Barbie, Oppenheimer to Poor Things, how (and where) to watch Oscar-nominated films online
- How (and where) to watch Oscar-nominated films online: Barbie, Oppenheimer, Poor Things to Killers of the Flower Moon, all are available.
The winner in the Oscar nominations race Tuesday after a bruising year for the film industry was “Oppenheimer” with 13 nods, followed by the otherworldly “Poor Things” with 11 and the period epic “Killers of the Flower Moon” with 10 and yes, Barbie was there too. 2023 was marred by strikes and work stoppages for the cinema world, throwing production and release schedules into chaos. Looking to catch up ahead of the Academy Awards on March 10? Here's how (and where) to watch Oscar-nominated films online:
13 nominations. Digital purchase or rental. Streams on Peacock starting Feb. 16.
Christopher Nolan's atomic opus “Oppenheimer” received widespread critical acclaim and broke box office records. It's half the Barbenheimer phenom with “Barbie” from last July. The three-hour film, which is semi-trippy and flashback heavy, chronicles the trials and tribulations of the secret Manhattan Project's J. Robert Oppenheimer Frankenstein story, and his bride. Director Yorgos Lanthimos owes a debt to Emma Stone, his childlike and highly randy Bella, in “Poor Things.” The comedy is dark and the vibe Victorian fantasy. And did we mention the sex? How Bella handles that activity has been the talk of film circles. No spoilers here but rest assured her consciousness is raised. Also stars Willem Dafoe and Mark Ruffalo.
“KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON”
10 nominations. Digital purchase. Streams on Apple TV .
Martin Scorsese delves into the systematic killing of Osage Nation members for their oil-rich land in the 1920s in his drama “Killers of the Flower Moon.” With a star-bright cast, including Lily Gladstone, Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro. Warning: Its running time is 3 hours and 26 minutes. There's craft in every shot. Available for pay at iTunes, Prime Video, Google Play, YouTube, Vudu and elsewhere.
8 nominations. Digital purchase or rental. Streams on Max.
Greta Gerwig's “Barbie,” in the billion-dollar club at the box office, is a live-action musical comedy focused on the 64-year-old plastic doll in a range of iterations. It also took the globe by storm, culturally speaking. The film stars Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling (as Just Ken). Robbie plays Stereotypical Barbie, who experiences an existential crisis but lands on the road to self-discovery. Available for pay at iTunes, Apple TV, Google Play, YouTube, Vudu and elsewhere.
7 nominations. Digital purchase or rental. Streams on Netflix.
With the help of a prosthetic nose, Bradley Cooper brings Leonard Bernstein alive in “Maestro,” which he also directed. The famed conductor's personal life and persona on stage benefit from Cooper's energy, and chain smoking. Cooper got an assist from Carey Mulligan, who plays the actor Felicia Montealegre, Bernstein's stylish wife. Available for pay at Prime Video, Google Play, Vudu, YouTube and elsewhere.
5 nominations. In theaters.
Cord Jefferson's directorial debut “American Fiction” is what satire should be: funny while succinctly pointing at truths. Jeffrey Wright plays a frustrated academic up against the wall of what Black books must be to sell. He takes action. The film is also about families and the weight of their struggles. Wright is joined by a great supporting cast in Leslie Uggams, Erika Alexander, Issa Rae, Sterling K. Brown and Tracee Ellis Ross.
“ANATOMY OF A FALL”
5 nominations. Digital purchase or rental.
Justine Triet's “Anatomy of a Fall” took the Palme d'Or at the 76th Cannes Film Festival. It stars Sandra Hüller as a writer, Sandra, trying to prove her innocence in court in her husband's death at their chalet in the French Alps. The verdict? We won't tell. Did she or didn't she? Triet wrote the film with her husband, Arthur Harari. “It's OK, he's alive,” she told The Associated Press' Jake Coyle. Available for pay at iTunes, Prime Video, Google Play, Vudu, YouTube and elsewhere.
5 nominations. Digital purchase. Streams on Peacock.
The Alexander Payne offering “The Holdovers” is set at Christmastime, but its themes of loneliness and belonging resonate well beyond the holiday, wrapped in a comedic package. Set in 1970 over the holiday break at a boarding school, there's plenty of nostalgia in the details. It stars Paul Giamatti in curmudgeonly glory as the teacher stuck minding Angus (Dominic Sessa) and other students with no place to go. Available for pay at iTunes, Prime Video, Google Play, Vudu and elsewhere.
“THE ZONE OF INTEREST”
5 nominations. In theaters.
There's another meaty role for Hüller in the Holocaust story “The Zone of Interest,” directed by Jonathan Glazer. She plays Hedwig, the wife of Rudolf Höss (Christian Friedel), the real-life, bloodthirsty commandant of Auschwitz. The action largely has Rudolf and Hedwig living their everyday family lives just a few steps from the ovens and trains that were instruments in the slaughter of millions of Jews. A story worth telling, considering their status as monsters? You decide.
