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Kansas City film critics run down the Oscar nominations and other movies to watch right now

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Da’Vine Joy Randolph stars as Mary Lamb, Dominic Sessa as Angus Tully and Paul Giamatti as Paul Hunham in director Alexander Payne’s "The Holdovers", a Focus Features release. The "Holdovers" was nominated for five Oscars, including in the Best Picture category and is one of UMKC professor Mitch Brian's must see movies.
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Da’Vine Joy Randolph stars as Mary Lamb, Dominic Sessa as Angus Tully and Paul Giamatti as Paul Hunham in director Alexander Payne’s "The Holdovers", a Focus Features release. The "Holdovers" was nominated for five Oscars, including in the Best Picture category and is one of UMKC professor Mitch Brian's must see movies.

The highest grossing film of 2023, "Barbie," saw its lead actress and director snubbed during Oscar nominations this week. That frustrated fans and cast members, but not everyone is surprised. KCUR's panel of film experts discuss the Oscar noms and what lesser-known films and series they recommend you see.

The Oscar nominations have stirred controversy among movie-goers and Hollywood celebs after the biggest film of the year, "Barbie," received a Best Picture nod, but director Greta Gerwig and Barbie actress Margot Robbie didn't get nominated.

Lonita Cook, a Kansas City film, TV, theater and culture critic, wasn't surprised by the omission.

"For the everyday viewer, it's probably very outrageous. But for me personally, I think that 'Barbie' struggles with structural issues," Cook told KCUR's Up To Date.

Cook joined screenwriter and UMKC film professor Mitch Brian and Abby Olcese, film editor at The Pitch, to discuss the process of nominations and some of their Oscar night predictions.

And for those who aren't interested in awards, the panel shared recommendations for movies you can watch right now, both at home and in the theater.

Mitch Brian's recommendations

Lonita Cook's recommendations

Abby Olcese's recommendations

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When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
As a producer for Up To Date, my goal is to inform our audience by curating interesting and important conversations with reliable sources and individuals directly affected by a topic or issue. I strive for our program to be a place that hosts impactful conversations, providing our audience with greater knowledge, intrigue, compassion and entertainment. Contact me at elizabeth@kcur.org or on Twitter at @er_bentley_ruiz.
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