The 90th Academy Awards held in the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles continue the long-standing tradition of honoring those who gave exceptional performances in a variety of cinematic and technical roles. Hosted by longtime late night host Jimmy Kimmel, there were a multitude of  contenders each bringing their own unique and complex story to the table.
 
Far from a usual romantic, big-budget movie with the biggest stars in the industry, most (if not all) films in this year’s nominations, featured some original story elements that the Oscars and, other film awards ceremonies had prior to this year. For example, the Greta Gerwig-directed “Lady Bird” illustrated an angst-filled, coming of age story of a young teenager and the complicated relationship with her mother. For a film with a slight sci-fi twist, there was Guillermo Del Toro’s “The Shape of Water” which brilliantly told the story of a mute woman  who falls for a South American sea monster. Despite its rather eccentric plot, Del Toro and the film cast and crew delivered a wonderful product.
 
Although, my personal favorite was the Jordan Peele-directed comedy/drama/horror “Get Out,” which portrayed the story of an African American protagonist meeting his white girlfriend’s family for the first time. There were moments of heart-pounding suspense, side-splitting laughter; most importantly, the film was ripe with social commentary on the issues that interracial couples sometimes face.
 
The unofficial theme of the films apparently seemed to be diversity, and this filmed diversity is very needed time given the current cultural landscape of our country. In the time of the #MeToo and the Time’s Up movements and the endless amount of horror stories regarding sexual misconduct from several powerful men, it was pleasant to see Greta Gerwig received the dubious honor of being one of only five women ever to be nominated for Best Director.
 

An image of "Shape of Water" Producer & Director Guillermo Del Toro

“Shape of Water” Producer & Director Guillermo Del Toro (latimes)

Maybe due to the film’s excellent cinematography, surprisingly compelling storyline or maybe it’s Guillermo Del Toro’s uncanny ability to turn anything into a groundbreaking film, “The Shape of Water” won the Oscar for Best Picture against several equally as great films.
 
On top of that, Del Toro’s masterpiece also received the prestigious awards of Best Director, Best Director, Best Original Masterpiece and Best Production Design.
 
Years ago, the idea of a film about a mute woman falling in love with a sea beast seemed to be ridiculous; today, a film like that has claimed high caliber awards at the Oscars. Whats even more fascinating is that we live in a time of endless possibilities and “The Shape of Water” certainly signifies that.
 
Also, I’m sure the millions who saw Jordan Peele’s “Get Out” were as  elated as longtime collaborator Keegan Michael-Key, when the comedian and Obama impersonator turned director won for Best Original Screenplay; the LGBT-centric “Call Me by Your Name” won Best Adapted Screenplay.
 
The Mexican culture-inspired Pixar film “Coco” won awards for Animated Feature Film and  Best Original Song with “Remember Me”. Gary Oldman (Commissioner Jim Gordon in “Batman” and Sirius Black in “Harry Potter”) won Best Actor in a Leading Role for his depiction of former British prime minister Winston Churchill in the movie Darkest Hour. Frances McDormand received the honor of Best Actress in a Leading Role for the movie “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”.
 
Overall, it was a diverse night which featured many well-deserved awards across many films, all of which are worth watching.
 

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