The 89th Academy Awards are coming up, and the nominations are out. While many came as no surprise, such as Meryl Streep’s nomination for best actress, others were quite a shock, when it came to receiving a nomination or being snubbed one. For instance, Jackie, starring Natalie Portman did not receive a slot for best picture, while Lion, a lesser known film, did. When it comes to the Oscars, the whole process may seem random, with clearly good movies getting no recognition, and others being showered with awards, but there is a rhyme and reason to these things. Here, I will be giving my opinion and prediction on who will go home with the gold in the five main categories in this year’s Academy Awards.
For Best Actor, I am going to have to give it to Casey Affleck for his role in Manchester by the Sea. The film itself was critically acclaimed, and it has Affleck’s brilliant performance to thank for this. Unlike most roles, this one called for quiet and still demeanor.This is not exactly what many would call impressive, but in this role, Affleck is truly able to capture a wide range of emotions and thought through little dialogue or screen direction. For this accurate portrayal of loss and sadness, Casey Affleck is my choice for Best Actor.
In the category of Best Actress, the surefire winner has got to be Emma Stone, for her excellent acting and singing in La La Land. Not only did Stone truly show her skill as an actress in this film, but she also was able to portray her character through song and dance, an impressive feat on its own. Her performance was both lively and touching and is definitely worthy of an Oscar.
Best Director is likely to be Damien Chazelle for Moonlight. The film’s unique structure and flow was extremely expertly executed by its director. Unlike other nominees this year, Chazelle worked hard to expose the inner being of humanity for the world to see. He worked painstakingly to bring the out the best performances in his actors, and it really shows through his marvelous direction.
This year’s best animated film, in my opinion, has to be Zootopia. With brilliant allegories for the social climate of our present world and the gorgeous animation of Disney Studios, it will definitely be getting some well-deserved recognition. While its competitor, Kubo and the Two Strings, was also nominated for best visual effects, a feat that has not been accomplished since The Nightmare Before Christmas, it holds nothing compared to the heart and soul that is felt while viewing Zootopia. Hopefully, the Academy will feel the same way.
Finally, the film to take home the title of Best Picture is likely to be Moonlight. Far before the nominations were announced and before award season even began, critics were calling this film a definite Oscar bid. Its strong themes about self-acceptance and the inner struggles in life connect to everyone personally and openly display what we all go through in life. This film also connects to the issues of our time, discussing themes, such as race and sexuality. It helps to further open up the minds of the viewers and provides insight into our world.
MH Picks for Academy Awards:
Ryan Gosling: 15
Meryl Streep: 17
Damien Chazelle: 12
La La Land: 14