With the Oscars a mere two days away, we here at GlitchUp thought it only right to give out our own awards that we’ve dubbed: The Glitchies.
As the Oscars have been criticized of being close minded and non-populist in their nominations (although that is changing, thanks to the diverse and youth movement by the Academy), there needed to be somewhere for the under-appreciated but wholly deserving movies, scenes, and characters to get their due. From best use of John Denver to best fight and worst character, we’re handing out the highest honors.
- Best Use of John Denver
- Best Fight Scene
- Funniest Scene/Line
- Most WTF Moment (SPOILERS!)
- Best Villain
- Worst Character
- Best Character
- Best New Actor/Actress
- Worst Movie That Should Have Been Better
Best Use of John Denver
- Alien: Covenant
- Logan Lucky
- Kingsman: The Golden Circle
Austin: This first category is probably the dumbest one but is also a pretty intriguing one. Movies have often come out in close proximity using similar premises (see the classics Friends with Benefits and No Strings Attached) and about 90% of movies use a famous older song somewhere in the runtime. But I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite like this. All three nominees here use the John Denver song “Take Me Home, Country Roads” in pivotal moments of the plot. A sneakily sinister distress call in Alien: Covenant, a talent show performance in Logan Lucky, and it’s present throughout Kingsman with the most notable instance coming during an honorable (?) sacrifice. Another important note is that all three instances showcase someone singing the song, not the actual song being played itself. All that said, I think there is a clear winner: Logan Lucky.
Andy: The strange thing about this category is that it probably will never be a viable category to give an award away in ever again. The stars aligned for this track this year and here we are writing about a 40 year old song in three big releases. Not to mention Denver was also featured prominently in 2017’s Free Fire. When I think back to these moments, I really think it’s Kingsman: The Golden Circle that sticks with me the most. Mostly because while I believe it was an impactful scene, the moments leading up to it were some of the my biggest grievances with the film. I can’t wait for next year’s version of this award featuring: “Best use of The Macarena in 2018 Movies”. My winner is: Kingsman: The Golden Circle.
Austin: Holy shit, John Denver was also used in Okja. That’s wild. A thing I love about this is that most of the filmmakers say “we had no idea they included that song, it was our idea from the start”, which I can mostly believe but it’s also almost too much of a coincidence. Anyway, I guess we have two new contenders but neither are deserving, so forget those. I think Alien is ruled out because it isn’t entirely essential to the plot and doesn’t inflict the emotional punch the other two do. Also, Alien sucked.
So I came down to Kingsman and Logan Lucky. Here’s why Kingsman is the wrong pick: IT IS CENTRAL TO A SCENE WHERE A CHARACTER MAKES AN EASILY AVOIDABLE, DISASTROUS CHOICE. Spoilers: We discussed this a long while ago on Episode 2 of the podcast, but let me just go over it again. Mark Strong, as Merlin, steps on a landmine, somehow glossed over by the minesweeper they were using. He starts singing the “Country Roads” song to distract the guards after telling Eggsy and Galahad/Hart that there’s no way he can get off of it without it blowing up. He most definitely could have gotten off of it. That stupidity (they are 100% going to pull a fake out death/return from the dead thing with him too!) is what knocks it to second. Logan Lucky wins by raw emotional power and an honorable lack of stupidity.
Andy: Alright, after searching my feelings, you’re probably right. While I do remember the scene as being emotionally impactful, looking back it really was tarnished by the massive plot holes. It’s use in Logan Lucky was a more emotionally earned scene, without terrible character decisions. I also was not looking forward to seeing his daughter sing Rihanna’s Umbrella, so it enabled all of us to avoid that nonsense.
Winner: Logan Lucky
Best Fight Scene
- Stair Fight in Atomic Blonde
- Keanu vs Common in John Wick 2
- Superman vs Everyone in Justice League
- Wind River Shootout
- Kylo Ren and Rey v Snoke and Guards in Star Wars: The Last Jedi
- Kylo vs. Luke in Star Wars: The Last Jedi
- Jason Statham vs. Bad Guys on Plane feat. Dom’s Baby in Fate of the Furious
Austin: This category is a doozy. I’m not quite sure how to vote here, since a fight scene comes down to personal preference a lot more, I think. Obviously, we can think critically about its placement in the film or how technically well done it is, but ultimately it probably comes down to our own individual tastes. Do you like vomit-inducing quick cuts, a la Jason Bourne? Do you like weapon usage? Long takes? So many options.
