For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

Published 11 months ago by , Updated February 27th, 2014 at 9:52 pm,

Oscars For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

Arguably the biggest night in Hollywood is the Oscar ceremony. Each year, the Academy nominates the stars and films they deem to be “the best” of the past 12 months and reward their cinematic accomplishments. For the most part, the voters do a solid job of recognizing the year’s greatest, but everyone is well aware that they’re also notorious for snubbing popular choices. (READ: the 2014 Oscar Nominees.)

But even acclaimed films like Goodfellas, Fargo, and The Social Network are able to say they were at least invited to the party. Over the years, there are countless examples of terrific films that were left off the Oscar ballot entirely – despite receiving heavy praise from audiences and other critical organizations, and eventually, long lasting acclaim with audiences. With the nominations for the 86th Academy Awards being revealed January 16, we started thinking about some of our favorite films with zero Oscar nominations.

Please note: If a film received any kind of Oscar nomination (even in a lone technical category, like Fight Club), it is NOT eligible for this list. Films that didn’t get enough Oscar love are another discussion for another day.

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Léon: The Professional (1994)

10 Films No Oscars Leon For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

1994 was one of the more iconic years in film history. The Best Picture race (a controversial one at that) came down to Forrest Gump, Pulp Fiction, and The Shawshank Redemption.  With a roster that includes classic movies like those, you would be hard-pressed to argue that the Academy overlooked one of the year’s finest – but if you said that Luc Besson and his gritty crime-revenge drama Léon: The Professional should have been there, there wouldn’t be too many cinephiles now that would disagreed.

The film’s best chance at any nomination was in the form of Gary Oldman’s Stansfield. Chewing up scenery everywhere he goes, Oldman portrays the villain in an over-the-top, but entertaining fashion. Responsible for some of The Professional’s most chilling moments, Oldman disappears into the character, showing off his impressive skill as a method actor (put it this way, you can’t tell that you’re watching Commissioner Gordon) and commitment to the role. The Academy typically favors antagonistic characters in the Best Supporting Actor category, so it’s odd that they would turn away from such an appealing choice.

In her first film role, Natalie Portman also drew praise for her performance as Mathilda. Filmmakers run a risk when they cast child actors in major parts, but Besson had a winner on his hands with the young Portman. Playing well beyond her years, the actress was able to handle the movie’s mature subject matter with ease. Giving us a well-rounded character that was both frightened and confident, she’s one of the most memorable parts of The Professional and could have easily been nominated for Best Actress. The Academy hasn’t been afraid to honor gifted youngsters before (they gave Best Supporting Actress to Anna Paquin the year prior), so there’s even some precedent.

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 NEXT: Famous Genre Film Snubs

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Groundhog Day (1993)

10 Films No Oscars Groundhog Day For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

Harold Ramis’ classic comedy about a weatherman (Bill Murray) stuck in a time loop in Punxsutawney, PA during Groundhog Day has been a favorite of movie fans for over 20 years. Perhaps the film’s strongest aspect is its screenplay, which won a BAFTA on top of several other honors. Last year, the Writers Guild of America even named it one of the top 101 screenplays of all-time. So it comes as some surprise that the Academy chose to ignore it when the Oscar nominations came around. Perhaps the film’s early release date was a detriment?

But the script wasn’t the lone reason why this film was added to the National Film Registry in 2006. Bill Murray’s nuanced performance – which balanced comedy and drama seamlessly – is one of the crowning moments of his illustrious career. His Phil Connors remains a likeable and sympathetic protagonist throughout the film, even when he’s at his most mean-spirited. Ramis deserved his fair share of credit as well, since he was able to take the high-concept of the premise and turn it into a grounded, believable film about the value of bettering yourself as a person.

With so many accolades to its name (including a spot on the American Film Institute’s top ten fantasy films) and its enduring popularity among movie fans, it’s a massive oversight by the Oscars that they did not nominate Groundhog Day for anything.

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Heat (1995)

10 Films No Oscars Heat2 For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

With résumés that include Oscar-nominated (and winning) classics such as The Godfather, Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, The Deer Hunter, Serpico, and Dog Day Afternoon, having Robert De Niro or Al Pacino star in your film is a great way to get some awards buzz (or at least it was for a period of almost 20 years). Michael Mann must have felt like he struck gold when he cast both of them to star in his cops-and-robbers deconstruction piece, Heat, but the film ultimately fell flat with voters, securing – you guessed it – no Oscar nominations.

