Yesterday’s Oscar nominations honored some of the best in cinema, while also surprising many with unexpected noms for talent such as Keira Knightly (The Imitation Game) and Mark Ruffalo (Foxcatcher). The Academy Award also disappointed many by snubbing favorites The Lego Movieand Selma, causing a stir of “What the fucks” from angry mobs of cinephiles. Film critic rants and op-eds will bombard your Twitter feed for days to come, so why not take a break from all of this controversy shenanigans, and relax by streaming movies starring Oscar nominated actors/actresses on Netflix. We’ve picked out the most intriguing (and interesting) roles played out by this year’s Oscar royalty, so figure out for yourself who’s the most versatile of the bunch.
THE IMMIGRANT (2013)
Starring Marion Cotillard, nominated for actress in a leading role for her role in Two Days, One Night
French actress Marion Cotillard is no stranger to the Academy Awards, having taken home the 2007 Oscar for best actress for her role as legendary French singer Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose. Cotillard’s career only went up from there, landing roles in blockbuster hits including Inceptionand The Dark Knight Rises. 2013’s The Immigrant was also a major accomplishment on the actress’ behalf who portrayed Polish immigrant Ewa who tries surviving New York while also searching for her sister Magda (Angela Sarafyan). The Immigrant recieved critical acclaim, including a nomination for the Palm d’Or at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, not too shabby for this French beauty.
MY WEEK WITH MARILYN (2011)
Starring Eddie Redmayne, nominated for actor in a leading role for his role in The Theory of Everything
Redmayne’s Stephen Hawking performance was very spot on; he got the mannerisms and intellectual stubbornness right, which completely contrasts Redmayne’s 2011 role in My Week with Marilyn. Redmayne perfectly plays the puppy dog-like Colin Clark who falls in love with Marilyn Monroe (Michelle Williams) and ultimately gets his heart broken like many men before him. Based on the true story of Colin’s fling with Monroe during the filming of The Prince and the Showgirl, My Week with Marilyn is a modern twist on the classic assistant-falls-in-love-with-movie-star storyline.
MR. MOM (1983)
Starring Michael Keaton, nominated for actor in a leading role for his role in Birdman
Keaton’s history of superhero macho roles (or former ones like Birdman), came after this 80s comedy about a dad/husband who loses his job and takes up the difficult role of stay-at-home dad. Socializing with the house wives on his block, Jack Butler learns the ropes of successful housekeeping while simultaneously trying to fight off the advances of house wives who are fonding over his now “sensitive side,” and overlooking his marriage to Caroline Butler (Teri Garr).
DEVIL’S KNOT (2013)
Starring Reese Witherspoon, nominated for actress in a leading role for her role in Wild
Reese Witherspoon had to grow an extra layer of skin to portray risk taking divorcee Cheryl Strayed in Wild, but Cheryl isn’t the only strong female character Witherspoon has portrayed. In 2013’s Devil Knot, Witherspoon plays mother Pamela Hobbs in this biopic of the chilling true story of the West Memphis Three. Hobbs must cope with the murder of her son, while trying to fight for the innocence of the three teenage boys convicted of murdering him. Admittedly, not the best of the many films and documentaries about the West Memphis Three, but still a great performance from Witherspoon, nonetheless.
THE MUSIC NEVER STOPPED (2011)
Starring J.K. Simmons, nominated for actor in a supporting role for his role in Whiplash
Based on the essay The Last Hippie, J.K. Simmons plays a music lover (but not a crazy one like Whiplash’s Terence Fletcher) that is, well, “the last hippie.” Henry (Simmons) embarks on a father-son road trip with son Gabriel (Lou Taylor Pucci) who is suffering from a brain tumor. When these great family moments aren’t remembered by Gabriel who can’t form new memories, Henry tries to reach out to his son through the power of music. Whereas Whiplash’s Terrence uses scare tactics to motivate his music students, Henry in The Music Never Stopped uses music to get closer to his son.
FLIRTING WITH DISASTER (1996)
Starring Patricia Arquette, nominated for actress in a supporting role for her role in Boyhood
Arquette’s role as the mother in Boyhood celebrates the selflessness and love a mother can give to her children, overcoming hardships while remaining untied as a family. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for Arquette’s character Nancy in Flirting with Disaster, who is also a mother and wife, but just not a really good one (wife at least). As the title entails, Nancy certainly flirts with disaster when she becomes involved with a gay Tony during her husband Mel’s (Ben Stiller) quest to find his biological parents. Stiller doesn’t look too good in this film either; the two cause a bit of commotion in their marriage we hope they’re newborn won’t have to relive in the future.