Fruitvale Station Just Got Robbed

Scott Lucas | January 16, 2014 | Lifestyle Story City Life

Oscar nominations were released this morning, and the Bay Area was robbed.

Let's get the basic facts out of the way: The leading amounts of nominations went to Gravity and American Hustle, at ten each, followed by 12 Years a Slave at nine and Captain Phillips, Dallas Buyers Club and Nebraska at six apiece. But it's what's not on the list that may be more surprising.

Fruitvale Station, the debut effort from writer-director Ryan Coogler, which starred Michael B. Jordan as Oscar Grant on the last day on his life, received zero nominations from the Academy. That's somewhat of a surprise. After all, not only did we go wild over the film, but so too did plenty of other critics. The film also picked up two awards at the Sundance Film Festival, which was seen as a barometer for larger success. Though Coogler's film may have been hurt by its limited box office appeal, its $16 million gross was in line with the takes for Best Picture nominees Nebraska ($8 million) and Dallas Buyers Club ($17 million). Also not nominated: actor Michael B. Jordan, who portrayed Oscar Grant in a searingly authentic performance.

Perhaps less authentic (how many Sunset neighborhood guys do you know with Long Island accents?), but no less Bay-Area focused was Woody Allen's latest stop in his around the world movie-making voyage. His Blue Jasmine earned the writer-director three nominations: Cate Blanchett for Best Actress, Sally Hawkins for Best Supporting Actress, and Best Original Screenplay for Allen. By comparison, his 2011 Midnight in Paris received four nominations and one win.

If it's any consolation, Her, a portrait of a man who falls romantically in love with a computer program, is up for five nominations, including for Best Picture. If that plot doesn't describe the Bay Area in 2013, we don't know what does.

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