In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

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In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by Buscemi on Tue Feb 17, 2009 8:24 pm

The Oscars. Hollywood's biggest event and what every film fan pays attention to. We worship the ceremonies and fawn over what is awarded. The film fan's Super Bowl. But the ones who get nominated and win aren't usually the ones that we want. So today, I will some what I believe should have been nominated (and what should have won). This will be in two parts: the nominees and the winners.

Here is the first part: the nominees. (2008 will not be included since I haven't seen The Reader)

Note: will be done in segments

2007:
What Shouldn't Have Been Nominated:
Atonement, Juno and Michael Clayton (for Best Picture)
George Clooney and Johnny Depp (for Best Actor)
Cate Blanchett (for Best Actress)
Tony Gilroy and Jason Reitman (for Best Director)
Juno (for Best Original Screenplay)
Atonement (for Best Adapted Screenplay)

What Should Have Been Nominated:
Ratatouille, Gone Baby Gone and Into The Wild (for Best Picture)
Josh Brolin and John C. Reilly (for Best Actor)
Nikki Blonsky (for Best Actress)
Brad Bird and Ben Affleck (for Best Director)
Knocked Up (for Best Original Screenplay)
Atonement (for Best Adapted Screenplay)

2006:
Shouldn't Have
Meryl Streep (for Best Actress)
Pan's Labyrinth (for Best Original Screenplay)
Children Of Men (for Best Adapted Screenplay)
Pan's Labyrinth (for Best Foreign Language Film)

Should Have
Maggie Gyllenhaal (for Best Actress)
Volver
Thank You For Smoking (for Best Adapted Screenplay)
Black Book (for Best Foreign Language Film)

2005:
Shouldn't Have
Crash (Best Picture)

Should Have
Syriana (Best Picture)

2004:
Shouldn't Have
Finding Neverland (Best Picture)
Kate Winslet (Best Actress)
Clive Own (Best Supporting Actor)
Tupac: Resurrection (a 2003 release) (Best Documentary Feature)
Spider-Man 2 (Best Visual Effects)

Should Have
Hotel Rwanda (Best Picture)
Uma Thurman (Best Actress)
David Carradine (Best Supporting Actor)
Tarnation (Best Documentary Feature)
Sky Captain and The World Of Tomorrow (Best Visual Effects)

2003
Shouldn't Have
Naomi Watts and Diane Keaton (Best Actress)

Should Have
Uma Thurman and Evan Rachel Wood (Best Actress)

2002
Shouldn't Have
The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers and The Hours (Best Picture)
Stephen Daldry (Best Director)
My Big Fat Greek Wedding (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Far From Heaven and Adaptation (Best Picture)
Todd Haynes (Best Director)
Punch-Drunk Love (Best Original Screenplay)

2001
Shouldn't Have
Moulin Rouge! (Best Picture)
Denzel Washington (Best Actor)
Halle Berry (Best Actress)
Monster's Ball (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Memento (Best Picture)
Guy Pearce (Best Actor)
Tilda Swinton (Best Actress)
Mulholland Drive (Best Original Screenplay)

2000
Shouldn't Have
Erin Brockovich and Chocolat (Best Picture)
Steven Soderbergh for Erin Brockovich (Best Director)
Chocolat (Best Adapted Screenplay)
Erin Brockovich (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Requiem For A Dream and Quills (Best Picture)
Darren Aronofsky (Best Director)
Requiem For A Dream (Best Adapted Screenplay)
Cast Away (Best Original Screenplay)

Part 2: 1999-1990 will be up in a little bit.

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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by numbersix_99 on Tue Feb 17, 2009 8:59 pm

I did an article on this last year.

However, it’s interesting, if not obvious, to point out that the Oscars aren’t always right. Out of the top 25 films as voted by Internet Movie Database Members, only 6 won the prestigious Best Picture Award. And at times the winner, or even the list of nominees, seem downright lazy, representing the mainstream and neglecting the independent, while often sidelining foreign cinema into its own condescended subcategory. Below is a list of what I feel are the most unfair wins and worst omissions in this important award institution. Feel free to add your own in this tribute to aesthetic injustice.

