Five Oscar Worthy Movies That Went Digital During COVID-19 Crisis

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The film industry may be eagerly awaiting a fairy-tale ending but it also knows only too well that the “show must go” on.It’s been an extraordinary year thus far, no ifs or buts about it. A year like no other in modern history. Tough, taxing, challenging, frustrating, unbearable – adjectives that barely scratch the surface of what the world collectively has had to endure.

It’s fair to say, no hyperbole will ever adequately summarise the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on society or convey the extreme demands on our tolerance thresholds. Worse yet, it certainly hasn’t helped that the escape of theatres – the proverbial gates of Eden – were shuttered, relegating the common mortal to a real world that was only getting far too real for comfort.

Fortunately, the brilliant creative minds behind the entertainment business quickly cottoned on to the fact that they had to adapt under an unprecedented public health crisis like the Covid-19 pandemic. That at their disposal were alternative measures with which to deliver content to a captive audience that was forced to stay indoors due to widespread coronavirus-mandated edits. That is, to go digital. And, so they did.

Releasing new films directly to  the various steaming video on-demand services admittedly is really the only way to stay viable during an uncertain time. Trolls: World Tour was the first movie of note that went straight to digital early during the pandemic when people were mostly under lockdown.

The Dreamworks production rejected any idea of postponing the release of the animated film and now, in hindsight, the decision is proving to be a stroke of genius. The film broke streaming records to the chagrin of all, causing a cataclysm effect that may yet have far-reaching consequences in how the film industry approaches content consumption in the future.

Since Trolls: World Tour forged the way, other studios have followed with their submissions going early – or in some cases – straight to digital. Here’s a list of the Top 5 of the best films that are streaming, some of which are already earmarked for Oscar recognition.

#5 DA 5 Bloods (Netflix – June 12)

Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods, which focuses on four African American Vietnam War vets that return to Vietnam decades later, on a mission to recover the remains of a fallen friend. The film went straight to Netflix release early during the coronavirus pandemic and ticks many boxes for Oscar consideration. At the moment bookies like Bovada it has Da 5 Bloods as a favourite at +900, not least because it’s a timely film that deals uncannily with similar social realities that are thrusting American society into chaos today as it tries to reconcile socio-economic and racial injustice to MAGA ideology.

#4 GreyHound (Apple – July 20)

Tom Hank is certainly no stranger to Oscar glory, having picked up the golden statue in his career, winning back-to-back Oscars for his roles in Philadelphia and Forest Gump. Even when he’s not winning golden statues, his work is at another level and his films or his performance alone are received to much acclaim. This is true once again for GreyHound, which was released on Apple in July. GreyHound is a WWII saga, based on a novel by C.S. Forester.

#3 Shirley (Neon – June 5)

Elisabeth Moss steals the show in Shirley, a performance that could see her shortlisted for an Oscar in April next year. The Josephine Decker-directed drama stars the Moss in a feverish and hallucinatory performance as horror author Shirley Jackson. The film went straight to VOD and Hulu streaming on June 5.

#2 Athlete A (Netflix – June)

Netflix’s Athlete A is not only in the running for Best Documentary Feature across sports betting shops it is in fact the frontrunner in this category. The movie debuted on Netflix in early June and takes a raw look at the scandal that rocked USA Gymnastics. A must see if not a must win at the Oscars.

#1 Palm Springs (Hulu – July)

Palm Springs debut to rave reviews on Hulu in July, where it became the streamer’s biggest hit ever for an original title release. Already enjoying Sundance Film Festival buzz, Palm Springs could very well surprise at the Oscars. Andy Samberg and Cristin Milioti star as wedding guests that are forced into a uncommon relationship after they find themselves trapped in a time loop and forced to relive the same day over again.

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About Kristin

Master reviewer of all types of products. Love XL Fountain Sodas!! Cheer Mom extraordinaire. Socialite to all things small town and founder of Come socialize and connect with me.

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