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The Amazing Race: Is 'The Dark Knight Rises' A Serious Best Picture Contender?

by Oliver Lyttelton
July 25, 2012 1:05 PM
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Dark Knight Rises JG-L Modine

But it's more complicated here. For one, the period trappings of LOTR, for want of a better term, perhaps made it seem more palatable. For another, the two previous 'Rings' films had both been Best Picture nominees, and at a time when there were only five nominations possible. And finally, many of the same arguments, in terms of nominations in recognition of the series as a whole, were made last year for "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2," and the film never got traction (although we maintain it's at least in part because that film was a two-parter; a single film 'Deathly Hallows' might have done a little better).

It's also clear that the shootings in Colorado last week will cast a long shadow. Warner Bros. already looks likely to delay "Gangster Squad" to avoid any unsightly links between the film and the incident in Aurora. Will their hearts -- and those of the modest Nolan -- really be in for a lengthy and exhausting campaign in the wake of tragedy? And will voters be able to get past the incident, particularly as idiots in the media question whether the Batman films might have inspired the shooter?

Dark Knight Rises Hathaway Caine

It certainly sounds as if the film wasn't rapturously received at an Academy screening over the weekend, which was begun with a minute of silence from AMPAS president Tom Sherak. While it didn't have a hostile reception, it was mostly indifferent, though many films have gotten nominations without wowing the crowd. And one member told Steve Pond of The Wrap that, "The film played extremely well." But Bret Easton Ellis (who is prone to be hyperbolic) was there too, and tweeted that "there was zero love" for the film at the screening. It may be that, while it has many admirers, the Academy justs find it too chilly and cerebral for them, or it may have been skewed by the effects of the shooting. How long that effect lasts remains to be seen.

Finally, it's also worth noting that Warner Bros. is particularly stuffed with contenders, at least at this point. In the second half of the year they'll unleash "Argo," "Trouble With The Curve," "Cloud Atlas," "The Hobbit" and "The Great Gatsby," all of which have their eyes set on gold. If one of these -- particularly the genre-leaning 'Hobbit' or 'Cloud Atlas' -- becomes a front-runner, Batman's chances could end up dipping.

But of course, the reverse is true too; ultimately, the film's Best Picture chances depend on the other films that come in the next few months. As you'll see from the inaugural edition of our Best Picture predictions chart below, which will run every week throughout awards season, we figure that there's several movies that feel more likely to pick up a nod than Nolan's right now. But if "Hyde Park On Hudson" disappoints at Toronto, or "Zero Dark Thirty" is delayed until 2013, or "Les Miserables" turns out to be terrible, or any number of things that could happen to any one of the films, "The Dark Knight Rises" will be better placed than ever. We'd certainly be happy if it was recognized.

