The Oscars (89th Academy Awards)

Last night, the long-awaited 89th Oscars finally took place. There was some huge competition this year, despite some obvious winners, there were some surprises that I’ll get to later. Jimmy Kimmel did a great job hosting, and every joke he threw made me crack up. He was a fantastic choice to host the show. He poked at a lot of things, including his “rivalry” with Matt Damon and the president’s comments on the “overrated” Meryl Streep. We had great performances from John Legend, Auli’i Cravalho, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Justin Timberlake, and Sting. There were also some great segments including Jimmy Kimmel’s famous Mean Tweets, featuring stars from this year’s awards. Now, before I talk about the wins and awards, here are this year’s winners:

Best Picture: Moonlight
Best Director: Damien Chazelle – La La Land
Best Actor: Casey Affleck – Manchester by the Sea
Best Actress: Emma Stone – La La Land
Best Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali – Moonlight
Best Supporting Actress: Viola Davis – Fences
Best Original Screenplay: Manchester by the Sea
Best Adapted Screenplay: Moonlight
Best Animated Feature: Zootopia
Best Original Score: La La Land
Best Original Song: “City of Stars” (from La La Land)
Best Cinematography: La La Land
Best Film Editing: Hacksaw Ridge
Best Production Design: La La Land
Best Makeup and Hairstyling: Suicide Squad
Best Costume Design: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Best Animated Short: Piper
Best Visual Effects: The Jungle Book
Best Sound Editing: Arrival
Best Sound Mixing: Hacksaw Ridge
Best Documentary Feature: O.J.: Made in America
Best Documentary Short: The White Helmets
Best Live Action Short: Sing
Best Foreign Language Film: The Salesman (from Iran)

I think that this year’s winners were mostly deserved. La La Land won 6 Oscars, the most of the night and I don’t think it won anything that it didn’t deserve. After some buzz that Denzel may make a surprise win for the third time, the award ended up going to the frontrunner, Casey Affleck. Affleck’s award was very well deserved for his brilliant work in Manchester by the Sea, which also won a well-deserving Original Screenplay award. I would have preferred Lucas Hedges or Dev Patel, but Mahershala Ali was also a great pick for Best Supporting Actor. One award I think was not well-deserved was Suicide Squad for Best Makeup and Hairstyling. I don’t think Suicide Squad is a good film at all, and even though it’s just the makeup/hairstyling category, I think the award should have gone to Star Trek Beyond. Another very well deserving win is for The Jungle Book, which brought some marvelous visual effects to the screen. Asghar Fahardi, the winner for Best Foreign Language Film for The Salesman (who also won this award five years ago for A Seperation), chose not to attend the Oscars in support of those from his nation and neighboring ones who have been affected by the recent immigration ban, which I believe was a brave thing for Fahardi to do.

Now, I’d like to talk about the biggest and most talked about event of the night, and that is the presentation of the Best Picture award. Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway came onstage to present the award, and after opening the envelope, and a long confused pause, Beatty gave the card to Dunaway, who announced that the winner was La La Land. After the crew came up to the stage, they started to make their speeches when people from backstage came up to tell the crew about the mistake. One of the producers of La La Land told the crowd that the wrong card was read and that Moonlight was the actual winner. According to Beatty, he had accidentally been given the Best Actress card to read from. This may be one of the biggest moments in Oscar history. I feel bad for the La La Land crew, having experienced a huge Oscar win only to lose it minutes later. However, I’m surprised by how humble everyone acted during this mix-up, even one of the La La Land producers said he’d be happy to give the award to Moonlight. Even after this, I think La La Land really deserved the award. Despite being a powerful and deep film, Moonlight was an exceptional movie but I think that La La Land had the true spirit, beauty, and perfection that deserved to win Best Picture. La La Land was my favorite film of the year and an incredible achievement that’s already a classic. It has been in the making for years, and it took Chazelle a long time to finally get the film picked up by a studio. It also took a lot of hard work, including shutting down a highway for the opening scene, tons of set buildings, and lessons for the singers, dancers, and instrument players for the film. Moonlight is an excellent movie that addresses realistic and heavy themes but I think La La Land is a much more universally acclaimed and viewed film. Honestly, I even think Manchester by the Sea deserves the award slightly more than Moonlight. I’m at least glad that Damien Chazelle won Best Director. I knew he was an exceptional filmmaker ever since I saw Whiplash over two years ago. He’s the youngest director to ever win that award, and without a doubt, he deserves such an honor. Despite this upset, it was a great night for La La Land, and I enjoyed watching the Oscars this year. At least it’s only an awards ceremony, and I guess we all learned that even the Academy can sometimes make mistakes.

What did you guys think about this year’s Oscars? Who deserved to win, and who didn’t? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Image result for oscars 2017 poster

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