The 1942 Oscars

I know, I know, anyone who knows anything about cinema knows about the travesty that was this event. This is entirely due to the neglect of Citizen Kane, pretty much acknowledged as the most important film ever made. Newcomer Orson Welles changed the face of cinema by incorporating the most impressive techniques of expressionist cinema, and placing it into a gripping yarn about lost innocence. Not only that but Welles played the lead role brilliantly, being in his mid 20’s but portraying Kane from young adulthood to old age with utter conviction. And what did it get form the Oscars? Best Screenplay. John Ford’s sentimental How Green Was My Valley picked up picture and director awards. But what do you expect? The Oscars aren’t exactly known for charting the future of cinema, but rather sticking to the easy. But besides Kane, it was also a shame that Preston Sturges’s charming Sullivan’s Travels and the moody The Maltese Falcon were largely ignored.

The Return of the King winning, well, everything in 2004

Come on. Admittedly, this is a well made action adventure romp (the best in over 15 years), but it delved into self-importance (the sentimental 20 min ending), and occasionally missed the mark in terms of action (the battle with Shelob). But it would be like Star Wars sweeping the 1978 Oscars. Was the year so bad that voters had only this to choose? Not at all, it was just publicised so much that its ubiquitous advertising campaign and schoolyard buzz pushed other films from the minds of most. Fernando Meirelles’s vision of Brazil’s favelas in City of God was both thrilling and deeply disturbing, more vibrant and passionate than Jackson’s directing. And winning Best Adapted Script over Berman and Pulcini’s witty, hip, and uniquely honest American Splendour was an utter shame.

How ‘…the West‘ Didn’t Win

You’d think the definitive Western, if not the Western that ended all Westerns, would have been acknowledged in the 1970 awards? Leone was one of those directors you could identify by watching a few frames of his films, so distinctive was his style. The action was brief, the scenes’ tension optimised through extreme angles and the strength to avoid relying on quick cuts all the time. I think Once Upon a Time in the West is his best, for its characterisation, especially its strong female lead, and for being genuinely thrilling. You’d think even Morricone would get a nod for his creation of specific themes for specific characters, blending into medley whenever characters clashed. Alas, this is not the first classic film to be neglected and not the last.

A Snubbed Malcolm X

Spike Lee was an angry young man who could translate that passion into his films. And Malcolm X was his first large-scale feature, charting the rise of the African American rights activist. The film is dark, imaginative, and unlike modern biopics, gets into the head of the complex and sometimes contradictory man, partly due to Denzel Washington’s astounding performance. While it can be argued that Clint’s The Unforgiven is a great film too (it beat Malcolm X to Best Film), it’s sickening that Washington was beaten by Al Pacino’s hammy hoo-hah-ing ferrari-driving blind-man performance in the soppy and silly Scent of a Woman. It must have been a tribute Oscar, much like Washington’s was for his over-the-top shouting through Training Day.

The Incredible Case of Kramer Vs Kramer

I sat down to this film hoping to see Seinfeld’s gangly neighbour battle it out with his doppelganger. Alas, the eponymous protagonists are man and ex-wife battling for custody over their kids. Whoever voted for this hyped-up TV-movie should be shot, or at least endure a severe ass-kicking. Dustin Hoffman’s performance was impressive enough, but nowhere near the poignancy of Peter Sellers in the touching yet satirical Being There. And of course there’s the mildly debatable issue of it winning Best Film over a little flick known as Apocalypse Now.

Lynched in 2002

2001 was a pretty good year for cinema. It brought us Donnie Darko, Amelie, the Royal Tenenbaums, the Pledge, and so on. And how was this represented at the 2002 awards? A Beautiful Mind taking up the Best Film category. But the real crime was in directing. You would image that when choosing for the best director, you try to look for a distinct use of visuals, imagination, and creative ways of bringing emotions to the audience. So why on earth did Ron Howard win for the sentimental, clichéd, corny, and insanely boring A Beautiful Mind? David Lynch (who should win an Oscar for Best Hair in Cinema) was nominated for Mulholland Drive, a film that achieves the very rare in boasting a very unconventional, non-linear manner of storytelling that manages to retain emotional authenticity, and have stunning cinematography. Maybe the category should be Most Typical Directing.

