It’s that time of year again, y’all! The coveted little gold men will be passed out this Sunday on ABC and as always, I CANNOT WAIT!! In the spirit of celebrating the best films of this past year, J Chic will be flooded this weekend. I’ll be featuring plenty of glimpses into our annual Oscar viewing party via Instagram, and my favorite Oscar Red Carpet looks from the past few years. And without further ado–let’s kick off Oscar Weekend 2017 with my
Must See Nominees of 2017
Why not start with my favorite nominated film?? Mr. Jay had been going on and on about this film since he first saw it in Telluride. He babbled about it via text message, phone and in person upon his return. All of his talking had me insanely hyped to see this film and guys, it did NOT disappoint. Told in three acts, much like a play, it is the progression of a young black man’s life in Miami. I could make comparisons to other films with similar themes, but I won’t–simply because I don’t want to ruin anything. Through all of Mr. Jay’s loving of this film, he never revealed much about the actual plot and in my opinion, this was an excellent way to approach the film. Seeing the film with mostly a clean slate was great because I was able to take in the unadulterated story. We saw it on my birthday and I liked it, a lot. However, I must admit that I didn’t love it immediately. The first three acts are marvelously executed, but the third didn’t stand quite as strong. I left the theater thinking I’d just seen a great film, but I wasn’t in love….yet. Moonlight is one of those films that really, really sticks with you. I saw it in late November and I still think about it regularly. The direction and performances by almost every single actor were stellar, the story is powerful and relevant, and the soundtrack is amazing. I fully expect to see this film take both supporting actor categories on Sunday.
Manchester by the Sea
This film was the one I had been most excited to see in terms of films that were generating early Oscar buzz. While in the end I love Moonlight more, Manchester is an extremely close second. Manchester by the Sea is the story of a man forced to take care of his teenage nephew after the death of his older brother. The whole vibe of the movie perfectly captures the human experience. Never before have I seen a film that actually felt like life. Manchester is funny when it shouldn’t be(life does that, you know), it’s characters are raw, gritty and human, and it socks you right in the jaw with a twist you’ll never see coming! Casey Affleck gives the performance of a lifetime and Michelle Williams could easily walk out with the Supporting Actress statue.
La La Land
Let’s get one thing clear right from the start–I did not want to like this movie. I have this thing about Oscar caliber films….I want them to be innovative. Much to Mr. Jay’s chagrin I’ve still never seen The Artist, because it irritates me that a black and white film won best picture in 2012. Naturally, I was instantly annoyed that a “classic Hollywood musical” would be generating so much buzz in 2017. Haven’t we seen that before? A million or so times? Yet, I had to see it because I adore the two actors and quite frankly when such a wide audience loves something, I’m intrigued. Seeing La La Land is one of the best decisions I’ve made, y’all. Similarly to Moonlight, I didn’t walk out of the theatre in love but I’m there now. I have the soundtrack memorized, I want the wardrobe, and I’d like a flight to LA booked ASAP. The musical element of this film comes so naturally that it never feels awkward and the dance routines re never forced. This film uses music to tell a story of two star-crossed lovers in the best way I’ve ever seen. Damien Chazelle may have just brought back the musical.
Mr. Jay has seen Arrival three times and it isn’t even out on DVD yet–that is love. This film also has a twist that I definitely didn’t see coming, and although it’s science fiction, it holds it’s own with the heavy contenders in this year’s Best Picture race. It truly is a beautiful story about a day that we all birth fear or eagerly anticipate, and a fresh take on contact with alien life. The sub of may Adams for Best Actress must have simply been because it was a stacked year of performances, as she was excellent.
A film by a fashion designer? Sign me up! I’m going to go ahead and tell you guys, though–Nocturnal Animals is weird as hell. Last summer, when we walked out of Mad Max:Fury Road, I was giddy because deep in my gut, I knew this movie was Oscar gold. I did not feel that way with this film. However, we both were just blown away by Michael Shannon’s performance! He is amazing and the film is worth seeing just to catch his brilliant rendition of a Texas Sheriff with nothing to lose.
What Oscar nominated films have y’all loved this year? Do you plan on watching the awards Sunday?? Thanks so much for reading!