The 2021 Academy Awards are finally here! Ahead of the Oscars on April 25, join Wonderwall.com as we take a look at this year’s crop of nominated films — and let you know where you can stream them… starting with best picture, best original screenplay and best original score nominee “Minari.” Directed by Lee Isaac Chung — who also earned a nod for best director this year — “Minari” tells the story of a Korean American family in search of the American dream. After relocating to Arkansas, Jacob, Monica, David and Soonja must learn how to navigate life in their new environment. For his performance in the drama, Steven Yeun (pictured) earned a nomination for best actor. Yung-jung Youn also received a nod for best supporting actress. Stream it now on Amazon Prime, Google Play, Vudu, Redbox or Direct TV. Keep reading for more…
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“Judas and the Black Messiah” on YouTube, Apple TV & Amazon Prime Video
Shaka King’s “Judas and the Black Messiah” follows FBI informant William O’Neal (LaKeith Stanfield) as he infiltrates the Black Panther Party in Chicago in the late ’60s as a means of taking down the party’s chairman, Fred Hampton (Daniel Kaluuya). In addition to earning 2021 Academy Award nods for best picture, best original screenplay, best original song and best cinematography, for their co-starring roles in the biopic, LaKeith and Daniel earned nominations for best supporting actor.
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“Promising Young Woman” on YouTube, Apple TV & Amazon Prime Video
“Promising Young Woman” — which received Academy Award nominations for best picture, best original screenplay and best film editing — follows Cassandra “Cassie” Thomas who, after a traumatizing sexual assault, takes it upon herself to exact revenge against those she feels are deserving of it. For her starring portrayal, Carey Mulligan received a nomination for best actress. Filmmaker Emerald Fennell also earned a nod for best director.
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“Sound of Metal” on Amazon Prime Video
Starring Riz Ahmed — who earned a best actor nomination for his performance — “Sound of Metal” tells the story of Ruben Stone, a heavy metal drummer whose life is turned upside down when he progressively loses his ability to hear. The Darius Marder-directed film racked up an impressive six nominations including best picture, best supporting actor for Paul Raci and best original screenplay.
“The Trial of the Chicago 7” on Netflix
With an ensemble cast that includes Sacha Baron Cohen (pictured), Michael Keaton, Frank Langella, John Carroll Lynch and Eddie Redmayne, “The Trial of the Chicago 7” chronicles the real-life 1969 trial against seven men charged with inciting the Chicago-based counterculture protests at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Aaron Sorkin earned a nod for best original screenplay. The legal drama also received six nominations in total including best picture, best supporting actor for Sacha and best original song.
“Nomadland” on Hulu, YouTube & Amazon Prime Video
Written and directed by Chloé Zhao — who received 2021 Academy Award nominations for best director, best adapted screenplay and best film editing — best picture nominee “Nomadland” stars Frances McDormand as a 60-something woman who, after losing her possessions in the Great Recession, travels throughout the Western United States as a present-day nomad. For her starring performance in the drama, Frances received a best actress nod. “Nomadland” is also up for best cinematography.
“Mank” on Netflix
As for the most nominated film of the 2021 Oscars? That would be “Mank,” which received a whopping 10 nominations. Directed by David Fincher, who earned a nod for best director, the drama takes a candid look at Hollywood’s Golden Age by way of troubled screenwriter Herman J. Mankiewicz amidst his desperate attempt to finish writing “Citizen Kane.” The 2021 best picture nominee scored Gary Oldman a nod for best actor and Amanda Seyfried a nod for best supporting actress.
“One Night in Miami” on Amazon Prime Video
“One Night in Miami” — which marks 2019 best supporting actress Oscar winner Regina King’s directorial debut — dramatizes a fictional meeting between Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali, Sam Cooke and James Brown in February 1964 following boxer Muhammad’s win against Sonny Liston. Leslie Odom Jr., who portrays Sam in the drama, received nominations for best supporting actor and best original song. The film also earned a nod for best adapted screenplay.
