by Garytt Poirier @garytt
The 2016 Oscar nominations were announced this morning, and you know what that means: Time for people to offer their unwarranted opinions while complaining about their favorites being overlooked.
If you are going to argue that Oscar nominations should recognize more people of color (and you really should), it is important to refrain from grabbing any movie featuring black actors and saying, "That should be nominated!"
*Disclaimer: I am completely aware that the lack of nominations for people of color is a direct result of the lack of roles and writing/directing opportunities for people of color in Hollywood. I am in no way, shape, or form trivializing that very important problem.
That said, there are some arguments being made about certain omissions. Here's what we have to say about them.
THE TERRIBLE ARGUMENT:
Will Smith for Best Actor - Please. Everything about Concussion is so contrived and desperate to give you goosebumps that it becomes laughable. Nothing about Concussion is award-worthy.
THE WEAK ARGUMENT:
Straight Outta Compton for Best Picture). I really liked Straight Outta Compton. It would probably fall between #15 and #20 in my films of the year. The story is fascinating and inspiring, but the structure felt elementary, and I think people want more of an artistic point of view from their biopics these days. Straight Outta Compton isn't even the best music-driven biopic featuring Paul Giamatti to come out of 2015. That said, Love and Mercy, about Brian Wilson, was fantastic and definitely unique.
THE SOLID ARGUMENT:
Samuel L Jackson. What the hell does this guy have to do to get recognized? If you look at the other nominations, it is perfectly clear that people really did not care for The Hateful Eight. Tarantino not being recognized for his original screenplay reflects this point, and I think it hurt Sam Jackson's chances.
THE GREAT ARGUMENTS:
I would have nominated Ryan Coogler over Adam McKay for Best Director. Then again, I probably would have nominated Ridley Scott over Adam McCay as well. Creed had such a great style and captured the culture of Philly. The one-take fight scene in the middle of the film should have been enough for a nom.
I would give Coogler a nomination for screenwriting as well over Straight Outta Compton, but that doesn't really help things does it?
ARGUMENTS I CAN'T MAKE (because I have yet to see the films):
Idris Elba for Beasts of No Nation and Teyonah Parris for Chi-Raq
All of that being said, I am disappointed that the pool of films featuring people of color is this small and we have so little to choose from. Do better, Hollywood. Seriously.