Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone trip the light fantastic as lovers dreaming of stardom in the City of Angels. Damien Chazelle’s follow-up to Whiplash has already hoovered up a mound of Golden Globes, but will this romantic musical sweep the Baftas and Oscars, too?
Casey Affleck is this year’s award magnet for best actor with his hard-to-ignore performance as a mouthy janitor jolted into taking responsibility when he’s appointed guardian of his equally lippy teenage nephew. It’s doomy and a bit gloomy, but leavened by a rich seam of humour, too.
Older Affleck brother Ben already has two Oscars in his cabinet but his latest opus, an ambitious gangster saga set during Prohibition, probably won’t be adding to the tally. At least it’s blessed with a classy cast and the writer/director starring as the sharp-suited “hero” determined to build an empire in spite of violent attention from rival mobsters.