9 films that could have easily gotten a Best Picture nod at the Oscars
The Best Picture award doesn't decide which film was the best of a particular year. It decides which film deserved to win an Oscar that year.
Awards ceremonies should never be taken too seriously, even the Oscars. Ultimately, these are all just movies and a good movie can stand on its own two feet without an award to prop it up.
But there is a definite 'type' of film that gets nominated for Oscars. La La Land is a perfect example and will almost definitely walk away with the top prize on the night. But what about the films that were really, really great, but still didn't get a mention?
1. Hunt for the Wilderpeople
Films about family often get a look-in at the Oscars, and there's fewer more joyously off-beat films about family than Hunt for the Wilderpeople. It's an emotional and funny journey through the rainforests of New Zealand as a boy and his uncle go on the run.
Entertaining and endearingly sincere, Hunt for the Wilderpeople never really had a shot at the Oscars, but that's why we're including it here. A must-see.
2. I, Daniel Blake
A powerful and moving film about real people, dealing with a real issue in society today. It won the Palme d'Or at Cannes last year, but it should have been in with a shout at the Oscars.
3. Nocturnal Animals
It was actually a surprise not to see this up for a nomination. Nocturnal Animals split the critics, with some enjoying it as a super-stylish thriller, and others finding it to be misogynistic and lacking substance.
What Nocturnal Animals is, however, is an extremely well-made film that left everyone who saw it feeling uncomfortable and more than a little unclean. A truly cinematic (if slightly traumatising) experience.
4. The Lobster
The last comedy film to win Best Picture was Annie Hall in 1978. The last weird-as-balls comedy film to win was, well, probably never.
The Lobster is a weird-as-balls comedy, but it's about the absurdity of relationships and the ridiculous pressure to not be single, to settle for someone and live out your days in semi-happiness. Is it classic Oscar fare? Definitely not, but it's a cracking film.
Before you say it, it was actually looking as though Deadpool was genuinely heading towards an Oscar nomination. It picked up a Golden Globe nod and got nominations at various industry awards, which usually signal it's good for a place on Oscar night.
Sadly not. Besides, Deadpool doesn't need an Oscar nomination - it kicks ass on its own terms. On the other hand, when Suicide Squad gets a nomination (for Best Makeup and Hairstyling, admittedly) and Deadpool gets nothing, something's amiss.
6. Sing Street
If you've seen Sing Street, then you'll already know what this is doing in here. The most feel-good film of last year, Sing Street is an absolute joy to watch, with some of the catchiest songs of the year (none of which got nominated, by the way).
The synopsis is basically "boy starts band to impress girl, band actually turns out to be quite good" but it's so much more than that. It's about teenage rebellion, first loves and finding your groove. If you don't love this film then can you honestly say you've ever really loved anything?
No documentary has ever been nominated for Best Picture, but there's no real reason why not. If any doc deserved a place at that table this year, it's Ava DuVernay's incredible movie 13th. The film looks at the problem of mass incarceration in America, and how the 13th Amendment legally enables a new kind of slave labour in prisons.
It's a shattering and eye-opening film that will make you simultaneously sad and angry, and you can watch it on Netflix right now. It's up for Best Documentary, but if there was ever a film that deserved the platform of Best Picture, it's 13th.
8. Green Room
Horror movies tend to have a tricky time at the Oscars, with only five ever getting nominations for Best Picture: The Exorcist, Jaws, Black Swan, The Sixth Sense and The Silence of the Lambs, with the latter taking home the prize in 1992.
Green Room was one of the most tense, most brutal films of last year. The film deserves some kind of technical recognition for the gore alone, but if films are meant to take you an emotional journey, Green Room puts you through the fucking wringer.
Now in fairness, Zootropolis (or Zootopia as it's know in the US) did get a nomination for Best Animation, but as anyone who saw Zootropolis will know, it is a great film in and of its own right.
Not every family movie deals with the tricky issue of race relations, but Zootropolis did so with great aplomb. It's funny, it's meaningful and it really has something to say. It deserved a shot at the top prize, but it's in with a strong shot at Best Animation, which is not to be sniffed at.