It has been a few days now since the debocle of the 89th Oscars. Unless you have been living under a rock, you would know that there was a major mishap in delivering the Oscar for best picture. The Oscar originally was awarded to "La La Land," but the actual winner was "Moonlight."
Old timers Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway took a while to announce the film. Audiences believed Beatty was just playing around with Faye and the crowd, making them extra anxious after all the buzz surrounding the event this year. When Dunaway finally took the lead and announced "La La Land" as the winner, cheers erupted. The "La La Land" team quickly took the stage, after already winning the categories for best original score, cinematography,production design, leading actress, and director. It was an exciting win for the team, but a very expected outcome for viewers. In fact,it added a little flare to the relative blandness of the show.
The real craziness happened right after film producer — Fred Berger — spoke. He grudgingly announced that they had lost into the microphone. Producer of "La La Land,"Justin Horowitz, heroically claimed that there had been a mistake and the real winner was "Moonlight." He even held up the letter that was supposed to be delivered by The Academy.The cast of Moonlight stole the stage in happiness and tears. Who'd a thunk! What a triumphant night for queer people, black actors, and independent films everywhere!
When all of the madness was happening, I thought that this was another Adele Grammy performance, where the winner felt undeserving and was giving another artist an award themselves. However, it turns out that Beatty had received another envelope copy for best actress, which read: "Emma Stone- La La Land." I personally felt bad for the old man, but at the same time come on dude! He knew from the moment he opened that envelope that something was not right. Instead of just embarrassing himself, he embarrassed the teams of both "Moonlight" and "La La Land."
The night ended quite awkwardly with Jimmy Fallon awkwardly trying to save the show with laughter, but frankly there was no hope. My roommates and I sat there in shock at what we had just seen. We kept rewinding to see the very "oh shit moment" when things began to go wrong. It is ultimately probably some interns fault who printed two of the same award on accident. Regardless someone is getting fired!
As for the actual results, I am very happy "Moonlight" won. Not only were the technical aspects such as acting, cinematography, and writing absolutely amazing, but the social impact it had was revolutionary (also that soundtrack it to die for). 2016-2017 was a great year for the film industry, but it was hard to take sides on a specific movie. I personally felt that a lot of the films that were up for the same categories were not comparable. The theme for unhappy endings is one that I am LOVING! After watching "Lion," and its classic Hollywood finished happy ending, I was sort of unfulfilled. Films such as "Moonlight," "La La Land," "Fences," and "Manchester by the Sea," all gave me ambiguous endings and raw emotion.
We are in a new era of film. Many older generations have expressed unease at this, but I am a huge fan. It is a perspective I think we should relish in. A more inclusive and diverse Academy and industry is ultimately a good thing. I am excited to see what film has in store for us in the next few years.