Posts Tagged ‘Snub’


Every year, brilliant movies are utterly ignored by the Oscars. The Searchers, Groundhog Day, Persona, Breathless, Hoop Dreams, King Kong, Caddyshack — the Academy has a long history of overlooking comedies, action movies, horror flicks, artsy foreign films, and documentaries that aren’t about World War II. While it makes a lot of great decisions, often it overlooks certain genres or stories that don’t appeal to them. This year, we’ll be taking a closer look at films that were too small, too weird, or perhaps simply too awesome for the Academy Awards.

With that in mind, here are the five major films that the Academy undervalued in 2011. Although some of the films on this list received a few Oscar nominations, overall the Academy did not give them the credit they are due. Instead of a nod or two, these films deserved much greater recognition and appreciation from the Academy.

50/50

50/50 received zero Oscar nominations this year. The film tells the story of a young man (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) who is diagnosed with cancer and given a 50/50 shot chance of surviving. Yes, the film includes some crude humor and off-putting jokes, but it’s a great film with its heart in the right place.

In a lesser year, Gordon-Levitt would have been nominated for Best Actor for his performance, but the abundance of strong male performances in 2011 ruined his chances. Regardless, I still believe that either Anna Kendrick or Anjelica Huston should have been nominated for their brilliant supporting performances. And without a doubt, Will Reiser – who faced cancer in real life – should have been nominated for his honest and heartbreaking screenplay.

HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS: PART II

Unlike a few of the films on this list, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II did receive a few Oscar nominations. It was nominated for Art Direction, Makeup and Visual Effects. But this epic finale to the “Harry Potter” series deserved more. It was an elegant and visually-stunning conclusion to a masterful series of films.

Many have argued that Alan Rickman deserved an Oscar nod for his supporting performance. His performance wasn’t nominated and I can understand why in this year of great supporting male performances. I can’t, however, understand why this film wasn’t nominated for Best Picture. It was a critically-acclaimed blockbuster that appealed to adults and children alike. To not give it a best picture nod is an insult to those who loved the film as much as I did – and ignores the epic achievement that the series, as a whole, represents.

DRIVE

Drive, a dark film about a stunt driver who moonlights as a getaway driver, was a thought-provoking and brilliant film. Instead of relying on a lot of dialogue, its story was mostly told through great performances and unique direction. Critics will be talking about this movie for years to come. But how did the Academy recognize it? With one single nomination for Best Sound Editing.

This is the most surprising film to be on this list because not only did I think that it should be nominated for more awards, I also thought that it should win a few of them. Nicolas Winding Refn directed this film with an awe-inspiring fierceness and intelligence, Albert Brooks delivered a brilliant performance as the story’s malicious villain and of course, Ryan Gosling who delivered a splendid low-key performance. All these men should have been nominated and in my opinion, all three should have returned home with statues. May be the movie was too stylish for the academy voter where most of them are past their 60s. The lack of nominations is beyond disappointing.

SHAME

Shame, Steve McQueen’s haunting drama about a tortured New Yorker named Brandon Sullivan (a revelatory Michael Fassbender), a sex addict whose life begins to unravel even more when his equally self-destructive sister Sissy (a fragile Carey Mulligan) arrives in town. Yes, there are explicit sex scenes (plenty of them) and yes, there are shots of the breakout actor’s highly-publicized package (plenty of them), but it’s the harrowing story of a man struggling with his demons and an unforgivably snubbed performance by Fassbender that made it one of the most talked-about films of 2011.  Fassbender’s performance will be remembered by everyone for a long time in the future. But this engaging drama was applauded with how many nominations? – NON.

Shame is a great, though by no means a perfect film, but there’s one big reason that this movie will stand the test of time and that’s Michael Fassbender’s… star-making performance. At least the academy voters should’ve nominated him.

WARRIOR

Every so often you’ll come across a combat sport movie that manages to find just the right balance of drama and action – that is, more drama than action. When fights are justified with backstories full of crushing emotion, they become all the more intense and gratifying. Warrior is one of those amazing movies. The fighting was almost an extension of the drama and connected the dots of this film beautifully. The combat that takes place in the ring was brutally real, vividly authentic, and in your face genuine.

Through the incredible acting talents of Tom Hardy, Joel Edgerton, and Nick Nolte, this confused and passionate chemistry really comes alive. All three actors put up some of the most convincing and heartbreaking performances of their careers; and seeing as how The Fighter garnered so many Oscar nominations last year, I was sure this one too would get at least get nominated for many categories or even win in some. But to my disappointment, only Nick Nolte got nominated for the best supporting actor (thank god for that)…At least some more nominations would’ve brought little gem of a movie a little more attention.

So though the show, as boring as it was, a round of applause to all the winners but don’t forget that some of the best films of the year weren’t recognized at all. Perhaps next year, the Academy will be better. Let’s keep our fingers crossed…