Review of the 2022 Oscar Best Picture Nominees (by a Money Nerd who ain’t seen half of ’em)

by | Mar 13, 2022 | Own

With the red carpets rolling out in just a couple weeks, I wanted to do a quick review of the 10 Best Pictures nominees for the 2022 Oscars. These reviews will be from the context of how to “Own” a money mindset. I’ll avoid spoilers here, which should be easy, since I haven’t seen half of them. 🙂 

velvet rope graphic


As inflation rises and wages flatten, the working class are fighting to survive. Will they stay put in the place they’ve always called home, or move somewhere totally new with the hopes of a fresh start? Now substitute Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland, set it in 1969, and make the woofy dom from Fifty Shades of Grey the hot dad of the family. (That’s what I gathered from watching the trailer.) 

Belfast movie poster


As a money nerd, sometimes your suggestions about personal finance go unheard by your immediate friends and family. To explore your passions, it may mean venturing out to find your tribe in a new environment where your talents can shine. Now substitute a singer born as a Child of Deaf Adults (CODA), with parents who “literally” cannot hear what she has to offer. (And yes, I literally said “literally,” but at least I used it as intended by its literal dictionary definition.)

coda movie poster


Half of the U.S. is ignoring the writing on the wall that their financial future is going to sh*t as the retirement crisis hurls toward certain destruction. Now substitute a comet, politics, and a hefty dose of dark comedy that feels disturbingly accurate.

Don't Look Up movie poster


There’s so many things we should do. We should create an estate plan; we should review our spending and maybe make a budget; we should document everything in our homes with a video in the event we need to file an insurance claim. Now substitute all those should’s with the expectation that we should see this movie, set in Japan, and translated into English subtitles. The movie could be great, but the trailer does not do it any favors. As a result, seeing it will probably stay at the bottom of my to-do list until I finally do because it’s the responsible thing.

Drive My Car movie poster


It can take a long time to see results with your financial portfolio. After navigating an endless wasteland for what feels like decades, you finally see a little positive movement that gives you hope: “This is the action I’ve been waiting for.” Now substitute a 2.5-hour sci-fi remake that actually feels much longer.

Dune movie poster


Achieving financial freedom means knowing at your core that the time and money you’ve invested will eventually bring opulence to your future. It means having conviction; staying positive; and keeping your head up when the haters want to bash it in for daring to dream and work toward something better for yourself and your family. Now substitute Will Smith, working triple-duty as father, tennis coach, and mentor to Venus and Serena Williams.

King Richard movie poster


Coming of age often comes with lessons learned the hard way. Should I go into debt for college and hope there’s a job waiting that will help me dig out from all those student loans? Now substitute a young adult romance set in 1970s San Fernando Valley. (Sorry, that’s what I got from the trailer.)

Licorice Pizza movie poster


A stoic financial advisor battles the demons of his past for putting so many of his former clients into “whole life” and “cash value” plans that were good for him but devastating for his clients’ investment portfolio. Will the sins from his past come back to haunt him? Now substitute a mid-century carnival worker and the fine-ass Bradley Cooper. You’ll spend half the movie debating if his tailored moustache is refined and handsome or a little too Hitler-y. Then an epiphany will come to you: it’s Bradley Cooper… therefore, hot. Duh!

Nightmare Alley movie poster


Picture an unhappy financial guru who seems to take pleasure in angrily belittling the people who ask him for advice. Deep down, he’s actually quite unhappy. And based on his hard-core homophobia, maybe a little bit gay, too. But the smaller, soft-spoken voices in the personal finance world are building momentum and should not be underestimated. Now substitute a husband, wife, uncle, and socially-awkward gay son living in 1920s Montana.

The Power of the Dog movie poster


There’s so many turf wars always battling each other that you don’t need to scroll far to find one on social media. For example: “All debt is bad!” followed by “No it’s not, only consumer debt is bad!” Or this one: “Don’t worry about cutting out your lattes and just earn more money!” crossed with “Nah bro! Cut your spending and you’ll have more to save and also have a lower FI number to reach financial independence even sooner!” Now substitute a white and Puerto Rican gang and a forbidden romance caught in the middle of it all, and you have “West Side Story.”

West Side Story movie poster

Lights! Camera! Action!

As we get into the spirit of Oscar season, I’d encourage you to use this time to reflect. In the movie of our lives, there will undoubtedly be challenges. And that’s just life! In the end, overcoming those hurdles only makes the final victory that much more satisfying! (Notice how I avoided saying “happy ending?”) With that in mind, the next time life throws some shade at you—like I did some of these movies—decide if you will be playing the role of the victim or the hero in the movie of your life.

Leave a comment below and share with us any steps you’ve taken this week to Hustle, Own a winning money mindset, optimize your Money, or score some Opulence to make your retirement a happily ever after.

That’s a wrap!

sunset in the horizon over water


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