“My Octopus Teacher” on Netflix
Best documentary feature nominee “My Octopus Teacher” chronicles filmmaker Craig Foster’s year spent building a relationship with an octopus in a coastal kelp forest in South Africa. The film, which debuted in 2020, has already won accolades including a BAFTA Award for best documentary and a Producers Guild of America Award for best documentary motion picture.
“Soul” on Disney+
Disney’s “Soul” — which is up for best animated feature, best original score and best sound — follows uninspired middle-school band teacher Joe Gardner (Jamie Foxx), whose passion for jazz has progressively dwindled over the years. After finding himself in an alternate realm by happenstance, however, he embarks on a journey with an equally lost soul who helps him see the meaning of life in a completely new light.
“The Father” on Amazon Prime Video
Based on Florian Zeller’s 2012 play, “The Father” tells the story of a balky old man (Anthony Hopkins) whose understanding of reality loosens as he falls deeper into dementia. The drama, which also marks Florian’s directorial debut, earned six nods overall at the 2021 Academy Awards including best picture, best actor for Anthony, best supporting actress for Olivia Colman and best adapted screenplay.
“Crip Camp” on Netflix
James Lebrecht and Nicole Newnham’s “Crip Camp” — which received a 2021 Oscar nomination for best documentary feature — spotlights the Catskills summer camp for disabled folx and the ways in which it empowered the disability rights movement in the ’70s. Barack Obama and Michelle Obama serve as executive producers of the moving documentary.
“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” on Netflix
Directed by George C. Wolfe, “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” dramatizes a tumultuous recording session involving acclaimed blues singer Ma Rainey and her band in Chicago in the late ’20s. For their performances, Viola Davis and the late Chadwick Boseman received nods for best actress and best actor, respectively. The drama also received 2021 Oscar nominations for best costume design, best makeup and hairstyling and best production design.
“The United States vs. Billie Holiday” on Hulu
Starring Andra Day as the titular singer — who received a 2021 Oscar nomination for best actress for her performance — “The United States vs. Billie Holiday” tells the real-life story of a sting operation launched against the influential jazz artist. The biopic, which was based on Johann Hari’s 2015 book “Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs,” also stars Trevante Rhodes, Natasha Lyonne and Garrett Hedlund.
“Onward” on Disney+
What would you do if you were given the opportunity to spend one more day with someone you love? Disney’s “Onward” — which is up for best animated feature, best original score and best sound — explores this reality. Tom Holland and Chris Pratt voice Ian and Barley Lightfoot, elf brothers who set out on a magical journey filled with twists, turns, ups, downs and more as they seek to spent one more day with their late father.
“Pieces of a Woman” on Netflix
After enduring at-home birth that ends in tragedy, a woman who’s since isolated herself from those she’s close to struggles to overcome the emotionally devastating event. Vanessa Kirby, who stars as Martha Weiss, earned a 2021 Oscar nod for best actress.
“Hillbilly Elegy” on Netflix
Starring Glenn Close, whose performance garnered her a nomination for best supporting actress, and Amy Adams, Ron Howard’s “Hillbilly Elegy” tells the story of a Yale Law School student with family roots in rural Appalachia who’s called back to his Ohio hometown to deal with a tragic event. The flick also earned a nod for best makeup and hairstyling.
“Greyhound” on Apple TV
“Greyhound” — which was written by and stars Tom Hanks — follows a U.S. Navy commander who’s tasked with leading a convoy being pursued by German U-boats across the Atlantic Ocean. The film, which dramatizes the Battle of the Atlantic, is up for best sound at the 2021 Oscars.
“Mulan” on Disney+
Disney’s live-action adaptation of the beloved animated film “Mulan” follows the titular young woman who joins the Imperial Army disguised as a man. In the process, she ends up heroically fighting for her country and saving innocent people from dangerous invaders. “Mulan” earned two nominations at this year’s Academy Awards: best costume design and best visual effects.
“Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga” on Netflix
“Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga,” a truly hilariously film starring Rachel McAdams and Will Ferrell, tells the outrageous tale of two aspiring singers who compete in a worldwide music contest in hopes of turning their dreams into reality. The musical comedy earned a nod for best original song for “Húsavík.”
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