Stan is not the Man

Like Hitchcock, Bergman, and Lynch, Stanley Kubrick was another visionary that perhaps went too far into cinematic innovation for Academy members to take that awful risk and vote for something new. Kubrick’s 2001 still stuns most for its sets, he was the first to use extensive steadicam for The Shining, he was responsible for the creation of a super-sensitive lens in order to light scenes with candles in Barry Lyndon, and few films capture the quality of an unnerving dream better than Eyes Wide Shut. Kubrick was nominated several times, for his writing and producing as much as his directing, but his only Oscar was for his role in the special effects for 2001. I’m sure he’ll get an honorary award eventually, the typical consolation attempt the Academy makes to acknowledge those geniuses that were too far out there for the Academy’s collective conservatism.

No Place like Home

Whenever I get into a discussion about special effects in movies, the list of latest films boasting the best technology means very little to me. Technical advances do not necessarily mean better effects. And I’ve yet to see a film whose sets and fictional landscapes have impressed me as much as the dystopic realm of 2019, as featured in Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner. Combining modern (well, for 1982) Japanese design with ancient Mayan architecture, this tale of identity and rogue replicants remains one of the greatest sci-fi films ever devised. Sadly, it lost Best Special Effects to none other but the plastic figurine that is ET.

Leave Ullmann

One of the most under-rated actresses in cinema history had to be Liv Ullmann. Being a Scandinavian actress she was either going to end up in porn or in existential dramas, and fortunately she ended up in the latter. She is mostly known for her work with legendary Swedish director Ingmar “the comedian” Bergman. She was nominated for their 1976 film Face to Face. She also came close to receiving the award in 1973 for her performance in the epic The Emigrants, losing out to Liza Minelli for Cabaret (Ullman did get a Golden Globe for her efforts). Her greatest moment is the TV-drama turned feature film Scenes from a Marriage, in which she creates one of the most complex portrayals of a person in cinema’s history, as passive-aggressive Marianne, as we trudge through a decade of her rocky marriage. Domestic drama has never been so powerful, and Ullmann is the key factor. She returned to the same character in Bergman’s final film Saraband, but she didn’t use enough prosthetics to even be considered.

Hitch-Hiked

He’s rated as one of the best directors of all time. He was one of the few that could balance complex psychological theories with exciting and entertaining plots. And he was always trying to push the boundaries of movies. Occasionally that failed, but out of the 50 or so movies about a dozen are classics. Alfred Hitchcock remains possibly the most influential film-maker, inspiring those from Truffaut to Spielberg to Tarantino, to every modern thriller and chiller. He was nominated five times as director in his career, including Rear Window and his iconic Psycho, but never won. I think Vertigo is one of the greatest films ever made, and it was thrown scrap awards in 1959 (Best Sound, Best Art Direction). Anyone who hasn’t seen it should rush out and buy it, for this ultimate portrayal of obsession demands multiple viewings. It lost Best Film to the frivolous musical Gigi, of all films. Hitch eventually got an honorary Oscar in 1968 (and a commemorative stamp!), a bandage award on a wound of neglect.
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by Buscemi on Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:49 pm

Interesting read, Six. But you will have to wait until later for my, should we say, opinions.

Part 2: 1999-1990

1999
Shouldn't Have
The Sixth Sense (Best Picture)
The Sixth Sense (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Fight Club (Best Picture) or Toy Story 2 (Best Picture that the Academy would have liked)
Toy Story 2 (Best Original Screenplay*)

1998
Shouldn't Have
Shakespeare In Love (Best Picture)
John Madden- not the football guy (Best Director)
Shakespeare In Love (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
American History X (Best Picture)
Shekhar Kapur (Best Director)
The Big Lebowski (Best Original Screenplay)

1997
Shouldn't Have
As Good As It Gets (Best Picture)

Should Have
Boogie Nights (Best Picture)

1996
Shouldn't Have
Jerry Maguire (Best Picture)

Should Have
Sling Blade (Best Picture)

