Usually, post-nomination Oscar talk is dominated by the frontrunners. Yet the film on everyone's lips yesterday wasn't either of the nomination hogs, "The Artist" or "Hugo," but one with no chance whatsoever of winning: "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close" pulled off arguably the most surprising Best Picture nod of at least the last decade (even if Kris was one of the few pundits tuned into the possibility), and its buzz took a 180-degree turn. Tim Robey ruminates on how the film, in the space of a single minute, went from being this year's "The Lovely Bones" -- failed bait, both Academy-tailored and critically massacred -- to this year's, well, "The Reader," and wonders how Stephen Daldry keeps pulling off this unlikely trick, where similar prestige filmmakers like Sam Mendes keep missing the mark. [The Telegraph]  

Meanwhile, the film lands at #5 on Vulture's critics' poll of the worst films of 2011. (Then again, it's one place ahead of "Shame," so make of that what you will.) [Vulture

A saddening chaser to yesterday's comparatively trivial awards news: Palme d'Or-winning Greek auteur Theo Angelopoulos was killed in a car accident. Ronald Bergan reflects on a remarkable career. [The Guardian]

Mark Harris breaks down yesterday's nominations, finding room for GOP presidential parallels in the race. ("The Artist" = Mitt Romney, apparently.) [Grantland]

Steven Zeitchik wonders which producers will wind up receiving the Best Picture nomination for "The Tree of Life?" Can Brad Pitt land his third nod in one year? [24 Frames]

Scott Feinberg has a typically exhaustive list of stats, facts and figures about this year's nominations. [The Race]

Paul Sheehan wonders if "The Help" or "Midnight in Paris" can win Best Picture without an editing nod. Surely that's not the only reason they can't win. [Gold Derby]

Ryan Gilbey thinks yesterday's nominations for "The Artist" and "Hugo" flatter the industry's own sense of self-worth, but will be happy with the former winning. [New Statesman

From Sundance, Andrew O'Hehir says the Kirsten Dunst comedy "Bachelorette" will inevitably be compared to "Bridesmaids," but finds it smarter and smuttier. [Salon]

Bejamin Wright summarizes some of the major acquisitions of the Sundance Film Festival so far. [The Playlist]