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Jan 24 2017

Happy Thoughts from Oscar Nominations!

We've delivered the hot takeaways,mourned the snubs,but now let's get positive.I polled Team Experience about what made them happiest this morning and which category is the best overall.I hope you'll chime in.An unexpected consensus emerged straightaway in their answers.More after the jump...

Which nomination made you happiest?

Tim:Kubo and the Two StringsforBest Visual Effects.It's a great movie that deserves as much as it can possibly get,and also a good reminder to keep our conceptions about what "counts"as film craft as broad as possible

Laurence:Kubo and the Two Stringsfor Visual Effects.After theEx Machinawin I got the sense that branch was becoming more interested in awarding outside the box effects, so I bet on this nomination happening early.It's stunning work even by Laika standards...

Steven: I was ecstatic to see Kubo cross the animation hurdle and nab a nomination for Best Visual Effects.I have said it before,but the most impressive visual effect I saw this year was the scene where Kubo calls upon the autumn leaves to build a ship.It's intricately,immaculately rendered.The whole film is mesmerizing and I'm so happy for Kubo's effects team.  I don't expect or need it to win,the nomination is achievement enough.

Mica LeviManuel:Mica Levi's Best Score nomination.WhileJackieclearly didn't connect with the Academy (either for its prickliness,its chilliness,or its Actressyness),I was so happy to see Levi's dizzying compositions getting the recognition they deserve.

David: I squealed at my desk when Mica Levi opened upthe Original Score nominees.Fear that that famously insular branch wouldn't go for such a dissonant,bold score was all too real,but it turned out to just be the cream of a very diverse crop of almost entirely new nominees.(And Thomas Newman.)

Matthew: Cue the Whitney!In the months leading up to these nominations,I foolishly allowed myself to get nervous aboutthe Foreign-Language chances of Maren Ade's gloriousToni Erdmann,which I worried might be too weird and unruly for most tastes.But then I remembered that this same body of voters sprung forDogtoothnot too long ago and I rightfully calmed down.Like Yorgos Lanthimos' breakthrough oddity,Toni Erdmannrepresents an utterly singular cinematic vision whose rapturous reception from those not named George Miller continues to please and surprise.

John:  Delighted to seethe writers branchassert its routine and often unmatched intelligence with20th Century WomenandThe Lobsternominated,and an "Umm no,"to Tom Ford's garbage script.

Dancin Dan:20th Century Womenin Best Original Screenplay.I'm so glad the film didn't walk away empty-handed,and this is a good place to honor Mike Mills's warm,thoughtful,beautiful film.The fact that it makes up forBeginners's snub in this category is just icing on the cake.

Nick:The Editing nomination forMoonlight.This is the kind of superb,risky,art-driven editing that doesn't always get recognized,but it's a huge part of what makes the movie work so well.And seeing the first-ever black female nominee in contention here is totally fabulous.

Deborah:Costumes forLa La Land.Those costumes were perfection,they told a story and set a tone,and it is so rare for costumes to get nominated outside the realm of period piece of scifi/fantasy.

Glenn:TannaforBest Foreign Language Film.It's not only the first every nomination in this category for my home country of Australia,but it's a great and unique film to boot.Asia Pacific cinema is so routinely forgotten by the world at large that seeing the spotlight put on this beautiful film set and filmed in Vanuatu is even more special than its historic nature.If more people now seek it out,then it's all worth it.

What's the best category with no weak link nominees?

John: As ever,Best Actress,even considering Bening's heartbreaking snub.I would've nominated Amy Adams over Emma Stone,but I'm fine with her sitting this one out,and Meryl deserves this nom more than forInto the WoodsorThe Iron Lady.Ruth Negga is a surprising yet completely satisfying addition.

