What’s On Stage Awards 2019 Winners

Hamilton was the biggest winner at the What’s On Stage Awards, taking home five prizes on Sunday night. This included best actor in a musical for its star Jamael Westman and best supporting actor in a musical for Jason Pennycooke. Little Shop of Horrors and Heathers the Musical also took home several awards each at the London ceremony.

Sophie Okonedo and Aidan Turner won best actress and best actor in a play – Okonedo for Antony and Cleopatra at the National Theatre and Turner for Michael Grandage’s production of The Lieutenant of Inishmore.

Best new musical went to instant classic darkly comedy production of  Heathers, with West End superstar Carrie Hope Fletcher winning best actress in a musical for her role as Veronica Sawyer.
Full List of Winners Below:

Best actor in a play – Aidan Turner, The Lieutenant of Inishmore

Best actress in a play – Sophie Okonedo, Antony and Cleopatra

Best actor in a musical – Jamael Westman, Hamilton

Best actress in a musical – Carrie Hope Fletcher, Heathers the Musical

Best supporting actor in a play – Adrian Scarborough, The Madness of George III

Best supporting actress in a play – Vanessa Redgrave, The Inheritance

Best supporting actor in a musical – Jason Pennycooke, Hamilton

Best supporting actress in a musical – Patti LuPone, Company

Best new play – The Inheritance

Best new musical – Heathers the Musical

Best play revival – The Madness of George III

Best musical revival – Little Shop of Horrors

Best direction – Marianne Elliott, Company

Best choreography – Andy Blankenbuehler, Hamilton

Best costume design – Paul Tazewell, Hamilton

Best set design – Tom Scutt, Little Shop of Horrors

Best lighting design – Howell Binkley, Hamilton

Best video design – Terry Scruby, Chess

Best off-West End production – Six the Musical

Best regional production – Spring Awakening

Best original cast recording – Everybody’s Talking about Jamie

Best show poster – Little Shop of Horrors

Best West End show – Les Miserables

Oscar 2019 Winners List

Here’s a full list of winners in all categories at the 2019 Academy Awards. This year’s Oscars saw top acting prizes claimed by Rami Malek  and Olivia Coleman with supporting wins for Mahershala Ali and Regina King. Best film went to Green Book with Roma taking the foreign language prize, Free Solo winning best documentary and Spider-man into the Spiderverse winning best animated film. Best director was won by Alfonso Cuaron. Full list of winners below:

Best picture

  • Winner: Green Book
  • BlacKkKlansman
  • Black Panther
  • Bohemian Rhapsody
  • The Favourite
  • Roma
  • A Star Is Born
  • Vice

Best actress

  • Winner: Olivia Colman – The Favourite
  • Glenn Close – The Wife
  • Yalitza Aparicio – Roma
  • Lady Gaga – A Star Is Born
  • Melissa McCarthy – Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Best actor

  • Winner: Rami Malek – Bohemian Rhapsody
  • Christian Bale – Vice
  • Bradley Cooper – A Star Is Born
  • Willem Dafoe – At Eternity’s Gate
  • Viggo Mortensen – Green Book

Best supporting actress

  • Winner: Regina King – If Beale Street Could Talk
  • Amy Adams – Vice
  • Marina de Tavira – Roma
  • Emma Stone – The Favourite
  • Rachel Weisz – The Favourite

Best supporting actor

  • Winner: Mahershala Ali – Green Book
  • Adam Driver – BlacKkKlansman
  • Sam Elliott – A Star Is Born
  • Richard E Grant – Can You Ever Forgive Me?
  • Sam Rockwell – Vice

Best director

  • Winner: Alfonso Cuaron – Roma
  • Yorgos Lanthimos – The Favourite
  • Spike Lee – BlacKkKlansman
  • Adam McKay – Vice
  • Pawel Pawlikowski – Cold War

Best original screenplay

  • Winner: Green Book – Nick Vallelonga, Brian Currie and Peter Farrelly
  • The Favourite – Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara
  • First Reformed – Paul Schrader
  • Roma – Alfonso Cuarón
  • Vice – Adam McKay

