The Absolute Worst, Most Despicable Snubs of the 2014 Oscar Nominations

Inside LLewyn DavisStudio Canal

Let’s start off with something positive…
Leonardo DiCaprio earned a Best Actor nod. Not a shocker, although with the wealth of strong male lead performances this year, a few of us were betting that the Wolf of Wall Street star would be edged out of the running. Smile, folks. It’ll be the last time you do today. 

And now onto the bad news…
There are a wealth of deserving performers recognized in the Best Supporting Actor category this year, but Rush‘s Daniel Bruhl remains unjustly omitted, leaving room for the far more flashy albeit one-note turn by Jonah Hill in Wolf of Wall Street.

And the really bad news…
That “edging out” that we were worried would inflict Leo? It actually happened to Tom Hanks. In Captain Phillips, Hanks gave one of the year’s most terrific lead performances, turning what could have been a colorless thriller into a humane, engaging, and really eviscerating movie.

And the even worse news…
What the hell is up with that Best Original Score category? In lieu of truly artful orchestration, like that in StokerPrince AvalancheThe Wind Risesand (we know this would never earn a nomination, but it’s still magnificent) Spring Breakers, we see lifeless fare like the scores from Saving Mr. Banks and The Book Thief take nominations. F**k that noise.

I’m starting to feel ill here…
The omission of Sarah Polley’s Stories We Tell from the Best Documentary Feature category. After the past two years of celebrating filmmaking and storytelling in movies like Argo and The Artist, the Academy overlooks the most wholly invested tribute to the idea of story in years.

Oh, and this is just bulls**t…
The inscrutable absence of Inside Llewyn Davis in the Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and (most shockingly) Best Original Song categories.
Our Best Picture Gripe: With only nine films nominated for BP, Llewyn Davis can’t even be accused as falling victim to a full slate of superior projects — although to claim said superiority in half of the films on this list would be criminal (in the rest, it’d be simply laughable).
Our Best Director Gripe: Admittedly, the Coen Brothers were dark horses in the Director category this year with Steve McQueen, Martin Scorsese, David O. Russell, and Alfonso Cuaron being sure things. We’re not at all displeased that the final position going to Alexander Payne for Nebraska, but we are sad to see the brilliantly constructed New York tragedy earn no recognition.
Our Best Original Screenplay Gripe: Things are getting even more outrageous with these snubs. The brilliant, lyrical character piece that is Llewyn should, at the very least, taken one major category this year, that being for writing. The clunky Dallas Buyers Club and the cartoonish American Hustle both got notice for scripting, while this deft and dense study of human misery and toxicity gets squat.
Our Best Original Song Gripe: But NONE of these snubs is more offensive than this one. To not even nominate Inside Llewyn Davis‘ signature song “Fare Thee Well,” which is at once beautiful as an individual piece of music and unbelievable powerful as an anchor to the Coens’ spectacular story is… well, it’s really just kind of weird. But we guess Despicable Me 2 needed that nod for “Happy,” right?

Staff editor Michael Arbeiter’s natural state of being can best be described as “mild panic attack.” His earliest memories of growing up in Queens, New York, involve nighttime conversations with a voice from his bedroom wall (the jury’s still out on what that was all about) and a love for classic television that spawned from the very first time he was allowed to watch “The Munsters.” Attending college at SUNY Binghamton, a 20-year-old Michael learned two things: that he could center his future on this love for TV and movies, and that dragons never actually existed — he was kind of late in the game on that one.