Where to stream the 2020 Oscar nominees

The 2020 Oscar nominations are finally out, and for those of us playing catch-up, there are plenty of films to keep us occupied at home.

Although some of the biggest films in the Oscar race like Little Women, 1917, Ford v Ferrari, Uncut Gems, and Bombshell are only viewable in theaters, there are just as many to rent, buy, and stream. This year, Netflix has an especially large presence between original films such as The Irishman, Marriage Story, The Two Popes, and the many animated films and documentaries it’s released, but Amazon, Hulu, and HBO are also home to several nominees.

And with several major contenders having been released earlier in the year, working your way through the nominees to help you win your office pool is only a click away.

Where to stream the 2020 Oscar-nominated films

Ad Astra

Rent/Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: sound mixing

It’s pleasantly jarring to see a star like Brad Pitt give such a complex, intense performance in the context of a big-budget space thriller instead of a traditional drama. But as I mentioned before, Ad Astra is otherwise conventional. It’s a story about a troubled hero (a white man, naturally) who goes on a dangerous quest to save the world. His estranged wife (Liv Tyler) is as one-dimensional as they come, and the film’s other female character (Ruth Negga) primarily exists to share some necessary exposition. So while Ad Astra is more cerebral and thematically complex than, say, Avengers: Endgame, I’m wary of labeling it unique or groundbreaking. —Gavia Baker-Whitelaw

American Factory

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: documentary feature

Years after a GM plant closed in Moraine, Ohio, a Chinese billionaire opened a new plant and hired American and Chinese workers to operate it. With the wide-ranging amount of access, it reveals employees who’ve become closer, the American workers’ efforts to unionize, and just how far the board will go to stop those efforts as two countries’ work values clash. —Michelle Jaworski

Avengers: Endgame

Streaming: Disney+

Nominations: visual effects

Yes, Avengers: Endgame delivered the epic conclusion and love letter to the MCU that we long expected it would, and it’s thrilling to watch. But with the time to tell its story, it spends ample time with its characters and provides an even more emotionally resonant ending. It’s a film that’s aware of the weight it carries, and even if the architecture of some parts feels transparent, there’s enough going for it that it’s much easier to forgive some of its shortcomings. —MJ

Breakthrough

Streaming: HBO Go/HBO Now

Nominations: original song (“I’m Left Standing With You”)

Brotherhood

Streaming: Vimeo

Nominations: live-action short film

The Cave (Jan. 14)

Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: documentary feature

The Edge of Democracy

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: documentary feature

Brazilian filmmaker Petra Costa shares what she perceives as the rise and fall of democracy in Brazil. She documents the nation’s political landscape for the past three decades through both the lens of her personal experience as a working-class citizen and footage of the country’s leaders. In a little over two hours, Costa attempts to deconstruct the nation’s complicated relationship with democracy and unfolds a cautionary tale that’s relatable for any nation struggling with political division and corruption. —Tess Cagle

For Sama

Streaming: PBS; YouTube

Nominations: documentary feature

Hair Love

Streaming: YouTube

Nominations: animated short film

Harriet (Jan. 14)

Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: leading actress (Cynthia Erivo), original song (“Stand Up”)

Honeyland

Streaming: Hulu

Nominations: documentary feature, international film (Macedonia)

How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World

Streaming: Hulu

Nominations: animated feature film

I Lost My Body

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: animated feature film

The Irishman

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: best picture, best director (Martin Scorsese), supporting actor (Joe Pesci and Al Pacino), adapted screenplay (Steven Zaillian), cinematography, editing, production design, costume design, visual effects

It’s tempting to compare The Irishman to Scorsese’s other mob movies like Goodfellas or Casino (which both star Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci). And sure, you have some crossover in the genre or the cast, and much of the film is aided by a voiceover from Frank Sheeran, the titular Irishman, similar to how Henry Hill’s voiceover leads us through Goodfellas. But while Goodfellas gives us a classic rise-and-fall story, The Irishman is a much slower build in that it doesn’t fit into a simplistic narrative. Its long run time manages to pick back up through a mix of action, its use of suspense, and three veteran actors at the top of their game. —MJ

