Oscar Run – (noun) The act of viewing all movies nominated for an Academy Award before the winners are announced. Ex: “There’s only two days left in my Oscar Run, but I still have 10 movies to go.”

I met my husband 10 years ago, and every year since has included an Oscar Run. I blame this on the fact that we met in February: baseball and football seasons were over, we both love movies, the nominees were just announced…hey, let’s go see them all! Whaddya say?

Now it’s like a sickness. We see them ALL. Not just Best Picture nominees, or the major acting awards. All the foreign films. All the animated films. All the nominated films, for every category. (Okay, not the shorts. They’re just too hard to find. If this offends you as a maker of short films, please put your masterpiece on YouTube and I’ll watch it.)

As a result, we’ve seen some great films, many of which we never would have thought to see if they weren’t nominated. Last year the Israeli film Beaufort was in town for one day during the Jewish Film Festival here in San Diego, and tickets cost $20. It was nominated for Best Foreign Film. Yep, we went.

This year, the Oscar nominees will be announced on January 22, and the awards will be given on February 22. That gives us exactly a month to cram in all that cinematic goodness. But what if you want to start now? Simple. You cheat with the Golden Globes.

The Globe nominees are usually an excellent predictor of what movies will be nominated for an Academy Award, and the winners give a good idea of which will lead the pack.

As such, here is my pre-nomination list of movies I need to see:

  • The Reader*
  • Revolutionary Road*
  • Happy-Go-Lucky*
  • Vicky Cristina Barcelona*
  • The Wrestler*
  • Waltz with Bashir*
  • The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Frost/Nixon
  • Rachel Getting Married
  • Doubt
  • I’ve Loved You Too Long
  • Pineapple Express
  • Last Chance Harvey
  • Kung-Fu Panda
  • Gomorrah
  • The Baader Meinhof Complex
  • Everlasting Moments
  • Defiance
  • Gran Torino
  • Cadillac Records

* = Golden Globe winner

The following are Golden Globe nominees (or *winners) that I’ve already seen:

  • Bolt
  • Burn After Reading
  • Changeling
  • The Duchess
  • The Dark Knight*
  • In Bruges*
  • Mamma Mia
  • Milk
  • Slumdog Millionaire*
  • Tropic Thunder
  • Wall-E*
  • Let the Right One In (not actually a GG nominee, but a fine movie which I hope gets a nomination)

That’s 20 movies to see in a little over a month. Not too bad, actually. I remember years when there were more movies than there were days to see them in.

Watch this space for mini-reviews of the movies as I see them.