Oscar Nominees: 2016

My own personal unqualified opinion on what should win, and what should or shouldn’t have been nominated.

Best Picture
Nominees: The Big Short, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Martian, The Revenant, Room, Spotlight
Remaining to See: Bridge of Spies
My preference: ROOM. I’m sure I’ll get into it in other categories, but I was completely blown away by every aspect of it. I can say with total sincerity that it was the best movie I saw in 2015. If Spotlight or Mad Max won I’d be happy. I’d be surprised if Brooklyn or The Martian won but I enjoyed both.
Should Have Been Nominated: Carol and Steve Jobs both should have been nominated. It’s honestly ridiculous that Carol wasn’t.
Should Not Have Been Nominated: Upon first seeing the trailer for The Big Short I remember texting my best friend, in all caps, “Michael Lewis book movie looks kinda bad I wanna see it tho.” Not my most eloquent, but it got my point across. The problem is that after seeing it my opinion hasn’t changed much. I thought it was an average movie. Something I might watch for a business class if the professor was feeling generous, but nothing special. The Revenant deserves to be nominated (I guess) but I certainly didn’t like it. There were things about it that I liked, but altogether it wasn’t a very good movie.

Best Actor
Nominees:
Bryan Cranston, Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio, Michael Fassbender, Eddie Redmayne
Remaining to See:
Bryan Cranston
My Preference:
I won’t even pretend to hide my bias. Michael Fassbender is, in my opinion, one of the best actively working actors in Hollywood. He deserved the Oscar in 2014 and he deserves it now. He managed to carry a movie that didn’t need to be carried. His performance was just incredible.
Should Have Been Nominated:
I haven’t seen Creed or Beasts of No Nation, but the consensus seems to be that Michael B. Jordan and Idris Elba deserved nominations. I’d believe it. Idris is pretty good in everything he does. I don’t necessarily think Johnny Depp deserved a nomination, but I was a little surprised to see that he wasn’t. Only because for a short time he was a favorite.
Should Not Have Been Nominated:
This is probably a little controversial and a little elitist but maybe not Matt Damon. I think comedy roles while really great and entertaining to watch aren’t so Oscar-worthy. I loved The Martian and thought he was enjoyable as Mark Watney, but I think his spot might have been better suited for someone else, like Idris Elba.

Best Actress
Nominees:
Cate Blanchett, Brie Larson, Jennifer Lawrence, Charlotte Rampling, Saoirse Ronan
Remaining to See: Charlotte Rampling
My Preference: Brie Larson. Duh. But also Saoirse is so lovely; if Brie wasn’t nominated against her I’d be Team Ronan. Maybe next year.
Should Have Been Nominated: Alicia Vikander should have been nominated for Gerda in The Danish Girl and then also for Best Supporting Actress as Ava in Ex Machina.
Should Not Have Been Nominated: If Joy deserved any nominations this was it. So while I’m not a fan of Jennifer Lawrence, I don’t mind it. I would have rather gone without, though.

Best Supporting Actor
Nominees:
Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Mark Ruffalo, Mark Rylance, Sylvester Stallone
Remaining to See: Mark Rylance, Sylvester Stallone
My Preference: I’d be a bit disappointed that this is the movie Tom Hardy wins for, but he did a good job and I think he’s the most deserving.
Should Have Been Nominated: WHERE IS JACOB TREMBLAY? Best actor is a tight race this year, but I think he could have easily won supporting actor.
Should Not Have Been Nominated: Maybe once I watch Creed I will get the Stallone hype.

Best Supporting Actress
Nominees: Jennifer Jason Lee, Rooney Mara, Rachel McAdams, Alicia Vikander, Kate Winslet
Remaining to See:
None!
My Preference:
Too close to call. I love all of them dearly. If I had to choose, I pick Kate. But really, they’re all wonderful.
Should Have Been Nominated:
Alicia for Ex Machina, as previously mentioned. Charlize Theron for Mad Max would have been nice too.
Should Not Have Been Nominated:
Nobody. Yay girls :)

Best Directing
Nominees:
Adam McKay, George Miller, Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Lenny Abrahamson, Tom McCarthy
Remaining to See:
none
My Preference:
I am fully Team Room. Somebody give Lenny a hug and an Oscar. However. To quote Rust Cohle, “I’d consider myself a realist, alright? But in philosophical terms I’m what’s called a pessimist.” I cannot foresee Lenny winning, and therefore George Miller has my support. I mean. I think it’s going to Iñárritu. But Miller has my support.
Should Have Been Nominated:
How does Ridley Scott win the Golden Globe without even being nominated for the Oscar? Some nonsense. Todd Haynes deserved a nod as well.
Should Not Have Been Nominated:
Adam McKay. Personal preference.

