The 2009 Academy Award Nominations

As announced this morning here are the nominations for the 2009 Academy Awards (review links appear after a specific film's first mention):

Best Picture:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (review)

Frost/Nixon (review)

Milk (review)

The Reader (review)

Slumdog Millionaire (review)

Best Actor in a Lead Role:

Richard Jenkins - The Visitor

Frank Langella - Frost/Nixon

Sean Penn - Milk

Brad Pitt - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Mickey Rourke - The Wrestler (review)

Best Actress in a Lead Role:

Anne Hathaway - Rachel Getting Married (review)

Angelina Jolie - Changeling (review)

Melissa Leo - Frozen River

Meryl Streep - Doubt (review)

Kate Winslet - The Reader

Best Actor in a Supporting Role:

Josh Brolin - Milk

Robert Downey Jr. - Tropic Thunder

Philip Seymour Hoffman - Doubt

Heath Ledger - The Dark Knight (review)

Michael Shannon - Revolutionary Road (review)

Best Actress in a Supporting Role:

Amy Adams - Doubt

Penelope Cruz - Vicky Cristina Barcelona (review)

Viola Davis - Doubt

Taraji P. Henson - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Marisa Tomei - The Wrestler

Best Director:

David Fincher - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Ron Howard - Frost/Nixon

Gus Van Sant - Milk

Stephen Daldry - The Reader

Danny Boyle - Slumdog Millionaire

Best Foreign Film:

The Baader Meinhof Complex - Germany

The Class - France

Departures - Japan

Revanche - Austria

Waltz With Bashir - Israel

Best Screenplay from Adapted Material:

Eric Roth and Robin Swicord - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

John Patrick Shanley - Doubt

Peter Morgan - Frost/Nixon

David Hare - The Reader

Simon Beaufoy - Slumdog Millionaire

Best Original Screenplay:

Courtney Hunt - Frozen River

Mike Leigh - Happy-Go-Lucky

Martin McDonagh - In Bruges

Dustin Lance Black - Milk

Andrew Stanton Jim Reardon and Pete Docter - WALL-E (review)

Best Animated Feature Film:

Bolt (review)

Kung Fu Panda (review)


Best Achievement in Art Direction:


The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Dark Knight

The Duchess (review)

Revolutionary Road

Best Achievement in Cinematography:


The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Dark Knight

The Reader

Slumdog Millionaire

Best Achievement in Sound Mixing:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Dark Knight

Slumdog Millionaire


Wanted (review)

Best Achievement in Sound Editing:

The Dark Knight

Iron Man (review)

Slumdog Millionaire



Best Original Score:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - Alexandre Desplat

Defiance - James Newton Howard

Milk - Danny Elfman

Slumdog Millionaire - A.R. Rahman

WALL-E - Thomas Newman

Best Original Song:

"Down to Earth" from WALL-E - Peter Gabriel and Thomas Newman

"Jai Ho" from Slumdog Millionaire - A.R. Rahman and Gulzar

"O Saya" from Slumdog Millionaire - A.R. Rahman and Maya Arulpragasam

Best Achievement in Costume:

Australia (review)

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Duchess


Revolutionary Road

Best Documentary Feature:

The Betrayal (Nerakhoon)

Encounters at the End of the World (review)

The Garden

Man on Wire (review)

Trouble the Water (review)

Best Documentary (Short Subject):

The Conscience of Nhem En

The Final Inch

Smile Pinki

The Witness — From the Balcony of Room 306

Best Achievement in Film Editing:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Dark Knight



Slumdog Millionaire

Best Achievement in Makeup:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Dark Knight

Hellboy II: The Golden Army (review)

Best Animated Short Film:

La Maison en Petits Cubes

Lavatory — Lovestory



This Way Up

Best Live Action Short Film:

Auf der Strecke (On the Line)

Manon on the Asphalt

New Boy

The Pig

Spielzeugland (Toyland)

Best Achievement in Visual Effects:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

The Dark Knight

Iron Man





The Dance of Male Forms in Denis' 'Beau travail'

Claire Denis' masterwork of cinematic poetry, Beau travail, is a cinematic ballet that tracks through tone and style the sublimation of violent masculine complexes into the silent convulsions of male angst.


The Cradle's 'Laughing in My Sleep' Is an Off-kilter Reflection of Musical Curiosity

The Cradle's Paco Cathcart has curated a thoughtfully multifarious album. Laughing in My Sleep is an impressive collection of 21 tracks, each unapologetic in their rejection of expectations.


