After (pick your verb) watching/enduring/wretching over/passing on the Golden Globes annual ceremonies, movie fans are now preparing for the big show: the annual orgy of self-congratulation called the Oscars, which will be broadcast on March 2. Nomination went out this morning, and some — if not all — of the usual suspects are covered.
The usual suspects? "Gravity," of course, Alfonso Cuarón's sci-fi flick about the breakup of the International Space Station, which tied with "American Hustle" by earning 10 nominations. Cuarón and "American Hustle" director David O. Russell, who won directing nods, along with Martin Scorsese for directing "The Wolf of Wall Street." And others, such as Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts for their acting performances (Actress and Supporting Actress, respectively) in "August: Osage County." Cannes Film Festival Best Actor Bruce Dern for his performance in "Nebraska." And "Frozen," which as some identify as a try-out for a Broadway show, as Best Animated Freature. And so on.
But the nominations did have some surprises. Nothing for Oprah Winfrey. (In fact, where was any support for "Lee Daniels' The Butler"?) No acting nominations for Tom Hanks or Robert Redford. Yet Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto scored for "Dallas Buyers' Club," and Christian Bale slipped into the Best Actor category ("American Hustle"). No directing nomination for either Paul Greengrass ("Captain Phillips") or Spike Jonze ("Her"). But Alexander Payne gets recognized for "Nebraska." Again … Jonah Hill, Supporting Actor for "The Wolf of Wall Street"? And, finally, nothing for the Coen Brothers' "Inside Llewyn Davis" except for cinematography (deserving) and sound mixing?
Ah, well. What would the Oscar race be without a little whining?