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23 streamable (or free) Oscar-nominated films to watch in Canada

Margot Robbie stars in the Barbie movie. It's one of this year's Oscar nominated films that can be streamed from home.  (Warner Bros. - image credit)
Margot Robbie stars in the Barbie movie. It's one of this year's Oscar nominated films that can be streamed from home. (Warner Bros. - image credit)

With the Oscars shortlist out this week, most avid movie-goers are probably aware of the front-runners, predicted winners and (Barbie, anyone?) biggest snubs.

But they're also likely aware of how hard it is to see the lot. With 53 nominated titles — 38 of which are feature films — that's a serious time investment if you plan on heading to the theatres.

As well, more than a quarter of the movies are not available for home viewing. Among the ones that are available, many only offer one-time rental or purchase options. It all adds up to putting a serious dent in your wallet if you try to watch them all.

To help, CBC News has compiled a list of some of the movies up for an Oscar this year that you can stream on a subscription service, or watch for free with no subscriptions at all.

Killers of the Flower Moon

Robert De Niro is inside a car and talking to Leonardo DiCaprio in the movie Killers of the Flower Moon.
Robert De Niro is inside a car and talking to Leonardo DiCaprio in the movie Killers of the Flower Moon.

Robert De Niro, Martin Scorsese and Lily Gladstone are all nominated for Killers of the Flower Moon. (Melinda Sue Gordon/Apple)

Stream on Apple TV+

Martin Scorsese's early-America epic Killers of the Flower Moon is competing for an impressive 10 awards this year — trailing only Poor Things and Oppenheimer. While Apple's other buzzy entry, Napoleon, bumped its total nominations up to 13, it won't be available for home viewing until later this year. With Killers up for best actor for Robert De Niro, best actress for Lily Gladstone, best director for Scorsese, best picture and a host of other statues, you can bump up your Oscars knowledge considerably with this film alone.

Barbie, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

Both box office smash Barbie and Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse are available to stream on Crave.
Both box office smash Barbie and Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse are available to stream on Crave.

Barbie and Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse are both available to stream on Crave. (Warner Bros, Sony)

Stream on Crave

It's maybe an odd pairing, but Barbie and Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse do have at least three similarities: they were both among the most critically acclaimed movies of 2023, they're both Oscar nominees and they're both available for streaming on Crave. While Barbie dominated headlines for its eight total nominations (and the perceived slights against non-nominated director Greta Gerwig and actor Margot Robbie), Spider-Man's best animated feature film came in an incredibly competitive year for that genre.

Golda

Helen Mirren appears in a scene from Golda.
Helen Mirren appears in a scene from Golda.

Helen Mirren in a scene from Golda, wearing the makeup and prostheses that earned the film its nomination. (Jasper Wolf/Elevation Pictures)

Stream on Prime

Golda may not have received the same level of attention as the previous films, but the transformation its team performed on star Helen Mirren certainly turned some heads. Up for best makeup and hairstyling, this film about Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir impressed many — but dismayed others, as the techniques used to believably change Mirren (who is not Jewish) into Meir sparked backlash at the time, not unlike the controversy around the prosthetic nose Bradley Cooper wore to portray American composer Leonard Bernstein in Maestro.

To Kill a Tiger

To Kill a Tiger.
To Kill a Tiger.

To Kill a Tiger, from Toronto's Nisha Pahuja, had a strong showing at last year's Canadian Screen Awards. It's available for free viewing on YouTube and the National Film Board's website. (TIFF)

Stream for free on YouTube, or the NFB website

From Toronto director Nisha Pahuja, To Kill a Tiger already presented a strong showing at the Canadian Screen Awards in 2023. Now, the harrowing but powerful documentary — about a father's search for justice after his daughter is raped — is headed to the Academy Awards. The entire film is available to stream on TVO's YouTube page, as well as the National Film Board website.

Invincible

Vincent René-Lortie's Invincible is a short film about mental health and coming of age.
Vincent René-Lortie's Invincible is a short film about mental health and coming of age.

