Epic Movie Marathon -The Oscars, 2017 Edition

An Epic Movie Marathon is where I, your humble blogger watch a big group of movies, write reviews, and then reveal my favorites. But it all starts with a list and a prediction.

It’s been five years since I discussed the Oscars, (although I’ve watched them every year) and I’m significantly more excited about the nominees this year than the last time it came up. After the #OscarsSoWhite protests the past two years, this year we finally saw some improvement in the diversity of nominations. The Best Picture nominees include several stories of people of color, a thoughtful sci-fi piece, and a film with GLBT characters. I find myself excited to watch all but couple of the options and even those two still sound like interesting stories. With my local art theater showing the full slate over the next couple of weeks I’ve decided to watch and review all of them, plus a few extra if I can sneak them in. February is a cold, dark time in my part of the world and cramming 10 or 15 movies into 28 days sounds like a good way to forget the winter blues.

The List

  • “La La Land”
  • “Arrival”
  • “Lion”
  • “Hell or High Water”
  • “Hidden Figures”
  • “Moonlight”
  • “Hacksaw Ridge”
  • “Manchester By The Sea”
  • “Fences”

Bonus Films

  • “Jackie”
  • “Elle”
  • “Nocturnal Animals”
  • “Kubo And The Two Strings”
  • “Moana”
  • “My Life As A Zucchini”

Having watched a little less than half of the movies that are up for Best Picture, I feel confident in making some sweeping guesses about what will win, and what I will think should win at the end of this mad adventure.

Full disclosure, at this point I’ve seen “La La Land”, “Arrival”, “Manchester By The Sea”, and “Fences”.

The Prediction

In different years I think all of these movies stood a chance to win, but this year was great one for the kind of pictures that the Academy generally picks. So much so that I think it’s a toss up. “La La Land” is the industry movie, visually captivating with a fabulous score and all the charm that Ryan Gosling could bring. Hopeful and bittersweet it is definitely a movie for the dreamers. It would be the clear winner if it weren’t for “Hidden Figures”, a fictionalized story of the lives of three scientists fighting the tides of racism and misogyny that were set against their success. Played to perfection by Janelle Monae, Octavia Spencer and Taraji P. Henson the three African-American women brought change to NASA that has persisted and grown to this day.

But I Think…

I loved “La La Land” I haven’t stopped listening to the soundtrack since I saw the movie and it still makes me feel all romantic and squishy inside when I think about the end.

I haven’t seen “Hidden Figures” yet but I’m expecting to love that as well. Janelle Monae and Octavia Spencer are fabulous and I love their respective bodies of work. I’ve researched NASA’s history of discrimination against women and people of color for a short story and I’m looking forward to seeing their contributions represented on screen.

Even with all of that, I think my pick will be “Moonlight”. Everything I’ve seen about that film looks intriguing and like it will make me feel all possible emotions at the same time. Those are the best kind of movies.

Now to watch the rest of the movies and see if I’m right. Keep an eye out for my “La La Land” review, the first installment of the Oscars 2017 edition of Epic Movie Marathon.


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