Jojo Rabbit (Feb. 4)

Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: best picture, adapted screenplay (Taika Waititi), supporting actress (Scarlett Johansson), editing, production design, costume design

Jojo Rabbit is something of an amalgamation of Waititi’s coming-of-age tale Hunt for the Wilderpeople and mockumentary What We Do in the Shadows, and it was likely helped along by the success of Thor: Ragnarok. Adapted from the 2008 novel Caging Skies, it tells the story of 10-year-old Jojo Betzler (Roman Griffin Davis), an enthusiastic member of the Hilter Youth who lives with his mother Rosie (Scarlet Johansson). Jojo’s imaginary friend is Hitler, and Waititi plays him as gossipy, pouty, moody. The director said he didn’t do any research on Hitler for the part, since he wanted to keep him as a figment of a 10-year-old’s imagination. Jojo’s father is apparently away fighting the war, so, taken another way, Hilter is also something of a father figure. —Audra Schroeder

Joker

Rent/Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: best picture, best director (Todd Phillips), leading actor (Joaquin Phoenix), adapted screenplay (Todd Phillips and Scott Silver), cinematography, original score, editing, makeup and hairstyling, sound editing, sound mixing, costume design

Joker adopts a paint-by-numbers approach to making a “serious” comic book movie, drawing directly from Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver and The King of Comedy. Instead of portraying the Joker as a sadistic prankster with a perverse sense of humor, director/co-writer Todd Phillips reimagines him as a tragic figure who struggles with mental illness, plagued by relatable socio-economic problems in a harsh, unforgiving city. —GBW

Judy

Rent/Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: leading actress (Renée Zellweger), makeup and hairstyling

Kitbull

Streaming: Disney+; YouTube

Nominations: animated short film

Klaus

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: animated feature film

Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re a Girl)

Streaming: A&E (with cable login)

Nominations: documentary (short subject)

Life Overtakes Me

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: documentary (short subject)

When a child succumbs to Resignation Syndrome, their body shuts down. They cannot move or open their eyes, and they can only eat via a feeding tube or with assistance from their parents to swallow soft foods like ice cream. Experts still don’t know the cause of Resignation Syndrome, but it generally impacts children from the Balkans or former U.S.S.R. who have endured crushing trauma in their home country and are now seeking asylum. Life Overtakes Me is a brief, powerful Swedish documentary that calmly explores the trauma that child asylum seekers face. —Brenden Gallagher

The Lighthouse

Rent/Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: cinematography

The Lighthouse has got to be one of the smelliest films ever made. Set on a remote island, it stars Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe as a pair of 19th-century lighthouse keepers who spend most of their time hungover, covered in coal dust, and/or splattered with bodily fluids. It makes you heartily glad to live in a world with hot running water and readily available soap. —GBW

The Lion King

Rent/Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: visual effects

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil

Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: makeup and hairstyling

Marriage Story

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: best picture, leading actor (Adam Driver), leading actress (Scarlett Johansson), supporting actress (Laura Dern), original screenplay (Noah Baumbach), original score

In Marriage Story, writer/director Noah Baumbach takes a well-covered subject—a young couple on the brink of divorce—and turns it into a film that feels completely original. The couple in this story are Charlie and Nicole, played by Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson, in performances that netted both of them Oscar nominations. It’s hard to take a side here, as the film portrays the couple as sympathetic characters who once loved each other but have since grown apart. —Tiffany Kelly

Missing Link

Streaming: Hulu

Nominations: animated feature film

Nefta Football Club

Streaming: Vimeo

Nominations: live-action short film

The Neighbors’ Window

Streaming: Vimeo

Nominations: live-action short film

Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood

Rent/Buy: Amazon; Google Play

Nominations: best picture, best director (Quentin Tarantino), leading actor (Leonardo DiCaprio), supporting actor (Brad Pitt), original screenplay (Tarantino), cinematography, production design, costume design, sound editing, sound mixing

