When it comes to the Academy Awards, there are always snubs that really surprise us -- Jennifer Aniston for Cake, Jake Gyllenhaal for Nightcrawler were among the few shut out. And this year, we couldn’t help but lament the fact that Tilda Swinton, Jennifer Lawrence, and others weren’t recognized for their achievements on screen.
Best Supporting Actress: Tilda Swinton, Snowpiercer
The cult hit of the summer was definitely the post-apocalyptic sci-fi film about the world’s remaining population living on a train. Tilda Swinton slayed audiences as Mason, the monstrous spokesperson of the engine’s caretaker who spars with the revolt’s leader played by Chris Evans. Her over-the-top performance may have been too camp for the Academy but her commitment made every minute of screen time worth it.
Best Original Song: Jennifer Lawrence, “The Hanging Tree” for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1
While we’re excited to see the Best Original Song category recognize some of today’s biggest stars, would it have been too much to ask that J. Law also join them? The actress landed a surprise hit with “The Hanging Tree,” a folk song written and performed in the film. Sadly, it didn’t even make the short list of potential contenders.
Best Actress: Shailene Woodley, The Fault In Our Stars
We should celebrate the fact that the race for Best Actress was packed this year with several amazing performances by Julianne Moore, Reese Witherspoon, Felicity Jones and others. Though, it’s a shame to not recognize Woodley, who in addition to becoming one of the biggest stars of 2014 also delivered one of the most touching and grounded performances on screen.
Best Supporting Actor: Zac Efron, Neighbors
Before you react, just remember how funny and committed Efron was to the role of a terrifyingly hot fraternity president who terrorized Seth Rogen and Rose Byrne. The film did more for his post-High School Musical than any of his stints in and out of rehab. Comedy is often overlooked because of the sometimes broad, crowd-pleasing nature of storytelling but here is was so biting and intense it deserves to be recognized.
Best Original Screenplay: Justin Simien, Dear White People
With Dear White People, writer and director Justin Simien offered an honest and funny look at what it means to be black in a “white” world for a millennial generation. A Sundance hit, the film became one of the most buzzed about flicks of the year and end of year favorite among critics.
Best Picture: The LEGO Movie
This incredibly sweet and funny animated flick was Chris Pratt’s other big hit of 2014, helping certify him as Hollywood’s new leading man. It was also the best thing Pixar didn’t release and easily topped Disney’s undying hit, Frozen. It would have been nice to see film join Beauty and the Beast, Toy Story 3, and Up as the only animated features ever to be nominated for the top prize.
Best Original Score: Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross, Gone Girl
Considering the pair previously won an Oscar for The Social Network, it shouldn't be too far fetched to have them among the list of nominees for this year. The score for Gone Girl was creepy as it was beautiful and captured the eerie feeling of David Fincher's film.
Check out a complete list of 2015 Oscar nominees here.