Best adapted screenplay

  • Winner: BlacKkKlansman – Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott and Spike Lee
  • The Ballad of Buster Scruggs – Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
  • Can You Ever Forgive Me? – Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty
  • If Beale Street Could Talk – Barry Jenkins
  • A Star Is Born – Eric Roth, Bradley Cooper and Will Fetters

Best animated feature

  • Winner: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
  • Incredibles 2
  • Isle of Dogs
  • Mirai
  • Ralph Breaks the Internet

Best foreign language film

  • Winner: Roma – Mexico
  • Capernaum – Lebanon
  • Cold War – Poland
  • Never Look Away – Germany
  • Shoplifters – Japan

Best documentary feature

  • Winner: Free Solo
  • Hale County This Morning, This Evening
  • Minding the Gap
  • Of Fathers and Sons
  • RBG

Best original song

  • Winner: Shallow (A Star Is Born) – Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt
  • All The Stars (Black Panther) – Mark Spears, Kendrick Lamar, Duckworth and Anthony Tiffith and Solana Rowe
  • I’ll Fight (RGB) – Diane Warren
  • The Place Where Lost Things Go (Mary Poppins Returns) – Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman
  • When A Cowboy Trades His Spurs for Wings (The Ballad of Buster Scruggs) – David Rawlings and Gillian Welch

Best original score

  • Winner: Black Panther – Ludwig Goransson
  • BlacKkKlansman – Terence Blanchard
  • If Beale Street Could Talk – Nicholas Britell
  • Isle of Dogs – Alexandre Desplat
  • Mary Poppins Returns – Marc Shaiman, Scott Wittman

Best production design

  • Winner: Black Panther – Hannah Beachler and Jay Hart
  • The Favourite – Fiona Crombie and Alice Felton
  • First Man – Nathan Crowley and Kathy Lucas
  • Mary Poppins Returns – John Myhre and Gordon Sim
  • Roma – Eugenio Caballero and Barbara Enriquez

Best costume design

  • Winner: Black Panther – Ruth E Carter
  • The Ballad of Buster Scruggs – Mary Zophres
  • The Favourite – Sandy Powell
  • Mary Poppins Returns – Sandy Powell
  • Mary Queen of Scots – Alexandra Byrne

Best cinematography

  • Winner: Roma – Alfonso Cuaron
  • Cold War – Lukasz Zal
  • The Favourite – Robbie Ryan
  • Never Look Away – Caleb Deschanel
  • A Star Is Born – Matthew Libatique

Best visual effects

  • Winner: First Man – Paul Lambert, Ian Hunter, Tristan Myles and JD Schwalm
  • Avengers: Infinity War – Dan DeLeeuw, Kelly Port, Russell Earl and Dan Sudick
  • Christopher Robin – Christopher Lawrence, Michael Eames, Theo Jones and Chris Corbould
  • Ready Player One – Roger Guyett, Grady Cofer, Matthew E Butler and David Shirk
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story – Rob Bredow, Patrick Tubach, Neal Scanlan and Dominic Tuohy

Best make-up and hairstyling

  • Winner: Vice – Greg Cannom, Kate Biscoe and Patricia DeHaney
  • Border – Goran Lundstrom and Pamela Goldammer
  • Mary Queen of Scots – Jenny Shircore, Marc Pilcher and Jessica Brooks

Best sound editing

  • Winner: Bohemian Rhapsody – John Warhurst and Nina Hartstone
  • Black Panther – Benjamin A Burtt and Steve Boeddeker
  • First Man – Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
  • A Quiet Place – Ethan Van der Ryn and Erik Aadahl
  • Roma – Sergio Diaz and Skip Lievsay

Best sound mixing

  • Winner: Bohemian Rhapsody – Paul Massey, Tim Cavagin and John Casali
  • Black Panther – Steve Boeddeker, Brandon Proctor and Peter Devlin
  • First Man – Jon Taylor, Frank A Montano, Ai-Ling Lee and Mary H Ellis
  • Roma – Skip Lievsay, Craig Henighan and Jose Antonio Garcia
  • A Star Is Born – Tom Ozanich, Dean Zupancic, Jason Ruder and Steve Morrow