1995
Shouldn't Have
Il Postino, Apollo 13 and Sense and Sensibility (Best Picture)
Michael Radford (Best Director)
Il Postino (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
The Usual Suspects, Casino and Se7en (Best Picture)
Ang Lee (Best Director)
Casino (Best Adapted Screenplay)

1994 (it is one of my favorite film years, I like most of the films but a few deserved better)
Shouldn't Have
Woody Allen (Best Director)
Nigel Hawthorne (Best Actor)
Bullets Over Broadway (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Frank Darabont (Best Director)
Terence Stamp (Best Actor)
The Adventures Of Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert (Best Original Screenplay)

1993
Shouldn't Have
The Remains Of The Day (Best Adapted Screenplay)
In The Line Of Fire (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Short Cuts (Best Adapted Screenplay)
Strictly Ballroom (Best Original Screenplay)

1992
Shouldn't Have
A Few Good Men and Scent Of A Woman (Best Picture)
Martin Brest (Best Director)
Al Pacino (Best Supporting Actor)
Lorenzo's Oil (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
The Player and Malcolm X (Best Picture)
Spike Lee (Best Director)
Jack Lemmon (Best Supporting Actor)
Aladdin (Best Original Screenplay)

1991
Shouldn't Have
The Prince Of Tides (Best Picture)
Barry Levinson (Best Director)
The Prince Of Tides (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
Boyz N The Hood (Best Picture)
Kirk Wise/Gary Trousdale (Best Director)
Beauty and The Beast (Best Adapted Screenplay)

1990
Shouldn't Have
Dances With Wolves (Best Picture)
Kevin Costner (Best Director)

Should Have
Reversal Of Fortune (Best Picture)
Penny Marshall (Best Director)

Part 3: 1989-1980 is up next.


*- I'm sure that sequels have been nominated for Best Original Screenplay

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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by Buscemi on Wed Feb 18, 2009 12:26 am

Part 3: 1989-1980

1989
Shouldn't Have
Driving Miss Daisy and Field Of Dreams (Best Picture)
Marlon Brando (Best Supporting Actor)
Enemies: A Love Story (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
Do The Right Thing and Glory (Best Picture)
Matthew Broderick (Best Supporting Actor)
Henry V (Best Adapted Screenplay)

1988
Shouldn't Have
The Accidental Tourist (Best Picture)
Tom Hanks (Best Actor)
Michelle Pfeiffer and Sigourney Weaver (Best Supporting Actress)
Running On Empty (Best Original Screenplay, haven't seen this film but I believe that better screenplays were snubbed)
The Accidental Tourist (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
The Unbearable Lightness Of Being (Best Picture)
Willem Dafoe (Best Actor)
Lena Olin and Juliette Binoche (Best Supporting Actress)
Mississippi Burning (Best Original Screenplay)
The Last Temptation Of Christ (Best Adapted Screenplay)

1987
Shouldn't Have
Hope and Glory (Best Picture)
Vincent Gardenia (Best Supporting Actor)
John Boorman (Best Director)
Hope and Glory (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Empire Of The Sun (Best Picture)
R. Lee Ermey (Best Supporting Actor)
Stanley Kubrick (Best Director)
Matewan (Best Original Screenplay)

1986
Shouldn't Have
Hannah and Her Sisters (Best Picture)
Jane Fonda (Best Actress)
Dennis Hopper- Hoosiers (Best Supporting Actor)
Crocodile Dundee and My Beautiful Laundrette (Best Original Screenplay)

Should Have
Blue Velvet (Best Picture)
Melanie Griffith (Best Actress)
Dennis Hopper- Blue Velvet (Best Supporting Actor)
Blue Velvet and Mona Lisa (Best Original Screenplay)

1985
Shouldn't Have
Prizzi's Honor and Out Of Africa (Best Picture)
Jon Voight (Best Actor)
Anne Bancroft (Best Actress)
Eric Roberts (Best Supporting Actor)
The Trip To Bountiful (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
Back To The Future and The Purple Rose Of Cairo (Best Picture*)
Raul Julia (Best Actor)
Mia Farrow (Best Actress)
John Lone (Best Supporting Actor)
Ran (Best Adapted Screenplay)

