The 93rd annual Academy Award Nominations were announced yesterday (March 15), soI wanted to do two things this week. 1) Highlight other work by an actor/director/craftsperson that was nominated. 2) Highlight a couple movies that have mercifully escaped my newsletters thus far.
Also, Delroy Lindo and the rest of Da 5 Bloods was totally robbed.
If you like this, then this…
If you like Minari, try Shoplifters
If the familial struggle of Minari spoke to you, then 2018’s Koreada film Shoplifters will devastate you. A quiet story of found family in the heart of Tokyo, as a ragtag group of squatters and petty thieves find their world coming apart when one is arrested. Watch on Hulu.
If you like Chloe Zhao, try The Rider
Nomadland was the first film by director Chloe Zhao for most people. If you liked the real world acting and beautiful landscape cinematography, watch Zhao’s previous film The Rider. Set in South Dakota, she follows real life cowboy Brady Jandreau as he recovers from a head injury that has changed his life and career. Find it on Pluto TV.
If you like Olivia Colman, try The Favourite
Nominated for The Father, iconic actress Olivia Colman won a statuette a few years ago for The Favourite from delightfully twisted Greek director Yorgos Lanthimos. As an ailing, self-absorbed, psychopathic ruler in period England, Colman manages to upstage the excellent Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone in a love triangle gone awry. Darkly comedic, modern, and ruthless. Rent on Amazon VoD ($3.99)
If you like Aaron Sorkin, try Moneyball
While Sorkin’s name is abuzz for Trial of the Chicago 7, his best screenplay in years was the Billy Bean story, Moneyball. Telling the story of how deep analytics and Beane (played by Brad Pitt) changed the game of baseball and team building forever. Pitt and Jonah Hill give humanistic performances you can’t help but root for. You don’t need to be a sports fan to fall in love with this film. Rent on Amazon Prime ($3.99).
A couple little seen films now Oscar nominated…
Director Thomas Vinterberg nabbed a surprising nod for Best Director (and Best International Feature) with Another Round, a tale of midlife ennui. Starring Mads Mikkelson as you’ve never seen him, the film is a tragic comedy of relatable proportions. Don’t read much about it, watch it. Stream it on Hulu.
Nominated for her first time (not like the Academy has a storied history of nominating female directors), Emerald Fennel’s Promising Young Woman is a revenge thriller/comedy that features a dynamite Carey Mulligan. A provocative film that is certainly divisive, at least the Academy is being bold. Rent on Amazon Prime ($5.99)
An animated space show that’s not too sci-fi, not too kiddie, and approachable is rare, but Final Space manages to do that. Following Gary, a lone prisoner on a prisoner ship with a bevy of robots, as he saves the Galaxy and meets an ensemble of charismatic and likable characters (Adorable Mooncake, pithy Avocato, and uptight Quinn). Violent enough to let you know it’s an adult show, but doesn’t lost in its sci-fi jargon that’ll make your eyes roll. S1 Trailer. Three Season, stream on HBO Max.
Shoutout Letterboxd for helping the film community keep track!
For last week’s recommendations, check it out here.