The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, is widely referred to as the “biggest night in Hollywood” as it is far and away the most prestigious award there is in the film industry. It’s an honor just to be nominated, and this year’s nominations are set to be announced later this month on January 24th, 2023.
As it is pretty much every year, there will, of course, be many snubs and a few surprises, but for the most part, there has been an Oscar shortlist forming since the beginning of last year. Though nobody knows who will make the final cut, some potential nominees seem like an absolute lock at this point. Nearly every category has at least one “shoo-in” for a nomination this year.
10/10 Avatar: The Way Of Water Is A No-Brainer For Best Visual Effects
It feels silly explaining why Avatar: The Way of Water is an absolute lock for a Best Visual Effects nomination. Just look at the finished product. Long before the film’s release, James Cameron promised that the sequel would match the original film’s awe factor regarding its special effects, and Cameron didn’t disappoint.
The word stunning doesn’t do it any justice, yet that is the only word in the English dictionary capable of describing the film’s special effects. It will undoubtedly be nominated for Best Visual Effects and will likely win the award, too, just like the original Avatar film did.
9/10 Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio Was The Best Animated Feature Of The Year
Since 2002 when the Academy Awards for Best Animated Feature was introduced, it has quickly become one of the most highly contested categories, and this year is no different. There have been tons of fantastic animated films released in 2022, from Pixar’s Turning Red to Marcel The Shell With Shoes On, but the one that takes the cake, and will probably take the award too, is Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio.
It might not be the Disney version, but it’s still a familiar story. However, every scene is dripping with the visible effort put forth by animators, and the result is magical. It’s an incredible film that takes the art of stop-motion animation to new heights.
8/10 Angela Bassett As Ramonda For Best Supporting Actress Needs To Happen
Superhero movies generally don’t do too well at the Oscars as they rarely get nominated. In fact, there have only been two times a superhero movie has ever received an acting nomination, and both were for the same character, the Joker. However, this year might be a little different.
Why? Because Angela Bassett delivered a phenomenal performance that can’t be overlooked as the grieving sovereign Queen of Wakanda in the Black Panther sequel. Basset has already received a Golden Globe nomination for her performance and has also been named on the official BAFTA shortlist. All that’s left is a rightfully deserved Oscar nomination.
7/10 The Banshees Of Inisherin Deserves A Best Original Screenplay Nod
Martin McDonagh is a playwright turned filmmaker. Before 2022, he had only made three feature films, of which two were nominated for Best Original Screenplay. So, his track record speaks for itself, and The Banshees of Inisherin is arguably his best work as a screenwriter.
The film is a dark comedy set at the end of the Irish Civil War in 1923 and tells the tragic story of two men who decide to no longer be friends. It might not sound like a real page-turner, but with McDonagh’s wit and humor, The Banshees of Inisherin is easily one of the year’s best-written films.
6/10 Austin Butler Became Elvis!
You know an actor took a role seriously when it’s been well over a year since the film wrapped, and that actor still sounds like the character. Austin Butler didn’t just play Elvis Presley; he became Elvis Presley.
Whether he was belting out a classic tune, having a drug-filled episode, or simply having a conversation with a loved one, Butler embodied this role. For a long period of 2022, the Best Actor award was his to lose. Now that the year is wrapped, that might be up for debate, but what isn’t is the fact that he will undoubtedly be nominated.
5/10 All Quiet On The Western Front Was Easily One Of The Best International Feature Films Of The Year
This German anti-war epic based on the novel of the same name took the world by storm by not holding back any punches. All Quiet On The Western Front puts the audience on the battlefield and delivers a truly harrowing look at the psychological harm caused by war.
The film has already won a slew of awards in many categories ranging from sound editing to production design. It is expected to be nominated for Best International Feature Film at this year’s Academy Awards, for which it has already been shortlisted. The film is available on Netflix, but beware, it’s not for the faint of heart.
4/10 Top Gun: Maverick’s Cinematography Was Absolutely Breathtaking
Top Gun: Maverick not only performed better than most people expected, but the quality of the film was a lot better than what most people were expecting from a sequel to a movie that came out over three decades ago. Now, it looks as though Top Gun: Maverick will be scoring Oscar nominations in many categories, and among them will certainly be cinematography.
Those fortunate enough to have seen this high-octane film in theaters know that the experience was unlike anything else this year. This was primarily due to the excellent cinematography by Claudio Miranda, who has previously won the award for Life of Pi and will likely win again this year.
3/10 Michelle Yeoh Is The Front-Runner For Best Actress
Everything Everywhere All At Once is certainly one of the more original movies of 2022 and one of the best. At the center of this absurdist sci-fi comedy-drama is an incredible performance by Michelle Yeoh, who is given the opportunity to showcase all of her talents as an actor.
Whether it be her martial arts skills, comedic timing, or a deeply emotional scene, Yeoh hits all her marks with gripping precision. While the film will likely earn a handful of Academy Award nominations, Michelle Yeoh should start practicing her acceptance speech now.
2/10 Steven Spielberg Should Be A Lock For Best Director
Steven Spielberg is one of Hollywood’s greatest and most influential directors and has been nominated for an Academy Award for Best Director an astounding eight times. His latest film, The Fabelmans, is a semi-autobiographical film about his life and how he came to be a director. So essentially, it’s a film about directing, directed by one of the greatest directors of all time. If that isn’t a recipe for a Best Director Oscar nomination, then what is?
Joking aside, The Fabelmans is a beautifully crafted film that tells a wonderfully poignant story about the power of movies. It also proves that even after all these years, no other filmmaker can evoke that “movie magic” quite like Spielberg.
1/10 Brendan Fraser Gave The Performance Of A Lifetime In The Whale
If the year 2022 should be remembered for anything, it’s the renaissance of Brendan Fraser’s career. While The Whale has received mixed reviews, Fraser has received universal acclaim for his performance as a morbidly obese man who tries to rekindle his relationship with his daughter before he dies.
His performance is heartbreaking, and he deserves all the praise he’s received. If anything, the movie should be seen for his performance alone; it’s really that good. So good that he’s taken some of the limelight from Austin Butler and has really heated up the Best Actor race. Who will win remains to be seen, but both actors are shoo-ins for a nomination, and rightfully so.