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Netflix

During last week's Super Bowl, Netflix announced the surprise release of the third installment in the already-super-unconvential Cloverfield film franchise... that night. Was it a genius, disruptive publicity stunt? Or was it an unceremonious, direct-to-streaming dumping of a subpar sequel? Or maybe it was both?

And speaking of unconventional: The official presidential portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama were unveiled this week. The likenesses are being heralded as a milestone in black portraiture. But, predictably, not everyone agrees.

Sony Pictures Classics

There are nine movies nominated for Best Picture at this year's Academy Awards. And, as of this week, The Nose has seen eight of them. We saw Get Out way back in last March. We saw Dunkirk over the summer. We went to Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at night. And this awards season, we've gone to Greta Gerwig's Lady Bird and Steven Spielberg's The Post and Paul Thomas Anderson's Phantom Thread.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This hour: "the search for William Grimes."

We talk to author and film producer Regina Mason about her quest to find her great-great-great-grandfather -- a New Haven resident and runaway slave. 

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Tucked away in New Haven’s Evergreen Cemetery is an ornate gravestone bearing the names of William Wirt Winchester, his infant daughter Annie, and Sarah Lockwood Pardee -- Winchester’s wife, who outlived her firearms magnate husband by some 40 years.

NEON Rated

I, Tonya is a big, brash, brightly-colored, quirky comedy that happens to be telling a story that's ultimately kind of super sad. It's that mixture of tones -- a cinematic style seemingly at odds with the film's content -- and its Oscar-nominated performances by Margot Robbie and Allison Janney that have earned the movie a 90% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The Nose picks it apart.

Focus Features

Paul Thomas Anderson's Phantom Thread is nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director for Anderson, and Best Supporting Actress for Lesley Manville. Oh, and including Best Actor in a Leading Role for Daniel Day-Lewis. It's Day-Lewis's sixth nomination in the category. He's won the award three times previously, including for his work in Anderson's There Will Be Blood. If Day-Lewis were to win again this year, he'd join Katharine Hepburn as the only people ever to win four acting Oscars. It'd be a fitting end to a career that Day-Lewis says is over.

Updated at 11:09 a.m. ET

The nominations for the 90th Academy Awards were announced Tuesday morning by a dapper, genial Andy Serkis and the always-intoxicating Tiffany Haddish.

Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

The Post is Steven Spielberg's first movie since he turned 70 (and it's actually his first movie since he turned 71 too). It's just a little newspaper picture with a cast of newcomers like Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks and Bob Odenkirk and Matthew Rhys that Spielberg tossed off while he was simultaneously making Ready Player One (which comes out in a couple months). Oh, and it was nominated for six Golden Globes including Best Picture -- Drama and Best Director, and it's probably about to be nominated for a bunch of Oscars too. The Nose has seen it.

Jamle / flickr

They smell better, they're better at sensing temperature changes and they can handle more pain. These are just a few of the actual differences between redheads and the rest of us. But while having red hair does come with certain advantages, there are more than a few disadvantages as well.

Netflix

Dave Chappelle somewhat famously walked away from his Comedy Central series and went twelve years without releasing a comedy special. He broke that streak by putting out no less than four specials in 2017, and now he's maybe threatening to go back on another hiatus? Netflix released two new Chappelle specials -- "Equanimity" and "The Bird Revelations" -- on December 31, and The Nose has watched both.

Netflix

Netflix's The Crown tells the story of Queen Elizabeth II, starting with her wedding in 1947. The second season, released this month and nominated for a 2018 Golden Globe for Best Television Series -- Drama, covers 1956 through 1963. The Nose has thoughts.

...And this Nose also has an expanded, year-end, best-of, New Year's Eve Eve Eve endorsements extravaganza covering all of our favorites from the dumpster fire that was 2017 (but, I mean, there were some good new movies and podcasts and toaster ovens and stuff -- this part of the show'll be more about that stuff and less about the dumpster fire).

A24 Films

Greta Gerwig's solo directorial debut, Lady Bird, is a coming-of-age comedy/drama that stars Saoirse Ronan, Laurie Metcalf, and Lucas Hedges. Oh, and it's currently at 99% on the Tomatometer. So here's the question: Can a movie that's at 99% on the Tomatometer really ever be anything other than a letdown?

And then: Is the English translation of the Lord's Prayer actually a mistranslation? The Pope thinks it might be.

Lucasfilm Ltd.

For once in our lives, it's actually kind of obvious what this week in pop culture has been all about.

Star Wars's Episode VIII -- the ninth live-action Star Wars movie -- is out. The Last Jedi officially opens today, and it's projected to take in nearly half a billion dollars this weekend. The Nose stayed up late last night to catch a midnight showing. Or something like that.

And this week saw what is quite possibly the world's first viral short story. The New Yorker's "Cat Person" happens to be about just the right topic at just the right cultural moment. Perhaps not surprisingly, some men are missing the point.

David Torcivia / flickr creative commons

Jaws, Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones. Schindler's List, Saving Private Ryan. Close Encounters of the Third Kind and E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial. And the list goes on.

Steven Spielberg is very simply the most successful filmmaker in the history of filmmaking.

Fox Searchlight

Martin McDonagh's Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is probably the funniest movie you'll ever see about a mother trying to avenge the rape and murder of her daughter. And... that's pretty much all I need to say about it, don't you think? The Nose, though, has much more to say about it.

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