The Descendants

Ranking the Best Picture Nominees According to Their Design Aesthetic

If you’re like us and doing the obligatory Oscar week movie-cramming in preparation for Hollywood’s big night, here’s something else to think about when considering your pick for Best Picture: the anthropological question of good taste. We took it upon ourselves to rank this year’s nominees according to their design aesthetic. Wikipedia defines aesthetics as the study of sensory or sensori-emotional values, sometimes called judgments of sentiment and taste. So, what films have it? What films don’t? Does it matter?

Click through to see how the nine nominees measured up, and let us know in the comments if you agree with us, or if you’re now questioning our good taste. … Read More

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How to Prioritize Your Oscar Week Movie-Cramming

The Oscars are six days away, and you know what that means: only one more week to see every major nominee, in order to appropriately cheer, jeer, and second-guess on Sunday night. But time has flown in these early months of 2012 — we got distracted by the Super Bowl, and then we suddenly had to watch Knicks games, and now, here it is Oscar time. How on earth are you supposed to get through all of the major nominees? It’s easy to go into a tailspin — what do you see? What can wait? What should you avoid, now and forever?

Have no fear. Flavorwire is offering, as a public service, a priority ranking of the nominees for the major awards (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress), so you can sift through the 18 nominees and see what time will permit you to see. Let’s be clear: this list is only tangentially related to the actual quality of the films at hand (since, as we’ve discussed, the Oscars often don’t reflect that quaint notion). And it’s not a prediction list per se (that will come later in the week). But it is a guide to working your way through the stuff that’s probably going to matter come Sunday night. Sift through with us after the jump. … Read More

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Brutally Honest Posters for Oscar-Nominated Films

The Academy Awards tend to elevate the films they honor — in light of their fresh nominations, The Help feels somehow less racially problematic and we all begin to wonder whether there could actually be something to Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, beyond its unpleasant, quadruple-gimmick (Hanks! Bullock! Adorable child! 9/11!) sales pitch. Of course, most of this second-guessing is pointless; the Academy’s taste is far from infallible, to put it mildly. So, it’s nice to see that UK site The Shiznit has decided to take this year’s nominees down a peg, remixing their posters into brutally honest (and, OK, sometimes slightly unfair) characterizations of the movies’ content. A gallery of our favorites is after the jump, but be sure to visit The Shiznit to see the rest. … Read More

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