The Best Picture Chart - 07/25/12

1) "Les Miserables"
That trailer that debuted a few months back made it clear that Universal aren't fucking around on this one. Tom Hooper taking a Best Picture for two consecutive films would be virtually unprecedented (James Cameron aside), but the film could be a perfect storm of material, cast and form.
2) "Lincoln"
"War Horse" showed last year that when Spielberg's in serious mode, only a fool would bet against a nomination, particularly with subject matter like this. But the word is that it's more procedural than emotional in nature, which may stop it connecting.
3) "The Master"
The pre-emptive critical favorite of the year (most already seem to have decided it's the best thing since sliced bread), this is likely to get in as such, unless the whole is unsatisfying. But can it win?
4) "Beasts of the Southen Wild"
What seemed like unanimous praise at Sundance has been significantly tempered, but this seems like the rare example of an indie picture that can warm hearts of Academy voters too. How it does when it expands wider (it's at $3 million having never been on more than 130 theaters, which is damn good) will be key.
5) "Argo"
Looking like the key candidate for the kind of smart, grown-up 70s style picture that always seems to have a slot -- "Moneyball," "The Social Network," "Michael Clayton" et al. Of course, we won't know til Toronto if it's any good or not.
6) "Life Of Pi"
A wildly enthusiastic response to this morning's trailer, as well as that to footage at CinemaCon a few months back, suggested that this was a serious player -- this year's "Hugo," in many ways. But it's also a more difficult piece of material than suggested by the marketing to date, and is likely to divide people severely.
7) "The Sessions"
Fox Searchlight's other Sundance darling, this'll be a real player in the performance categories, but wider critical responses may be key in seeing whether it can make a play for the big prize. The crowd-pleasing nature of the film suggests it probably will.
8) "The Great Gatsby"
One of the major question marks of the season. A starry cast, serious literary material, lavish visuals -- but was Baz Luhrmann the right man for the job? We won't find out until November or December, we imagine.
9) "Zero Dark Thirty"
As a recent Best Picture/Director winner, Kathryn Bigelow's certainly in the running, particularly with material as stirring as her Bin Laden film. But word is it's more of an ensemble piece than "The Hurt Locker" -- will that make it tougher to engage with on an emotional level?
10) "Moonrise Kingdom"
The indie smash of the summer finally seems to be tailing off at the box office (it dropped off by 50% this past weekend), but it's certainly made its mark, and could be this year's "Midnight In Paris," in many ways. But Anderson has not been an Academy favorite before now -- could this change that?
11) "Hyde Park On Hudson"
Academy-bait on paper -- it's a New York version of "The King's Speech!" -- but may have to settle for performance nods unless it's a crowd-pleaser like Hooper's film. We'll find out in Toronto.
12) "The Dark Knight Rises"
See the thousand-odd words above. Could certainly rise higher in the coming weeks.
13)"The Silver-Linings Playbook"
Word from the footage screened at Cannes was divided as to whether it was a big Oscar player (many believe it'll be an above-average rom-com at best), and the trailer didn't convince one way or the other, but one shouldn't count David O. Russell out.
14) "Django Unchained"
We've always suspected this was a principally commercial picture, particularly given the potentially controversial subject matter, and a Comic-Con slot seemed to back that up. But then, we would have said that about "Inglourious Basterds" too.
15) "Anna Karenina"
Looks like a difficult beast, given the non-traditional conceit at play. Likely to be a big BAFTA player, but may be too much of a curate's egg, at least if the recent clip is suggestive of the whole.
16) "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey"
More negatives against it at this stage than with "The Lord of the Rings" -- a less organic storytelling split, the sense of returning to old ground, that controversial 48FPS presentation. But given that the first three films have 30 nominations between them, it shouldn't be counted out.
17) "Cloud Atlas"
We'd initally thought this might be too weird, but the book is well read, and the advance word is very strong indeed. Let's see how it goes down in Toronto -- the presence of Academy favorites like Tom Hanks and Hugo Weaving is sure to help.
18) "Amour"
A serious critic's favorite (and Palme D'Or winner) in Cannes, it's a film whose concerns seem to fall right in the average age of the Academy. But will that mean the film cuts too close to the bone? It's got an uphill battle as a foreign film as it is.
19) "To the Wonder"
Malick did the Picture/Director nomination double last year, but can he do the same again so soon? The starry cast, and seemingly more narrative-led story, of "To the Wonder" might suggest so. But word is it's even more 'difficult' than "The Tree of Life," and perhaps more importantly, hasn't yet landed a distribution, so it may not even be eligible this time around.
20) "Best Exotic Marigold Hotel"
Just as well-suited to the Academy, but far cheerier, the film's surprise box office does put this in the running. But we suspect it'll make way for more substantial fare over time.

Later in the week, we're going to look at some of the potential dark horses of the season; films not yet on many prognosticators' radars that could upset the race.

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  • Ahmad | November 25, 2012 12:37 PMReply

    The Dark Knight Rises is the best movie I've seen since The Lord of The Rings. It should be honoured with at least a nomination, also Tom Hardy's performance is oscar worthy. but the oscars are stupid.

