The nominations for the 95th Academy Awards have been announced, and like always, some fantastic movies somehow managed to avoid making it into any category. That’s not to say that any of the movies that were nominated are bad or undeserving, but there are films that absolutely should have made the list that didn’t. Here are just some of the incredible movies that were snubbed for the 2023 Oscars.
Wendell & Wild
Wendell & Wild brings together the minds of Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas and Coraline) and Jordan Peele (Get Out and Us) to create an intriguing and twisted tale about a young girl summoning her personal demons to help her save her school and see her parents again, but what she doesn’t realize is that they have a scheme of their own. This stop-motion adventure is smart, emotional, funny, the perfect amount of bizarre, and features important and organic representation in many forms. Not only should it have been nominated for Best Animated Feature Film, but it probably would have been one of the biggest contenders to win.
Another movie that would have been a strong contender for Best Animated Feature Film is Disney’s Strange World. It didn’t do fantastically at the box office due to terrible marketing, but it’s actually very good. It’s a creative science fiction experience with unique ideas and big heart. What truly stands out is its beautiful visuals that only prove how well-animated it all is. It may not have been as close to being a clear winner like some of the other nominees in the animation category, but it absolutely deserved the nomination.
The Woman King
The Woman King is a historical action drama movie about the all-woman warrior unit who protected the West African kingdom of Dahomey during the 17th to 19th centuries. It’s a groundbreaking epic that should have scored at least a few nominations. It should have been a shoo-in for the award for Costume Design with the incredible attire made for the Dahomey warriors.
Not only that, but Viola Davis definitely deserved to be nominated for her excellent performance. She should have easily been one of the top candidates. On top of that, it’s quite shocking that Gina Prince-Bythewood didn’t receive a nomination for her impressive directing. Not a single woman was nominated for directing this year, which is outrageous when someone like Prince-Bythewood proved her filmmaking skill.
Bros may be a romantic comedy and one of the first gay rom-coms by a major studio with a predominantly LGBT+ cast, but it’s even more than that. It’s a movie about identity, as the characters of Aaron and Bobby both search for what it is that they really want out of life and what it is that makes them happy and who they are. That, paired with especially witty dialogue, proves that Bros probably should have received a nomination for Original Screenplay. It’s certainly a disappointment that it didn’t make it onto the list of nominees.
The Batman did manage to nab a few nominations for Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Sound, and Best Visual Effects, all of which are definitely deserved. However, there are a few other categories it should have been a clear contender for. The cinematography was gorgeous throughout the film, and was one of the many things consistently praised about it. The shot of Batman and Catwoman’s silhouettes against the sunset alone should have made the cinematography Oscar-worthy.
It’s also pretty surprising to not see Paul Dano nominated for Supporting Actor with his terrifying performance as the Riddler. His acting in the Arkham cell scene is nothing short of chilling. Then, of course, there’s the score. It’s a head-scratcher to think about how such a dramatic and emotional score was ignored by the Academy.
Jordan Peele’s Nope is a riveting science fiction film that puts brand new spins on classic ideas. However, it missed out on being nominated for several Oscars that it deserves at least a nomination for. Keke Palmer not being nominated for Supporting Actress is a massive miss. Her performance has received nothing but praise and manages to stand out in a film filled with great acting all around. The production design is fantastic, especially during the scenes at the Jupiter’s Claim western theme park. It wouldn’t have been much of a surprise for the movie to get an Oscar nod for it.
What’s most shocking, though, is that there’s no nomination for Visual Effects or Sound for Nope. The effects for Jean Jacket are breathtaking, and the sound of him flying overhead are terrifying and add to the suspense greatly. The film succeeds on many technical levels and the Academy should recognize that.
Robert Eggers’ historical thriller, The Northman, was expected by many to be nominated for at least a couple of awards, and for good reason. The Viking attire worn by the characters throughout are especially impressive, including armor and wolf-skin headdresses. How this movie wasn’t nominated for Costume Design is a mystery.
The same can be said for the Production Design category. The set that was built looks perfectly like a 7th century village. Robert Eggers deserves a nomination for his directing as well. Every shot is stunning, and yet there’s no nomination for him. His skill will hopefully be recognized some day.