Every year, The Academy selects the best pictures of the past 12 months. Nominations for this event take place each January and cause a lot of red-carpet ruckus.

As a former movie columnist, I like to analyze why Hollywood singles something out and make no mistake, there is always method to its madness. The talked-about contenders are no exception, and, by the way, it was a bad year for race relations.

"The Shape of Water": Guillermo Del Toro’s modern mash-up of "Beauty and the Beast" and "Cinderella." A mermaid is held captive by cruel scientists while a janitress sees past their racial differences and falls in love with him. Features Octavia Spencer from "The Help," apparently held captive by typecasting.

"Dunkirk": A return to the heyday of WWII. And how one British pilot with a half-gallon of fuel can shoot down the German Luftwaffe.

"Call Me by Your Name": A goodbye nod to gays, whose cinema heyday was last season.

"The Darkest Hour": Dunkirk 2

"The Post": A return to the heyday of newspapers.

"Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri": The mother of a murdered daughter goes up against an indifferent police department. An homage to feminism and the mother-daughter bond, because male Academy members fear #MeToo and Harvey Weinstein syndrome.

"Phantom Thread": A younger woman rejects aging Daniel Day Lewis’s bid to worship him for life and demands equality. Feminism, see above.

"Ladybird": Directed by Greta Gerwig, more feminism, the mother-daughter bond and family expectations.

"Get Out": Directed by Jordan Peele of Key & Peele stand-up fame, a white girl brings home her black boyfriend only to find her white family is lobotomizing black people. There’s no seeing past racial differences and family expectations after that.


Patricia Gannon covers society for The Acadiana Advocate.  She can be reached at Fete@theadvocate.com.

Lights, Camera … Apollo!

And the winner is … Apollo, of course, taking their own trip to the movies this Mardi Gras. New Orleans lavish and French Quarter flamboyant King Apollo XLII Olajuwan Alexander and Queen Apollo Roxie C. Black (Kailin McCoy) misruled over the multitude at the Cajundome Convention Center, captained by Michael Perioux. Her majesty made a gracious celebrity entrance outside in a fabulous chartreuse coat, while inside red draperies framed larger-than-life gold Oscar statuettes onstage. Tables echoed the movie theme, and Best Set Design clearly goes to Mark Morris and Gary Breaux, whose table koozies busted, we mean bested, all competition. Red-carpet ready were his majesty and signature fur stole, Huntor Dake, Apollo President Kevin Doerr, fright night Derek Leboeuf, Hollywood handsome Tylor Patin and sexy diva Santana. By the way, it’s one thing for a woman to upstage you, it’s another for a man to do it. What we loved: That we had to fight KLFY’s Darla Montgomery for Jimmy Poole.

Cinema on the Bayou

The 13th annual Cinema on the Bayou Film Festival kicked off its eight days of world, U.S. and Louisiana premieres with Mary Gauthier’s “Rifles & Rosary Beads.” The Acadiana Center for the Arts was alive with independent filmmakers and fans, and of some 1,200 applications, only 200 were selected. “This is going to explode,” said local filmmaker Pat Mire. “We were coast-to-coast and Japan last year. This is the juice, and 50 percent of the filmmakers are women.” Gauthier also performed and was honored with a gala reception following the film. In addition to the AcA, other film venues during the week included Vermilionville, the Hilliard University Art Museum and Cite des Arts.

Attakapas Après Party

The Krewe of Attakapas honored its royal majesties Queen Kararondye and King Lacassine Robert Copeland with an elegant après ball social at Mazen Grill. The party spilled into several rooms as guests paid their homages to the pair and Jeremy Benoit played sax at the door. The hospitality was lavish, everything from carving station to kibbi, and needing no encouragement were Debbie Foreman and daughter Emily Foreman Babineaux, Ann Fenstermaker, Barry and Clair Bohn, Clif and Marianne Lane, Kyle Gideon and Helen Barnes. Attakapas celebrated 50 years this carnival season and is the matriarch of ladies’ krewes in Lafayette.

For They are Jolly Good Fellows

Sylvia Ann Louviere and Jeri Gayle Cohen celebrated birthdays in style with what else, a senior prom redux. Guests at 101 Brightwood Drive enjoyed cocktails, the ladies clearly enjoyed their coronation, while we liked the poem on the back of the invitation, “All the things they have done, all the places they’ve seen, Poor Sylvia and Jeri, were never Prom Queens …” We trust that’s been remedied. Many happy returns of the day.

Connections Luncheon

Connections, a women’s networking group, held their monthly luncheon at the Petroleum Club. Republican state Rep. Julie Emerson gave a speech titled “My Journey to the State Capitol,” but her trip to Lafayette must’ve been even more arduous — she still had not arrived by noon. Enjoying the female ambience — Rose Hoffman Cormier and the impeccably dressed Carolyn French, also Jeannine Prather and Eugenia Shedrick.