Matthew:It's hard to look atthat Best Actress rosterand not feel infinitely frustrated about all the brilliant women who didn't make it into this final five,including Bening the Great,obviously,but also those who hardly had a shot,like Sonia Braga,Sandra Hüller,Kate Beckinsale,and,even farther afield,someone like Dheepan's Kalieaswari Srinivasan,whose film had hardly anyone in its corner. I would say there are definitely some sizable gaps in quality between the amazing work done by Huppert (unreal) and Negga (splendid) and the very good if not quite exemplary star turns of Portman,Streep,and Stone,in that order.On the whole,however,this is a worthy andwayabove-average field of performers,each of whom workedhardon behalf of films that were either risky propositions (Elle,Jackie,La La Land) or not quite risky enough (Florence,Loving,and also,in a way,La La Land).It's impossible to imagine each of these finished products without the engrossing woman at its center and that,in itself,is an achievement worth lauding.

Glenn: The writing branch yet again came through,as did the visual effects and editing voters.The best,however,isBest Cinematography.Lifting the group 5/5 from the guild awards,there isn't a weak one in the bunch.Not only that,Greig Fraser and Bradford Young (only the second black nominee ever) finally broke through with their first nominations after film after film of deserving work.

Dancin Dan:Cinematography,for the second year in a row,has a diverse set of films in terms of genre and style that represents absolutely the best of cinema today.Yes we can quibble with some of the people left out (my heart weeps forJackie's Stephane Fontaine),but there's no denying that each of these five films is beautifully and uniquely shot.

David: Hands down,Cinematography- what an absolutely gorgeous bunch of movies.It's also shows such a wide range of approaches to the craft,from the sensual blues ofMoonlightand the humble reserve ofSilenceto the colourful splash ofLa La Landand the bold graphical imagination ofArrival.(AndLion,which I must admit I haven't seen but Ihearit's great so it gets a pass.)

Laurence: Perennial nominee Thomas Newman aside - rolling my eyes at that one as much as I amMeryl's-Best Score is a pretty terrific set of nominees.

Lynn: Gotta go withSupporting Actor.  All worthy nominees,though admittedly a bit of category fraud w/ Patel.  But he's so good in Lion.

Steven: EasilyBest Original Screenplay,in which the nominations are richly diverse in story,style,and setting.It's nice to see truly original work be rewarded in this category,that can sometimes be swallowed up but best-picture also-rans.

Manuel:Viola's wounded dignity;Naomie's histrionic mothering;Nicole's warm tenderness;Octavia's quippy efficiency;Michelle's bottled grief. I have to say I am in love withthe Supporting Actress lineup,which is just beautiful and a wonderful cross-section of characters and performance styles.

Tim:Visual Effects.Deepwater Horizon,Doctor Strange,andThe Jungle Bookall managed to actively surprise me with the grandeur and physicality of their effects work,which I've long since assumed would never happen again,and outside of Zombie Peter Cushing,there's not a missed step in either of the others.

Your turn,dear reader.What Oscar development this morning made you smile from ear to ear?

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Reader Comments (39)

Huppert and Negga.Nicole securing her 4th,Michael securing his 2nd,and Denzel expanding his nomination count outside of acting with a producer nod for Fences.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commenter/3rtful

Isabelle Huppert was the nomination of which I was sure would happen that I'm happiest about.But as far as gleeful surprise happiness that would be Ruth Negga,it felt like she was sure to finish out of the money which made the nomination even sweeter.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commenterjoel6

Hacksaw Ridge aside,it's an above-average year all the way around.I'll say Cinematography as well.Just an amazing lineup.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterSawyer

Jackie for Score and Ruth Negga.I'm also pleased that Hail,Caesar!is an Oscar nominee with its Production Design nod.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

I'm going to give some love to Best Actor,a line-up that I feel is really hard to improve upon.Every single actor in that lineup does something very different and they all work to bring out the best in their films...yes,even Andrew Garfield!!!I'd describe what impressed me about the performance,but I'm not sure I can describe it better than out very own Tim Brayton did,so I'll just leave this excerpt from his review:

"Garfield is quite outstanding in the role,bringing tremulous emotion to a part that could have awfully easily settled in at bland,performative virtue;he convincingly makes it clear how hard this is on Desmond,how much discipline it takes to keep his values foregrounded at all times.It's not exactly ambivalent - there's not a frame where we're invited to think anything other than that his pacifism is absolutely just - but a depiction of firm moral behavior as something essentially exhausting and terrifying is pretty rare in its own right,and kudos to screenwriters Robert Schenkkan and Andrew Knight,and Garfield,for going there..."Tim Brayton

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterRichter Scale

Levi is only the second woman nominated for score,right?

