By: Henry J. Fromage –
Well, that was a wild ride. For the first time ever all 24 Oscar categories were announced live, and I’ll be mentally unpacking the nominations list for the next week or so most likely. However, here’s what strikes me off the bat as, well, good, bad, and ugly:
– Seeing Ryszard Lenczewski and Lukasz Zal get nominated for their absolutely gorgeous black and white cinematography is one of those incredible long shot but so, so right noms that restores your faith in the Oscars ever so slightly.
– Likewise, Marion Cotillard got snubbed for Rust and Bone a few years back in favor of less inspired choices, but beat out poor Jennifer Aniston in Cake for her stunning performance in Two Days, One Night.
– About time Wes Anderson, Best Director nominee was a thing, eh?
– Two lavish foreign animated films in The Tale of the Princess Kaguya and Song of the Sea both got into the race.
– It’s not Gugu Mbatha-Raw’s time yet, but was nice seeing Beyond the Lights nab a Original Song nom.
– Finding Vivian Maier is a hell of an intriguing documentary, and seeing it get more attention is gratifying.
– Timbuktu is Mauritania’s first Best Foreign Language Film nominee, and a rare shot for an African country at the category.
– It was kind of a foregone conclusion, but with four locks in Best Supporting Actor, Oscar seriously couldn’t have gotten more creative than Robert Duvall? If they’d relegated Steve Carrell to this category like they should have (and the Golden Globes did), they would have had more room in Best Actor for a host of deserving candidates.
– Weird seeing Force Majeure miss out a nom when many (including myself) thought it had a real shot at winning Best Foreign Language Film.
– Inherent Vice‘s Best Adapted Screenplay nomination feels like an A for Effort nod to Paul Thomas Anderson attempting to do the impossible… make Thomas Pynchon coherent. That even he failed to do that would seem to preclude a nom, but whatever.
– American Sniper got six Oscar nominations, people! More than Selma and Gone Girl combined. I’m a bit of an apologist for the film, but… hell no.
– How else to interpret Life Itself‘s snub but as a giant “Fuck You” to critics everywhere? Either that or Steve James has been a serial seducer of Board of Governors members’ wives, since… 1994? When did Hoop Dreams (aka Best Documentary of All Time) come out?
– I liked The Imitation Game well enough, but in no universe past, present, or future did Morten Tyldum do a better directing job than David Fincher…
– … or Ava DuVernay. Hey, remember when everybody thought two women might get Best Director nominations? Ha.
– Or when Gillian Flynn was a frontrunner to win Best Adapted Screenplay? *Sad Feminist Trombone*
– Bradley Cooper over Jake Gyllenhaal and David Oyelowo, folks. Come on.
– The ugliest fact of all- this race is pretty much over. Selma was out of it weeks ago, and did you notice that Best Film Editing category? No Birdman. Bye bye Birdie, and hello your Best Picture Winner… Boyhood.
– Not that I’m complaining about that… unless either American Sniper or The Imitation Game explode out of the Academy’s ass and takes it down.