In many ways, Phantom Thread is the ideal Oscar bait. It's a moody, meditative piece about relationships and dedication to craft, starring a lifelong Academy favorite (Daniel Day-Lewis); it's directed by a proven auteur (Paul Thomas Anderson); it features beautiful cinematography and costume design (it's about dresses, folks!); and feels, generally, about as anti-blockbuster and awards-friendly as a movie can get.
But in 2018, it also feels like an anachronism, an awards season casualty of socially conscious filmmaking and an increased awareness of the need for diverse representation in the industry. That's not a bad thing, unless you bet on Phantom Thread in your Oscars pool. The film was up for a total of six Academy Awards: Best Picture, Director (Anderson), Actor in a Leading Role (Day-Lewis), Actress in a Supporting Role (Lesley Manville), Costume Design, and Original Score. It walked away with the Oscar for Costume Design, and nothing more except the satisfaction of knowing it tried its very best.