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Welcome to the 2020 Snubby Awards!
Like the Oscars, we’re going without a host this year, so let’s get right to the big awards. Remember, the sole requirement for winning a Snubby is you must have created a snubbed piece of work that a blind man’s seeing eye dog would have nominated for an Academy Award.
As always, the presenter in each category is the person who usurped our winner’s rightful spot on the Oscars nominee list.
Here we go:
Seriously, do we have to spell it out for you? When Terrence Malick makes a film, his cinematographer is an automatic nominee. Even those who found A Hidden Life overlong and a tad pretentious were blown away by Widmer’s flawless, dreamlike compositions. PRESENTER: Robert Richardson, Once Upon a Time in…Hollywood. The visual richness of this period film is primarily due to its impeccable art design.
The intimate dynamics of family and the macro issues of clashing world cultures both inform this relentlessly human film. Presenter: Sam Mendes and Krysty Wilson-Cairns, 1917. As powerful as director Mendes’ film is, the script serves largely as a roadmap for cinematographer Roger Deakins’s ingenious vision.
Male moviegoers everywhere are swooning over a Louisa May Alcott story. Need we say more? PRESENTER: Martin Scorsese, The Irishman The inconvenient truth: at 3 ½ hours, The Irishman is not a movie. It’s a miniseries binge watch.
The most egregious omission of the There was no more powerful performance this year than Foxx’s turn as a wrongly accused Death Row inmate. The fact that no one from Just Mercy’s cast was nominated for an Oscar is outrageous — the snub of Foxx is mind-numbing. PRESENTER: Joe Pesci, The Irishman. It’s nice to see Joe back , but the film didn’t demand much more of him than nodding and looking concerned.
We’re not above acknowledging when the Academy gets it right. But we’ll be showing a little tribute reel in honor of snubbed Shuzhen Zhao, who was perfection as the dying grandmother in The Farewell.
When Moore’s primal scream portrait of a Los Angeles woman looking for love opened in March, she was proclaimed a sure-thing Oscar nominee. The subsequent nine months held nothing to change that. PRESENTER: Renee Zellweger. A good performance as Judy Garland, for sure, but also an old-fashioned slice of Oscar bait.
The story of civil rights lawyer Bryan Steveson is a big-hearted, absolutely essential film for our time. #OscarSoWhite’s stiff-arm is doubly insulting because the Academy left the number 10 Best Picture nominee position empty rather than recognize it. PRESENTER: Subsequently, no one from the other nine films even has to give up their place in line!
The one movie you must see this week is Just Mercy, the powerful story of legendary civil rights lawyer Bryan Stevenson. At the Toronto International Film Festival, I asked him how much things have changed in the South — and America at large — since he began his legal crusade in the 1985.
Buck Henry: A Fond Farewell In a career that spanned seven decades, the two-time Oscar nominated writer/director/actor profoundly influenced the direction of the movies. And he was one funny guy.
Critics and audiences are split on the new big screen version of the musical Cats — but the movie's cast of furry friends are just the latest in a long history of memorable film felines.
What Should You See? What Should You Skip? Here's What You Need to Know about this week's new movies
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