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commentercal roth

Isabelle Huppert,a legend at this point.Uncompromising,risk taking actress who is finally getting some Oscar recognition,not that she needed any but a validation like this is always nice.I can't wait to see her around the circuit in the upcoming weeks.What a rare treat!
Ryan Gosling,welcomed back as a nominee 10 years after his first nomination,in a wonderful,understated star turn.Even though it's not your typical Oscar role I like how he take chances in his roles,certainly exposing himself in a musical like this,and very well is a large part of what made the movie works.
Toni Erdmann is a modern masterpiece in my opinion.But it's such an unassuming film that almost makes it look like an accident.It's a film with a lot of heart and just as timely as many of the other films.I really hope it will snatch that award comes Oscar time.
And of course,Moonlight,being everywhere in different categories.One of the best films of the year getting some well deserved recognition.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commenterguest

Happiest about the big tally for MOONLIGHT

Thrilled about Ruth Negga

Happy for Mike Mills/20TH CENTURY in screenplay

Happy for HIDDEN FIGURES in screenplay,pic and supporting actress

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterSan FranCinema

"Hail,Caesar!"in Production Design is among the happiest.Almost makes up for the ingenious work Gonchor did on "Inside Llewyn Davis"being snubbed,not to mention other masterfully designed Coen films such as "The Hudsucker Proxy."

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterJonathan

Happy with Meryl Streep's 20th nomination,if only because it validates her anti-Trump message.After all,she is Queen!

Pleased with all acting noms for cast of Manchester by the Sea,my favorite film this year.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commenterbrandz

Maybe I'm biased,but I'm impressed with all of the nominees in the Best Animated Short category.They are all terrific and excel in both storytelling and animation techniques.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterAjnrules

Huppert & Williams (probably won't) but should win there first Oscar...

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commenterstjeans

guest: Gosling is definitely under-nominated.In the ten years since Half Nelson,he has four other at least "nomination level"performances,two of them in 2016.So,getting to his second?Yeah,good that's happened.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

1) Isabelle Huppert and Ruth Nega even if it had to come at the expense of Bening The Great ( I liked that!!!).Now if only Huppert would win!

2) Original Screenplay - all the noms.

3) La La Land in costumes - finally costumes outside of a period movie.

4) Meryl Streep.I thought the film was excellent all around.I'm not sure what people expect from her to actually call one of her lately performances "great".I agree that nobody needs 20 nominations let alone 3 Oscars,亚博主页but at least lets call it right.That was a great performance and a great film,and I have seen "Marquerite"as well.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commenteradelutza

Two that made me very happy indeed: Isabelle Huppert and Fire at Sea.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterEdward L.


*should have happened for The Paperboy but brb crying*

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterTJ

The nomination that made me the happiest is Mica Levi getting in Best Original Score.So glad they went with something less traditional.

The category with no weak links is Cinematography.Every film on the lineup is so beautifully shot.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMatt St.Clair

It's kinda weird to see Arrival being nominated so much but missed at Visual Effects.
Best Supporting Actress is a great line-up.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterCraver

Happy -- Huppert

No weak link -- Best Original Screenplay

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

Meryl Streep definitely.I am sure the orange cheeto is tweeting right now about how over-rated she is and how the Academy is only nominating her because of her brilliant Golden Globe speech.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterBette Streep

13thandI Am Not Your Negro(tied for #1 on my Best of 2016 list) both nominated!



The Lobsterscreenplay!

And Huppert,of course!