  • Jonnie | August 12, 2012 2:58 AMReply

    dark knight rises should definalty get the best picture award it was even better than the dark knight,batman begins, and avengers it was the best moive of all time!!!!!!!

  • Angel | July 30, 2012 1:54 PMReply

    It should have been called "The Caped Crusader". The current title is so... derivative.

  • Sher | July 27, 2012 4:56 AMReply

    At this point there is really no point being concerned whether TDKR will get nominated or not. The Academy has consistently shown itself to be out of touch with the viewers taste awarding mediocre films in the past decade. The mere fact Nolan is yet to be nominated for best director (especially after the fact he was nominated for every other award for Inception) speaks volumes about the stuck up nature of the voters. Personally I couldn't care less if it gets nominated or not, for me this was one of the most satisfying movie going experience of my life.

  • Alan | July 27, 2012 11:27 PM

    You're making the mistake of assuming the Oscars selection has ever been about the fans. The voters have a set of criteria that don't seem to have any subjective scoring, which is a problem. The good news is that increasing the possible number of nominees from 5 helps through bones to folks who think that mass appeal should have something to do with the Best Picture nom. I suspect TDKR will make it to the nomination level, even with the tragedy in Aurora, but unless there's another untimely cast death, I don't see it taking home gold with the possible exception of Best Director.

  • JD | July 26, 2012 8:51 PMReply

    Coming off one of the weakest years for Best Picture nominees in memory, its hard to see The Dark Knight Rises getting a nomination, most people are still debating whether it is better than than the Dark Knight to begin with,( from a personal standpoint I thought it worked despite the slow and slightly chaotic first act). I can't say the Playlist's best picture chart is looking that accurate either, Les Miserables at 1 seems a bit far-fetched based on what we've seen, i'd definitley say The Master and Lincoln for 1 and 2, Argo seems to be tracking strong but from what i've heard its not covering any new ground as a story (Very Syriana feel). Hyde Park on Hudson should come away from Toronto with sone significant buzz and look to start its ascent, although overall this year's potential nominees look far stronger than last.

  • RICHARD4 | July 26, 2012 12:58 PMReply

    This movie was just okay. I don't know, I can sort of sense the desperate denial by people who are forcing themselves to think this movie was amazing because they were so dead-sent on loving it. But it wasn't very good, Nolan's weakest IMO. It takes me a while to accept a movie (like The Phantom Menace. Not comparing the films or saying TDKR was as weak, just saying) was nowhere near as good as I was hyping it up to be.. The "Dumb Knight Rises" review is amusing and sadly accurate.

  • Oh come ON! | July 26, 2012 12:47 PMReply

    Surely you're not beng serious? LOL No, just no. This movie was an absolute mess. Nolan basically copied and pasted the script to "The World Is Not Enough" to this film. That script sucked even worse in 2012 than it did in 1999.

    Btw, though I have NO interest in the film, the constant swipes at Total Recall from this site are REALLY getting old.

  • Smokey | July 26, 2012 12:12 PMReply

    Not gonna lie, claiming RISES is superior somehow to THE DARK KNIGHT instantly discredits any serious Oscar talk.

  • Dave | July 26, 2012 12:02 PMReply

    For as much as I enjoyed The Dark Knight Rises, I can't envision it as a viable Oscar contender. I say this not because I find it lacking as a movie, but because the members of the Academy will never go for it. I've seen a ton of films this year, and only a few have surpassed it in my opinion. And similar to the Harry Potter franchise, there's no way that the Academy will try to encompass the collective greatness of Nolan's trilogy by recognizing this final installment. So for all you Batman lovers out there (like me), you just have to accept the Oscars for what they are.

  • Niti | July 26, 2012 3:13 AMReply

    Tom Hardy is Bane in The Dark Knight Rises 2012, hoping to give new life to Bane after Batman and Robin! Host Grace Randolph, from Beyond The Trailer, and guest Alan Kistler talk about the history of Bane from DC Comics, the man who broke the Bat - literally!