Andy: This is a real tough one, as I obviously loved the brutal Stair Fight in Atomic Blonde, but by that point of the movie I was completely lost storywise. Kylo Ren & Rey versus Snoke & the Guards was probably the best part of The Last Jedi, but I definitely enjoyed how incredibly tense the Wind River shootout was. Superman versus everyone is obviously the laughing stock of this list, just like the rest of Justice League.
My gut has me going with Kylo Ren & Rey versus Snoke & the Guards, because of the emotional impact of the scene itself and the one that follows. First, you have Kylo striking down Snoke, which was shocking in itself. The fight scene is really badass and well choreographed, and we have our first real lightsaber action of the movie. It’s worth noting that we don’t EVER see a lightsaber touch another lightsaber in this movie, so it’s a fresh take on ‘saber fights. Finally you have Kylo Ren, a villain with a ton of depth, showing some true human emotion for the first time. When Kylo turns to Rey and says ‘please’, you can see him snap when Rey finally rejects his offer.
As a Star Wars hater, I’m excited for you to rip my choice to shreds.
Austin: Andy, I know how to show respect when it is deserved. A great scene can stand out and not be bogged down by the rest of the terribleness surrounding it. For example: While the scene in Justice League was probably one of the better parts of the entire movie and something people were fairly excited to see, it still kind of sucked. I don’t know if that’s because the entire movie was just that bad or what, but it nowhere deserves to win this. The Last Jedi lands on the other side of the spectrum though, the side with respect. That movie was bad, although probably a solid 40 points better than JL (not saying much, as JL registered a 5/100 on my scale), but it had some phenomenal scenes. The Luke-Ren fight had me shaking my head, but Ren/Rey vs. Snoke/Guards? Inject directly into veins. It was a culmination of everything that preceded with those characters and a goddamn Viagra pill for the senses after the blandness of the Casino scenes. But, I’m not quite ready to declare it the winner yet.
The Stair Scene in Atomic Blonde scores a lot of points with me because the technical skills and choreography required to pull off a long, one shot take is unparalleled. But, also like you said, what in god’s name was happening in that movie? John Wick scene definitely wins in the length department, and Jason Statham wins the laughs. The only contender I have is Wind River, but that actually is undercut by how incredibly crafted the scene leading up to it is. Creating that uneasy, overwhelmingly tense environment is what made the fight scene seem so great, but I don’t think the actual fight matched what came before. So, yeah, you’re right. That throne room saber battle wins. The cinematography, the effects, the moves, the betrayal, the music, the everything. It’s amazing.
Winner: Kylo Ren and Rey v Snoke and Guards
- Kumail 9/11 Joke (The Big Sick)
- Mary Poppins (GOTG: Vol. 2)
- Beaver Trapping Joke by Richie (IT)
- “Piss off ghost!” – Korg (Thor: Ragnarok)
- “I said no peekin’!” (Logan Lucky)
- Dinner Scene (Phantom Thread)
Austin: …Phantom Thread.
Andy: WHAT??? Having not seen Phantom Thread, I guess I can’t argue. But, you’re telling me a Paul Thomas Anderson directed film starring Daniel Day Lewis about DRESSMAKING has the funniest moment in movies in 2018? Get the hell outta here with that nonsense.
Austin: The reaction I wanted. Beautiful. Let me say that Phantom Thread really is fairly funny. This is probably helped by the fact that it has no right being funny. The dinner scene nominated here is excellent but I don’t think it’s played for laughs, so I guess that hurts it. There is a line in there that is just such an absurd, hilarious thing to say in a moment of bickering/romantic argument that it might honestly be #2 for me in this category.
It’s tough for me to pick one because I feel like almost all of these, or at least Thor and IT, have plenty of jokes throughout that are all on the same level of the one nominated. When one joke in your movie doesn’t really stand out from the rest, I don’t know if it’s worthy of winning.
