Well, the 2016 Academy Awards are here, despite the fact that the Oscars website lists the nominees as for 2015. Honestly, I've been rather dreading awards season this year as evidenced by the fact that I've done just about everything I can except watch films that have been touted as potential Academy Award winners. Last year I casually watched movies thinking I'd watch more films up for awards than I did (four), and this year I intended to actively raise that number. Instead, though, I mostly loathed the idea of watching the films I knew would be fighting for awards and my tally is exactly the same as last year's four: Ex Machina, Mad Max, Room, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I kept holding out on watching The Danish Girl and Sicario in particular hoping they would fail to be named, but knowing that they eventually would. And here they are with six nominations between them.
There is excitement, too. All too often, there seem to be too few films striving to win Best Picture on the strength of their leading ladies, and yet we have Brooklyn (nominated only for Actress in a Leading Role and Adapted Screenplay in addition to Best Picture) and Room (which garnered the same honors as well as Director). Though, it is still disappointing to see Carol not make the cut despite having women up for each acting category. Also encouraging is that The Danish Girl, while accumulating four nods, did not reach Best Picture status. Part of this is that two of those nods, to no one's surprise, are Production Design and Costume Design which I dare say carry little to no weight on that ultimate of categories. Eddie Redmayne of course is unfortunately hoping to win Actor in a Leading Role, and, to no surprise of mine, no female director was honored, nor were their films as a whole. And, honestly, I'd rather this year's no respect to past years of Kathryn Bigelow garnering praise for directing pieces of propaganda.