2022 Oscar Season at Palace Cinemas
The 2022 Oscar nominations have just been announced, featuring several familiar titles that have shown or are still showing at Palace Cinemas nationally. Read on for our early thoughts on the nominations, as well as a couple of hot takes on where we think the Academy went wrong…
Spencer – 1 nomination
Best Actress – Kristen Stewart
Kristen Stewart has earned her first-ever Oscar nomination of Best Actress for her portrayal of Princess Diana in Spencer. This film received a 3-minute standing ovation following its premiere at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival and we can see why – Stewart is breathtaking…hands down, no doubt, however… we’re going to have a Kanye at the 2009 VMAs moment and say that Johnny Greenwood had one of the greatest soundtracks of all time. Hauntingly beautiful, dissonant, and whimsical, Greenwood has crafted the perfect counter piece to Pablo Larraín’s surreal Diana feature. Do we think he was snubbed? Yes. Are we over the moon for K-Stew? Also, yes.
Best Visual Effects
This one is fairly straightforward. The latest Spider-man sequel was INCREDIBLE. Visual effects, unreal. We’re talking audiences crying in the cinema as they wipe away tears, thinking back on their last 20 years of moviegoing and what it meant to them… or at least that’s what director Kevin Feige said. Our neighbourhood hero may not be winning an Academy Award for Best Picture but he’s certainly has won our hearts. Sigh. Thank you Tom Holland.
Best original score, Best actress – Penélope Cruz
Pedro Almodóvar is a genius, okay? Pain and Glory was absolute perfection, and old mate really had us wondering – can he do it again? Almodóvar answers with a thumping yes in Parallel Mothers, starring film veteran Penélope Cruz and newcomer Milena Smit. The film is an emotional catharsis, surprising audiences in all the right ways. Almodóvar builds melodrama in gorgeous technicolour, and then interweaves the pain and legacy of the Spanish Civil War and subsequent dictatorship. Alberto Iglesias provides an exquisite score to support the whiplash twists and turns of the drama, well deserving of an Oscar nomination.
Best Cinematography, Best Production Design, Best Actor – Denzel Washington
We always knew there would be some Oscar credentials for The Tragedy of Macbeth (I mean, look at the poster art – that should get an Oscar in of itself), but let’s talk about the real TRAGEDY of Macbeth. Where the heck is Kathryn Hunter’s supporting actress nomination? Where? She literally threw her body and soul into the 3 witches, bending her limbs, contorting her voice, and terrifying audiences with every witchy glare. Hunter is striking. Hands down the most captivating performance of all the films listed. Denzel Washington is brilliant…but dare we say not as brilliant as Hunter? It’s not like it’s a competition or anything… oh wait. Nevermind.
Flee – 3 nominations.
Best Animated Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best International Feature.
Flee is extraordinary. A perceptive, piercing look at the immigrant experience in Europe. Unlike anything that has come before, Flee is an animated documentary that tells the story of Afghan refugee Amin Nawabi. One man’s pain and suffering is brought to life through ingenious story-telling and the heart-felt direction of Jonas Poher Rasmussen. If Flee doesn’t secure some Oscar wins, we will eat our proverbial hats.
Best Adapted Screenplay, Best International Feature, Best Director – Ryûsuke Hamaguchi and Best Picture.
Described by ABC News as “the best movie you’ve never heard of”, we can’t help but agree. Drive my Car has been steadily racking up critical acclaim and awards, having only just been released in cinemas this week. Now, this is no short feature, coming in at just under 3 hours… but it’s so worth it! Pinky promise. Director Ryûsuke Hamaguchi has artfully constructed a masterpiece that is enthralling from the first scene to last. Fingers crossed Drive My Car pulls a parasite and takes out Best International Feature AND Best Picture.
Best supporting actress – Aunjanue Ellis, Best original screenplay – King Richard (Zach Baylin), Best film editing, Best original song – Be Alive, Beyoncé (King Richard), Best actor – Will Smith, Best picture
King Richard is quite literally the Grand Slam of biographies. Based on the incredible true story, Richard Williams (armed with a 78-page plan) is determined to write his two daughters, Venus and Serena, into history. Will Smith took this role and ate it up. Smith lights up the screen in every moment alongside the glorious Aunjanue Ellis, giving us a thrilling picture of one ordinary (kind of) family’s extraordinary aspirations. Don’t even get us started on Beyoncé’s original song “Be Alive”… Certified BANGER. Makes you want to go chase your dreams… or win several Oscars…
Belfast – 7 nominations
Best supporting actress – Judi Dench, Best sound, Best original screenplay – Belfast (Kenneth Branagh), Best supporting actor – Ciarán Hinds, Best original song – Down to Joy, Van Morrison (Belfast), Best director – Kenneth Branagh, Best picture
Oh Belfast, how you warm our hearts and make us nostalgic for a city we didn’t grow up in. Belfast is a crowd favourite sure to bring joy to even the Grinchiest of moviegoers. Kenneth Branagh’s whimsical semi-autobiographical feature takes us to Northern Ireland during the tumultuous ’60s in striking black and white. With stellar performances from Judi Dench, Ciarán Hinds, Jamie Dornan and Caitríona Balfe (snub alert!), the film is a must-see love letter to childhood – brimming with warmth and charm. Plus, Jude Hill is quite simply the cutest child alive.
Dune – 10 Nominations
Best costume design, Best sound, Best original score, Best adapted screenplay – Dune (Eric Roth, Jon Spaihts & Denis Villeneuve), Best film editing, Best makeup & hairstyling, Best cinematography, Best production design, Best visual effects, Best picture
Watching Dune is like getting out of a sensory deprivation tank after years of lifeless floating and entering a 5D space opera. This film is unreal. Hans Zimmer’s booming score hits you like a spiritual awakening in minute one. You’re then taken on an intergalactic voyage through sprawling lands and wars of the universe. It’s like a David Attenborough deep-sea documentary had a baby with Star Wars, in the best possible way. Denis Villeneuve has given us a gift that we do not deserve, truly – why he hasn’t received a nomination for Best Director we really don’t know. Levelling out the playing field for the others? We don’t have anything else to say other than you need to see it on the big screen. Like, yesterday. Desert power!