Oscar Nominations 2019 Review


The Oscar nominations for 2019 feature 11 nominations for Joker. The nominations were released January 13, 2020.

Maisie Westerfield, Yearbook Editor-in-Chief

Another year, another disappointment from the Academy. This year’s Oscar nominations were overwhelmingly white and male, with 11 nominations for Joker and 10 for Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood, The Irishman and 1917. Some were absolutely deserved, like Best Actor for Joaquin Phoenix and Best Cinematography for 1917. Some films, however, were snubbed of their highly anticipated nominations.

The Good: Florence Pugh, who was a standout in Little Women, received a nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Parasite, which surpassed The Godfather as the highest rated movie on Letterboxd this year, received six nominations including Best Picture and Best Director, showing a new pattern in foreign films being recognized. While many categories are filled with the same five or six films, The Lighthouse, Ad Astra and Knives Out will have their moments to shine in the respective categories for which they were nominated. 

The Bad: Greta Gerwig, who was speculated to be nominated for and win Best Director for Little Women, was shut out of the category by an all-male lineup. Many films that have been recognized for other awards this season were shut out of the nominations completely (Portrait of a Lady on Fire, The Farewell, Booksmart, Uncut Gems). The horror genre especially, with great performances in The Lighthouse, Midsommar and Us saw only one nomination. Those dubbed cinema auteurs like Quentin Tarantino and Martin Scorcese swept the field this year, leaving women and people of color to watch on the sidelines. 

Overall, expect many awards for Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood, 1917 and Joker. Maybe if Quentin Tarantino finally wins Best Director, for which he’s been nominated for now four times, he will leave newer filmmakers to take the spotlight with their original and creative work. For now, he and his peers will continue to rule the Academy’s hearts, as we will most likely see come February 9.