Best film editing

  • Winner: Bohemian Rhapsody – John Ottman
  • BlacKkKlansman – Barry Alexander Brown
  • The Favourite – Yorgos Mavropsaridis
  • Green Book – Patrick J Don Vito
  • Vice – Hank Corwin

Best animated short

  • Winner: Bao
  • Animal Behaviour
  • Late Afternoon
  • One Small Step
  • Weekends

Best documentary short

  • Winner: Period. End of Sentence.
  • Black Sheep
  • End Game
  • Lifeboat
  • A Night at the Garden

Best live action short

  • Winner: Skin
  • Detainment
  • Fauve
  • Marguerite
  • Mother

Capernaum Review

The Plot

After he’s arrested for a stabbing, Zain El Hajj (Zain Al Rafeea) decides to take his parents to court for being born.

The Good

Writer-director Nadine Labaki brings a heart-achingly devastating story to the screen in Capernaum (Chaos), following the tragic life of Zain, a Lebanese boy who doesn’t even know how old he actually is. Opening with his arrest for stabbing a ‘son-of-a-bitch’ as Zain puts it, Labaki’s script – co-written by Jihad Hojaily and Michelle Keserwany – quickly flashes back to go through the events that lead up to Zain’s arrest and his relationship with his parents whom he is suing at the same time.

For the next two hours Labaki displays a gut-wrenching tale that is as hard to watch as it is to turn away from. As Zain tries desperately to protect his younger sister from being married off to the family’s landlord/human trafficker when her period begins, he soon becomes estranged as he sets out to make a life for himself.

One of the most effective ways in which the story is told is through Labaki’s directing. As we follow Zain’s journey from his family to Ethiopian cleaner Rahil (Yordanos Shiferaw) and her young son whom Zain helps to look after. Labaki’s framing feels restricted at times, pulling back to let you watch but making you ache even more to crawl into the screen and help our young characters out.

While the plot is fictional the premise feels so based in fact that, despite the depressing two hour journey you’re taken on, if some biopic-like text were to appear on the screen at the films climax to finish Zain’s story off, it wouldn’t be surprising at all.

The absolute stand-out performances in the film come from the two youngest members of the cast, Zain himself and Boluwatife Treasure Bankole as Rahil’s son Yonas. With a combined age of no more than 15 (Zain being 11 or 12) their performances are so captivatingly realistic and are the heart and soul of the film.

The Bad

If you go into Capernaum expecting a courtroom drama from the plotline you’ll leave dissappointed. While the premise of suing ones parents for the act of giving you life is certainly an intriguing one, the legal ramifications of such a court case are never delved deeply into. Instead Capernaum’s main priority rests upon bringing the undoubtedly real life for poverty stricken children around the world to the screen. That said, no matter what you walk into Capernaum expecting you will definitely leave with the same heavy heart as everyone else.

The Ugly Truth

An unflinchingly depressing film that deserves all the attention it can get. Capernaum will leave you heartbroken and angry but that should not put you off. Without a doubt one of the most important films of the year.

Review By Johnny Ellis

BAFTA Film Awards Winners List 2019

Best film

The Favourite
Green Book
A Star Is Born

Outstanding British film

Bohemian Rhapsody
The Favourite WINNER
Stan & Ollie
You Were Never Really Here

Outstanding debut by a British writer, director or producer

Apostasy – Daniel Kokotajlo (writer/director)
Beast – Michael Pearce (writer/director), Lauren Dark (producer) WINNER
A Cambodian Spring – Chris Kelly (writer/director/producer),
Pili – Leanne Welham (writer/director), Sophie Harman (producer)
Ray & Liz – Richard Billingham (writer/director), Jacqui Davies (producer)

Best film not in the English language

Cold War

Best documentary

Free Solo WINNER
They Shall Not Grow Old
Three Identical Strangers

Best animated film

Incredibles 2
Isle of Dogs
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse WINNER

