So The Complainer is back to discuss the Oscars and nominees for the fourth year in a row. Let’s a go!
Sorry for this post being released so close to the actual ceremony, which is mainly because as always I was playing catch-up when it comes to Oscar nominated movies. Plus I wasn’t overly motivated to see most of these movies in the first place, but I persevered and I have at least seen all of the best picture nominated movies so I’ll focus on them first.
This was the last BP nominee that I watched so it’s the freshest in my mind. I was a little sketchy going into this because it’s a Kenneth Branagh movie and he has one of the most inconsistent filmographies I’ve seen from a major director. Belfast is easily the best of his I’ve seen, as it’s a pretty good movie. Belfast is nominated for seven categories, and I only have strong feelings on two of the picks. It shouldn’t be nominated for Original Screenplay only because the writing is very problematic and it needs work. I agree with Supporting Actor for Ciaran Hinds, who was very enjoyable as Grandpa Ireland. Although these awards are missing Catriona Balfe for Supporting Actress, and I would argue the young kid, Jude Hill deserves Best Actor. I’m also surprised it didn’t get nominated for cinematography as there were some really good shots in this movie. Finally what will the Oscars award Belfast, they’ll probably go against what I want and give it screenplay.
I had to renew my Apple TV Plus subscription to watch this and Tragedy of Macbeth, thanks Academy. While CODA isn’t anywhere near WolfWalkers great, it’s still a good crowd pleaser, and it’s my favourite of the movies that are tailor made for The Oscars. I don’t have any strong opinions on the three categories it’s been nominated for, expect I believe it’s got supporting actor for Troy Kotsur in the bag. What CODA should have also been nominated for is Best Actress for Emilia Jones. She was the best part of that movie, and she will join the list of snubbed performances that will continue to perplex me as we carry on with this post.
Don’t Look Up
The odd ball of this bunch, because it’s more a comedy than a serious drama like every other movie on here. The main appeal of Don’t Look Up is it has an all-star cast that got nominated for nothing and it has a very on the nose commentary on government corruption and the ignorance of climate change. This has been nominated for Original Screenplay, bloody why!!! Out of all the best picture nominees this is the only one I think doesn’t deserve to win or have any of the nominations it has. It’s not a terrible movie, it just isn’t Best Picture material, it’s as simple as that.
Drive My Car
The Foreign darling of the year is Drive My Car. It took me awhile to come around on this one, as it’s really long and that dramatic shift within the story threw me off, however it won me over with that ending. This is why I am hesitant to agree with its adapted screenplay nom and I would prefer something else to win that category. Regardless of what I think it’s definitely winning Best International Feature, even though it should really go to The Worst Person in the World, but Drive My Car is obviously the Academy’s favourite, which explains why I’m talking about it here.
Dune, I’ve already reviewed in the past, but long story short, I agree with all 10 nominations it has. I believe Dune will be the techy champion so it should win most of these categories such as Best Score for Hans Zimmer, Visual Effects, Production Design and Cinematography. While I’m disappointed Denis Villeneuve isn’t up for director, but I feel bold in saying it’s got a shot at Best Picture. My reasoning is last year’s Oscars had the worst ratings they’ve ever had, and some of it was due to the general public hadn’t heard of any of the movies nominated. Dune is the only movie on here that would have any mass appeal, because it’s a blockbuster, it’s a sci-fi and it’s going to win.
We’re passed the halfway point with King Richard. Another very traditional Oscar destined movie, that is a pretty good time, but isn’t Best Picture material. It’s been nominated for six categories and I only really agree with the acting choices. Supporting Actress for Aunjanne Ellis would be one of my favourites to win and Best Actor for Will Smith as King Daddy Richard, who’s going to win. I would have liked to see Jon Bernthal on here for Supporting Actor and it shouldn’t have been nominated for Original Screenplay. Sure the real life subject matter is very interesting, but it’s still your typical sports movie, so no thanks.
Alright, Licorice Pizza the most non Oscar movie out of this entire lot, because it’s too original. If Paul Thomas Anderson’s name wasn’t on this thing, then I would be surprised to see this even on here. As my second favourite of this bunch it should win all three of the nominations it has, but I have a strong bet it won’t win any of them. Although the most disappointing thing about this movie being here is both of the two leads got completely snubbed, which sucks because they were probably my favourite performances out of this entire Oscar season.
Nightmare Alley, I was expecting to like more than I did, but I think I prefer King Richard over this. It’s got four nominations and I’m fine with Costume & Production design, but realistically I can’t really see it winning any of these except maybe cinematography. If some of its ensemble cast got nominated such as Cate Blanchett for Actress or bloody Toni Collette for Supporting Actress, then I would be much more pumped to see it win something. I’m just glad it doesn’t have writing or Bradley Cooper for Best Actor, because none of that was good.
