The 2015 Oscar Nomination Snubs, Ranked in Order of Outrage

Breathe. Breathe. It'll be all right. Yes, this happens every year: the Academy Awards, in all their infinite wisdom, fail to nominate some of the most deserving films, directors, writers, and performers of the prior 12 months. It appears that 2015 has ushered no change into the organization's practice, as some parties of indubitable merit have been left off the list with egregious insult. Here are the 2015 Oscar snubs.

The only question here is: Which one are you most angry about?

Image: Paramount Pictures

by Michael Arbeiter

Best Actress: Jennifer Aniston, 'Cake'

Here’s one that we all sort of just wanted to happen for the kitsch of it. Nobody was really pulling for Cake based on merit.

Outrage level: Like your love life, D.O.A.

Image: Cinelou Releasing

Best Actor: Timothy Spall, 'Mr. Turner'

Though Mr. Turner had a fraction of the reach of some of the movies nominated for the Best Actor category, Timothy Spall’s name was thrown around as a reliable plausibility since Oscar talks began.

Outrage level: We’ll get over it by lunch.

Image: Entertainment One

Best Actress: Amy Adams, 'Big Eyes'

Julianne Moore’s Best Actress win has been all but cemented since the first screenings of her terrific performance in Still Alice. That said, it’s a bit of a shock that Amy Adams didn’t even land a nomination for Big Eyes, especially after winning the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy/Musical.

Outrage level: Eh, the disappointment is rooted more in a general pro-Adams agenda than a love for this performance.

Image: The Weinstein Company

Best Animated Feature: 'The Lego Movie'

Although not necessarily the most “outrageous,” The Lego Movie’s absence from the Best Animated Feature category is probably the most surprising snub on the list.

Outrage level: How can I be too peeved when The Tale of Princess Kaguya got nominated?

Image: Warner Bros.

Best Documentary: 'The Overnighters'

This socioeconomically inclined doc might not have received widespread publicity, but it made a ton of end-of-year lists and was surely considered a gunner for the Best Doc category.

Outrage level: The grumblings are getting louder.

Image: Drafthouse Films

Best Actor: Jake Gyllenhall, 'Nightcrawler'

Critics had touted Jake Gyllenhaal’s Nightcrawler performance as the stuff of Taxi Driver-esque majesty. Robert De Niro might have lost the Oscar to Peter Finch, but at least he got as far as a nomination.

Outrage level: To the “Oh, come on!” degree.

Image: Open Road Films

Best Documentary: 'Life Itself'

Here’s the real documentary snub to get hung up on: the marvelously moving Life Itself, a portrait of not only a man (Roger Ebert), but of the industry he spawned.

Outrage level: Two thumbs down!

Image: Magnolia Pictures

Across the Board: 'Gone Girl'

The Best Director category might have been too tight for a David Fincher nomination this year, but either one of the two vacant Best Picture slots might have offered a home to his excellent Gone Girl. (Or, you know, if nine would have been too tight, then American Sniper might have been ousted to make room…).

But more egregious than the Best Picture absence is the lack of love for Gillian Flynn’s Adapted Screenplay, especially when you consider the all-male lineup of this year’s recognized writers.

Outrage level: Madder than a framed-for-murder Ben Affleck.

Image: 20th Century Fox

Best Actor: David Oyelowo, 'Selma'

Let’s get down to brass tacks here. The Best Actor category had plenty of room for the magnificent David Oyelowo. Steve Carell is in truth a supporting player in Foxcatcher; Bradley Cooper is churning out second-rate material in the third-rate American Sniper. So why couldn’t Oyelowo make the cut? It all plays into the Academy’s obstinate aversion to Ava DuVernay’s movie on the whole…

Outrage level: Seething.

Image: Paramount Pictures

Best Director: Ava DuVernay, 'Selma'

The main source of dread leading up to this year’s Oscar nomination announcements was the distinct possibility that Selma would walk away empty handed, due either to the pervasive “no screeners” excuse or some malarky about historical inaccuracy.

While the film did land a Best Picture nomination, its most egregious of the many snubs we all feared came in the Best Director category, which offered no love for Ava DuVernay. On top of the fact that DuVernay would have been the first black woman to receive a Best Director nod (adding a bit of diversity to this year’s monochromatic slate), her filmmaking talents vis a vis Selma far outweigh those of two thirds of this year’s nominated helmers.

Outrage level: Furious.

Image: Paramount Pictures