2019 Oscar Nomination snubs: The surprises and shocks

A close preview and predictions of the 2019 Academy Awards, which will be presented Sun, Feb. 24 at 5pm PST.

A close preview and predictions of the 2019 Academy Awards, which will be presented Sun, Feb. 24 at 5pm PST.

Image By: Photo Courtesy of Den of Geek

The Academy got many of the categories wrong this year, honoring the wrong films for the wrong nominations. Several of this year's best films were completely or almost completely ignored. The Oscars chose to focus on decent or generally pleasing films instead of the more thought-provoking or daring works of art that remained oblivious to mainstream audiences. Here are the biggest snubs: 

“First Reformed”

Snubbed: Best Picture, Lead Actor and Director

Paul Schrader's brilliant drama was the most intelligent and creative film of 2018. While Black Panther was busy jumping around and chasing cars, Paul Schrader made a film that was extremely relevant and reflective of today. Ethan Hawke gave one of the best performances of the year as a broken-down pastor of a historic church who deals with the pressure from a radical eco-terrorist. He plays the part with such detail and subtle nuances that his character became a part of us in an infectious way. Being so fascinating, it’s a shame the Academy found films like “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Vice” more timely than this brilliant piece of storytelling. 

“You Were Never Really Here”

Snubbed: Best Picture, Lead Actor, Director, Cinematography, Editing, Original Score and Sound Mixing. 

Joaquin Phoenix led this tour de force noir drama with an intoxicating performance that chilled us to the bone. Director Lynne Ramsay crafted a truly stunning vision of a traumatized vigilante struggling to revive himself while rescuing a kidnapped girl. This is one of 2018’s most visually arresting films, the editing pitch perfect and stylish, the cinematography breathtaking and the score haunting, giving the film a kinetically beating heart. The technical usage that generated such a jaw-dropping thriller complemented the character arc of Phoenix’s character beautifully. Sadly, the artistic vision of this film went over the Academy's head. 

“A Star Is Born”

Snubs: Best Director and Editing

Bradley Cooper put his heart and soul into directing one of the biggest hits of 2018, giving us a film that was soulfully executed in every way. While Cooper received three nominations (Best Actor, Adapted Screenplay and Best Picture), his snub for directing is shameful. While the Academy nominated Adam McKay for his unorganized and misguided direction of “Vice,” they ignored one of the most elaborate directorial achievements of 2018. 


Snubs: Best Picture, Director, Original Screenplay, Lead Actress and Editing

The horror genre was once again overlooked by the Academy, this time with the shocking and haunting “Hereditary.” This film did an excellent job of not only scaring the hell out of us, but more importantly how it scared us. It told a haunting story about powerful family issues that almost seemed real, the film grounded in a familiar reality despite involving demons and evil spirits. Toni Collette is perhaps the biggest snub of the year, giving a remarkable emotional performance that can only be marveled at. How the Academy didn’t fall head over heels for this masterpiece baffles me. 

“Eighth Grade”

Snubs: Best Original Screenplay

“Eighth Grade” told a genuinely honest film that is a standout in the coming-of-age drama. It tackled the modern issues of adolescents in the digital age with heart, humor and tragedy, giving us a wide range of emotions to feel all because of its spot-on writing.

“A Quiet Place”

Snubs: Best Sound Mixing, Editing and Cinematography

This thrilling work of horror was so suspenseful, widely due to the use of sound, light, close-ups and editing, making it one of the most visually effective films of the year. 

Shouldn't be nominated

“Black Panther,” while fun and entertaining, is overrated and doesn’t have the visual appeal that it’s made out to have. “Vice,” while also entertaining and led by a great performance by Christian Bale, is misguided and all over the place; its comedic style is forced upon its audience. Other films like “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Green Book” may be alright, but the films themselves can’t compete in creativity and artistic vision with the films who were snubbed. 

Dominic LeRose is a staff writer for the Daily Cardinal. To read more of his work, click here.

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