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84th annual Academy Award nominees list: Hugo and The Artist lead a field of predictable candidates

Earlier today, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences released the nominations for the 84th annual Academy Awards, which will air about a month from now, on Feb. 26 (on a Sunday at 7pm EST). While I tend to get excited about the Oscars every year, this year is especially fascinating because there just weren’t any huge standout films. There were many good films, but few that blew me away. Looking at the list of nominated films, it looks like nostalgia for the golden age of movies has gotten the best of Academy members, as I noted earlier on Digital Trends. The two most nominated films of the year were Hugo and The Artist, both of which harken back, in different ways, to the earliest days of cinema. 

I’m not quite ready to make my picks for the big show, but I’ve broken out and listed all of the nominees in every category below, splitting them the awards into four categories: the big awards, acting, technical, and everything else. In the next couple weeks, we’ll make our predictions on who will take home the prize in each category. But first, I have to find a way to go see The Artist and Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close. Interestingly, some very good movies are not on the list. Young Adult, Pariah, Like Crazy, Shame, and We Need to Talk About Kevin are four exceptionally good films with truly amazing performances by Charlize Theron, Adepero Oduye, Anton Yelchin, Michael Fassbender, and Tilda Swinton. Are they too dark for the Oscars? Perhaps they missed the cutoff date? It looks like the Harry Potter series won’t be getting a Return of the King sweeping victory either. The Oscars are as political as ever. I was a bit disappointed that Neither Drive nor The Ides of March got much (if any) love from the Academy. Both were critically acclaimed and fascinating films starring Ryan Gosling. 

But, without further delay, here are the actual nominees for the 2012 Oscars. 

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