Each year, Oscar time seems to roll around before we know it—and when it comes to catching up, everyone is short on time. From the list of nominees, here are eight slightly below-the-radar choices you may have missed, each one worthy of your precious viewing hours.
International Feature: The Quiet Girl
Set in 1980s rural Ireland, Colm Bairead’s understated drama about a withdrawn young girl (Catherine Clinch) who blossoms when she’s sent off to spend a summer with kindly relatives is one of this year’s gently glittering gems.
The Quiet Girl is currently playing in theaters.
Animated Feature: Marcel the Shell With Shoes On
Dean Fleischer-Camp uses the story of a lonely mollusk named Marcel (voiced by Jenny Slate) to fashion a gentle meditation on the importance of community and the ways in which loss can sometimes open a door to unexpected joy.
Stream now on Showtime.
Documentary Feature: All the Beauty and the Bloodshed
Laura Poitras’ extraordinary documentary follows artist and activist Nan Goldin in her tireless—and ultimately successful—fight to bring down the Sackler family, longtime patrons of the arts whose fortunes were amassed largely from highly addictive opioids.
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed comes to HBO on March 19.
Supporting Actor: Brian Tyree Henry
In Lila Neugebauer’s Causeway, Henry plays an auto mechanic who befriends a recovering veteran (Jennifer Lawrence) even as he struggles with his own repressed trauma. This is an incandescent performance, muscular and delicate at once.
Stream Causeway on Apple TV+.
Read more: The 10 Best Movie Performances of 2022
Supporting Actress: Hong Chau
Terrific performances can make a not-so-great movie more than worthwhile. Hong Chau’s superb turn in Darren Aronofsky’s well-intentioned but drab drama The Whale is a case in point: she brings spiky empathy to her role as a frustrated caregiver doing her best to save the life of Brendan Fraser’s reclusive, morbidly obese English professor.
Costume Design: Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris
This jubilant story of a cleaning lady in 1950s London (Lesley Manville) who falls in love with, and saves up to buy, a Dior original is pure pleasure. The dreamy—and historically accurate—costumes by Jenny Beavan are the crowning touch.
Actor: Paul Mescal
In Scottish director Charlotte Wells’ quietly stunning debut feature Aftersun, Mescal gives a performance of shattering beauty as a young father trying to corral his own demons during a holiday getaway with his preteen daughter (Frankie Corio).
International Feature: EO
At 84, Polish filmmaker Jerzy Skolimowski has become something of an overnight sensation with EO, a tender but unsparing parable about the cruelty and kindness of humans as seen through the eyes of a onetime circus donkey.
Rent EO on Apple TV+.
- Who Will Be TIME's Person of the Year 2023?
- Why Cell Phone Reception Is Getting Worse
- The Dirty Secrets of Alternative Plastics
- Column: It's Time to Scrap the Abraham Accords
- Israeli Family Celebrates Release of Hostage Grandmother
- In a New Movie, Beyoncé Finds Freedom
- The Top 100 Photos of 2023
- Want Weekly Recs on What to Watch, Read, and More? Sign Up for Worth Your Time