Animated Feature Film
Nominees: Anomalisa, Boy and the World, Inside Out, Shaun the Sheep Movie, When Marnie Was There
Remaining to See: Boy and the World, When Marnie Was There
My Preference: Shaun the Sheep! One of the most underrated movies of the year, and it can be enjoyed by literally anyone at literally any age! Inside Out was very good and “adult” animated films like Anomalisa are interesting to me, but I liked Shaun the Sheep the most.
Should Have Been Nominated: Interesting that Disney Animation Studios didn’t produce anything this year? I guess they already had huge money makers like Star Wars. I didn’t see The Peanuts Movie but I heard good things about it.
Should Not Have Been Nominated: None. Come on.

I’m getting tired so for the technical awards I think I’ll only cover ones I have opinions on.

Costume Design
Nominees:
Carol, Cinderella, The Danish Girl, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Revenant
Remaining to See:
none
My Preference:
Tough call. I liked the costumes in Carol alot because for a period film, they didn’t show just one kind of person. They had clothing for wealthier people and for the middle class. The costumes in The Danish Girl and Cinderella were very pretty in different ways.
Should Have Been Nominated:
Brooklyn definitely. Maybe Suffragette? The Man From Uncle would have been a wild card but I thought the costumes in that were great. Would Jupiter Ascending be in contention???? Or was that on the cusp of last year’s nominations? Steve Jobs too. Who even cares.
Should Not Have Been Nominated:
nothing really

Film Editing
Nominees: The Big Short, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Revenant, Spotlight, Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Remaining to See:
none
My Preference:
Mad Max! I think the smooth editing is one of the things that made the movie so enjoyable to watch.
Should Have Been Nominated:
no opinion
Should Not Have Been Nominated:
The editing in The Big Short started out kind of cool, but then it got old pretty quickly.

Original Score
Nominees:
Bridge of Spies, Carol, The Hateful Eight, Sicario, Star Wars
Remaining to See:
Bridge of Spies, Sicario
My Preference:
Of the ones nominated? I like Ennio Morricone. Carol had a nice score as well though it made me sleepy.
Should Have Been Nominated:
So many. Daniel Pemberton for sure. I think he deserves the Oscar. He does amazingly well tailoring the score to fit the scene. His music stands well on it’s own. Stephen Rennicks for Room of course. And not just because I tear up every time I listen to it. Alexandre Desplat not being nominated is a shame. (For the record I think Pemberton is an up and coming Desplat. He’s able to create very diverse pieces while still having a distinct sound.) Michael Brook also did a nice job in Brooklyn. For something different: Mad Max was awesome. Also I personally liked the Pawn Sacrifice score.
Should Not Have Been Nominated:
Well. None of the nominees had bad music. Some of them didn’t have anything that stood out to me. Star Wars seems a bit too much of a sentimental nomination. I’m kind of surprised The Revenant wasn’t nominated, but I wasn’t a fan anyway.

Production Design
Nominees:
Bridge of Spies, The Danish Girl, Mad Max, The Martian, The Revenant
Remaining to See:
Bridge of Spies
My Preference:
The Martian had so many different settings that all looked realistic. Mad Max was also obviously very cool, especially the different cars. Even The Revenant! You know what I’d be fine with anything winning this one.
Should Have Been Nominated:
Crimson Peak, honestly. It should have been nominated for costumes too, come to think of it. The Hateful Eight could have been nominated. Room as well! Both spent a large portion of the movie confined to a small space and worked with it well. For that matter, Ex Machina too.
Should Not Have Been Nominated:
nothing

This was so exhausting. I’m going to wrap up by saying: Ex Machina’s visual effects blew my mind, lol at Quentin Tarantino for Hateful Eight’s screenplay, The Revenant’s pretty cinematography was the film’s saving grace,and Aaron Sorkin was absolutely 100% without a doubt the biggest snub this year. His screenplay DESERVES the Oscar yet he wasn’t even nominated. Beyond ridiculous. I am very excited for Oscar night.

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