Resolution, justification, redemption and an impulse to play it safe define this year’s Best Picture nominees. All five of them are safe choices, which could mean progress in certain areas – a Bollywood-esque movie, a film where two men openly kiss in the first few scenes and no one really freaked out about it? Not only did they not freak out about it but most of the time it wasn’t even mentioned. The love story was not controversial but perfectly normal; at least in the circles I visit. Maybe in some regions of the country, it is still considered quite scandalous. Even still, Milk is a traditional biopic the way Slumdog is a traditional fairy tale. There is nothing particularly new about Frost/Nixon. Benjamin Button is modern technology but a traditional love story, albeit a fantastical one. And The Reader is like stepping into a comfortable pair of shoes. This is not to say the films aren’t spectacular, memorable, life-affirming or even Oscar-worthy, it’s just to say that this year, voters decided not to take the big risks.