“No peekin’” is an expertly delivered line from a wildly different Daniel Craig than we usually see, and the fact he is so different helps it a ton. But they overplayed that trailer with that as the main “this movie should be funny” clip a bit too much for it to have its full effect. Long story short: I’m going the 9/11 joke in The Big Sick.
Andy: Thank FSM you were just trolling me for a response, and you’re not actually going with the Phantom Thread pick.
I’m going to go with ‘Piss off ghost!’ in Thor, for many reasons. 1.) It’s delivered from a new character that we’re still not really comfortable with yet, personality wise. The subtle tone of voice he’s shown so far and ‘matter of fact’ delivery has been pretty level headed, but all of a sudden he comes out of nowhere with that ridiculous line. 2.) It was delivered by my kiwi hero, and the film’s director, Taika Waititi. This guy should not be this talented. He directs AND delivers the best line? Ridiculous. 3.) Me choosing this represents more than just the best line, this is definitely the funniest movie in 2017, so I feel like it has to be my choice.
That being said, the 9/11 joke in The Big Sick is DEFINITELY the ONLY tasteful 9/11 joke I have ever heard, so I can see how it’s a frontrunner for your favorite. “No peekin” is definitely up there as well, as I’ve never seen Daniel Craig look and sound so ridiculous. Huge shout-out to the Mary Poppins joke in GOTG as well, I was nearly in tears with that one.
Austin: Lol. Why do you hate PTA so much? Sorry you can’t see the deeper value in boring movies, BRO. I’m fine with your pick. Mine is better because, as you said, The Big Sick joke is the ONLY 9/11 joke that has been done tastefully while still being laugh out loud funny. All the love to Taika and the MVP in Korg, but considering that Thor’s Loki/Snake Story is the funnier part of that movie (at least to me), Big Sick wins it.
Finally, though! We get to hand out two awards. Congrats to Kumail and Taika. You can swing by our respective offices to get the award (one long handshake or hug plus a nod of approval).
Winner: Kumail 9/11 Joke and Korg’s “Piss off ghost!”
Most WTF Moment (SPOILERS!)
- The Baby (mother!)
- Finger Scene (Kingsman)
- Fassbender Flute Duo (Alien: Covenant)
- Peach Scene (Call Me By Your Name)
- Pikachu Speaking English in New Pokemon Movie
Austin: Before we start the discussion for this, everyone needs to go watch the clip of the theater freaking out when Pikachu starts talking, because it is hilarious how appalled everyone is:
Ok, now that that is out of the way let’s begin honoring the wackest moments of the year. I think several of these might actually crack my top 5 of weirdest, wildest, grossest moments I’ve ever seen.
Andy: There can only be one true winner here, and it’s not even close. What if I told you that a mid-30-year-old-looking Armie Hammer flopping around naked on a childlike, naked Timothee Chalamet would NOT be the most cringe inducing part about Call Me By Your Name. What if I told you that the strangest sexual experience I’ve ever seen on screen involved fruit? Having not seen mother! yet, I guess I can’t definitively say that this should win the award, but my gut tells me a babyfaced teen banging a piece of fruit can’t be outdone this year.
Look, I get CMYBN, I do. I get it yanno? And I get that scene is really the culmination of that character’s sexual exploration, but man, I wasn’t ready for it. I even had it spoiled for me before it happened, and still as he mashes his finger inside the butthole shaped bottom of the pear, and juices start squirting all over him, then he slowly moves it lower and lower down his pale childlike body, I STILL couldn’t help but yell “NO! NOOOO! I DON’T WANT TO SEE THIS!”. There’s an American Pie joke in here somewhere but I’m not funny enough to make one. This was by far the biggest WTF moment of the year in movies for me.
Austin: I like that you’re so passionate about this pick (bet you never thought you’d be typing the words “lower and lower down his pale childlike body”) that you didn’t even get the fruit right. Ain’t nobody out here boning a pear; it’s that peach life my dude.
The scene is WILD and definitely had a very strong reaction out of me as well. Not often does my jaw drop the way it did then. But I also kind of chuckled it off. And since I was able to do that, it only rose to #2 for me.