Like so many of the snubbed movies before it, Heat has gone on to have a bigger impact on the industry than the films that actually won. Several modern movies ranging from The Dark Knight to The Town have used Mann’s opus as a source of influence. Its ongoing impact on Hollywood notwithstanding, Heat operates as an intriguing character study of both sides of the law, buoyed by excellent performances from De Niro and Pacino. The screenplay and the performances should have been up for several awards – not just Oscars.

Heat is also a masterwork from a technical level, as Mann was able to create some of the most famous bank heist sequences in film. One viewing of Heat today, it’s hard not to see traces of their DNA in countless similar movies. The top-notch cinematography should have also been considered, along with other technical categories. Instead, the film was passed over by every major awards committee – despite being released in the thick of awards season.

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Midnight Run (1988)

10 Films No Oscars Midnight Run For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

One of the more underrated De Niro pictures (in this writer’s opinion) is the late-’80’s comedy Midnight Run. Overcoming the conventions of the buddy-cop genre thanks in large part to the chemistry between De Niro and Charles Grodin, the film is both highly entertaining and full of great character moments that push it to the next level (“I hope it’s a wonderful coffee shop, Jack.”) . With a well-rounded script and a strong cast, Midnight Run was named one of the ten best films of the year by the National Board of Review.

Aside from that honor, the movie found some momentum at the Golden Globes, gaining nominations (but no wins) for Best Picture – Comedy/Musical and Best Actor – Comedy/Musical for De Niro. While the Oscars do not have a separate category for comedic films, the pair of Globe nods indicates that Midnight Run had several supporters on the awards circuit and the Academy hasn’t been afraid to recognize funny films in some capacity (see Marisa Tomei’s Best Supporting Actress win for My Cousin Vinny).

It would have been hard for the film to sneak into the Best Picture lineup, but a case could easily be made for the two stars to secure acting nominations. Both De Niro and Grodin delivered surprisingly subtle and nuanced performances (for a comedy) and the screenplay crafted three-dimensional characters that evolved as the film went on. Comedies rarely find good fortunes at the Oscars, but this is one case where an exception should have been made.

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NEXT: Famous Director Snubs

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The Terminator (1984)

10 Films No Oscars Terminator For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

The late-’70s to mid-’80s was the Golden Age of the Hollywood blockbuster. Crowd-pleasing spectacles like Jaws, Star Wars, Alien, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T. and Back to the Future were not only recognized for their technical achievements; in many cases, the Academy also gave these movies nominations for the more “prestigious” categories like Best Picture or Best Original Screenplay.

So it seems odd, then, that Oscar would completely ignore one of the more famous films of the era, The Terminator. James Cameron’s 1991 sequel cleaned up in the technical categories, but his 1984 original received zero nominations. Stan Winston – who received several nominations and wins for his work in the years following The Terminator – was not noticed for his breakout job of creating the Terminator. The effects may look dated today, but for the time they were revolutionary.

Cameron’s screenplay was also inventive and thought-provoking and could have very easily earned a Best Original Screenplay nomination (Reese is John Connor’s father? TWIST!). Cameron (along with co-writer Gale Anne Hurd) received a Saturn Award for their writing and the Academy had shown a willingness to include genre films in that particular category in the years before.

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Three Kings (1999)

10 Films No Oscars Three Kings For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

Long before David O. Russell became an Academy favorite with his string of critically-acclaimed hits in the early 2010s, he directed the Gulf War gem Three Kings. Starring George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, and Ice Cube, the film tells the story of a small group of soldiers who embark on a mission to steal gold for themselves – only to have a change of heart when they encounter a group of Iraqi rebels who need their help.

Featuring a morality tale that tied into a hot political issue, the film should have been ripe for Oscar nominations. Despite a number of honors from a variety of other critic organizations (including the National Board of Review and the Writer’s Guild of America), the movie ultimately found no support in the Academy. Granted, 1999 was one of the landmark years for film, but Three Kings received widespread acclaim upon its release and is considered to be one of the better films of that year. While it would have been tough for it to crack the lineup of only five Best Picture nominees, it seems odd that none of the strong performances were nominated (especially given the overwhelming success that Russell’s last few films have had with the acting branch), and Russell’s terrific script and stylish direction would have been worthy additions to the ballot.

