The Oscars are quickly approaching with about a month left until we see who takes home an Academy Award, and one of the most competitive areas this year will be in the category for Best Animated Feature.
The Oscar for this field will ultimately have five nominees, "Isle of Dogs" and "Incredibles 2" being the anticipated frontrunners due to both of the outstanding critical acclaim both films have received and the overwhelmingly high box office numbers that both films brought in.
"Incredibles 2" seems to have a really great shot as it won the category back in 2004 with its first film, along with the amazing approval ratings and criticism the sequel received following its release in June. And although all nominations are worthy of their rightful recognition, if "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" does not win at this year's Academy Awards, I think we can all agree that it would be a completely unjustified loss.
The reason behind this is because this film is uniquely made and takes on a new, fresh vision to the Spider-Man comics and to animation as a whole. It's almost hard to believe that the creators of this film are the same people who made "The Emoji Movie" and have now made this animated film that is full of raw energy, stunning animation, and a tight and detailed storyline.
In case you haven't seen the film, Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) is an average high school kid from Brooklyn. His father (Brian Tyree) is a city cop and his mother (Luna Lauren Valez) is a nurse who both push Miles to succeed in everything he does, which they initiate by sending him to a preppy, private high school. This ultimately causes tension between Miles and his father, which is only heightened after Miles and his Uncle Aaron (Mahershala Ali) are out one night and Miles is bitten by a radioactive spider.
After some confusion about what's happening to him, Miles goes back to the scene of the place where he was bitten and is confronted with the original Spider-Man (Chris Pine) and witnesses the hadron particle collider going off and opening a portal that brings other dimensions and realities into Miles's. The plot then continues to follow Miles interacting with the other Spider-people who come through this portal, who all aim to help Miles figure out how to become the ultimate version of himself as Spider-Man and in defeating the antagonist, Kingpin.
Not only is the plot intricately written with plenty of humor, sharp wit, and plot twists woven into it, but the animation in "Spider-Verse" is made to look strictly like drawings from a comic book and it shows why all superhero movies should be animated. It is not an exaggeration when I say that this film has the most stunning visuals I have ever seen and it surpasses any animated film I in terms of the technique the animators utilized. One of the most appealing parts of the movie is the amazing art direction that it took because it is nothing like modern audiences have seen before, which is one reason as to why this film deserves the proper recognition at the Oscars.
This film broke boundaries with its animation style, but, Sony and Marvel have also shown that it is still possible to make revenue (a really large revenue, in fact) with a diverse cast. "Black Panther" stood out when it was released last year with its primarily black cast and "Spider-Verse" has done the same thing with the protagonist being an Afro-Latino teenager. It should not come as a surprise that people want to see themselves represented on the big screen, yet it appears as though Hollywood is only coming to terms with this. With this incredible success, we can hope that more diversity in Marvel films will follow.
And I am confident that it will. Including people who are not primarily white in narratives and including POC does much more in terms of just equality, but, it shows that more interesting and incredibly successful stories can be told. The main theme surrounding the film is that "Anyone can wear the mask" and "What makes you different is what makes you Spider-Man", and with these words, we can see that the way superhero movies will be told from here on out is going to change for the better.
The incredible animation style and the way this film will change superhero films as we currently know it thus justifies why "Spider-Verse" is the only proper film to win Best Animated Feature. It took home the award for Best Animated Feature at the 24th Critics' Choice Awards, so now we can only hope that the proper recognition will be given to it at the Academy Awards on February 24th, 2019.