Oscar nominations: the good, the bad, the ugly

Just as they do every other year, this year’s Oscars nominations have received very mixed reviews from fans and critics alike. There has already been quite a bit of drama surrounding the Oscars because of Kevin Hart stepping down from his position as host due to a number of homophobic tweets he posted a few years ago. This year, the Oscars will go hostless for the first time since 1989. The nominations themselves have received a lot of backlash, but that’s nothing new for the award show going on its 91st year. The best picture nominees have felt somewhat lackluster to many fans who hoped to see films like First Man, First Reformed, If Beale Street Could Talk, and Eighth Grade on the list, but it’s not all bad. Many were happy to see Alfonso Cuarón’s film Roma and Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Favourite tie for most nominations and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse get a Best Animated Feature nomination.

Netflix’s Roma, a film set in Mexico in the 1970s about a housekeeper for a wealthy family, earned 10 nominations. Not only is the film a shoo-in for best foreign film, it also became the first movie from a streaming service to get a best picture nomination. Yalitza Aparicio was nominated for best actress for her role in Roma and became the second Mexican woman to do so.

Bohemian Rhapsody’s nominations have come with quite a bit of backlash, despite already having won several other awards this season including the Golden Globes for Best Motion Picture Drama and Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture for Rami Malek. The film’s director, Brian Singer, is facing multiple charges of sexual assault with minors, and on top of that, the film has faced a lot of criticism for its multiplicity of inaccuracies. Nonetheless, the film did amazing in theaters; racking up close to 800 million dollars and is celebrated by fans for Rami Malek’s portrayal of Freddie Mercury and being an entertaining and dazzling film.

As for diversity, the Oscars seem to be making progress in some places, but going backward in others. This year’s nominees have a clear lack of women, with many major categories such as cinematography, directing, and film editing only nominating men. They did a better job than usual with nominating people of color. Spike Lee became the sixth black person to be nominated for best director for Blackkklansman. However, the majority of the actors and actresses nominated for acting awards are still whiteA  lot of people on Twitter brought back the hashtag #Oscarsowhite that was created four years ago to protest the lack of representation. Though it’s important to note a lot of progress has been made since the 2015 Oscars when every actor and actress nominated was white. There is still a long road ahead to complete racial and gender equality at the Oscars. 

The Oscars are on Feb. 24, at 7 p.m.