2018 Snubby Awards: Top films that weren’t nominated for Oscars

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Even though the 90th Academy Awards are distinguishable for nominating truly innovative, boundary-pushing films, the fact remains that the Oscars gotta Oscar — some films and artists are simply snubbed. Yet, such films don’t need the recognition of an award to be great. But to hell with that, because we’re giving them one anyway. Without further ado, these are the winners of The Daily Californian’s second annual Snubby Awards.

— Harrison Tunggal


Best Picture

Winner: “Blade Runner 2049”

Leave it to Denis Villeneuve, director of films such as “Arrival,” “Prisoners” and “Sicario,” to craft a sequel that outdoes the original “Blade Runner” film in every conceivable way. “Blade Runner 2049” embarks on a deeply thorough exploration of what it means to be “more human than human,” assembling a thesis that proves more emotional than Rutger Hauer’s legendary monologue — but only if you can make it through the nearly three-hour film without taking a bathroom break.

— Harrison Tunggal

  1. “Mudbound”
  2. “The Florida Project”
  3. “I, Tonya”
  4. “War for the Planet of the Apes”


Best Director

Winner: Luca Guadagnino, “Call Me By Your Name”

“Call Me by Your Name” packs an emotional wallop unlike any other film this year, which — considering how quiet and understated it is — reveals the brilliance of Luca Guadagnino’s directing efforts. Each frame is meticulously composed to evoke such subtle yet intense sensuality. The development of Elio and Oliver’s love is constructed so beautifully, yet also so naturally. Guadagnino knows how to say everything without really saying anything, and it’s a shame that he was ignored.

— Kyle Kizu

  1. Dee Rees, “Mudbound”
  2. Denis Villeneuve, “Blade Runner 2049”
  3. Sean Baker, “The Florida Project”
  4. Matt Reeves, “War for the Planet of the Apes”


Best Actor

Winner: Andy Serkis, “War for the Planet of the Apes”

Sure, a team of visual effects artists translates Andy Serkis’ motion-capture performance, turning a man in a onesie into the regal, Mosaic leader of the apes, Caesar. But without Serkis’ performance, the character of Caesar would be fundamentally different. Caesar’s posture and facial expressions are entirely Serkis’ work. Within “War for the Planet of the Apes,” constant closeups of Serkis’ face show the depth of Caesar’s pain, emphatically declaring his utter underlying humanity.

— Harrison Tunggal

  1. Christian Bale, “Hostiles”
  2. Hugh Jackman, “Logan”
  3. Jake Gyllenhaal, “Stronger”
  4. Ryan Gosling, “Blade Runner 2049”


Best Actress

Winner: Brooklynn Prince, “The Florida Project”

Brooklynn Prince’s performance in “The Florida Project” is deceptive. Moonee feels so real — her energy so vivid — that we subconsciously process Prince as simply just being. However, Prince’s  character work in defining Moonee’s exact characteristics as a kid and implementing those details into every single aspect of her is absolutely astounding. Her powerhouse emotional scene at the end of the film is some of this year’s best work by any actor of any age.

— Kyle Kizu

  1. Vicky Krieps, “Phantom Thread”
  2. Jessica Chastain, “Molly’s Game”
  3. Ahn Seo-hyun, “Okja”
  4. Haley Lu Richardson, “Columbus”


Best Supporting Actor

Winner: Michael Stuhlbarg, “Call Me By Your Name”

Easily the most egregious snub this year, it’s astounding that Michael Stuhlbarg wasn’t recognized for his emotional gut-punch of a performance in “Call Me By Your Name.” Even though Stuhlbarg’s impact is only significantly felt at the film’s end, the story’s emotional climax would not succeed without his presence. He delivers the most impactful monologue in recent memory, imbuing James Ivory’s script with an inimitable sincerity. But whatever, academy. Go ahead and reward Woody Harrelson.

— Harrison Tunggal

  1. Jason Mitchell, “Mudbound”
  2. Patrick Stewart, “Logan”
  3. Mark Rylance, “Dunkirk”
  4. Bill Skarsgård, “It”


Best Supporting Actress

Winner: Dafne Keen, “Logan”

To quote Jeremy Scott of the YouTube channel “CinemaSins,” “I will never get tired of her kicking ass and screaming. Never!” Truer words have never been spoken, as Dafne Keen’s unhinged intensity proves that she can go toe to foot-claw (and then some) with Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. More significantly, Keen’s dramatic chops are on full display — if her quoting of the classic western “Shane” doesn’t leave you in tears, then quite frankly, you might not have a soul.

— Harrison Tunggal

  1. Holly Hunter, “The Big Sick”
  2. Tatiana Maslany, “Stronger”
  3. Tiffany Haddish, “Girls Trip”
  4. Rosamund Pike, “Hostiles”


Best Adapted Screenplay

Winner: “Blade Runner 2049”

When a masterful film such as “Blade Runner 2049” has such evident directorial flourish, it’s easy to forget the rock-solid foundation that its screenplay provides. Breaking down the film to its basics — how writers Michael Green and Hampton Fancher build the story’s themes with such powerful symbols, how they expand the mythology of the world and how they so gracefully and efficiently lay out the arc of K (Ryan Gosling) — it’s clear just how well-written “Blade Runner 2049” is.

— Kyle Kizu

  1. “War for the Planet of the Apes”
  2. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi”
  3. “Our Souls at Night”
  4. “The Lost City of Z”


Best Original Screenplay

Winner: “Phantom Thread”

“Phantom Thread” is certainly a strange film, but after we leave the theater utterly delighted, we can see how tightly controlled the story really is. At every single story beat, even the rather minute ones, Paul Thomas Anderson’s screenplay so absorbingly realizes the conflict within and between its characters. With some of the sharpest and most hilarious dialogue of the year, the script becomes a formidable piece of art on its own.

— Kyle Kizu

  1. “I, Tonya”
  2. “Okja”
  3. “Dunkirk”
  4. “The Florida Project”

Contact Kyle Kizu and Harrison Tunggal at [email protected].