Which means #1 is the scene from mother!. I don’t think I’ve ever squirmed more in my seat or repeated “WTF” to myself more times in such a short couple minutes than this segment. I saw mother! in a theater that had like four other people, so we were all committed to seeing it through, but if I were in a larger theater I could believe it if people began walking out. I won’t ruin it entirely, but there is a sound in this scene that is so devastating and horrific that you can’t help but look around as if you want to see others’ reactions to make sure it actually just happened. In a sequence that is the most batshit crazy part of a movie I have ever watched, this scene somehow stands out from the hectic, absolutely bonkers shit that surrounds it. I need you to watch this movie so we can talk about it. As it stands, only two people I know have seen it and that is not nearly enough, despite how much I was disappointed by it.
Winner: The Baby (mother!) and Peach Scene (Call Me By Your Name)
- Kylo Ren (SW: TLJ)
- Pennywise (IT)
- WASPy White People (Get Out)
- Hela (Thor)
- Emily’s Disease (The Big Sick)
- James McAvoy (Split)
- Jon Hamm (Baby Driver)
- Ego (GOTG: Vol. 2)
- Julianne Moore (Kingsman)
Austin: Do we want to just shut this down and say Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger from Black Panther is so great that he retroactively wins despite his movie not even having been released yet?
Andy: Absolutely. Killmonger wins last year AND this year by default. I suppose if I HAVE to choose a real one from 2017 I’m going to go with good ole Pennywise from IT. While Jon Hamm was a welcome surprise and a fun villain, and Kylo of course is a very different villain than we’re used to, I’m giving it to Pennywise based on the fact that he was our last shot at launching the SKCU (Stephen King Cinematic Universe), and by god they did it! We’ve already written in length about why Pennywise is a Top 10 Horror Movie Creature, but as a straight up villain, he literally has no other motive in IT other than to eat children who taste better when they are scared. That’s a pretty boss villain right there.
Austin: Your reasoning is tough to argue against, but it also brings into question what we mean by “Best Villain”? Obviously, only having a motivation of inducing fear and eating children is about as villainous as you can get. But, is there more to what makes a villain the best? Do I want them to be conflicted in their pursuits? Likable, or rather, love to hate them? Theatrical in how they go about it? Do I want to maybe be able to identify with their thinking in the slightest, weirdest of ways? I would say Ego and Kylo Ren are the best villains in those senses. Or if I wanted to go very basic I would give Jon Hamm or Cate Blanchett, as Hela in Thor, the award for being enjoyable to look at and delightfully crazy while they go about their evil ways. It’s a tough one for me. I think James McAvoy in Split did the best actual acting work out of anyone, but I’m going Kylo Ren. That character is too good.
Andy: I think the reasoning Ego isn’t even in running for me is just how ridiculous of a villain he was. I think Hela had a lot going for her, and was better than some of the more recent Marvel villains, but still felt like something we’ve seen before. You’re going with Kylo? I’m willing to look deeper than a surface level horrific villain with Pennywise and secede that Kylo is probably the right choice here. I’m all for it. We haven’t seen the last of his character development as a villain either. The best villain is someone you can empathize with, and Kylo is most certainly fits that bill.
Winner: Kylo Ren
- Rose Tico – Kelly Marie Tran – Star Wars
- Rose – Allison Williams – Get Out
- Fat dude – I, Tonya
- Nothing Coming at Night – It Comes At Night
- The Flash – Ezra Miller – Justice League
- Tilda Swinton – Okja
- Steppenwolf – Justice League
Austin: Now, just as Best Villain begs the question of what it means to have that namesake, this category may need the same clarification. Some of the nominees here are…bad people but I wouldn’t necessarily say they’re, like, the WOOOOOOOOOORST *insert Jean-Ralphio gif*. For example, Allison Williams was a terrible person but I liked her character a lot. She wasn’t annoying either, which is, I think, what I would consider the biggest aspect of being the worst character.