Invincible is Vincent René-Lortie's short film about mental health and coming of age. (H264 Distribution)

Stream on TV5Unis (French only)

Invincible's Oscar nomination was something of a surprise — to no one more than its director Vincent René-Lortie. A five-year passion project inspired by the death of a childhood friend, the short film is now competing against the likes of Wes Anderson's The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar at the Academy Awards. While it is streamable online now, only the French version is available. The film's distribution company confirmed to CBC that it will be available on Apple TV in both French and English in the coming weeks.

20 Days in Mariupol

20 Days in Mariupol is one of the over 200 documentaries screening at this year's Hot Docs Festival. It is also one of the very best that are available to stream from anywhere in Canada.
20 Days in Mariupol is one of the over 200 documentaries screening at this year's Hot Docs Festival. It is also one of the very best that are available to stream from anywhere in Canada.

20 Days in Mariupol had its Canadian premiere at Hot Docs last year, and has been astounding audiences ever since. (Mstyslav Chernov/The Associated Press)

Stream for free on YouTube or the PBS website

When 20 Days in Mariupol first started making the festival rounds early last year, it earned almost universally rave reviews — including from this critic. And now that the documentary on the Russian invasion of Ukraine (filmed by the last international reporting team in the country at the time) is finally out to regular audiences, it's starting to pick up even more buzz. You can check out the film (which earned The Associated Press its first Oscar nomination) either on PBS Frontline's website, or their YouTube page.

The Last Repair Shop

Porche Brinker appears in a still from Ben Proudfoot's The Last Repair Shop.
Porche Brinker appears in a still from Ben Proudfoot's The Last Repair Shop.

Porche Brinker appears in a still from Ben Proudfoot's The Last Repair Shop. (Searchlight Pictures)

Stream for free on YouTube or Disney+

Halifax's Ben Proudfoot is becoming something of an Academy Awards mainstay: first nominated for documentary short in 2021 for A Concerto is a Conversation, he went back in 2022 for The Queen of Basketball — and won. Now he's Hollywood-bound for a third time, for his new co-directed documentary short The Last Repair Shop, which is about the hardworking team that repairs musical instruments for Los Angeles public schools.

Nyad, Society of the Snow, May December, Maestro, American Symphony, Rustin, Nimona, El Conde, The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar 

Nyad, Society of the Snow, May December, Maestro, American Symphony, Rustin and Nimona, El Conde and the Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar are all available on Netflix.
Nyad, Society of the Snow, May December, Maestro, American Symphony, Rustin and Nimona, El Conde and the Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar are all available on Netflix.

Nyad, Society of the Snow, May December, Maestro, American Symphony, Rustin, Nimona, El Conde and The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar are all available on Netflix. (Netflix)

Stream on Netflix

If you don't consider Disney's subsidiary companies, Netflix was the clear streaming winner of the Oscar nominations. Pulling in a total 18 nominations spread out over numerous titles, the service offers a wealth of choice. Those choices include: swimming biopic Nyad, with acting nods to both Jodie Foster and Annette Bening; Andes mountain disaster-inspired Society of the Snow, competing for best international feature and makeup and hairstyling; campy thriller May December; nominated for best original screenplay; Maestro, which is up in seven categories including best picture; and American Symphony, RustinNimonaThe Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and El Conde all up for a statuette of their own.

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, Elemental, The Creator, Bobi Wine: The People's President, Flamin' Hot, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Elemental, Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, The Creator, Bobi Wine: The People's President, Flamin' hot and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 are all available to stream on Disney+.
Elemental, Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, The Creator, Bobi Wine: The People's President, Flamin' hot and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 are all available to stream on Disney+.

Elemental, Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, The Creator, Bobi Wine: The People's President, Flamin' Hot and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 are available to stream on Disney+. (Disney, Disney, Disney, National Geographic, Searchlight, Disney)

Stream on Disney+

With 20 total nominations for Disney and all the production companies under its umbrella, there are more than a few entries available on its streaming service. Bobi Wine: The People's President and Elemental boast nominations for best documentary and best animated feature respectively — one telling the story of the titular singer and politician Bobi Wine's presidential campaign in Uganda, and the other about anthropomorphized elements in a Romeo and Juliet-type tale. Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, The Creator and Flamin' Hot all also scored nominations, but none for narrative categories.