The Power of The Dog
We’re finally at the big showstopper, The Power of the Dog, with a whopping 12 nominations! This was one of the few movies I saw before the announcements and it sits at 13th place on my Best to Worst of 2021 list, because this is one of the most boring movies I’ve seen this entire Oscar season. It’s this year’s Nomadland for me, because all the critics were praising Power of the Dog to no end, while I was struggling to stay attentive. To add insult to injury, it’s worse than Nomadland, check out my list for proof, as they’re both on there. Anyway, the only nominations I agree with is Benedict Cumberbatch for Actor and Jane Campion for Director as they made that movie. Everything else I would be quite hesitant to agree with. Campion is going to win Director and basing on the hype it has a high chance of sweeping this entire show along with taking Best Picture.
West Side Story
Finally we have West Side Story and we’re ending on my favourite of the BP nominees. Perhaps it’s because I do enjoy a good musical, plus I love the 1961 West Side Story and it’s a remake that surprised me with how good it really was. It has seven nominees and I would be really happy if it won all of them. It’ll probably win Sound, because it’s a musical, production design and I think Ariana DeBose has a fine shot at Supporting Actress, more so since Rita Moreno, also won for that very same role, 60 years prior. Speaking of Rita Moreno why wasn’t she nominated for supporting actress, or better yet Mike Faist for supporting actor and most importantly Rachel Zegler for Best Actress. After seeing all these movies I feel pretty confident that the Academy just hates young people and wants to see snubbed in every award, but they love old people and recognisable celebrities.
The Other Nominated Movies
Right, I have a few comments to share, so let’s power through this. Tick, Tick…Boom! was another hit with me and Andrew Garfield is easily the best of Actors category, with second place going to Denzel Washington for Tragedy of Macbeth. They’re probably both going to lose to either Will Smith or Benedict Cumberbatch, but still incredible regardless. When these nominees were announced I was surprised Spencer got next to no love. It was about as hyped up as Power of the Dog, but it only got one nomination, which was Kristen Stewart for Actress. Oh well Stewart is taking this category regardless and she’s also my preferred choice too.
This is the first year of doing these predictions where I haven’t seen all of the Best Animated Feature films, as Flee still isn’t available where I live. Regardless Encanto is going to win, because the Oscars are legally obliged till the end of time to hand over all their animated feature awards to Pixar or Disney. Encanto is also going to win Best Original Song, it’ll also be a funny one to win too, as it’s going to forever be overshadowed by the fact Disney didn’t consider campaigning for We Don’t Talk About Bruno to win this award instead.
Lastly I’ve being making fun of these movies that shouldn’t win screenplay, well the last movie I saw for this post, deserves to win that and also just about every other award in this dumb show. It only got two nominations and it’s very likely it’ll be going home empty handed. The Worst Person in the World, only saw it a few days, but I don’t care it’s by far the best movie out of all the nominees. It has Great acting, editing, directing, etc. It has a really great well thought out story, with relatable interesting characters, and it has the best balance of drama and comedy, I’ve seen out of this lot. It’s very much like Licorice Pizza with a realistic portrayal of a dysfunctional relationship, except this one has better pacing.
In conclusion I wasn’t overly rapt in this year’s Oscars nominations. As the ones I had seen before the nominations were announced weren’t amazing, and bordered on above average, then 10 to 15 movies later it was pretty much the same, except for one outlier. (I feel like I wasted my life, because I actually chose to watch these movies.) Obviously my tastes don’t meet with what Oscars think the masses like, because as of this year all the minor technical awards like editing, production design, etc. are being cut out in favour for more time dedicated to the live musical performances, movie compilations and stand-up. (Stuff people apparently like?!?) Also all those Marvel movies and other blockbuster movies that people like now have a shot at winning an Oscar thanks to the Best Fan Film and Oscar’s Yippee Moments categories. The winners for these are chosen by Twitter, not Academy members. A stupid idea, but I look forward to next year where the tanked ratings from the 2022 Oscars, allow me to finally pick my own best picture nominees, because I would definitely subscribe to The Oscars’: People Choice Awards. Then I can finally stop complaining about this stupid award show!
Sure I’ll review this weekend’s ceremony, but I’m not sure how many more of these I have left in me. It’s becoming a pretty sad joke, and I don’t know how long I can keep laughing at it. Anyway show’s over. Blog Complainer, signing out.