When moviegoers think of Russell today, the term “Oscar lock” comes to mind, but that wasn’t always the case. Three Kings couldn’t even find love in the technical categories, despite the fact that other awards groups praised its cinematography, sound mixing, and editing.

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The Big Lebowski (1998)

10 Films No Oscars Lebowski For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

As is the case with David O. Russell, Joel & Ethan Coen have earned a reputation as Academy darlings thanks to building an impressive résumé that includes Fargo, No Country for Old Men, and True Grit. Even their lesser-known films like O Brother, Where Art Thou and A Serious Man have found their way on the ballot for screenwriting. It’s very rare for the Coens to be shut out completely –   Fargo was awarded Best Original Screenplay in 1996, for example - but a snub is exactly what happened when the duo released The Big Lebowski, arguably their most famous film.

All the awards groups failed to appreciate Lebowski when it was initially released (for what it’s worth, it scored a handful of nominations in Europe). Still, the Coens have been nominated for five Best Screenwriting Oscars (winning twice) in their illustrious careers – but unfortunately their latest,  Inside Llewyn Davis, was snubbed at the 2014 Oscars,  so maybe it is NOT surprising that one of their most quotable screenplays was also ignored.

Of course, it’s impossible to talk about The Big Lebowski without mentioning Jeff Bridges’ defining role – the Dude. The actor’s most iconic performance is the perfect blend of apathy and comedy, crafting one of film’s most memorable characters. John Goodman (who has never been nominated in his career – crime) was more than deserving of a Best Supporting Actor nomination as his unhinged and hilarious turn as Walter stands out as one of the movie’s highlights. The Coens have directed their fair share of Oscar-nominated performances, so it seems like a missed opportunity that these two main players were left out.

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Reservoir Dogs (1992)

10 Films No Oscars Reservoir Dogs For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

Like so many of his fellow auteurs, Quentin Tarantino is a well-regarded director who seems to deliver awards-quality films at every turn. A two-time winner for Best Original Screenplay (for Pulp Fiction and Django Unchained), Tarantino’s filmography has been showered with nominations in a variety of categories including Best Picture and the various acting awards. However, when he arrived on the scene in 1992 with Reservoir Dogs, the Academy did not take notice.

Keeping with the theme of our list, Tarantino’s debut feature received recognition from a handful of critic associations, with the filmmaker’s direction getting a bulk of the praise. One of his biggest strengths is his writing, which combines pop-culture references and dark humor to create lines of dialogue that stick with the viewer long after the film is over. Reservoir Dogs also features a lot of substance, tackling themes of honor among thieves and loyalty to friends. Both the screenplay and the film itself could have been nominated in their respective categories – especially in retrospect, as the film has become one of the most enduring releases of the year.

Tarantino is also famous for getting standout performances from his actors; guiding Christoph Waltz to two Best Supporting Actor wins among a number of other nominations. It’s hard to point at one specific performance in the ensemble as the “most Oscar-worthy” (since all the actors deliver), but a case can be made for Michael Madsen – who gave us the chilling and ruthless Mr. Blonde – or Harvey Keitel, whose Mr. White was a voice of calming influence and humanity – to have been placed on the ballot.

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NEXT: Recent snubs

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The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

dark knight rises running time comic con For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight was a watershed moment for the Academy. Not only did Heath Ledger win a posthumous Oscar for his chilling portrayal of the Joker (marking the first time an actor won a prize for a comic book role), it also affected the institution as a whole. When the middle chapter of the trilogy was not one of the five Best Picture nominees, the Academy responded to the uproar by expanding the category to include ten movies. They hoped this would allow more commercial fare to be included.

So it came with a heavy dose of irony when The Dark Knight Rises came out in 2012 and was awarded with… a grand total of zero nominations.

While not as beloved as its predecessor, the trilogy’s finale certainly had its fair share of supporters, as it was named one of the American Film Institute’s ten best films of the year. None of the performances reach the heights of Ledger, but the film very well could have snuck into the Best Picture lineup as the “token blockbuster” (a la Inception in 2010) without too many detractors. However, the biggest eye-opener was it being shut out in the technical categories (where summer blockbusters usually shine). State-of-the-art special effects, Wally Pfister’s cinematography, and Hans Zimmer’s exceptional score were all worthy of receiving a nod.