Tobin Sprout Goes Americana on 'Empty Horses'

During the heyday of Guided By Voices, Tobin Sprout wasn't afraid to be absurd amongst all that fuzz. Sprout's new album, Empty Horses, is not the Tobin Sprout we know.


'All In: The Fight for Democracy' Spotlights America's Current Voting Restrictions as Jim Crow 2.0

Featuring an ebullient and combative Stacey Abrams, All In: The Fight for Democracy shows just how determined anti-democratic forces are to ensure that certain groups don't get access to the voting booth.


'Transgender Street Legend Vol. 2' Finds Left at London "At My Peak and Still Rising"

"[Pandemic lockdown] has been a detriment to many people's mental health," notes Nat Puff (aka Left at London) around her incendiary, politically-charged new album, "but goddamn it if I haven't been making some bops here and there!"


Daniel Romano's 'How Ill Thy World Is Ordered' Is His Ninth LP of 2020 and It's Glorious

No, this is isn't a typo. Daniel Romano's How Ill Thy World Is Ordered is his ninth full-length release of 2020, and it's a genre-busting thrill ride.


The Masonic Travelers Offer Stirring Rendition of "Rock My Soul" (premiere)

The Last Shall Be First: the JCR Records Story, Volume 1 captures the sacred soul of Memphis in the 1970s and features a wide range of largely forgotten artists waiting to be rediscovered. Hear the Masonic Travelers "Rock My Soul".


GLVES Creates Mesmerizing Dark Folktronica on "Heal Me"

Australian First Nations singer-songwriter GLVES creates dense, deep, and darkish electropop that mesmerizes with its blend of electronics and native sounds on "Heal Me".


Otis Junior and Dr. Dundiff Tells Us "When It's Sweet" It's So Sweet

Neo-soul singer Otis Junior teams with fellow Kentuckian Dr. Dundiff and his hip-hop beats for the silky, groovy "When It's Sweet".


Lars and the Magic Mountain's "Invincible" Is a Shoegazey, Dreamy Delight (premiere)

Dutch space pop/psychedelic band Lars and the Magic Mountain share the dreamy and gorgeous "Invincible".


What 'O Brother, Where Art Thou?' Gets Right (and Wrong) About America

Telling the tale of the cyclops through the lens of high and low culture, in O'Brother, Where Art Thou? the Coens hammer home a fatalistic criticism about the ways that commerce, violence, and cosmetic Christianity prevail in American society .


Alexander Wren's "The Earth Is Flat" Wryly Looks at Lost Love (premiere + interview)

Singer-songwriter Alexander Wren's "The Earth Is Flat" is a less a flat-earther's anthem and more a wry examination of heartache.


Big Little Lions' "Distant Air" Is a Powerful Folk-Anthem (premiere)

Folk-pop's Big Little Lions create a powerful anthem with "Distant Air", a song full of sophisticated pop hooks, smart dynamics, and killer choruses.


The Flat Five Invite You to "Look at the Birdy" (premiere)

Chicago's the Flat Five deliver an exciting new single that exemplifies what some have called "twisted sunshine vocal pop".


Brian Bromberg Pays Tribute to Hendrix With "Jimi" (premiere + interview)

Bass giant Brian Bromberg revisits his 2012 tribute to Jimi Hendrix 50 years after his passing, and reflects on the impact Hendrix's music has had on generations.

Jedd Beaudoin

Shirley Collins' ​'Heart's Ease'​ Affirms Her Musical Prowess

Shirley Collins' Heart's Ease makes it apparent these songs do not belong to her as they are ownerless. Collins is the conveyor of their power while ensuring the music maintains cultural importance.


Ignorance, Fear, and Democracy in America

Anti-intellectualism in America is, sadly, older than the nation itself. A new collection of Richard Hofstadter's work from Library of America traces the history of ideas and cultural currents in American society and politics.

By the Book

Democratizing Our Data: A Manifesto (excerpt)

Just as big tech leads world in data for profit, the US government can produce data for the public good, sans the bureaucracy. This excerpt of Julia Lane's Democratizing Our Data: A Manifesto will whet your appetite for disruptive change in data management, which is critical for democracy's survival.

Julia Lane

Collapse Expand Reviews

Collapse Expand Features

PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.