1984
Shouldn't Have
A Soldier's Story (Best Picture)
Jeff Bridges (Best Actor)
Robert Benton (Best Director)
Splash (Best Original Screenplay)
Greystoke: The Legend Of Tarzan (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
Once Upon A Time In America (Best Picture, too bad they saw the cut version)
Eddie Murphy (Best Actor)
Sergio Leone (Best Director)
Ghostbusters (Best Original Screenplay)
Once Upon A Time In America (Best Adapted Screenplay)

1983
Shouldn't Have
The Dresser and The Big Chill (Best Picture)
Tom Courtneay (Best Actor)
The Dresser (Best Adapted Screenplay)
Peter Yates (Best Director)

Should Have
Fanny and Alexander and Scarface (Best Picture)
Eric Roberts (Best Actor)
Scarface (Best Adapted Screenplay)
Phillip Kaufman (Best Director)

1982
Shouldn't Have
Victor/Victoria (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
Blade Runner (Best Adapted Screenplay)

1981
Shouldn't Have
On Golden Pond (Best Picture)
Mark Rydell (Best Director)

Should Have
Prince Of The City (Best Picture)
Sidney Lumet (Best Director)

1980
Shouldn't Have
Brubaker (Best Original Screenplay)
Coal Miner's Daughter (Best Adapted Screenplay)

Should Have
The Empire Strikes Back (Best Original Screenplay)
Raging Bull (Best Adapted Screenplay)

*-because they wouldn't have nominated Brazil or Ran

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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by IPKI$$ on Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:43 am

The problem with these lists of yours, guys, is that it's easy to look back on films from years ago and replace the crappy forgotten nominees with today's recognized classics, but in order to understand why the films were on those lists in the first place you must view the film in the mindstate of the era and look at how it was ultimately received at the time, not how it has aged.
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by Buscemi on Wed Feb 18, 2009 2:48 am

But don't you think that even in 1987 that Hope and Glory was a weak nominee that should have been snubbed by other, more popular films (such as Empire Of The Sun, Full Metal Jacket, Cry Freedom and even Dirty Dancing)?

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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by undeadmonkey on Wed Feb 18, 2009 3:45 am

this is another one of those opinion conversations, ha ha
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by A_Roode on Wed Feb 18, 2009 4:54 am

There's an interesting book by Danny Peary you might be interested in. he wrote it in 1993, but it was his 'Alternate Oscar' picks and he had some interesting choices of his own. I found a bit of a summary with someone else doing a bit of editorialising by throwing in their own picks in the Best Picture category:

Danny Peary's Alternate Oscars
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by Buscemi on Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:02 am

I've actually seen Cavalcade (had to buy a used VHS tape just to see it) but King Kong is better.


Last edited by Buscemi on Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:30 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by A_Roode on Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:05 am

When asked what he thought about losing 'Best Picture' to Cavalcade, an obviously inconsolable Kong sobbed 'KONG SMASH!'

Poor Monkey.
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by BanksIsDaFuture on Wed Feb 18, 2009 8:38 pm

Wow, really? The Black Book over Pan's Labyrinth?

Pan's not only deserved the nod, but it should've won as well.
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by IPKI$$ on Wed Feb 18, 2009 9:22 pm

Oh, and by the way buscemi, I'm not too sure how compatible our tastes are but The Reader (despite the fact that it has no chance in hell at winning) is my personal favorite of the picture nominees. While I don't feel it was the best film all year, I do think it is one of two films that actually deserve their nomination in that category.
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by transformers2 on Thu Feb 19, 2009 2:20 am

I know last year Gone Baby Gone and 3:10 To Yuma should have been nominated instead of There Will Be Blood and Atonment[to be fair i havent seen Atonment but There Will We Blood was so god damn boring that didnt deserve to be nominated].
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Re: In My Opinion, The Biggest Oscar Snubs

Post by undeadmonkey on Thu Feb 19, 2009 3:05 am

Gone Baby Gone was pretty darn good, your right there. Yuma was good but not Oscar worthy. I liked Atonement too, but also dont think it was Oscar worthy. As for There Will Be Blood, I really enjoyed it and I thought it was great, I loved the aspect of seeing how corporate America was starting to take over, but I dont think I would sit through it again.
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