The Oscars are just days away and Hollywood is divided. It’s La La Land, a brilliantly-created musical about white lovers in Hollywood, versus Moonlight, a polarizing drama tacking racial and sexual barriers.
Over the past two years, not a single black actor or actress has been nominated for an Oscar. This began calling into question the integrity and diversity of the Oscars as actors and directors started boycotting the awards, claiming they had been “whitewashed”. This year, seven actors of color were nominated, including: Mahershala Ali, Viola Davis, Naomie Harris, Ruth Negga, Dev Patel, Octavia Spencer and Denzel Washington.
Now that the Academy has acknowledged the talent across the board in Hollywood, will they chose the “best” movie for each Oscar, or simply stick with the safest?
I believe Moonlight was the best film in 2016. It tackled social issues, told an amazing story, had an outstanding score, and featured an unbelievably talented cast. Despite being the amazing film it is, I think it will lose to La La Land. While La La Land was a great movie, highly regarded by critics and audiences around the world, it was not-hands down the best film of 2016.
Since the Academy switched to instant-runoff voting, it has a reputation of rewarding broadly-supported films, rather than the more daring and unique movies made during the year. I think that will be made glaringly obvious this year, as bold, polarizing films like Moonlight and Fences will be pushed aside.
The nominees for Best Picture are Arrival, Fences, Hacksaw Ridge, Hell or High Water, Hidden Figures, La La Land, Lion, Manchester By the Sea, and Moonlight.
Prediction: La La Land
The nominees for Best Actor: Casey Affleck; Manchester By the Sea, Andrew Garfield; Hacksaw Ridge, Ryan Gosling; La La Land, Viggo Mortensen; Captain Fantastic, Denzel Washington; Fences.
Prediction: Casey Affleck
Opinion: Denzel Washington
The nominees for Best Actress: Isabelle Huppert; Elle, Ruth Negga; Loving, Natalie Portman, Jackie, Emma Stone, La La Land, Meryl Streep; Florence Foster Jenkins
Prediction: Emma Stone
Opinion: Meryl Streep
The nominees for Best Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali; Moonlight, Jeff Bridges; Hell or High Water, Lucas Hedges; Manchester By the Sea, Dev Patel; Lion,Michael Shannon; Nocturnal Animals
Prediction: Mahershala Ali
Opinion: Mahershala Ali
The nominees for Best Supporting Actress: Viola Davis, Fences The nominees for Best Supporting Actress: Naomie Harris; Moonlight, Nicole Kidman; Lion, Octavia Spencerl; Hidden Figures, Michelle Williams; Manchester By the Sea
Prediction: Viola Davis
Opinion: Viola Davis
The nominees for Best Director: Damien Chazelle; La La Land, Mel Gibson; Hacksaw Ridge, Barry Jenkins; Moonlight, Kenneth Lonergan; Manchester By the Sea, Denis Villeneuve; Arrival
Prediction: Damien Chazelle
Opinion: Damien Chazelle
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