Many were expecting Nolan to at least get a Peter Jackson-style nomination for the cumulative effort of completing his trilogy; needless to say, the hopes were thoroughly crushed.

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50/50 (2011)

50 joseph Gordon Levitt For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

2011’s cancer dramedy 50/50 earned several accolades after its release, but an Oscar nomination was not one of them. Receiving praise from organizations like the Golden Globes and the National Board of Review, Jonathan Levine’s charming, inspirational film could not find a spot on the expanded Best Picture list – even though one can make a strong case it should have.

Will Reiser’s original screenplay (based on his own real-life struggles) pulled off the impossible (given the subject matter) by finding a happy medium between comedy and drama. There are several scenes and lines of dialogue that are gut-bustingly hilarious while others cause us to tear up. It told a heartfelt and realistic story of two friends enduring a trying ordeal and because the script was so strong, audiences were able to buy in.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt was also worthy of a Best Actor nomination (he even got his “Oscar clip” scene via the nervous breakdown in the car). 2011 was a tough year for this category, as big names like George Clooney and Brad Pitt were nominated, but there wouldn’t have been many complaints had Levitt found his way on the list. Like the screenplay, the actor had to achieve the right balance between two genres and did so with great effect. His Adam felt like a person we all know and Levitt showed he was more than capable of being a leading man.

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Academy Awards snub original scores For Your (Re)Consideration: 10 Famous Movies That Never Got Oscar Nominations

While some of Hollywood’s greatest films have gone on to add “Oscar-winner” to their name, some of what many consider to be better, more enduring, works were not even nominated for a single category (only to become a respected film in the years following its release). Since film is a highly subjective medium, it’s all but a guarantee that this phenomena will not end and fans will be asking why the next batch of unappreciated movies didn’t fit in the Academy’s wheelhouse.

Of course, our list is not meant to be all-inclusive, so be sure to list some of your favorite movies that never got an Oscar nomination in the comments below. Whether it’s the crime classic Scarface, an old western such as The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, the rare Scorsese picture to not find support, or anything from the filmography of John Hughes (Breakfast Club), there are plenty of instances to choose from.

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Follow Chris on Twitter @ChrisAgar90

The 86th Academy Awards will air on March 2. Check out the list of 2014 Oscar Nominees HERE.

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  1. Just goes to show that awards really don’t mean anything in the long run. Truly good movies will be remembered for many years after they come out. Most people forget the best picture within a year

    The Dark Knight Trilogy is one of the biggest upsets in history, It should have at least been nominated for several things. I think if Nolan wins for Interseller next year His work on batman will have set that up

  2. A lot of these films did not really gain a following until at least a year or so after their release when they became popular on video/DVD. It’s a combination of their impressions improving on multiple viewings, and having sometime removed from their release and the circumstances surrounding them. While the Academy voters have screeners, they are pretty much held sway by the same circumstances that kept most of these movies from performing well at the box office.

    In the instance of Groundhog Day, it was the perception of Murray being on the back end of his career and the appearance of the film as a simple comedy before the complexity and meaning was really made whole and it was embraced by not only comedy and film fans, but philosophy and religious academics as well as a whole host of others.

    It does point out the ludicrousness of singling out movies this way – particularly less than a year after their release. There should be a 10 years later award that can take longevity, accumulated following, continued relevance, and impact on the medium into account.

    • Kubrick’s films are a prime example “delayed appreciation”. His biggest masterpieces generally don’t get really noticed until 5-10 years later. Just now Eyes Wide Shut is starting to take hold.

    • I agree with you on the ’10 years later award’. I actually came up with a revised Academy Awards in my own mind that would allow a film/performance/ etc. to be re nominated up to 5 years after release. It would allow for a films zeitgeist saturation to be taken into consideration

      I also think that, similar to the Rock and Roll Hall of fame, the notoriously insulated “Academy” should allow for Public voting to account for a percentage of the vote, as well as an overall film critic’s consensus i.e. Rotten tomatoes percentage.

      Maybe even include some sort of tracking system that would include Red Box rental/ Netflix popularity/ over all internet downloading of the films being considered. In other words, democratize the Academy vote a little more.

      I think steps like this would revolutionize the Academy and would allow for the common movie going public to feel more invested (i.e. higher ratings)

      Thoughts, opinions?