Best director

BlacKkKlansman – Spike Lee
Cold War – Paweł Pawlikowski
The Favourite – Yorgos Lanthimos
Roma – Alfonso Cuarón WINNER
A Star Is Born – Bradley Cooper

Best original screenplay

Cold War – Janusz Głowacki, Paweł Pawlikowski
The Favourite – Deborah Davis, Tony McNamara WINNER
Green Book – Brian Currie, Peter Farrelly, Nick Vallelonga
Roma – Alfonso Cuarón
Vice – Adam McKay

Best adapted screenplay

BlacKkKlansman – Spike Lee, David Rabinowitz, Charlie Wachtel, Kevin Willmott WINNER
Can You Ever Forgive Me? – Nicole Holofcener, Jeff Whitty
First Man – Josh Singer
If Beale Street Could Talk – Barry Jenkins
A Star Is Born – Bradley Cooper, Will Fetters, Eric Roth

Best actress

Glenn Close – The Wife
Lady Gaga – A Star Is Born
Melissa McCarthy – Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Olivia Colman – The Favourite WINNER
Viola Davis – Widows

Best actor

Bradley Cooper – A Star Is Born
Christian Bale – Vice
Rami Malek – Bohemian Rhapsody WINNER
Steve Coogan – Stan & Ollie
Viggo Mortensen – Green Book

Best supporting actress

Amy Adams – Vice
Claire Foy – First Man
Emma Stone – The Favourite
Margot Robbie – Mary Queen of Scots
Rachel Weisz – The Favourite WINNER

Best supporting actor

Adam Driver – BlacKkKlansman
Mahershala Ali – Green Book WINNER
Richard E Grant – Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Sam Rockwell – Vice
Timothée Chalamet – Beautiful Boy

Best original music

If Beale Street Could Talk
Isle of Dogs
Mary Poppins Returns
A Star Is Born WINNER

Best cinematography

Bohemian Rhapsody
Cold War
The Favourite
First Man

Best editing

Bohemian Rhapsody
The Favourite
First Man

Best production design

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
The Favourite WINNER
First Man
Mary Poppins Returns

Best costume design

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
Bohemian Rhapsody
The Favourite WINNER
Mary Poppins Returns
Mary Queen of Scots

Best make up & hair

Bohemian Rhapsody
The Favourite WINNER
Mary Queen of Scots
Stan & Ollie

Best sound

Bohemian Rhapsody WINNER
First Man
Mission: Impossible – Fallout
A Quiet Place
A Star Is Born

Best special visual effects

Avengers: Infinity War
Black Panther WINNER
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
First Man
Ready Player One

Best British short animation

I’m OK
Roughhouse WINNER

Best British short film

73 Cows WINNER
Bachelor, 38
The Blue Door
The Field

EE Rising Star award (voted for by the public)

Barry Keoghan
Cynthia Erivo
Jessie Buckley
Lakeith Stanfield
Letitia Wright WINNER

Outstanding contribution to British cinema
Stephen Woolley and Elizabeth Karlsen

Alita Battle Angel Review

The Plot

A mysterious young girl wakes up in a cyborg body in the distant future of the 26th century where man and machine have largely become one. On a quest to reclaim her own forgotten past, she meets a fantastic array of friends and foes alike as she explores the vast lawless slum sitting beneath a Utopian city in the sky.

The Good

Fans of the original Manga series and the anime aesthetic in general will be delighted to finally see a live action adaptation that at last does faithful justice to the distinctive look and feel of anime. After many decades of patience for filmmakers and audiences, special effects has finally mostly caught up with the wildly imaginative worlds of Japanese animation. Allowing the genre’s iconic cyberpunk creations to be realised on screen more photo-realistically than ever before.

Alita is a labour of love for writer and producer James Cameron, who has spent two decades striving to make this project a blockbuster reality. His trademark flare for turning fantastical future tech into an exciting action packed reality remains very much in evidence. Armed with a vast budget and iconic source material Cameron and director Robert Rodriguez have crafted a truly dazzling post-apocalyptic world where super powered cyborgs, decaying ruins and glittering cities in the sky coexist convincingly. The attention to detail and the lived in feel of Alita’s world largely succeeds in immersing audiences.

