Anyone following our movie reviews will know that we’ve been able to see the majority of 2017’s Oscar nominees, and, of course, we certainly have opinions to share on the winners and losers. While you may be waiting for us to share disappointment at some of the losses – Kubo and The Two Strings, Florence Foster Jenkins among them – we think it’s been a very deserving roster of winners.
Moonlight absolutely deserves its Best Picture win, all the most dramatic for the false reveal that is going viral. While La La Land was spectacular in its own right, Moonlight is a fascinating character study that goes places very few movies ever have. It was almost unanimously positively received by critics, however, it was always in the shadow of La La Land, Hacksaw Ridge, Hidden Figures and Manchester By The Sea on the run-up to the awards. It was given no glory at all at the BAFTAs, and we feel it was a wholly deserving winner here – and it was equally great to see Damien Chazelle receive praise for his direction of La La Land, and that Emma Stone and Casey Affleck picked up their first best acting awards.
Any regular readers will know that we named Arrival the best movie of 2016 – and while it was disappointing to see the movie come away with only one award for sound editing – which it thoroughly deserves – seeing a science fiction movie become a genuine contender for big wins at the Oscars is incredible in itself. It will hopefully continue to set the benchmark for cinematic sci-fi, and with director Denis Villeneuve set to return to our screens with Blade Runner 2049 and a remake of Dune, we have not seen the last of him.
Suicide Squad winning an Oscar? Who saw that coming – deservedly so, however, as the make-up, hair and costumes were one of few shining lights in a movie that was otherwise so clumsy. It’s great that artists who were otherwise ignored in reviews got the recognition they deserved. It does, however, give the studio the excuse to re-box DVDs and Blu-Rays of the movie as an ‘Oscar winner’ – for better or worse.
Zootopia absolutely deserved its award and while Kubo and the Two Strings was, at the punch, our preferred choice, it’s great that a movie with such an important message of inclusivity has been recognized at a polarizing time in world politics. Kubo, at least, picked up a BAFTA equivalent – which will hopefully help to boost its home DVD sales in light of fledgling box office sales.
The Jungle Book beating Doctor Strange to Best Visual Effects was perhaps our only real caveat – while the movie was beautiful in its own right, Strange, Kubo and the hugely under-appreciated Deepwater Horizon were, in our eyes, more worthy winners. Regardless, it is again great that there has been such a variety in the field of winners.
Do we think that the right movie won Best Picture? Moonlight is an incredible achievement in its own right – and we personally struggled to balance both Jenkins’ and Chazelle’s works as our favorites. All in all, however, we found the picks to be rather satisfying – roll on next year!