Last night we looked back at the various science flicks over the years that have been nominated for, but failed to win, the Academy Award for Best Picture. Hell, in 2009 science fiction accounted for two of the Best Picture nominees — James Cameron’s Avatar and Neill Blomkamp’s District 9. They both lost out to The Hurt Locker, but it was still a noteworthy milestone. Last night it was a sci-fi two-fer once again, with both Gravity and Her up for the big award. Once again they both lost out for Best Picture, but let’s face it: Oscar got it right this time.
There was little question that Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity was going to clean up when it came to awards honoring technical achievements, and indeed it pretty much swept those. Gravity took home trophies for Cinematography, Film Editing, Original Score, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, and Visual Effects. Cuaron himself also won the Best Director award. All of those were well deserved, because Gravity was unquestionably a stunning technical achievement. There were plenty of scientific nits to be picked, but on the big screen — especially if you saw it in IMAX and/or 3D — it was a dizzying, jaw-dropping thrill ride that was well worth the higher ticket price.