  • E'le | July 26, 2012 1:12 AMReply

    "In this writer's mind, and in that of much of the staff, it's the superior entry in the trilogy and one of the best films of the year so far." Did we see the same movie? Why do so many people like Rises more than The Dark Knight? It's such a longwinded, disappointing mess. Entertaining, sure, but it's not nearly as exciting, as captivating, or even as coherent as TDK.

  • N | July 25, 2012 11:16 PMReply

    If TDKR is a best picture contender then this will be a very depressing year for films. Yes, it was good as far as comic book movies go, but is not deserving of awards. I'm really hoping that the field improves as the year progresses because Beasts of the Southern Wild is the only one I've seen so far that I would put on the list.

  • Max | July 25, 2012 11:14 PMReply

    I'm going to go ahead and say that if a piece of shit like The Blind Side can be nominated -- in a clear attempt to appease the box office crowd -- then this movie has a pretty good chance. Best director remains to be scene; if any of the upcoming flicks mentioned are duds, then Nolan might have a chance.

    It will probably perform in the same right as Inception: taking home most of the awards, without nailing down any of the bigger ones (best director, best picture, etc.), though it certainly deserves it. I think Caine has a really good shot at winning best supporting actor, reduced screen time be damned.

  • unknown | July 25, 2012 7:07 PMReply

    What movie has came out this year that is better than TDKR?

  • E'le | July 26, 2012 12:58 AM

    Moonrise Kingdom is a better movie than TDKR.

    And Moonrise Kingdom isn't even that great.

  • S | July 25, 2012 6:59 PMReply

    The Dark Knight Rises is a seriously flawed movie. Upon first watch there are obvious gaping plot holes, lapses in logic and continuity, and contradictions. People will say "Nuh uh it was the most epic and gritty." And while it was both of those things it does not make it a good movie. The previous two films in Nolan's series had similar flaws as well.

    What makes them better however, is that they feel like Batman movies. Remove Batman from this movie and you have a completely different product. This is Nolan's worst film by far and a sour final note for the franchise.

  • Sue Deaunym | July 30, 2012 12:29 AM

    One huge "plot hole" has to do with the marching of the Gothem police force into the underground catecombs, on Gordon's orders. Somehow, Bane and his henchmen knew that in advance, because the entrapment of the Gothem police was essential for their taking over the city. Not only would Gordon have never made so stupid a mistake, Bane had to assume that the Gothem police would be incapacitated for his scheme to have worked, a terribly flawed assumption.

    I've got a half dozen others, but it's late. maybe later. . .

  • matt | July 28, 2012 10:39 AM

    What plot holes? the thing is alot of people need to watch BATMAN BEGINS to truly understand this movie... The Dark Knight was not the first bale/nolan batman flick...

    Seriously flawed movie my ass because you didn't understand everything you saw or heard its flawed? Name me these so called plot holes, and i will answer them...

  • Alan | July 26, 2012 12:35 AM

    Also, someone even asked "Why didn’t Alfred tell Bruce about the letter from Rachel years ago?" and suggested this was a plot hole. Seriously?

  • Alan | July 26, 2012 12:33 AM

    What plot holes? So far all I've seen is people grasping at straws with plot details that could easily be explained with character.

    * Bruce returns to Gotham without his wealth: err, he didn't have use of his wealth in Batman Begins. He left the country, travelling throughout the world without use of any luxuries, developing contacts etc. If someone who is so adept at being incognito can travel multiple countries without any contact with his company, I don't understand why the same man can't return without his wealth.

    * How did Blake find Gordon: Blake found the dead body of the orphan earlier, and knew where Gordon's would wash up, as a result. Bane didn't know this because he did not find the said orphan.

    Seriously, I have not found a single 'plot hole' that couldn't EASILY explained by another part of the film.

  • Chris138 | July 25, 2012 5:28 PMReply

    I liked The Dark Knight Rises, even with all its flaws, but I don't see it getting nominated in the major categories like picture, director or adapted screenplay. In comparison to the first two installments of the trilogy it is not as good and I don't see the Academy going for it outside of technical categories. If the Academy really did feel that they had to honor one of the big blockbusters from this year, I'd rather they go for The Dark Knight Rises over something like The Hunger Games or The Avengers.

