2017 Best Picture Nominees

I saw eight out of nine Best Picture nominees before they were even announced! The only one I didn't see in the theater was Hell or High Water, but was able to get it from Redbox the other night. Last year, I loved every movie that was nominated. I have mixed feelings this year with two movies I just wasn't into at all.

Arrival I wasn't even interested in seeing this movie, but a bunch of friends loved it and Amy Adams was getting all sorts of praise, so I went. I saw it pretty late, probably right before it was about to leave theaters, and I'm glad I did. Although the ending was super cheesy I was totally entertained and invested throughout the film. I'm really glad I saw it on the big screen.

Fences Full disclosure, I fell asleep twice in the beginning! And then there was a power outage and even though an usher came in and told us it'd only take a minute to get the movie going again, I considered leaving. The film is based on a play and it feels like a play and I'm a musical kind of girl. I'm glad I stayed though. The dialog was outstanding and the second and third acts were much better than the first. And then Viola Davis packed an emotional punch and I cried until the end of the movie. She deserves every single award. 

Hacksaw Ridge I usually like to see war movies, but this was another one that didn't pique my interest until friends raved about it. I think Andrew Garfield did a great job playing Desmond Doss, but it wasn't my kind of movie. For a topic so heavy, it felt simple and even a little like a made-for-tv movie. Well, except for the super gory battle scenes, which may have been the bloodiest I've ever seen. I don't know, I just didn't walk away from it really feeling anything.

Hell or High Water I have to admit that I'd never even heard of this movie until the Oscar announcements. After Moonlight's 99%, it has the highest rating (98%) on Rotten Tomatoes, but it was my least favorite movie of the bunch. I think the cast was fantastic and liked the characters, but the modern-day western (or any western for that matter) just wasn't my cup of tea.

Hidden Figures I really hate that the general population didn't know about this story! I read Rise of the Rocket Girls last summer and from what I can remember, black women were hardly mentioned. The movies is engaging from start to finish, Henson, Spencer, and Monae were perfection, and the whole thing just felt like a breath of fresh air. I went to a Tuesday morning showing and the theater was packed. It was so good that the audience clapped at the end. (Yay! But don't do that.)

La La Land I was so looking forward to this one! I gathered my friends for a birthday celebration at a Mexican restaurant and then saw this afterward. (I had two double margaritas and was a little tipsy at the theater. Oops!) I liked the movie just fine, but didn't OMG love it. The songs were catchy, it was very visually appealing, I fell in love with Gosling's character Sebastian, and liked the ending. But it wasn't the most amazing thing I'd ever seen and out of this bunch, it's not even in my top three. I think it was hyped up too much. However, this is definitely the one I'd watch again, but that's probably because it's not a drama.

Lion I felt like I watched two different movies, but both were equally good. The story, although it's completely true, could have been just another feel-good movie of the year, but it was done in such a way that it felt more important than that. It was real and sad and scary and uplifting all at the same time. Dev Patel and Sunny Pawar were excellent as Saroo. 

Manchester by the Sea This was another movie that felt refreshing and real. I appreciated the funny moments as much as the sad ones and I ugly cried during Affleck's quick scene with Michelle Williams. It was well acted by all involved and really well written, but something was off with the pace for me. I also thought the score was way too loud. It was probably just me, but I found it very distracting.

Moonlight This was the second movie I saw and I found myself comparing the dozens of movies I saw afterward to it. It's my favorite by far. I spent days thinking about it. It was heartbreaking, raw, personal, honest, expertly acted, and beautifully shot. It's an important film that didn't feel like it was shoving it's message down my throat. I really loved it. 


Leeann @ Join the Gossip said...

I've seen zero of these films lol. The only one I had intended to see was Manchester. Only one of my friends likes go to the movies and when we go we usually opt for the light-hearted comedies. I need to catch up though because Kate has an Oscar party each year and predicting movies is so much more fun when you have the slightest clue haha!

Laura Darling said...

I haven't seen any of these movies!! I need to get out more! :) I do kind of want to see LaLaLand. I've heard mixed reviews about it though. I will have to try to see some of these others you loved!

jenn said...

so what bothers me about oscar movies are that i'm generally not inclined to see any of them. of these, the only one i've seen is hacksaw ridge (i loved the story, loathed the battle scenes, but that's par for the course for me for war films, so my gripe isn't that they're badly done, it's that i hate seeing people kill each other.) anway. the only other of these i want to see is hidden figures. i've no desire to see the rest. none. especially lala land. i can't stand musicals as movies, that goes for sound of music and mary poppins. i'd LOVE those two if there weren't so much blasted singing in them. i love ryan gosling. i love emma stone. but i'm not watching that one. and i agree with you, there's way too much hype where that one's concerned.

my biggest beef with oscar movies is that the wrong film wins the prize. the best example of this is steel magnolias vs. driving miss daisy. do you know how many noms steel magnolias got? one: julia roberts for best supporting actress. she didn't win. do you know many noms miss daisy got? nine. it won four: best picture, best screenplay, best actress and best makeup. i'm sorry, but that movie is SHIT.

and the more i'm digging into this comment, the more i'm thinking i should make this a post. so i'll stop here. check out picky for more. later. i've got to do some serious digging.

jenn said...

also, my parents saw manchester by the sea, and they hated it. they did say casey affleck did a really good job, and he deserves recognition for his efforts, but the movie was one of the most depressing things they'd ever seen, and there was no redemption in it. that's my other major grip with oscar films: they choose to reward things that are so bleak and oppressive and depressing. why? WHY?

Misty said...

It's the first year in a long time that I've seen NONE of the films. Maybe 2017 will be better.

Misty said...

BUT I'm taking a couple of days off soon, so I may try to squeeze in a few of the ones that are still in the theater. I really want to see La La Land, Lion and Moonlight.

Tanzir Rahman said...
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Jo said...

I haven't seen any of these yet.... real life is getting in the way and demanding all my time. That said, the husband saw Hacksaw and loved it. I really want to see Hidden Figures and He'll or High water .... crazy I know but I love a good western

Erin of TexErin-in-SydneyLand said...

Great recap. Thank you! I've seen Lion (as you know) and that's the only one. I definitely want to see Hidden Figures, and we were going today only to realize it hasn't been released here yet. I want to see Fences, if only to see the performances of Denzel and Viola. I want to see Moonlight. For some reason, La La Land has excited me. And, I like musicals. Maybe it's the hype surrounding it. Was Emma Stone's performance Oscar material, in your opinion?