      • To be honest, I think that would undermine the purpose of the Oscars entirely, and here’s why.

        The Academy Awards are given by industry members to one another. Getting an academy award is meant to send the message that “your peers, your fellow artists, want to recognize your work”. That’s why I don’t like to gripe about the retroactive award phenomenon, where someone wins an award for an under-deserving film or role to make up for a prior snub when they did deserve the award (The Departed comes to mind).

        Think of it this way – it’s sort of an employee of the year award. The people who determine that are all going to be inside the company. Even though some folks outside the company (clients, vendors, etc) may have an opinion on who the best employee of the company is, that doesn’t mean it makes sense to include their votes in determining who the company names employee of the year.

        There are critics awards for critics to make their statement, the Globes for the Hollywood Foreign Press, etc. There’s a people’s choice awards for the public to vote. And then there’s the box office where the public gets to vote for what they like. But the Oscars are a form of recognition for filmmakers by filmmakers, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

      • Oh, I want to clarify. I only disagree with your second idea. That first idea is really great. The Academy gets caught up in the moment and makes much ado about movies we’ll soon forget, and others last the test of time. It would be awesome to have a special award for Lebowski, or maybe a whole category for the decade 1990-2000, from which there’s one award given. A test of time award, etc.

        • Prod Sec,

          I appreciate your well thought out response.

          I def see your point with the “employee of the year award” analogy. But the flip side to your case, regarding the Academy, is the question: Why even pander to the movie going public at all? If, like you say, its more of an ‘in house’ voting system & ceremony, why let the masses in on it at all? Why all the worry about viewer ratings and such every year?

          Take ‘The Dark Knight’ debacle for example. It was the Best Picture snub of this film, and the ensuing public outcry, that directly led to the Academy’s decision to expand the number of films that are able to be nominated. This is like the “clients & vendors” in your analogy having a direct impact on the outcome of “employee of the year award” ceremony.

          I am not trying to troll here. Just coming up with a reasonable and discussion worthy counter point to your argument.

          • That’s a good point. Every opinion has an effect on other opinions. But I would argue that it wasn’t public outcry directly that led the Academy to change the policy per se, rather the industry insiders who happened to agree with or care about public outcry.

            I mean, it’s not a hard and fast line that separates the press and public from the industry – we’re all part of the ecosystem that is American cinema, and thoughts, ideas and opinions flow seemlessly between the different sections of that ecosystem. That’s, I think, the reason for an awards “season”. The different sections of the ecosystem all weigh in at about the same time of year with what they thought of the preceding year of movies. The fact that the Oscars have this status as the “top” award is an after-the-fact thing, and we can speculate all we want about why the entire ecosystem cooperates to treat that as the top award, but I think the fact remains that the award was established for filmmakers to recognize filmmakers. If the rest of the ecosystem wants to be spectators to the award, that’s fantastic, but just as it wouldn’t make sense for the New York City Film Critics circle to incorporate public polling in their awards, or SAG, DGA, or WGA to incorporate public polling into theirs, or the People’s Choice awards to give equal weight to a select panel of judges, so too the Academy should be left to judge the Academy Awards themselves.

            That said, we all get an opinion, and I think it’s important for the Academy to recognize that its awards do carry a special “top award” status, and it is important that they consider that responsibility when voting – especially with regards to progressive matters like minority and female representation in the Academy and its Awards. And, despite the historic old white male makeup of the Academy, I think they’ve actually taken that responsibility to heart in recent years. (That said, I think I don’t think it’s a coincidence that old white men are voting, and Jennifer Lawrence and Meryl Streep are perennial Oscar darlings…)

            To summarize a long rant – I don’t mean to defend the old, white fogeys in the Academy for their old-white-foginess, I just mean to say that the Oscars are specifically meant for filmmakers to honor their peers. Yes that leads to navel-gazing, Best Picture winners where Hollywood, film producers, and artists save the day (The Artist, Argo), but c’mon. It’s their night.

            Now a super award that surpassed the Oscar and aggregated every corner of the industry? That’s interesting… But I don’t think that will make for as must-see TV as, as Billy Crystal put it, a bunch of millionaires rewarding each other with little gold statues.

            (Thanks for the healthy debate, Dustin!)

            • Well put my friend, well put.

