a comment as to why this film is better edited than the other films in this category. Again, very well made in all aspects of editing but not sure what is special editing-wise.

The Shape of Water: Sidney Wolinsky

This film was a mammoth undertaking. Anytime you have a part CGI figure in a film you introduce a secondary timeline to the film. This means you can’t just copy/paste as quick and dirty as you can without this sort of CGI. For this reason, the scenes in this film deserve a hard look at for this category. I’m not sure if it will win but it at least deserves an honorable mention.

I, Tonya: Tatiana S. Riegel

Biopics like this that contain interviews, real news footage, and other media interspersed with a narrative film have a lot of challenges. Because this film watches so comfortably, I would put it as a contender for the award. The clips are effortlessly changing throughout. I can imagine the reams of storyboards. This is one of my picks for the wnner in this category.

Dunkirk: Lee Smith

While I wasn’t an immediate fan of this film, it’s impossible to deny the raw footage is all spliced together amazingly. I don’t think it will win, but this editor definitely earned his money editing this one.

Baby Driver: Paul Machliss and Jonathan Amos

I was not and still am not a big fan of this beloved film. I don’t find the protagonist particularly”cute” or “adorable” or cool as the “Baby” in the film. This story leaves a lot to be desired as well. Having said that, and probably angering at least 1/2 of my audience, I will tell you this one is my pick for best editing. Car chases … come on. Based on what I’ve been saying in my article you should be able to imagine how tough they’d be to edit. There are fight scenes, shoot-em- ups and regular drama scenes that all must have been a challenge to make work. This editing duo did it masterfully. I commend them and hope they win the award.

What do you think is going to win?


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