Quentin Tarantino’s ninth feature film is an opulent period piece that romanticizes a bygone version of Hollywood that maybe never existed, and glorifies a hyper-masculine, “embattled” antihero archetype who still exists today but deserves no deification. It relegates its women to the sidelines other than to exact violence upon them, which it does with disturbing, unadulterated pleasure. Yet from a pure entertainment perspective, Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood is an uproarious buddy comedy and languid stroll through its creator’s intoxicating fantasy world, anchored by disarmingly tender lead performances. Whether it’s Tarantino’s masterpiece—or even one of his top-tier movies—is beside the point. It is simply a quintessential (Quentessential?) Tarantino movie. —Bryan Rolli

Pain and Glory (Jan. 14)

Buy: Amazon

Nominations: leading actor (Antonio Banderas), international film (Spain)

Pain and Glory was released in Spain earlier this year and has already been selected as the pick for the country’s international film entry at the 2020 Academy Awards. It’s a quietly moving work that is, in many ways, unexpected for a filmmaker who has made several thrillers. There is little drama or suspense here, just a beautiful portrait of a filmmaker who survives by his creative work. —TK

Parasite (Jan. 14)

Buy: Amazon

Nominations: best picture, best director (Bong Joon-ho), original screenplay (Bong and Han Jin Won), international film (South Korea), editing, production design

There are obvious parallels in Parasite with last year’s Shoplifters, about another family of grifters, as well as this year’s Us, in which a family’s “untethered” doubles try to overtake them. There’s even a comment within the film, when Ki-woo suggests, more than once, “This is so metaphorical.” When the Parks’ “eccentric” son remarks on the Kim family’s “smell,” there’s nothing metaphorical about what it triggers, but co-writer/director Bong Joon-ho is careful not to take sides in a film that could easily be drawn as rich versus poor. —AS

Rocketman

Rent/Buy: Amazon

Nominations: original song (“(I’m Gonna) Love Me Again”)

Sister

Streaming: Vimeo

Nominations: animated short film

Toy Story 4

Rent/Buy: Amazon

Nominations: animated feature film, original song (“I Can’t Let You Throw Yourself Away”)

When you’ve slid down the side of an incinerator and stared death in the face only to come out alive, where do you have left to go? That’s the question Toy Story 4 had to answer before it earned the right to be evaluated on its own merit, nine years after Toy Story 3 seemingly brought the franchise to a perfectly cathartic end. But shame on anyone—this reviewer included—who doubted Pixar would treat its finest franchise with dignity and grace. Toy Story 4 is a gorgeous feat of storytelling and technical wizardry that not only justifies its own existence, but (hopefully) concludes a 25-year saga in a way that supplements its predecessor, rather than undermining it. —BR

The Two Popes

Streaming: Netflix

Nominations: leading actor (Jonathan Pryce), supporting actor (Anthony Hopkins), adapted screenplay (Anthony McCarten)

The Two Popes really is a textbook example of using fiction to humanize distant figures, because you can’t get more distant than a pope. And herein lies the ethical problem at the heart of the film, because while I enjoyed the experience of watching The Two Popes, by the end it almost felt like pro-Francis propaganda. Writer Anthony McCarten certainly doesn’t shy away from the darker side of the Vatican, but the contrast between Benedict and Francis becomes very one-sided in the film’s quest for a happy ending. —GBW

Walk, Run, Cha-Cha

Streaming: New York Times; Vimeo

Nominations: documentary (short subject)

The 2020 Academy Awards will air on Sunday, Feb. 9.


13 Disney+ Hidden Gem Movies You’ll Love:


Michelle Jaworski

Michelle Jaworski

Michelle Jaworski is a staff writer and the resident Game of Thrones expert at the Daily Dot. She covers entertainment, geek culture, and pop culture and has brought her knowledge to conventions like Con of Thrones. She is based in New Jersey.