Relative newcomer Rosa Salazar does well to make titular heroine Alita a captivating figure. She does well at balancing both sides of Alita’s complex personality. She is equally earnest playing her naïve young wide eyed wonder and then as required transforming into a confident indestructible cyborg super soldier. Salazar’s own face transformed by painstaking CGI into a literal embodiment of the original anime character remains reassuring capable of genuine emotion. Most importantly her endearing performance keeps Alita distinctly human.

Christoph Waltz is on typically fine form as the kind hearted cyber doctor who adopts a fatherly role in rescuing Alita and guiding her on her journey of self-discovery. The sincerely sweet natured affection between him and Salazar’s Alita is a nice contrast to the generally brutal world around them and gives the film a steady emotional centre.

In truth though the film’s most valuable assets are its action set pieces. Deadly battle between weird and wonderful mechanical warriors gives audiences a truly original and spectacular spectacle. During these sequences audiences can revel in the dazzling visuals fully and bask in the film’s very best big budget attributes.

The Bad

While Rosa Salazar does a fairly good job at making Alita an endearing presence in the film, the fact that the character is fully CGI with dramatically overly enlarged eyes is at time a little jarring and unconvincing. In certain shots it looks obviously cartoonish and masks what might well have originally been a decent emotional performance. With so much of the film’s settings and characters necessarily artificial it may have been a better choice to at least leave the main character with a more authentically human face.

In a similar fashion, the other cyborg characters which populate the world of Alita are well designed and stick close to the source material, however at times it’s difficult to avoid being distracted by how odd it is to see perfectly ordinary human faces superimposed onto elaborate robotic bodies. Some will be impressed by this distinctive imagery, others will find it creepy and more clearly fake.

While the film boasts a mostly solid cast of familiar stars, unfortunately newcomer Keean Johnson proves to be a little ill-equipped for his considerable screen time. As Alita’s love interest Hugo he is a mostly bland presence, robbing the film of credible romance.

In truth the entire cast struggles a little at times, doing their best to work through heavy handed exposition and oddly soulless emotional exchanges. It really doesn’t help that Robert Rodriguez is a director well known for prioritising slick CGI style over emotional substance. Oddly given the films dark visuals and hyper violent action, the film’s acting and narrative style almost seems skewed toward a younger less sophisticated audience. A side effect of its unexpected pg13 rating,

One of the biggest complaints casual audiences may have by the end of the film is that it’s abundantly clear that key plot points, characters and some of the most potentially interesting parts of Alita’s world have been purposefully held back for what is assumed to be inevitable sequels.  Time and ticket sales will prove whether or not this confidence at launching a new franchise has been misplaced or not. For now what it does mean is that this film feels far from complete and functions more as a lengthy exercise in initial world building rather than delivering a self-contained story.

It’s worrying that after over 20 years of planning and endless development screenwriter James Cameron has only been able to produce a lacklustre script peppered with heavy handed dialogue and predictably lazy clichés. Much like his box office record breaker Avatar, Cameron delivers high tech style largely lacking in substance. It’s a cause for concern as the world awaits his never ending series of seemingly unnecessary Avatar sequels. His chronic preoccupation with special effects and obsessively pushing the limits of CGI is becoming an obvious problem.

This film only serves to cast further doubt about whether or not the once essential Cameron is actually capable of recapturing the undisputed blockbuster greatness of his early work, now an increasingly fading memory from the 1990s…

The Ugly Truth

Alita Battle Angel has some unquestionably well-polished and original visuals, used to create several entertaining action set pieces. Unfortunately a threadbare plot, a few awkward performances and holding too much in reserve for possible future instalments handicaps audience satisfaction. Alita will be a welcomed delight for long term Anime fans and anyone with a particular fondness for this character and the cyberpunk genre. It succeeds far more than any previous live action adaptation of Japanese animation, even if it isn’t quite perfect.

Review by Russell Nelson