american hustleOh my, awards season is upon us. We just enjoyed the Golden Globes, and you know what that means: On to the next big show. The 2014 Oscar nominations were announced this morning. Two movies dominated the nominations -- well, three, really. American Hustle and Gravity got 10 noms each, and 12 Years a Slave came in with 9 nominations. All three are up for Best Movie and Best Director. That's some tight competition. The big surprise is a movie with 6 nominations that seemed to come out from nowhere. The other big surprise is maybe not so much a surprise. One important movie was snubbed, big time.

First, the Cinderella story: Nebraska is up for Best Picture, Best Actress (June Squibb), Best Actor (Bruce Dern), and Best Director (Alexander Payne). I've heard all about Captain Phillips and Dallas Buyers Club, which also each got 6 nominations. But even though I'm a fan of Alexander Payne -- he directed Sideways -- I feel like this movie quietly flew under the radar. I'm sure one reason is because it's in black and white, and it's missing the sizzle of a sexy star (no offense, Bruce and Will Forte). See all of the 2014 Oscar nominations on the official website.

You may be wondering, what is that movie even about? Well, here's the short version. Woody (Dern) gets a letter saying he's won a million dollars. His son (Forte) realizes it's a scam, but the larger problem is that Woody is getting older and may need to move to a retirement home. A road trip ensues, and word gets out that Woody has won a million -- but of course he hasn't, really. Somewhere in there Woody goes on a bender and loses his dentures. Yeah ... maybe I'll Netflix this one someday.

I'm glad to see Sally Hawkins and Lupita Nyong'o up for Best Supporting Actress. I think both have been overlooked. Not sure what JLaw is doing there. I mean, I love her as much as everyone else does, but I don't think her performance calls for an Oscar, much as I enjoyed it. Just saying.

The other surprise is how many nominations The Butler didn't get. What's Oprah thinking this morning, I wonder? No Golden Globe, and now no Oscar nod, either. What, she's too successful and doesn't need the additional affirmation? Nada for Forest Whitaker, zilch for Lee Daniels. In fact, The Butler was pretty much shut out of the Oscars, just like it was shut out of the Golden Globes. What's the deal -- Hollywood only has room for one movie about the American black experience a year? Apparently so ...

Also snubbed: Emma Thompson for Best Actress and Tom Hanks for Best Actor in Saving Mr. Banks and Robert Redford in All Is Lost (i.e. the aquatic Gravity). From everything I've heard and read about The Wolf of Wall Street, meanwhile, I truly do not understand all its nominations. Whatever, Oscar! See you March 2.

Were you surprised by any of the Oscar nominations?

 

Image via Atlas Entertainment