2 nominations. Digital purchase or rental. Streams on Paramount starting Feb. 2.
Celine Song's feature debut “Past Lives” is a triumph for her as director and writer, and for Greta Lee, one of her stars. Largely autobiographical, it tells the story of childhood companions in Seoul who reunite and rekindle in New York years later, landing in a love triangle. The other thirds of the equation are played by Teo Yoo and John Magaro. It's understated glory, inducing the best kind of tears: those come by honestly without massive manipulation. Available for pay at iTunes, Google Play and elsewhere.
2 nominations. Streams on Netflix.
Annette Bening plays the never-say-die marathon open-water swimmer Diana Nyad and Jodie Foster portrays Nyad's best friend and trainer, Bonnie Stoll. Enough said. “Nyad” isn't your average sports biopic. At age 60, Nyad decides to attempt as she did in her youth to swim the shark-infested ocean from Cuba to Miami. Nothing will stop her and lots of things try. A lesson in single-focus excellence.
“SOCIETY OF THE SNOW”
2 nominations. Streams on Netflix.
The story of an amateur Uruguay rugby team's 1972 plane crash in the Andes as they traveled with relatives and friends to Chile for a match has been told on film many times. There were 45 on board. Sixteen survived after 72 days in the mountains. They faced biting cold, massive snowstorms, avalanches and starvation, the latter motivating them to eat the dead. In “Society of the Snow,” J.A. Bayona wanted to honor the tragedy's victims and survivors, including him. It's bleak indeed, with a spirit of love and camaraderie.
“THE COLOR PURPLE”
1 nomination. Digital purchase or rental. In theaters.
It was a book “The Color Purple” has Barrino back. It's a musical, too, adapted from the stage version, and it's directed by Blitz Bazawule. He squeezes the strength of Black women out of his harrowing, maximalist film. Colman Domingo is Mister, Halle Bailey is Nettie, with Taraji P. Henson and Danielle Brooks helping the story along amid all the singing and dazzle. Available for pay at iTunes, Prime Video, Apple TV and elsewhere.
“SPIDER-MAN: ACROSS THE SPIDER-VERSE”
1 nomination. Digital purchase or rental. Streams on Netflix. In theaters.
Welcome to an animated high-octane comic-book sequel that manages to work. In “Spider Man: Across the Spider-Verse,” Miles Morales (voiced by Shameik Moore) is a 15-year-old better able to deal with his crime-fighting powers. Spider-Gwen is voiced by Hailee Steinfeld. By sequel, we mean the first half of the first sequel to “Spider Man: Into the Spider-Verse.” There's your cliffhanger alert. Available for pay at Apple TV, Prime Video, Google Play, YouTube, Vudu and elsewhere.
1 nomination. In theaters. Streams on Netflix.
The breakout star of Todd Haynes' tense “May December” is Charles Melton of Reggie fame on TV's “Riverdale.” He's the May to Julianne Moore's December, with a whole lot of Natalie Portman thrown in. Inspired by the Mary Kay Letourneau case, Moore plays a ripped-from-the-headlines woman who went to prison over an affair with a seventh-grader she later marries. Portman's character comes for a visit as she studies how to play Moore in a movie. Things, as they say, fall apart. Although the film's performances weren't honored with nominations, the screenplay for “May December” was.
1 nomination. Streams on Netflix.
Who engineered the 1963 March on Washington? Bayard Rustin, somebody lots of people knew nothing about before Colman Domingo came along in George C. Wolfe's “Rustin.” With verve, Domingo digs into the experience of a Black gay man in the racist and homophobic 1960s. Cameos abound: Jeffrey Wright, Adrienne Warren, Kevin Mambo, Audra McDonald, Chris Rock, Glynn Turman. Produced by former President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama's Higher Ground. Obama awarded Rustin a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom.
“20 DAYS IN MARIUPOL”
1 nomination. Digital purchase or rental. In North America it's streamable on the Frontline page at pbs.org, the PBS app and at Frontline on YouTube.
A joint production by The Associated Press and PBS' “Frontline,” the documentary “20 Days in Mariupol” has been met with critical acclaim and an audience award at the Sundance Film Festival. AP journalist Mstyslav Chernov directed the movie from 30 hours of footage shot in Mariupol in the opening days of the Ukraine war. Chernov and AP colleagues Evgeniy Maloletka, a photographer, and producer Vasilisa Stepanenko were the last international journalists in the city before escaping.
Available for pay at Prime Video, Google Play, Vudu and elsewhere. After screenings in dozens of cities, “20 Days in Mariupol” airs on PBS stations in the U.S. beginning Tuesday.
“THE BOY AND THE HERON”
1 nomination. In theaters.
Dreamy and enthralling, director Hayao Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli do it again. Well. The beautifully animated Japanese fantasy “The Boy and the Heron” has young Mahito late in World War II mourning the death of his mother and encountering a talking and ornery gray heron he can't get rid of. And there's a very important tower.