The nominations for the 2023 Oscars have been announced, with 10 films vying for Best Picture. Everything everywhere all at once led the way with 11 nominations in total, with The Banshees of Inisherin and In the west, nothing is new just behind with 9 nominations each.
Take a look at what CultureMap film critic Alex Bentley had to say about each of the nominees (listed below in alphabetical order) upon their initial release. This year’s Oscars ceremony will take place on Sunday, March 12.
In the west, nothing is new (Not revised)
The epic German anti-war film, available to stream on Netflix, has been gaining momentum on the awards circuit in recent weeks, also earning 14 nominations for the British Academy Film Awards, the most among nominated films there. With nine Oscar nominations, it’s a strong contender to win not just International Feature Film, but Best Picture as well. Parasite.
Avatar: The Way of the Water
It is undeniable that everything in the long-awaited Avatar looks spectacular, from the Na’vi to the various animals of the world to abundant water. But writer/director James Cameron also used the high frame rate of 48fps, giving everything a hyper-real feel that, to this reviewer at least, isn’t a great viewing experience. Also, for a 3 hour and 12 minute movie, you’d think there would be a lot of time to dedicate to all aspects of the story, but that’s not the case. Although it’s nominated for Best Picture, its best chance of winning lies in the other three technical nominations.
The Banshees of Inisherin
Written and directed by Martin McDonagh, this film reunited him with his In Brugge stars Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson for one of the funniest movies of the year, and also one of the saddest. The film is spectacular in its ordinary nature, with the story centering around Gleeson’s character ending his longtime friendship with Farrell’s character for no apparent reason. All four lead actors – Farrell (Best Actor), Gleeson (Best Supporting Actor), Barry Keoghan (Best Supporting Actor) and Kerry Condon (Best Supporting Actress) – earned nominations, and McDonagh was nominated for directing and writing, making it film one of the favorites.
One of those love-it-or-hate-it movies, the last from writer/director Baz Luhrmann didn’t find the right place for this reviewer, mostly because it focused more on Colonel Tom Parker (Tom Hanks), not Elvis (Austin Butler) himself. It meant a lot more time for Hanks to deliver one of the worst performances of the year. Butler earned his Best Actor nomination because there are times when he is absolutely electric. But there’s a reason six of his eight nominations are in technical categories – history doesn’t live up to Butler’s performance.
Everything everywhere all at once
At the other end of the spectrum Elvis is Everything everywhere all at once, a film that knew how to use its brilliance in a much better way. With a stunning performance from Michelle Yeoh (who earned his first ever nomination), the return of 80s star Ke Huy Quan (favorite to win Best Supporting Actor) and polar opposite performances from Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu (both nominated for Best Supporting Actress), the film was as wild and weird as it was emotional. With a few surprise nominations, including Best Musical Score and Best Song, it looks destined for plenty of wins.
The most personal film ever made by writer/director Steven Spielberg (nominated in both categories), The Fabelmans is a lightly fictionalized chronicle of Spielberg’s childhood, where he caught the movie bug and endured his parents’ disintegrated marriage. With seven nominations in total, including Best Actress for Michelle Williams, a surprise Best Supporting Actor nomination for Judd Hirsch (who is in the film for less than 10 minutes), and another Best Score nomination. for the iconic John Williams (who now has 52-!!-lifetime nominations), it would be unwise to overlook this film’s chances of winning the top prize.
If ever a film was defined by its main actor, it is Warehouse, featuring a towering – and now Oscar-nominated – performance by Cate Blanchett as world-renowned – but fictional – bandleader Lydia Tár. The first film in 16 years from writer/director Todd Field (nominated in both categories), it stands out for the time it devotes to establishing Tár as a character. Although the story is set in the rarefied world of classical music, it has a grounded nature that keeps it balanced. The film is nominated for seven Oscars in total, but its best chance of winning lies with Blanchett, who is the heavy favorite.
Top Gun: Maverick
My No. 1 Personal Movie of the Year, 1984’s Long-Gestating Sequel Superior gun delivered everything you could expect from a summer blockbuster and more. Even though it basically offers the greatest hits from the original in a slightly repackaged way, it does so spectacularly. While you’d expect his five nominations outside of Best Picture (which gives star Tom Cruise, who also served as a producer, his first Oscar nomination in 24 years) to be technical nominations, he was also nominated. for Best Adapted Screenplay, an indication that its story lived up to its visuals.
triangle of sadness (Not revised)
A black comedy that targets the unconscious of the rich, triangle of sadness is only nominated in three categories, but those are three big ones – Best Picture, Best Director (Ruben Östlund) and Best Original Screenplay (Östlund). Unlike some of the other films in this category, it wasn’t among the top-rated films of the year, but it’s clear that Östlund has its supporters in the writer and director wings of the Academy, so one or two victories are not priceless. the realm of the possible.
women who talk
Even though it was one of my top 10 movies of the year, women who talk is perhaps the film least likely to be in this category among the 10 nominees, as it only has one other nomination, Best Adapted Screenplay for writer/director Sarah Polley. Set almost entirely in a barn loft on a Mennonite compound as a group of women decide how to deal with violent men, it’s a true ensemble film, with no actor really standing out among the rest. Still, with award-winning actors like Rooney Mara, Jessie Buckley and Claire Foy leading the way, it deserves recognition as one of the year’s best.
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