Let’s Talk Snubs

The Eyes Have It

The Oscars are coming, and with them the nail-biting speculation, excitement, and dread. The most prestigious category is, of course, Best Picture. Though Best Picture nominees may be comprised of several other categories’s nominees – especially Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Actor or Actress – it is not necessary for a Best Picture to have many nominated components. Sometimes the sum is greater than the whole.

Having not seen enough of the nominee frontrunners this year, I decided not to do a pick list. I am going to vent about a Best Picture I would have liked to see nominated.

Skyfall.

Skyfall.

Skyfall.

In my wildest dreams I wouldn’t expect it to actually have a shot at winning, it’s just the nod I want. If a Bond film was ever going to be nominated, this was the one. It embraces the Bond tropes and gadgets, but acknowledges the modern world and our 21st century technological and gendered dynamics. It closes out Craig’s origins trilogy, taking Bond from orphan-with-a-heart to calculated woman-bedding killer. It encompasses themes from Greek tragedy to Freudian thought. It looks bloody gorgeous – the takes are long and superbly choreographed, the cinematography is beautiful, the scenes at the old house fade agonizingly through the shades of nightfall: everything is perfectly executed, perfectly encompassing the theme.

Casino Royale has a little more action thrill, is a little sparser in the third act, but these things can be liabilities in awards season. Skyfall takes its time to focus on the psychology, the sets, all the things Oscar generally awards. If Bond was capable of seducing The Academy, it was going to be wearing Skyfall‘s patriotic, complex, and well-fitted suit.

Apparently, The Academy is only seduced by bad history and Bradley Cooper.

Staring Impassively Over The Oscar Nominations

Stray Observations

  • Interesting to see Django Unchained get the nod. Let the columnists continue to chew their fodder.
  • I wouldn’t mind seeing Anna Karenina in some bigger categories. Joe Wright tried something. Unlike 2005’s Pride and Prejudice, he took his concept all the way.  Like 2007’s Atonement, he deals with a woman chasing something reserved for romantics and idealists, but made impossible by societally-enforced prejudice. He’s obviously learning and evolving as he goes (*cough* unlike another director whose picture got several nods). It also looks bloody gorgeous. It’ll get some technical awards, but who reading this will be watching those? No seriously, if you’re going to watch those, let’s do a simulcast/Twitter something.
  • Whether or not you think Affleck was snubbed, surely we can agree he is more snubbed than Streep.
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  1. […] caught before finishing execution his plan, it’s actually more believable here than in Skyfall or Star Trek, because the plan doesn’t hinge upon him getting caught, he has simply made […]

  2. […] Something being dark from beginning to end doesn’t make it ‘better’ as a film. I will argue all day long Charade (1963) is a better film in every possible way than the aforementioned piles of grit, or the somewhat more plot-similar The Bourne Legacy, let alone its more serious remake The Truth About Charlie. But nobody seems to want to lighten up. Instead, The Dark Knight being passed over for Best Picture nomination helped extend the category to 10, but even then Bridesmaids couldn’t nab a nod. (To be fair, neither could the darker Skyfall.)  […]



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