  3. do fans of movies even take the Oscars serious?? theres a reason that the biggest grossing movies of all times usually never get any recognition…the Oscars are reserved for uppity snob old folk films. (usually)

    peoples choice is more of a reflection of what should win.

    • I take them serious at times, sometimes those movies are really really good. They don’t always need to be the highest grossing film, or the most popular, those movies aren’t always the best. They do their job by bringing in the movie and filling the seats.
      “Uppity snob old folks films”? is not really a fair label. Only movie at least on the new nominee list that would probably fit that is “Wolf of Wall Street” and that’s because the type of movie it is period.

      Now People’s Choice, that’s an award show for the popular masses. Teenage girls are the ones who dictate that show, I mean best example are the previous winners.

    • I like to see the nominees, and who wins, but no I do not take them very seriously. I see the nominees that I’m interested in.

      Of this years nominees I’ve seen 12 yrs, Gravity, Her, American Hustle, and Wolf of Wall Street and I gotta say, they were all really great!

    • I used to, but then I realised the whole thing is just a night for celebrities to wank each other off.

  4. The Academy is a joke.

    • +1

    • +1

      its more about PR and the politics of hollywood than acting ability.

      • It’s actually based solely on the viewing preferences of a small group of 50-70 year olds pseudo intellectuals living in and around Los Angeles CA. It has absolutely nothing to do with PR, Ability or anything else of measurable maret.

        Although typically a release date in the last half to quarter of a given year does help your chances if it would appeal to the 50-70 year old market.

        • and usually if they have a stake in the film or a relative/friend

  5. I have to disagree with you on Dark Knight Rises. It was easily the weakest of the trilogy. When I sat down to write my own thoughts about it, the most important thing that came to mind was: “I just watched Christian Bale pretend to be Batman.” To me, that says it all.

    • I agree about TDKR. Very disappointing film. Batman Begins deserved nominations much more than TDKR.

      I see what you mean about him pretending to be Batman. To me it was more like he was trying to be Batman, but not doing a very good job – even at the end where he “won”. In parts 1 and 2 he definitely was Batman, but in 3 it was as if he forgot how to be Batman.

    • I think he had tired of the role by TDKR.

  6. I’m most upset about The Big Lebowski and 50/50. Both movies are easily 10/10 for me.

  7. Do you think it is a fair assumption to say that when the Academy nominates/awards an actor, director, composer that they take into account they nominees prior history. i.e – Martin Scorsese for The Departed or hopefully Christopher Nolan for his work on The Dark Knight Trilogy? In other words, they look at the nominees resume and say “hey, you know what, I think he’s been snubbed enough. Let’s just give him the Oscar that we should have way back when.” :p

    • That’s probably why Denzel Washington won for Training Day.

    • If that were the case, I’m sure Leonardo DiCaprio would have won an Oscar by now haha.

  8. The Dark Knight Rises?

    Lol

    That’s not a snub… that’s just accurate.

  9. The Oscars are alright haven’t really been into it since LOTR trilogy finished up and I was happy Return of the King won it all. 2008 was when they disappointed me by not nominating The Dark Knight at that moment I was like this is some bulls**t but hey cant change that. I thought The Passion of Christ was another rob in itself it was a hard film to watch but looking back I was surprised Hollywood did not nominate it.

  10. I say Dark Knight(not rises), better movie than the winner.

  11. As you indicate, movies that stand the test of time have been in the past 2 decades the ones that don’t win Oscars. Saving Private Ryan will be remembered forever I’d expect, but who cares about Shakespeare in Love?

    I think this year one of the best films left off is Rush. Rush has that great quality of filmmaking that Heat has, and I think I’ll remember it much more fondly than American Hustle.

  12. I know I’m in the minority but The Big Lebowski is high on my list of movies that everyone else likes but I don’t.
    I’m even surprised by this because I love The Coen Brothers. No Country For Old Men is a masterpiece and Fargo, True Grit and Inside Llewyn Davis are some of my favorites. I can go on and on about some of their other movies like Burn After Reading, Raising Arizona and A Serious Man but that would lead to a very long rant.
    For some reason though The Big Lebowski just didn’t connect with with me. I’ve watched it at least 3 times always thinking that the next viewing will be the time it clicks but it doesn’t and now I’ve given up.

