And the nominees are…

The nominees for the Academy awards have been announced for this year. For me the most notable inclusions are “genre” films in the Best Picture category. It’s unusual for genre films to get much love from the Academy in this category (Peter Jackson’s The Return of the King is so far the only fantasy film to ever win Best Picture) so it will be interesting to see if either Guillermo Del Toro‘s fairy tale fantasy (The shape of water) or Jordan Peele‘s modern gothic horror (Get out) will take the out the Oscar. They’re both up against more traditionally “Oscar-worthy” films in this category so it seems unlikely, in my opinion ( but if you’re interested in knowing more, may I direct you to this graph showing how the genre preferences of the Academy for Best Picture stack up)

Oscar nominated movies must have opened in the previous calendar year, which means that some (but not all) of these films are now available in New Zealand. Flicks has a useful list of where and how you can watch the 2018 Oscar-nominated movies locally.

As for the library collection, below are the 2018 Oscar-nominated films available for loan on DVD or with tie-in reading material. See how many you can watch/read ahead of the awards ceremony on Sunday, 4 March (Monday, 5 March here if you’re planning on watching live).

2018 Oscar nominated films available on DVD

Related books and soundtracks

A number of  this year’s nominated films are either based on books or have tie-in titles or soundtracks, so you might want also want to check out:

  Cover of The breadwinner by Deborah Ellis Cover of Call me by your name by Andre Aciman Cover of The disaster artist by Greg Sistero and Tom Bissell Cover of Dunkirk: The history behind the major motion picture by Josh Levine Cover of Molly's game by Molly Bloom Cover of Mudbound by Hillary Jordan Cover of Star Wars the last jedi, the visual dictionary Cover of Victoria and Abdul by Shrabani Basu Cover of Wonder by R. J. Palacio Cover of The world of Kong: A natural history of Skull Island

Find out more:

Fantasy – Kings and killers

Here are some picks from our Fantasy newsletter for October 2014. You can read it online or subscribe to get it delivered direct to your inbox.

Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews Fool's Assasin by Robin Hobb  City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett Poison Promise by Jennifer Estep Sleeping late on judgement day by Tad Williams The Death of King Arthur by Peter Ackroyd

The most popular nude guy in Hollywood

He’s featureless, naked, and holding a sword. If it weren’t for the fact that he’s plated in 24-karat gold and just over a foot tall, he’d be the stuff of nightmares but as the emblem of the Academy Awards, Oscar is the guy that everyone wants.

I’ve always enjoyed watching the Oscars, especially the extravagances of the red carpet, but I’d never really thought about the behind-the-scenes dramas that must play out when you’re putting on the most watched awards show in the world. The egos alone must be hell to juggle. Maybe Oscar is a nightmare after all?

I do like a bit of a Hollywood exposé so I’ve really enjoyed dipping into The big show: High times and dirty dealings backstage at the academy awards. In it author Steve Pond gives an insider’s view of the Oscars, behind the glamour and velvet curtains, with candid backstage photos of some of the film industries biggest names. There’s quite a bit of swearing and a lot of concern over the visibility of nipples (both Julianne Moore’s and Jamie Lee Curtis’s get a mention) among other things and when I watch this year’s ceremony (on Monday 23 February, NZ time), I think I’ll be wondering about all the Academy staffers running around frenetically backstage trying to keep the Oscar beast in check…