Oh, the Horror: Horror Films that Deserved Oscar Recognition


Each year, there always seems to be a horror movie or performance that goes unnoticed at the Academy Awards. We always shrug this off as we’re used to the Academy not being fangirls of the horror genre. I thought about this more and more with all of my October re-watches of my favorite horror films. There are just so many performances and movies overall that deserved more love at the Oscars.

The Shining (1980)

Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining is easily one of my favorite films of all time and was the beginning of my love for film, but this is easily one of the most overlooked films on the list. This film received two Razzie nominations (Worst Actress and Worst Director) and was not very well received upon its original release.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Director
  • Picture
  • Editing
  • Screenplay
  • Actor
  • Actress
  • Score

The Thing (1982)

Another film that had some Razzie love, but no Oscar love! The Thing not receiving a make up nomination is truly heartbreaking. The Make Up category was added to the Academy Awards the year prior to this film’s release and this should have easily been a shoe in. Kurt Russell may not have deserved an Oscar nomination per se, but should have been in the conversation at least.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actor
  • Makeup
  • Score

Hereditary (2018)

This one is an obvious must have on this list. Toni Collette should have EASILY been a nominee for Best Actress for Hereditary. The film was adored by critics and (most) audiences, but didn’t end up with any official awards love.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actress
  • Cinematography
  • Director

Don’t Look Now (1973)

When I think about how this film won the cinematography award at the BAFTAs, but got zero love at the Academy Awards, I get very annoyed. The film not only deserved the cinematography nomination at the Oscars, but also a few other nominations.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actress
  • Actor
  • Editing
  • Cinematography
  • Director

Dead Ringers (1988)

I adore David Cronenberg, but even if you don’t, you can’t deny Jeremy Irons in this movie. This film easily should have received an Oscar nomination for Best Actor, but also a few other noms.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actor
  • Editing
  • Screenplay

Rosemary’s Baby (1968)

Mia Farrow not getting an Academy Award nomination for this film is truly a travesty. Make it make sense.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actress
  • Score
  • Costume Design

mother! (2017)

I know, I know, this film isn’t for everyone, let alone the Academy, but hear me out! If this movie doesn’t work for you, you have to at least acknowledge the powerful, intense performance delivered by Jennifer Lawerence. She commands your attention in one of her best performance’s to date. Michelle Pfeiffer should have also been in contention for Supporting Actress.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actress
  • Supporting Actress
  • Screenplay
  • Editing
  • Cinematography
  • Production Design

Possession (1981)

I would argue this film deserved a few nominations, but I truly cannot believe Isabelle Adjani was passed over for a Best Actress nomination. Even if the Academy members couldn’t finish the film, Adjani’s performance is one of the best that year.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actress
  • Director

Jennifer’s Body (2009)

While I would have argued to include Megan Fox in the conversation, I know it most likely would have never happened. I do think Diablo Cody should have been in contention for this amazing screenplay that just gets better as time passes.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actress
  • Screenplay

The Others (2001)

I know Nicole Kidman was nominated this same year for a different performance, but if anyone deserves to be a double nominee, it’s Miss Kidman this year.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Actress
  • Screenplay
  • Director

It Follows (2014)

This film was not only well loved by audiences, but critics as well. I would have LOVED to see some screenplay and score love for It Follows.

Shoulda Been a Contender In:

  • Score
  • Screenplay

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