Andy: I think this boils down to a few types of characters, 1.) Ones with NO redeeming qualities whatsoever as a person who you really hate (Allison Williams – Get Out), but I feel like she could be moved up to villains for sure, 2.) Characters that are basically Jar-Jar Binks quality (Ezra Miller – Flash – Justice League), and you wanted them off the screen as soon as they entered it, and 3.) Characters that are just eye-rollingly bad as an addition to the movie, like Steppenwolf in Justice League, who’s just a cookie cutter trash CG villain.
I think for me, Ezra Miller as The Flash fits that bill. I was pumped for him in this role, as I really liked him in movies like We Need to Talk About Kevin, and Fantastic Beasts and Really Long Titles, but every single joke in Justice League fell flat for me. Aside from wanting to pick “Nothing Coming at Night – It Comes At Night” very badly, Ezra Miller as The Flash wins for me.
Austin: I’m with you on this one. The Flash character may have been entertaining with a little better writing, but Ezra Miller turned it into a 10 year old’s take on being funny and quirky with none of the likable aspects that an actual 10 year old would be afforded by the audience since they are so young. No joke landed, had some of the worst lines in the movie, cringed at almost every expression. Some of this isn’t helped by the fact that Miller sounds like he hasn’t begun to approach puberty. Good god, he was the worst.
Winner: The Flash – Ezra Miller
- Korg (Thor)
- Rod (Get Out)
- Vulture/Michael Keaton (Spiderman)
- Wonder Woman (Wonder Woman)
- Daniel Craig (Logan Lucky)
- Frances McDormand (Three Billboards)
Austin: Best Character is a tough one to even nominate for because there’s tons of great characters in a given year. Some movies have several characters that can be considered standouts. But, at least in what we see here is that most of the characters that stood out from those “standouts” were ones that were surprises and/or the funniest aspect in their respective movies. Vulture might deserve to win for simply being the best villain in a superhero movie in over 5 years. Wonder Woman, obviously a classic and, for movies, groundbreaking character, but I don’t think she really wow’d me in the way others did. While McDormand’s grouchy ass grieving, venge-filled mother is going to win an Oscar, the actual character I actually disliked a fair amount. I’m going with Rod from Get Out as my winner narrowly above Korg because both are hilarious characters that deliver some of the best lines of the year but Rod injects levity and a breath of air into a tense horror movie without feeling out of place, while Korg’s jokes at times detract from the current action. Important note: “I’m TS-motherfuckin’-A. We handle shit. That’s what we do. Consider this situation fuckin’ handled.”
Andy: Korg comes in a close second for me, with Wonder Woman closely following. Korg I’ve already discussed, but Wonder Woman represents so much about the ‘wins’ that lesser represented audiences had last year in Hollywood. I’m going to have to actually agree with you on this one, as much as it pains me! Rod was the MVP of Get Out. He was telling Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) the ENTIRE TIME that something was up with this white chick. He saves the day at the end, and pretty much every single line is comedy gold without being too wacky.
Austin: Rod is such a great character, despite essentially just being a stand-in for the audience. May Rod be put into every horror movie from now until forever.
Winner: Rod (Get Out)
Best New Actor/Actress
- Laura/X23 (Logan)
- Timothee Chalamet (Call Me by Your Name; Lady Bird)
- Barry Keoghan (Dunkirk; Killing of a Sacred Deer)
- Caleb Landry Jones (Get Out; 3 Billboards; The Florida Project)
- Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out)
- Tiffany Haddish (Girls Trip)
- Little Girl (The Florida Project)
Austin: I love the age variation here. The fact that you can break out at 10 years old just as easily as you can at 38 is great for my dreams of future Hollywood stardom. Also, congrats to Caleb Landry Jones for being in 3 of the most critically acclaimed movies of the year. Should almost just win by volume and variety. I mean, he won’t, but he can have my consolation prize.
Anyway, I’m going with the little girl (Brooklynn Prince) from The Florida Project. She’s truly the newest one on the list and also did some of the greatest work. I know you got some beef with this child getting recognition, you grouchy old man, but she’s got my vote.
