The Oscars are this Sunday, which means there are only a few days to catch up on the nominees, hone your predictions, figure out more reasons why you hate La La Land, and pre-write snarky tweets about Andrew Garfield’s hair. (You can catch our own takes on at least a couple of those items here.) The Best Visual Effects category is interesting, because it’s one of the few places where genre pictures tend to do well. Recently, Burger Fiction put together a montage of every win in the category dating back to 1937, and it’s a fun 12-minute trip through the history of filmmaking technology, as models get increasingly realistic, blue screens are introduced, practical effects scale ever upward until people eventually say “fuck it” and let computers handle it all. It’s neat to trace the lineage, although it still does not explain the creepiness of Benjamin Button.
So, which of this year’s nominees is most likely to join that lineage? The Daily Dot has helpfully assembled behind-the-scenes reels that show each movie’s most spectacular scenes and a little bit of how they were created. For example, Deepwater Horizon’s filmmakers went to the trouble of building an 85 percent scale replica of the titular oil rig, and Doctor Strange’s filmmakers went to the trouble of watching Christopher Nolan’s Inception. Check out all of the nominees’ best efforts below.