ZEITLINES | 01.25.19
It’s Oscar season and while movie lovers are scrambling to check all of the films vying for Best Picture, off of their “seen that” list, Client Success Coordinator and film aficionado Giordano Temple offers a different take on the must-see movies of 2018 with six great films that DID NOT get the coveted Oscar nod this year. Break out the popcorn.
The Best 2018 Movies NOT Nominated for the Best Picture Oscar
Giordano Temple, Client Success Coordinator
The Best Picture nominations have historically been the most contentious topic around the Oscars. No matter what nominees are announced, movie viewers claim that their movie got snubbed and blame their displeasure on a range of excuses and conspiracy theories.
Then there is the Oscars’ year-over-year slide in TV ratings - fuelling the idea that the Academy and the network will do whatever it takes to get people to tune in. Look no further than the short-lived attempt at adding an Achievement in Popular Film category for proof.
While I, like others, think there are aspects of award season that are inherently flawed, I also think it’s important to celebrate the year’s achievement in film. As for the recently announced nominees, they’ve all now been written into the history books. It’s the other incredible films we shouldn’t forget about. So, I give you the best films of 2018 that were NOT nominated for the Best Picture Oscar.
You Were Never Really Here - Directed by Lynne Ramsay
Out of all the movies on this list, I’m mostly surprised this one didn’t even get into the Oscars discussion. It originally premiered at the 2017 Cannes Films Festival and wasn’t released in North America until early 2018 while being distributed by Amazon Studios, making it easy to miss. Equal parts beautiful and horrifying, Ramsay creates a tight narrative about a PTSD-riddled veteran (Joaquin Phoenix) trying to manage both his demons of the past and the present. Possibly my personal favourite of the year, never have I felt a sense of claustrophobia and tension in the way I did while watching this movie.
Eighth Grade - Directed by Bo Burnham
Bo Burnham shows an understanding for modern youth culture like I’ve never seen before. The social anxieties and insecurities that come with the age of social media are something that most of us know about, but no one has been able to articulate on the big screen. It’s a movie filled with so much heart that it is not only worth watching yourself, but also showing to the young teens in your lives.
First Reformed - Directed by Paul Schrader
When I saw this film back during its release, I thought it was a shoe-in for a Best Picture nomination. Ethan Hawke is at the peak of his ability and Paul Schrader has a clear vision for what he’s trying to create. If you don’t know much about it, I suggest going into First Reformed blind, but prepare for a harrowing experience.
Blindspotting - Directed by Carlos Lopez Estrada
Most of Blindspotting is extremely on-the-nose in its social commentary and storytelling techniques, but that’s the beauty of it. It doesn’t need to be coy about its portrayal of racism or the discussions around other controversial topics, it gets in your face. And that’s important, because, frankly, these topics should be treated this way in our day-to-day lives. It might not be the first film to do it, but the infusion of comedy and the undeniable chemistry between Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal separates Blindspotting from the rest.
Hereditary - Directed by Ari Aster
Horror film nominations for Best Picture are already a rarity as is, so I wasn’t holding my breath on this one. Still, it just might fit the bill. Possibly the most unsettling movie-going experience of my life, Hereditary dives deep into the many haunted house movie tropes and comes out feeling completely unique. At the very least, Toni Collete deserved Best Actress considerations and with the help of some impressive direction and performances, this movie should be on every horror fans’ ‘must watch’ list.
Suspiria - Directed by Luca Guadagnino
Hot off of his success with 2017’s Call Me by Your Name, I was extremely excited to see Guadagnino’s interpretation of the cult classic. Then, you sprinkle in an original soundtrack by Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and it’s almost guaranteed I’ll enjoy it. I’d be lying if I said I always understood what was going on in Suspiria but it’s so beautiful to look at and it raised so many questions that I still can’t stop thinking about it.
What do you think of our list? Which movie didn't make the cut? Send us your thoughts at firstname.lastname@example.org!