Oscar Snubs: They Shoulda Been a Contender

It’s an open question whether the red carpet, the stargazing, the invariably overlong ceremony with its record of misjudged entertainment set pieces, and the obligatory afterparties will be present, but to paraphrase one of this year’s big nominees: There will be Oscars.

Zodiac - Where’s Robert Downey Jr.’s nomination?My annual Oscar report card is up at MSN. There are a lot of good nominees. I list a few choices that I think would have been better. Everyone’s a critic…

For the most part, it’s a classy bunch, but there’s always room for complaining. There is no shortage of deserving artists who didn’t make Oscar’s cut and we’re not shy about sharing our opinions on where the academy went wrong. So here is our report card on Oscar’s slights and oversights. Call it: They shoulda been a contender.

Best Picture

The five Best Picture nominees are a worthy — if fairly dark — class this year, lightened only by the inclusion of the indie-ish comedy “Juno.” I adore the film, I confess, and find it far more interesting and alive than last year’s token quasi-indie “Little Miss Sunshine.” But I’d prefer to see Sean Penn‘s “Into the Wild” — the glaring omission of the category — in its place. This sprawling, ragged human epic throws the audience headlong into the romance of an odyssey across America, living in the moment and in the buzzing thrill of the quest for something that may not exist. Carved out of primal imagery, raw emotion and pure passion, Penn’s ambition may exceed his grasp but only by degrees.

Read the rest here.

Into The Wild - Director Sean Penn shoots Emile Hirsch

Author: seanax

I write the weekly newspaper column Stream On Demand and the companion website (www.streamondemandathome.com). I'm a contributing writer for Turner Classic Movies Online, Keyframe, Independent Lens, and Cinephiled, and the editor of Parallax View (www.parallax-view.org).. I've written for The Seattle Post-Intelligencer, The Seattle Weekly, GreenCine.com, Senses of Cinema, Asian Cult Cinema, and Psychotronic Video, among other publications, and I am a contributing editor to Parallax View. I currently live and work in Seattle, Washington, with my two cats, Hammet and Chandler.

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