Andy: I like your pick, but was she acting? Or was she given candy and Mountain Dew and told ‘go run around a be a kid’. I honestly couldn’t tell if any of the kids were acting or playing with The Florida Project. I swear I felt like I was watching a sad documentary for 90% of the film. I think in the final scene she was acting, because if she wasn’t, that just means the director or her parents made her cry somehow and filmed it. Caleb Landry Jones is moving out of ‘the creepy pale dude that’s in lots of stuff’ territory and showing his range, which is great to see!
Barry Keoghan was WEIRD AS HELL in The Killing of a Sacred Deer and his performance stuck with me for quite some time. I’m going to go with Laura/X23 in Logan. That little girl portrayed so much emotion WITHOUT SPEAKING for 90% of the film. Most of the time it was pure rage, but there were many other subtle moments of concern, curiosity, love, hate, the range was impressive from her. Plus she’s absolutely nuts when she fights, like, she gives angry fighting Hugh Jackman a run for his money!
Austin: Was the mom in it acting, or just being a terrible person? It’s obviously easier to act something out well when it’s not a far cry from the normal you. Since most kid actors tend to fall on the unbearably annoying side of the spectrum, I’ll give her cute kid, sometimes annoying, sometimes terrible, sometimes sweet acting the benefit of the doubt.
Laura/X23 on the other hand…BOOOOOOOOOOOOO. You’re certainly right that she conveys mostly pure rage. It’s impressive to see how many different kinds of rage there are! Intense rage, slightly less intense rage, fighting rage, normal rage, crying rage, and maximum rage. She sure has rage down. Both our picks are kind of moot points considering these child actors probably won’t amount to much more than a couple more movies, but I guess they deserve while they’re in the moment.
Andy: Well, I guess we’re going to have to default to Caleb Landry Jones on this one!
Winner: Caleb Landry Jones
Worst Movie That Should Have Been Better
- Alien: Covenant
- Justice League
- It Comes At Night
- The House
- The Mummy
- Killing of a Sacred Deer
Austin: I feel so passionately about this category and that most of these movies should have been great that I am at a loss for words. Can I just pick the entire list?
Andy: I’ll start with one that shouldn’t even be on this list. Baywatch should not have been better. Baywatch should be as bad as it was. Everyone saw this coming. Everything else though, WOOF. Alien: Covenant and Life turned into ‘stupid scifi character decisions’ pretty quickly. It Comes At Night suffered from nothing coming at night. I think this one has to go to Justice League.
If I’m DC, I’m doing everything I can to not mess this up, they were coming off a FRESH AS HELL movie in Wonder Woman, and they still let it go through development hell and let it flop on its face. Think back to the Nolan-verse days. Now think back to our Justice League Podcast Review. The drop off in quality of movie and emotions we felt is just staggering.
Austin: Whoa whoa whoa. You watch that Baywatch slander. Just because you didn’t think it had any right being made or being good doesn’t mean others didn’t. The Rock and Zac Efron don’t make stinkers, and are some of the most entertaining actors working today. It was high on my anticipation list. It may not have been the ideal IP to be made, but it sure as hell had the pieces to be a fun summer romp filled with laughs. If we’re talking about movies that most people expected to suck then Justice League is probably number one. Those trailers were so bad! The history of DC is so bad! It wasn’t a surprise. It should have been like a C+ maybe and it was a D.
Killing of a Sacred Deer and mother! might just not be my taste, I guess, so I can’t fault them. It Comes At Night was a tremendous dick tease and I think I was just more angry that it didn’t do what I wanted.
The winner is Alien: Covenant for me. While Prometheus divided fans, it’s still critically regarded as a good movie. It had great moments throughout while expanding mythology. Alien: Covenant set itself up for success by planning on building on the mythology while bringing back the horror roots. I mean, that 10 minute segment when all hell breaks loose is one of the best scenes of 2017 and somehow nothing surrounding it was even remotely close in quality. After that happens, it turns into complete shit. They went the most boring route without actually making any of the boring stuff important enough to justify it being the main plot put on screen. Alien is one of my favorite movies ever and Prometheus is one of my favorites of the past 10 years, so this may be biased, but it should have and could have been so much better.
Andy: You’ve got a good point there. After trailer #1 I should have not let Justice League get any of my hopes up. Alien: Covenant we both agree on.
Winner: Alien: Covenant