    • The Big Lebowski…keep watching it. The subtleties are what make it brilliant yet hard to fathom. The film is a reflection of the apathy of the protagonist who in turn is a meditation on the psyche of early 1990′s America. It’s popularity hints that this apathy was something that was prevalent on a larger scale. A snapshot of society from the perspective of the ‘Dude’. The eventual victor of the 90′s.

  13. Cloud Atlas could easily be on this list as well

    easily should have been nominated, at the very least, for best make-up and best adapted screenplay

    • ^^^
      Yes. Cloud Atlas definitely should’ve been nominated. That movie will go on to be remembered.

  14. What about Zodiac (2007)?

    With a career that includes Se7en, Fight Club and The Social Network and a handful of other classics an argument can be made that Zodiac is David Fincher’s best film.
    The fact that it was completely snubbed is mind boggling IMO.
    Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Editing, Best Production Design are all nominations that the movie deserved.

    I won’t argue with No Country For Old Men winning Best Picture but Zodiac should have taken a spot among nominees.

  15. The Dark Knight Rises should have had nominations for best cinematograpy (1 hour of IMAX and that airplane hijack prologue scene alone), editing and best scores.

    They also snubbed Marion Cotillard for her performance in Rust and Bones.

    Guess they just want to forget about that incidence, instead of doing anything to show their condolences.

  16. What about Rambo’s Oscar how many sequels did Titanic make or 12 years a slave I THINK Captain Philips has to be taken hostage at least 3 more times before it can be nominated.I’m just saying

  17. TDKR should never have been made…

    • Heath’s death made a LOT of rewrites and Nolan was on a tight deadline. We all know TDKR would have featured Joker and Batman’s ultimate battle with other Batman rogues for additional menace. Would have been better if Bruce had listen to Alfred and fought with the use of his money and resources as Bruce Wayne, while someone else donned the Cowl.

    • DawnTreader wins the Academy Award for “Most Ridiculous Opinion”.

  18. The Oscars lost their credibility A LONG TIME AGO… i.e. when they started to ignore the really big pictures in favour of niche arthouse productions.

    NONE of the past “best picture” movies have deserved that attribute since 2004′s Return of the King… I’m not saying they are bad films – they are not – but they don’t live up to the hype…

    The thing is: when mainstream focus switched from historical dramas to fantasy, comic book and sci fi blockbusters around the year 2000, the Academy refused to move along, looking for overrated artsy fartsy indie flicks and overlooking the great stuff!

    One might accepted Argo beating Life of Pi since the later was a tad boring, but there is NO WAY an experimental retro flick such as The Artist can be considered greater than a visual masterpiece such as Hugo. Even worse and beyond redemption was the victory of mediocrity such as The Hurt Locker against Avatar, one of the greatest if not THE greatest films ever made! The Dark Knight not even being nominated wuth superfluous stuff like Slumdog Millionaire getting the Oscar is beyond me! And how can mordid supercr*p like Slumdog Millionaire beat a masterpiece like Finding Neverland?

    No, I don’t want Transformers or G.I. Joe do get the best picture oscar, but there are plenty of artful, thoughtful and yet visually mesmerizing genre epics that do deserve it so much more than those basically irrelevant niche productions nobody really cares about anymore.

    The Oscar has outlived its relevance. I’ll say this only one more time: If Gravity doesn’t get the best picture statue, this will officially be the last time I’ll follow the Oscars at all…

    • * mordid supercr*p like Million Dollar Baby (NOT Slumdog Millionaire!!!) Sorry, I just confused “million/aire” :-) Slumdog was okay though not great but Million Dollar Baby I profoundly HATE…

      • And gosh…the word is MORBID, not mordid :-)

      • Slumdog was utter crap and I find Life Of Pi in no way boring whatsoever.

    • Okay. So, centainly, it’s up to you which movie you like or love, and which you don’t like, or even hate. But just saying that the movies you slammed in your comment, where great movies, and deserved the nomination, and or the win.
      So I disagree with nearly everything you wrote, yet agree with the point you’re making.

    • Million Dollar Baby was an excellent movie but Avatar was a true masterpiece. Avatar not winning Best Picture has made the Oscars completely irrelevant to me.

      • Avatar, a masterpiece?

        Have you seen it?

        I have. It was incredibly boring, the visuals weren’t impressive considering video games have had similar graphics for years and the plot was a mash up of various other movies.

