The 2020 Oscars were held on the 9th of February in contrast to past years, when they occurred on the 19th. Once again, for the 92nd Oscars, there was no host: instead, comedians and actors announced awards with witty quips throughout the night. Rather than an opening speech, the event began with a stirring performance by Janelle Monet. Some highlights of the night include Kristen Wigg’s and Maya Rudolph’s performance about costuming, which was met with enthusiastic laughter. Parasite received the most awards, taking home four Academy Awards from its six nominations: the film made history by being the first non-English film to win the Best Picture Award. In addition, Brad Pitt received the award for Best Supporting Actor and Laura Dern for Best Supporting Actress. Controversial moments at the event include once again the lack of diversity amongst the nominations. Many were upset about women and people of color not gaining any traction in terms of nominations. A disharmonious part of the night consisted of a tired-looking Eminem rapping ‘Lose Yourself’ supposedly to commemorate the art of music in movies. It was an awkward performance that could have been fixed by a better-suited song for its setting.
Best Picture nominees included Ford Vs. Ferrari, The Irishman, Jojo Rabbit, Parasite, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood, The Joker, Little Women, Marriage Story, and 1917, each with a short synopsis below. If you haven’t seen these movies yet, I recommend almost all of them. Besides Parasite, here are my top three favorite nominees: 1917 comes in first; it kept me on the edge of my seat for the entirety of its showing. Coming in second is Once Upon a time… In Hollywood, a remix of the widely known Tate murder that features two quirky actors struggling to maintain relevancy in the harsh movie industry. Lastly, coming in third is Little Women, a feel-good story that shows you the real meaning of sisterhood and family and reaffirms your faith in love. Indeed, this year’s Oscars, despite a few bumps in the road, were once again a classic event honoring the greatness of film and the people who work so diligently to create cinematic art.
Ford vs. Ferrari – Visionary auto designer Carroll Shelby and race car driver Ken Miles team up to build a high-performance race car for the Ford Motor Company, hoping to defy the odds and defeat the dominant Ferrari at the 1966 Le Mans.
The Irishman – As an old man, World War II vet Frank Sheeran reflects on his life as a hustler and mob hitman, working alongside many notorious figures, including Jimmy Hoffa, the subject of one of the greatest unsolved mysteries in American history.
Jojo Rabbit – During World War II, a lonely German boy’s world is turned upside down when he discovers his single mother is hiding a young Jewish girl in their attic. Aided only by his idiotic imaginary friend Adolf Hitler, Jojo must confront his blind nationalism.
The Joker – In Gotham’s fractured society, a young man longs to be a stand-up comic, but finds the joke is always on him. Caught in a cycle of apathy, cruelty and ultimately, betrayal, the comedian makes one bad decision after another, bringing about a chain reaction of escalating events.
Little Women – In the late 1860s, burgeoning author Jo March looks back on her and her three sisters’ Massachusetts childhoods and the events and relationships that helped shape them as adults.
Marriage Story – A young creative couple and their son navigate the tricky waters of bicoastal separation and impending divorce.
1917 – During World War I, two British soldiers are sent on a dangerous mission to stop an attack by the British 7th Division that will result in a massacre by the Germans. Their assignment takes on extra urgency as one of the young soldiers’ brothers is fighting in that Division.
Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood – In Los Angeles in 1969, aging TV star Rick Dalton and his longtime stunt double Cliff Booth struggle to make their way around an industry and a city they hardly recognize anymore.
Parasite – Greed, class discrimination and a mysterious interloper threaten the newly formed symbiotic relationship between the wealthy Park family and the destitute Kim clan.