As awards season approaches, so too will talk of what should and should not be nominated. While superhero and fantasy movies are often snubbed for Oscar nods, horror movies are also notoriously undervalued at the annual Academy Awards ceremony
Currently, AwardsWatch is predicting that the Marvel superhero movie Black Panther has a real shot at being nominated in the Best Picture category. This eventuality, should it occur, may score some points with comic book fans — but there remains a litany of other movies that are not being mentioned as potential-contenders for an Oscar which merit discussion.
A few films that deserve mention follow.
Alex Garland received high critical praise for his 2018 follow-up to Ex-Machina, a deeply philosophical science fiction movie called Annihilation. Oscar-winner Natalie Portman starred in this critical darling, alongside Academy Award-nominated actress Jennifer Jason Leigh. The film was artfully shot and superbly acted, challenging its audience and asking difficult questions of them. Its largely-female cast even makes the movie a socially relevant film, one that pushes back against an industry widely considered to be male-dominated. Alas, Annihilation is decidedly out of the conversation as it pertains to Oscar recognition. It did have a short theatrical run, making it eligible for consideration, but having a place among the contenders for Best Picture seems unlikely.
My four favourite #horror movies of the year also star four of the fiercest women working in the genre today. Give them all an Oscar each!#NataliePortman #ToniCollette #DakotaJohnson #JamieLeeCurtis #Annihilation #Hereditary #Suspiria #Halloween pic.twitter.com/DhYFcg3qFZ
— Sleighvid Opie ???? (@DavidOpie) October 30, 2018
Isle Of Dogs
Director Wes Anderson is no stranger to the Best Picture category. His 2015 film, The Grand Budapest Hotel, was nominated for numerous Oscars — but even with Isle Of Dogs achieving an 89 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and being filled to the brim with sociopolitical commentary, awards whispers are indicating a snub. Isle Of Dogs could get a nomination for Best Animated Feature Film, but animation is regularly overlooked as a serious medium by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Furthermore, Disney and Pixar traditionally clean house in the animation category for the Academy Awards. Isle Of Dogs seems like an unlikely recipient, despite its triumph as one of Wes Anderson’s finest films.
Horror rarely receives any nominations, but films belonging to the genre have attained critical laurels in the past. The Exorcist was nominated for the 1974 Academy Awards, but lost in the Best Picture category to The Sting. The 1991 psychological horror film Silence of the Lambs took home the Best Picture Oscar — and won in a number of other categories — but Hereditary is not being mentioned by most major outlets as even a long-shot possibility. For a movie that has been compared to The Exorcist for redefining terror in film and for eliciting strong reactions from audiences, that’s unfortunate. Hereditary received major acclaim from critics, touted a brilliant performance from Toni Collette, and was produced by A24 Films. A24 also produced Moonlight, which took home the Best Picture Oscar in 2017 — but they appear to be unlikely to have another Oscar hit with Hereditary.
Only time will tell how the 2019 Oscars ultimately shake out, but it would be nice to see one of the aforementioned movies make an appearance at the black-tie affair.