  • C | July 25, 2012 5:10 PMReply

    You have to remember that the Best Picture field was expanded to 10 because TDK was snubbed. How could they overlook TDKR?

  • E'le | July 26, 2012 1:02 AM

    Zack is correct. As much as people like to say otherwise, The Dark Knight stands as the best movie in the franchise, and Rises is one of Nolan's weaker films.

    That said, I wouldn't be at all surprised if it was nominated, purely in an attempt to keep the Oscars at all relevant to people under 21.

  • Zack | July 25, 2012 5:12 PM

    Because it's not as good.

  • Thislalife | July 25, 2012 4:03 PMReply

    No way this get's nominated. I could see a directing nomination for Nolan considering the scope and pretty awesome directing (except for that final Bane/Batman fight). Michael Caine could get a nomination as the Academy is old and he's old so yeah brah.

  • DG | July 25, 2012 3:35 PMReply

    No Beasts of the Southern Wild please. I didn't hate it or anything but it should in no way be considered the best movie of the year. Beautiful cinematography and great characters aside it was a pretty cliche indie affair (now that this and Bombay Beach have been released I hope the whole 'films about poor people doing things while Beirut plays' trend cools off). TDKR is for sure my favorite film of the year so far and I would love to see it nominated and think it desrves it but I still really, really doubt it will happen. Also a best director nomination seems probably more likely than best picture at this point.

  • OCO300 | August 12, 2012 9:10 AM

    Well Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 was the most favorited film of 2011, it made alot of box office recordsa and got alot of POSITIVE REVIEWS/RESPECT FROM NOT ONLY THE PEOPLE BUT FROM ALOT OF TOP CRITICS!

    100% among TOP CRITICS from Rotten Tomatoes

    100% among TOP CRITICS from Metacritic

    8.1/10 on IMDB

    93% from BFCA (Critic's Choice)

    I mean it was arguably maybe not one of BUT the best reviewed film of 2011, and it not got snubbed out of THE OSCAR BP NOMINEES, THE ACADEMY, BUT ALOT OF OTHER CRITIC SOCIETY AWARDS AND ALL I COULD FIGURE OUT WAS WHY?







    Well so was E.T., The Wizard of OZ, Hugo, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, The Lion King, Shrek, Avatar, Tree of Life, Midnight in Paris, The Godfather, am I missing anything else?

  • Sherm | July 25, 2012 3:19 PMReply

    This has to be a first, I' ve heard alot of people say it's an amazing film and a few who believe it's horrible. I really think this speaks volumes for the film and the nay sayers or Avenger lovers need to take a second look. Besides if Avatar can be nominated for best picture, than this is a no brainer!

  • AS | July 25, 2012 3:15 PMReply

    There is a 0% chance this will get nominated for anything other than effects. There is nothing Oscar worthy about the performances, the direction and certainly not the screenplay. What actually irritates me more than the people who are going "it's the best movie ever" ( cause those are just 13 year olds who have only seen 20 movies in their life) are the people who criticizing it, but criticizing it for the wrong reasons. It's a deeply flawed film that feels more like a studio mandate than a Christopher Nolan film.

  • RWMENDEZ | July 25, 2012 3:08 PMReply

    I loved the film. It had everything I was hoping it have, plus more. I hope it gets nominated for something because it deserves it, whatever it may be. Sorry but it was the best film this year. I don't even remember what else came out. Why? Cause everything was irrelevant.

  • KT | July 25, 2012 5:11 PM

    Please tell me you're joking... Nope. Scratch that; I sometimes forget that there really are people like you out there.

  • AS | July 25, 2012 3:16 PM

    How old are you?