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPaul Outlaw

Super YAY for Huppert!I hope she wins.I WANT HER TO WIN!

Not so thrilled about Negga's nomination based on her performance but if it helps her to secure good roles in the future,well you go girl!

It may be a blessing for Amy to sit out this year if it builds her case of 'overdue' narrative.I think she may win with her next nomination.

As for Meryl,it's hard to look at her recent performances with clear objectivity given her wealth of accolades and praise.She was excellent in FFJ but she's also cursed with 'let other more worthy actresses have their chance....she doesn't need her 20th' sentiments.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterJans

@Cal Roth: Anne Dudley and Rachel Portman have both won,so Levi is at least the third,and there may be others I'm not remembering.

I think my answer got skipped for being too wishy-washy,but I singled out Animation and Documentary Feature for really auspicious years,with the caveat that I haven't seen every nominee.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterNick Davis

I don't think Meryl Streep is cursed,more the opposite.She is a legend and her film was more widely seen.I don't think it's fair to blame her when all 5 women in her category received more votes than other people.

The nominations that made me happiest are Ruth Negga,Isabelle Huppert and Michael Shannon,since many people did not necessarily expect them to be nominated.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMarie

While I knew some of Moonlight's noms were secure,I was fearful that Jenkins would miss out - the director's branch does weird things (see Gibson's nom today,I predicted it just because I thought 'they do crappy stuff sometimes'),so I am happy to see him here.Moonlight is BY FAR my favorite of the BP noms,and it's what I think of as an 'accessible art film' - so well-crafted that adventurous cinephiles who have seen many films can't fault it,but clear and strong enough that you don't have to have seen a lot of art movies or like more experimental films to get/appreciate it.I was it with the same friend I saw 'Under the Skin' with,and UtS was just too much for him - but after Moonlight he said "If this doesn't win best picture,it shows that the Oscars are crap."亚博主页

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca

I was RELIEVED to see Gosling make it in.I know he's in the Oscar frontrunner and all the precursors went for him,but I've been burnt before with romantic leads (Ewan McGregor,James McAvoy).Plus his 2nd nod was a long time coming.

Also I hadn't seen THE LOBSTER and 20TH CENTURY WOMEN until a few days ago,but I'm very happy to see them both nominated for Screenplay.

And yes,I know the backlash is coming (or is it here already),but YEAH to LA LA LAND's 14 nominations.Hell.Yeah.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterRyan T.

I loved Nathaniel's tag line: "Michael Shannon don't need no stinking precursors".

Happy: Michael Shannon,Ruth Negga,Mica Levi,20th Century Women screenplay.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commenteradri


Best supporting actress all round really,I know its been critiqued as being a staid,boring category but really,it's just all round excellence and I couldn't be happier!A majority of the nominees are POCs,Viola becomes the most nominated black actress,Nicole and Michelle secure their 4th nominations and they're all from best picture nominees - what more do people want!

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commentermorganb

PS - The new Lion poster crediting Best Supporting Actress Nominee: Naomi Watts might just be my favourite thing to come out of these Oscars :D亚博主页

January 24,2017 | Unregistered Commentermorganb

Ruth Negga made me happiest (I was walking to work and literally cheered and fist pumped when I heard her name,which earned me some odd stares).I was almost as happy for Fences doing well (although I wish Denzel would replace Gibson in Director),Michael Shannon,Mica Levi,and The Lobster and 20th Century Women for screenplay.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterLC

Happiest: Huppert!!!!Huppert!!!Huppert!!!Now if only she cld win...

Also happy for Mica Levi,Mike Mills,Kubo,Negga n yes,Queen Meryl at least her perf in FFJ is more deserving than AOC.

Actually it will b almost perfect had Edgerton b nom alongside Negga,but one cant b too greedy.

Overall its an awesome yr for movies n all the nominees are v deserving n i wld I'm v happy w the overall nominations

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterClaran

isabelle huppert because it's her (gasp) first nom,and ruth negga because she's lovely,and fire at sea because it's a fucking masterpiece!!

