Arré Checklist: How to Make an Oscar Winner


Arré Checklist: How to Make an Oscar Winner

Illustration: Sushant Ahire

The Oscar Best Picture this year went to a story about a woman who falls in love with a fish-human, proving once and for all that black people and Indian people are no longer considered exotic enough for the Oscar committee. In a clear message that bestiality is both back in fashion and the title of Kylie Jenner’s debut album, The Shape of Water, has gone from being a plot of an average anime series to the reason why America no longer eats filet-o-fish. The movie doesn’t fit in any box; it never digresses, and it speaks with an empathy that transcends language. These are just some of the things people have said to describe this movie about an aquatic fucc boi.

All things considered, writing an Oscar-winning movie seems pretty formulaic at this point. Take a method actor, give him the role of a genius artist, physicist, whatever; place him in the middle of a global crisis, such as apartheid, holocaust, or a zombie apocalypse and watch the tears flow. Once enough people have been consumed by grief, collect your golden statue and go home, respected foreign director.

It almost seems predictable enough for us to guess some of the future plotlines that are likely to get a nod at least, if not an Oscar win. Here are a few Oscar hopefuls from 2019.

Chin-up Chinua

A physically disabled World War II veteran from a poor African nation goes on a date with an alien who communicates only via monologues and stern expressions. The venerable Daniel Day-Lewis puts on a stunning performance in blackface to portray the lovable, but disabled, Chinua, while Meryl Streep is roped in to play N’xoste, the alien queen. Chin-up is a dark, quirky, romantic-comedy with several plot twists, leading to the eventual demise of all of N’xoste’s family. In a heartwarming twist, however, she does find love in Chinua’s disabled arms (he lost his limbs in the war), and the two settle down on a third planet, where Chinua loses both his legs.


Hans Zimmer and AR Rahman come together to compose this musical about a Mongolian child named Momo, who almost loses his life to a raging drug addiction before he is rescued by the charming Amy Adams (Mia) from his village and taken to Silicon Valley where he joins Apple as a software engineer. Momo eventually becomes the first Mongolian person to be understood by Siri and attend the Burning Man festival. Expect to be treated to hundreds of dance numbers across various countries, because Momo and Mia decide to do a road trip from Mongolia to California, rather than just flying there for reasons unknown.


Eight people whose gender will not be assumed by you (!) come together in this squishy rom-com about a charming eight-some. The movie stars four former Disney stars and four older actors with colourful ethnic backgrounds. The transgender character has the hots for the asexual person, who is currently pining for a gay man, who identifies as a woman on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. This scene is further complicated by Steve Buscemi, who has decided to fuck the world and be sexually attracted to trucks. Critics are already hailing this as the psychological thriller and screwball comedy of the year.

One Good Man

Set during the Afghanistan war, this is a beautiful tale of a trigger-happy American soldier named Hank Solo who accidentally kills half a village because he decided to drink alcohol and drive a tank. Starring Matthew McConaughey as Hank, and Marion Cotillard as token chick in warzone, this intense drama has people from across the world in tears. By the second half of the movie, Hank decides he feels really bad about the whole murdering everyone thing and trades his expensive car for a cheaper one. The Taliban are so pleased with this gesture, they forget all about the loss of their loved ones, and build a statue in his honour.

Now that 2018 has gone down in history as the year fish became sexy in Hollywood, we are excited to see where it goes next. It could be one of the movies suggested. Or maybe if Lady Bird puts out a cut with an actual Ladybird romance, it might stand a chance.