  • cirkusfolk | July 25, 2012 2:45 PMReply

    Let me just say the tide finally seems to be turning over on the imbd message board thank god (despite the film still having a 9.1 rating). Falling by the wayside are the "This is the best film ever" threads and springing up instead are negative ones. People are coming to their senses. The best one is titled "The Dumb Knight Rises"

    Please read it, because after you do there will be no way in hell you can talk Oscar about this film with a straight face.

  • Ronald | July 26, 2012 2:17 AM

    Wow, what a god awful review! Seriously, if the guy didn't like the movie he should try to actually articulate why in an intelligent manner and not just bash the film with next to no valid arguments or in many cases real points. Just simply wow. I honestly think how well it ties up everything with the trilogy (and even more so the film which is still my favorite of the 3, Batman Begins) is over many peoples heads...honestly, some people saying to me they didn't get it...really??? It's a very easy to follow and well written film.

  • Alan | July 26, 2012 12:41 AM

    So, this is what criticism has come to? Someone just regurgitating the plot and saying things are stupid ... without explaining why they are stupid. Give me a break ...

  • seriouscloud | July 25, 2012 8:20 PM

    I can easily refute every single one of his forced, affected "criticisms." Y'all are silly. The movie is very strong, and deserves more than one viewing, like any ambitious work. I expect it to get a Best Picture nod, but we'll see.

  • Chris Andersen | July 25, 2012 4:28 PM

    I read that hilarious review and thought it was spot-on. The guy didn't change anything at all. Everything he said actually happened in the movie. He just pointed out how ridiculous the film got at some points which I agree with. I know there's liberties you have to take when watching a comic book film but you really have to go to extremes to get past some of the dumb logic and coincidences in The Dark Knight Rises. If this movie is an Oscar contender it just won't feel right. I wouldn't even nominate this movie for sound editing since it couldn't find the balance between the score and the dialogue. Quite a bit of dialogue in this movie was muffled and drowned out by Zimmer's score.

  • RWMENDEZ | July 25, 2012 3:12 PM

    Yeah I read that crap and before anyone else does, let me spare you the pain. After seeing the movie twice, it is incredible how people (especially those who've seen the movie) could read that guy's crazed rant and take it seriously. First off the guy purposely changed a lot of what actually happened in the film just so that he could try and prove a point. I got lost right at the beginning of that thread, mainly because I was sitting here thinking "uh, that didn't happen. And that didn't happen like...wait, no....are we talking about the same movie here?"
    The Dark Knight Rises was a great film so let the haters hate.

  • Christopher Bell | July 25, 2012 3:03 PM

    Hahahaha, I noticed that too. It's a mixed bag, really, and while you don't care about the missteps when you're in the midst of things and invested in it, that doesn't change the fact that those problems still exist. I did enjoy it, but I don't think it will make much of a splash come Oscars...

  • marko | July 25, 2012 2:44 PMReply

    I don't think it deserves to be, but I do think it might get nominated just because The Dark Knight wasn't.

  • Ken | July 25, 2012 2:43 PMReply

    I agree with most of the commenters that TDKR most likely won't be nominated for Best Picture, but one of the commenters reminded me.... Playlist staff, what's been going with Inside Llewyn Davis? Early this year, there seemed to have been a possibility that it might sneak in and get a late 2012 release, but I haven't heard anything about the film in a few months.

  • triguous | July 25, 2012 2:38 PMReply

    The Dark Knight, not nominated. The Blind Side, nominated. The Academy, out of its mind.

  • jbean | July 25, 2012 2:33 PMReply

    worst of the trilogy by dice for this flying mouse

  • Travis | July 25, 2012 1:52 PMReply

    Cinematography? It will put up a fight to win it, and nomination is inevitable. Visual effects and sound? It may be the front runner in both categories. But editing? That was the film's weak spot. It will miss out there. Adapted screenplay will also miss out, as will Nolan. Costume Design will lose out, mainly because it is an insanely strong year. Best Picture. That's a push

  • Jerry | July 25, 2012 1:46 PMReply

    I'm going to have to go with "no" for a Best Picture nomination (As the article pointed out, it's just not Academy material) a "probably" for Best Director (As a "congratulations" to Christopher Nolan) and a "good God, I hope so" for Best Supporting Actor for Michael Caine, despite his reduced screen time.

