Thoughts on the Oscar winners

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The Academy Awards were on Sunday, Feb. 28. To my surprise, I actually liked it. If you read my previous piece on the Oscars, you must know that my opinion is still on the side of diversity. That doesn’t mean I can’t fall prey to making predictions on the winners.

That being said, let us get into the winners and losers of Hollywood’s biggest night.

“SPOTLIGHT” WINS BEST PICTURE

It seemed to be completely out of left field that the journalism drama “Spotlight” won the night’s biggest award. I’ve seen it, and I thought it was pretty great. Expertly detailed, very well acted and surprisingly tense, “Spotlight” is low key brilliance. But I thought “The Revenant” would win, and it seemed destined to sweep the awards. So I was very happy when “Spotlight” emerged as the underdog.

LEO GETS HIS OSCAR

After all this time, Leonardo DiCaprio finally got an Academy Award for Best Actor, for his work as fur trapper Hugh Glass in “The Revenant”. Honestly, I’m kind of over Leo, but I’m proud all the same. At least I don’t have to hear any jokes about him not having an Oscar anymore.

BRIE LARSON WINS BEST ACTRESS AND MY HEART

The lovely Brie Larson won her first Oscar during the night, for her work as a kidnapped mother in “Room”. This was well deserved, as Larson’s performance in the film was incredible, giving a beautiful, fragile portrait of a woman who lives and suffers for the sake of her child. On her way to accept her award, Larson hugged Jacob Tremblay, the young (and also talented) actor who plays her son in the movie. It brought tears to my eyes.

ALICIA VIKANDER HAS A SURPRISE WIN

Alicia Vikander has been on my radar since her good work in 2012’s “Anna Karenina”. The young Swedish actress is extremely talented, and I was surprised but excited that she won her first Oscar. Hopefully Miss Vikander will have a true breakout as a result of her win. Watch out for her in the future.

MARK RYLANCE SNEAKS UP AS BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

I expected Sylvester Stallone to win the award for Best Supporting Actor. While I didn’t see “Creed”, I had heard a lot of good things about his performance. So I was taken aback when Mark Rylance took home the gold for his acting as accused Soviet spy Rudolf Abel in the Cold War drama “Bridge of Spies”. For me, his work was the best part of the movie, as he was wonderfully subtle and added much needed levity to a serious story. Rylance also gave a very nice speech, giving credit to his fellow nominees, as well as other supporting actors who weren’t nominated. Congrats to him.

MAD MAX CLEANS UP

While “Mad Max: Fury Road” did not win the Best Picture award, it did win in many below-the-line categories. “Mad Max” won for Editing, Costume Design, Sound Editing, Production Design, Sound Mixing and Make-Up and Hairstyling. While I believe George Miller should have won Best Director for “Mad Max”, I’m glad to see the film get any type of recognition.

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

The Oscar gods seemed to favor me this year, as my pick for Best Foreign Language Film, Hungary’s affecting Holocaust drama “Son of Saul”, went away with the prize. I’m going to leave this one short, but definitely see the movie.

OTHER THINGS

  • Chris Rock was a very good host, as he was honest yet understanding. He should be proud of himself for the show he put on. As I said, diversity is still a problem, and Rock did not shy away from the truth.
  • DiCaprio and Kate Winslet (who was nominated for Best Supporting Actress) shared a hug as he left the stage after winning his Oscar. “Titanic” came out almost 20 years ago and they still aren’t married. My heart will go on.
  • The above mentioned Jacob Tremblay continued to be adorable throughout the night. The 9 year old actor practically jumped out of seat when “Star Wars” droids C-3PO and R2-D2 were brought out to present an award. That kid is precious.
  • All the Best Original Song nominees gave good, classy performances. Special shout-out to Lady Gaga and “Til It Happens to You”. I was moved.
  • I absolutely loved the the opening montage of all the films from 2015. My love of film basically transcended and I nearly broke into tears.
  • I also adored the montage of sounds from the different nominees for the Sound categories. The presentation of the screenplay nominees, with the presenters reading from the script along with the actual scene as well as the words showing up on screen, became a very nice at showing how important little details are to movies.
  • That Stacey Dash thing was embarrassing. No comment.
  • Everyone looked so beautiful. Brie Larson, Daisy Ridley (Rey in “Star Wars”), Cate Blanchett, Emily Blunt and Alicia Vikander were all gorgeous. Among the men, Mark Ruffalo was very handsome in his blue suit, Mark Rylance wore a nice fedora, and little Tremblay was charming in his mini suit. Not a single bad outfit that night.

 

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