Oscar Preview: Weekend of Feb. 28-Mar. 1, 2020

We had one film release this past weekend with the potential for Oscar nominations.

The Invisible Man

When it was first announced, no one thought this re-imagining of a classic sci-fi film would have the kind of reviews and acceptance that would make it an Oscar contender, but here we are.

The celebrated 1933 version was told from the scientist’s perspective as he becomes invisible, but murderously insane. While some elements of that concept are at play in this film, the invisible man of the title was villainous to begin with and entered invisibility in order stalk and terrify his wife. This film has managed to pique a lot of interest, especially in its position as a film that’s as apropos of the #MeToo movement as any other recent effort and is anchored by the performance of Elisabeth Moss.

With a 90% Fresh rating from Rotten Tomatoes and a MetaCritic rating of 71, the film certainly has the positive reviews to carry it into the Oscar conversation. The problem is that Jordan Peele’s film Us last year was in a similar position and, unlike his prior film Get Out, it failed to carry into the Oscars even with the race-leading number of awards star Lupita Nyong’o picked up. This film looks like it might have a similar trajectory and Moss might be in a similar position. Perhaps this year’s Best Actress race will be less stacked and give her more of an opportunity, but even if it is heavily competitive, Moss’ whiteness might make her more palatable to the Oscar voters who ignored Nyong’o.

That said, the film could also be in play for several above the line categories, especially if it sparks spirited support from critics at the year-end. That said, horror continues to be the Academy’s achilles heel and there’s no sign that they will accept this film any more than they did Us.

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