  • AS | July 25, 2012 3:19 PM

    I wouldn't put any money on that Best Director prediction if I were you.

  • Chris | July 25, 2012 1:43 PMReply

    "James Cameron aside"? Are you under the false impression that two consecutive James Cameron films won Best Picture? Because that didn't happen. "The Hurt Locker" won BP, not "Avatar." Cameron won nothing for "Avatar."

  • Chris | July 25, 2012 1:53 PM

    Sorry, but the Director nomination without a BP nod is extremely unlikely. There are up to 10 BP slots and only 5 director slots. I can't imagine a director of a Best Picture nominee getting nudged out for the director of a film that couldn't even make the 10-deep Best Picture cut. Not gonna happen.

  • oogle monster | July 25, 2012 1:25 PMReply

    While I found the film to be problematic (especially the big reveal at the end), I do think it is one of the best films of the year thus far. Plus, how could they not nominate Nolan for best director in 2010? Coen bros instead? Pluhhhease.

  • oogle monster | July 25, 2012 3:31 PM

    I'm not talking about Coen vs. Nolan. I'm talking about 2010- True Grit vs. Inception. True Grit was an actor-driven piece. Inception was purely director driven. It was, in my opinion, a much better film overall and Nolan should have gotten nominated over the bros. That or David O. Russell. Fincher and Aronofsky stay put. Maybe not Hooper but then again, I'm in the minority that was not tickled the least bit by The King's Speech. Point is- Nolan was severely overlooked. Retribution this year? Maybe.

  • Chris | July 25, 2012 1:46 PM

    Well, the Coen Brothers are better filmmakers than Nolan, so if they're on their game, why not? (And I'm a Nolan fan, by the way.) You haven't even seen whether any post-TDKR films are any good, Coen or otherwise. So let's not get our panties in a twist over the potential that Nolan gets overlooked for Best Director, since it's completely unclear whether he'll even be worthy of a nod compared to what might come up over the next five months.

  • rodie | July 25, 2012 1:19 PMReply

    Ironically, the competition is MUCH stronger this year than in 2008. Even with up to 10 Best Picture nominees, TDKR may not make it, but there's also a decent chance that it will. Unfortunately, with the slate of films coming out from now through December, I don't see Nolan getting a Best Director nod this year either.

  • rotch | July 25, 2012 1:18 PMReply

    I believe that come end of year, we would have come into terms that The Dark Knight Rises is simply not that good.

  • Lorenzo | July 25, 2012 1:17 PMReply

    Definitely yes!

  • Zack | July 25, 2012 1:15 PMReply

    Nah. One of the best of the summer, I'd say, but it's not an awards contender. Not nearly enough of a critical consensus, for one thing.
    Of course, I thought the idea of any of the LotR films winning was ridiculous, too, so don't mind me too closely.

  • Zack | July 25, 2012 1:34 PM

    "Hugo", "The Artist", "The Descendants" and "Midnight in Paris" all have better RT scores than "The Dark Knight Rises". The only nominee that could be called "lambasted" by any measure was "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close". And regardless, my point was that you don't have to be a unanimous critical darling to be in the game if you're a particularly Oscar-y film to start with, but it's way, way harder for a genre or summer movie to get in without it.

  • oogle monster | July 25, 2012 1:27 PM

    Just taking one look at the line-up last year (Moneyball and Tree of Life aside), your statement bears little truth. Most of those films were critically lambasted.

  • lookf4r | July 25, 2012 1:13 PMReply

    Not that its a horrible movie or anything, but really an award contender? If it even gets nominated that solidifies 2012 as a shitty movie year.

  • Knative | July 26, 2012 12:09 AM

    Not really. The academy nominates crappy films almost every year . 2007 was one of the best line ups and it still included Juno, and it was only 5.

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