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterPHIL

The Lobster screenplay and Bradford Young's cinematography nods were well deserved.Ditto Mica Levi in score.Moonlight's nomination haul was a foregone conclusion.I know it's not realistic,but I'm pulling for it to win Best Picture and Director.

January 24,2017 | Unregistered CommenterW.J.

TJ -- i share your delight about Kidman.It's about freaking time.

Everyone -- if i had answered my own questions i would have probably said Mica Levi who deserved the Oscar for UNDER THE SKIN and now has an improbably nod for JACKIE.Yes!

Morganb -- agreed.I mean if Greta Gerwig had subbed in for Octavia Spencer i might have experienced the rapture looking at the shortlist

Richter -- thanks for sharing that quote from Tim.That's the best argument i've heard for Garfield.

January 25,2017 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

I haven't seen Garfield yet and I'm still bummed that Edgerton was ignored,but I just saw Captain Fantastic and I'm glad it got recognized somewhere and it might as well have been Viggo.He makes it look so effortless and the performance could easily get credited to just good casting,but he really pitched himself perfectly between nurturer,disciplinarian,philosopher and protector,drawing the line from confidence to vulnerability without overly performing any of it.

Also,I don't want to take Moonlight's nominations for granted.Seriously,any of them.Under a lot of alternative circumstances this movie could've been totally ignored.And while I think it's count should actually be higher (Rhodes!),it still did very,very well and that's something to be celebrated.

Also happy that Negga got nominated in such a competitive year - another performance that easily could've been ignored due to it's lack of big,Oscar-y scene-chewing.

January 25,2017 | Unregistered CommenterDJDeeJay

Visual Effects for me,specially happy for Kubo and Doctor Strange - which should be up for Costume over La La,that HAD to be a joke,isn't it?

January 25,2017 | Unregistered CommenterJesus Alonso

I know everyone was predicting it for months but I fully expected the Academy to snub Isabelle Huppert at the last second,Globes win and all.Her work is just too dark and too challenging,too often,for her to make 'sense' as a typical nominee.I fully expected Amy Adams,who's been a default nominee for some years now,to squeak in ahead of her.So thrilled that she made it in.The greatest living actress has finally become an Oscar nominee!

January 25,2017 | Unregistered CommenterThe Mighty Rhino

Other happinesses: the lovely Ruth Negga,the great Mahershala Ali (whom I'd have loved to see get traction alongside Taraji P.Henson forThe Curious Case of Benjamin Buttona few years back - he smashed that),everything else forMoonlight(not least the gorgeous trifecta of cinematography,editing and score),Mica Levi,Bradford Young,Kubo,the enchanting Ms.Stone,my man Viggo,Dev Patel,Michelle Williams (what a performance!),director and screenplay for Lonergan (even though I vastly preferYou Can Count On Me),20th Century Women(so glad it didn't miss out altogether!),the whole Original Screenplay category (though I hear mixed things aboutThe Lobster),Ava DuVernay in Documentary (though it still smarts that she missed a director's nomination forSelma),the JT song fromTrolls(can't fathom why anyone doesn't love it),and,second only to Huppert,a wonderful Foreign Film category.First-ever successful Australian submission!Toni Erdmann!And the new film by my favourite working auteur,Asghar Farhadi!A Separationis a top five film of all time for me,andThe Pastis excellent too - I will be grateful and loyal to Farhadi forever.

January 25,2017 | Unregistered CommenterThe Mighty Rhino

What a joyous thread!

What everyone else basically said already: Huppert,Kubo in Visuals Effects,Mica Levi,all of Moonlight's success.

Doc Feature,Animated Feature,Original Screenplay,Cinematography.

All the newbies showing up in general.

Nathaniel - if Janelle replaced Octavia and Viola was bumped up to Lead and was replaced by Greta,then I'd have experienced the rapture,my goodness.

January 26,2017 | Unregistered CommenterMark The First

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