        I’m glad it didn’t win but still upset a “‘Murica!” movie won that year.

        • Sorry you thought it was boring but I liked it a lot. You must never have noticed that no two CGI creatures in that movie look the same … not true at all in video games. The CGI was good enough to forget it’s CGI and that says it all. The villain was a true bad*** that you don’t like but still respect. I even thought the cursing was done well. They cursed like real people in that film — no pottymouths but no grandmas. Ok, maybe it wasn’t THEE best movie that year but it’s a 3+ hour movie that I can watch over and over by myself or even with my kids.

          Sorry you didn’t like it.

  19. For me the only really good movie of 2013 was The Last Stand. The rest ranked from bad to decent, and trust me, i watched a lot of movies that year.

    • It was good, but it wasn’t the best of 2013. There were many others that were better even.
      -The Wolf of Wallstreet
      -Inside Llewyn Davis
      -Her
      -Captain Philips
      -Gravity
      -Man of Steel
      -Iron Man 3
      -Frozen
      -Oblivion

      just to name a few ;)

      • Oblivion for an Oscar? I suppose it had a plot, unlike Gravity.

  20. I have a theory, it might be stupid, but it’s just a theory.

    Maybe the reason why the dark knight rises wasn’t nominated for anything was because that there was so much fan backlash for the dark knight that they actually had to change the rule of how many best picture nominations. Thus i submit that the real reason why the oscars didn’t notice the dark knight rises is because that the academy didn’t like being do as it was told and took it out on the dark knight rises. That’s just my theory.

    It may be stupid, but this isn’t the first time the academy was biased about something like that.

    • Yup, can’t forget the Mickey Rourke “loss” to Sean Penn

  21. Puck the oscars. There are so MANY movies that were critically acclaimed, yet didn’t even get nominated. The most recent one, the one the author also mentions, is Inside Llewyn Davis — one of the greatest movies I’ve seen. And Oscar Isaac’s brilliant portrayal certainly should’ve earned him a Best Actor consideration. But no.
    I guess I’d say the Harry Potter movies too had so many great performances that deserved to be recognized, yet weren’t.

  22. The oscars are a joke and I stopped watching them over a decade ago. I doubt they even watch superhero or comedies at all and just assume they’re not good movies. In short, they’re just d-bags and their poop don’t stink. If you think I’m just being mean, then why has there never even been a “best comedy” award???

  23. I fell asleep during The Dark Knight Rises, that’s why I didn’t nominate it.

  24. Whenever this list comes out; At the very top always is 2001 A SPACE ODDYSEY.
    Stanley Kubrick’s most miraculous achievement routinely still sells out theatres today during screenings.

    Every respected film critic has this film on their TOP 10 LSIT of ALL TIME!
    But apparently, it was not one of the 5 best films of 1968!

  25. I’m sorry, but most have become nothing More than Glorified CARTOONS
    aND cABLE tv HAS dESTROYED tv AS WE kNEW IT..

    It will go the way of Newspapers and Magazines that also Killed the Goose laying the goledn eggs by Trying to Get People to Pay for them with over 50% Advertising in them
    Trying to collect on both ends..
    They could give them away for Free and still make Millions

    Nothing but Greedy People that Always end up where they belong..

    and if The Movies are Dong so Well? I GUESS THE ECNOMY ISN’T SO BAD OFF IS IT?

    Almost every Kid has a $100 Cell Phone and their parents spend $600 a yr For the service? and They also have no problem spending $1,200 a yr for Cable TV and Wi Fi?
    and The ave of $35,000 for a new Car?

    I’d say things are doing pretty Well aren’t they?

  26. The only reason Heath Ledger was even nominated much less won for The Dark Knight is because he died. The role, while fun, was NOT Oscar worthy!

  27. I’m sorry, but The Dark Knight Rises wasn’t snubbed for anything. That film wasn’t even close to Best Picture.

  28. Shall we forget that this year’s committee failed to even nominate Pacific Rim for special effects? Like the genre or not, that film was a 2-hour long effects extravaganza of the highest caliber; not only digitally, but through the use of miniatures, and fully articulated set pieces, as well. Someone must have pissed off someone else to slight that nomination… it looks personal.

  29. Non of these films deserved any legit oscars. (Except maybe 50/50)