As the other awards ceremonies have now passed us by and we count down the hours until the Oscars finally declare the very best in film over this festival season, it has become apparent that some of the films included in the mix have garnered somewhat of a mixed reception. Aside from the main contenders, of which we can all agree deserve their places in the elite, there are some films in the more technical categories that certainly raise eyebrows. We’re looking at you Suicide Squad…
With that in mind, let’s take a look back at some of the movies that you simply won’t believe are officially ‘Oscar nominated’, with the Razzies a more suitable awards ceremony for them.
1995’s superhero checklist included a Batsuit that ‘boasted’ nipples, some rather colourful villains and Drew Barrymore playing Harvey ‘Two-Face’ Dent’s beautiful girlfriend/assistant. It’s fair to say that Joel Schumacher’s Batman Forever was hardly inspiring…
Yet, it managed to notch up a total of three Oscar nominations – Best Cinematography, Sound and Sound Effects Editing.
How this quite happened is anyone’s guess, but at least it was slightly better than George Clooney’s follow-up effort. Urgh!
Eddie Murphy is a comedian that has always been held in high regard, even when his career took a misstep with a follow-up to the reasonably acceptable The Nutty Professor, but he stepped way beyond the line in 2007 when he brought to us Norbit.
A cinematic atrocity comparable to the overall filmography of Adam Sandler, Norbit was Murphy’s career low point, with him continuing his famed use of makeup and fat suits but taking them way beyond the call of duty and resulting in a truly diabolical movie. Somehow though, the film was indeed nominated for an Oscar in the category for Best Achievement in Makeup.
Coming To America this certainly was not!
Talking of Adam Sandler, his 2006 movie effort Click, which saw his lead character possess the ability to alter time and events with his very own remote control, managed to notch up an Oscar nomination as well. The very thought of Adam Sandler attending the Oscars makes us shudder with fear, but alas, the movie did get nominated for Best Achievement in Makeup (clearly all the great films are nominated for this category).
Thankfully, Sandler himself has never been nominated for an Oscar as an individual (why would he, ever?!) but he did manage to find himself among the nominees at 2003’s Golden Globes for his performance in Punch-Drunk Love. A rare moment in his career where he took on a serious role and came out with some dignity…
I Am Sam
Despite introducing the world to the flourishing young talents of Dakota Fanning, I Am Sam proved to be an over-sentimental slog of a drama that served as a harsh reminder that sometimes the subject of disability can be over-stretched and represented in an incorrect manner.
Despite this notion, and a batch of mixed reviews often describing it as having ‘the life squeezed out of it’ by over-sentimentality and a predictable nature, leading actor Sean Penn found himself up for the Best Actor prize against the likes of Russell Crowe, Tom Wilkinson, Denzel Washington and Will Smith. Thankfully, Penn lost out to Washington’s superb Training Day performance for a performance that can only remind us of Ben Stiller’s notion on acting in Tropic Thunder…
It’s very rare that you’ll see a comedy film involved heavily in the Academy Awards, with these specific films only really being seen in the lesser categories if at all. That wasn’t the case for 1991’s awards, with the Gerard Depardieu comedy Green Card finding itself nominated for Best Original Screenplay.
A baffling decision considering it was competing against the likes of Ghost, Woody Allen’s Alice, Metropolitan and Barry Levinson’s Avalon. This was a film fronted by the obnoxious and often out-of-control Frenchman and 90s go-to girl Andie MacDowell.
Maybe that Academy champagne has been flowing a little earlier than usual that year…
A movie at the time that notched up the highest ever production costs and also saw on-set squabbles and Kevin Costner living in luxury while his other cast members saw anything but, Waterworld was somewhat of a disaster movie in the realest sense of the word. The 1995 film saw its key star Kevin Costner invest some $22 million of his own money, only for the film to open to average reviews and hardly set the world alight with its box office takings.
But while the film was riddled with mass controversy over its costs, Waterworld did indeed get nominated for an Oscar for Best Sound Mixing.
This would however prove to be one of the only moments of joy for the project, with it warranting three Razzie nominations, including a win for Dennis Hopper for Worst Supporting Actor.
Con Air often comes up on many peoples’ ‘guilty pleasures’ list, with the Nicholas Cage-led picture often seen as a fine piece of action cinema that is a simple ‘leave-your-brain-at-the-door’ piece of genuine entertainment. Other people may think otherwise – however, in 1998, the Academy saw some merit in the film giving it a total of two nominations at the inaugural ceremony.
The first nomination came for the film’s Sound, while a second was notched up for Diane Warren’s “How Do I Live” song that featured on the soundtrack, a song that was later recreated for Grammy success by LeAnn Rimes.
Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen
Michael Bay’s loud and proud Transformers series has gained its fair share of critics over the years and yet they are still banking the bucks when it comes to the box office, proving that somewhere there is a huge audience for these blockbusters.
The Academy also saw some value in the Bayhem too as in the 2010 Academy Awards none other than Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen – arguably the worst in the film series – bagged a nomination for the work of Gary Summers, Geoffrey Patterson and Greg P. Russell for Best Achievement in Sound Mixing.
Admittedly, the films have been very much about their visual aspect and the sheer audacity of its sound design so this one, albeit in a minor category, is at least one of the entries on our list that could be deemed somewhat worthy. The film’s still an absolute dud though. OPTIMUSSSS!
Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close
For this year’s Oscars it was a very close toss-up between two extremely unlikely candidates as to which was the most baffling film to be awarded with the famed ‘Oscar-nominated’ tag – the shock awful Passengers being the lucky loser in this case – with Suicide Squad coming out on top in the WTF stakes for films having been included in the Oscars full-stop.
A film that was panned for its shocking editing and one that drew more than enough criticism for its portrayal of one of the all-time best comic book villains ever, Suicide Squad had a rough time, even if it did make Warner Bros and DC a rather modest sum of money. From David Ayer’s “F*** Marvel” tirade to Cara Delevingne’s swaying villain The Enchantress, many expressed their anger at such a property even being produced and yet here we are witnessing Suicide Squad as a contender for Best Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling.
It’s a funny world we live in…