This past Sunday, ABC broadcast the three-hourlong 90th Annual Academy Awards, hosted this year by Jimmy Kimmel.
Kimmel’s opening monologue was on point and mixed comedy with political commentary. He joked that there were so many nominees making history that “if you are a nominee tonight who isn’t making history, shame on you.” Though Kimmel was joking, he made a very good point.
He mentioned in his monologue how, at 22 years old, Timothée Chalamet was the youngest Best Actor nominee in nearly 80 years. Christopher Plummer was the oldest Best Actor nominee ever at 88 years old. Greta Gerwig was the first female nominated for Best Director in eight years.
Jordan Peele was only the third person in the history of the Oscars to be nominated for Best Original Screenplay, Best Picture and Best Director for his debut film. After Kimmel mentioned all of these milestones in the first 10 minutes, there was a certain feeling in the air that last night’s Oscars would be big.
Something everyone always wants to know after each Academy Awards is who was the biggest winner of the night. Somewhat unsurprisingly, that distinction goes to “The Shape of Water,” which came away with four Oscars after being nominated for 13 separate awards.
Though “The Shape of Water” didn’t come away with every big award – Sally Hawkins lost out to Frances McDormand for Best Leading Actress – it still captured some high-profile wins. Director Guillermo del Toro captured his first two Oscars with wins for both Best Director and the biggest award of the night, Best Picture.
Del Toro gave an extremely heartfelt acceptance speech for each win, and his speeches were especially poignant in today’s political climate. He talked about growing up in Mexico and achieving his childhood dream of becoming a filmmaker.
Guillermo del Toro has been in the movie business for nearly 25 years, and he had never won an Academy Award before Sunday. In fact, he had only been nominated for two awards in the past – Best Original Screenplay and Best Foreign Film, both for “Pan’s Labyrinth” in 2007. It was truly a satisfying moment for any of del Toro’s loyal fanbase to see him recognized on a national scale as the talented artist he has always been.
Guillermo del Toro’s speeches were not the only heartfelt moments of the night, though. In what some would consider one of the biggest surprises of the night, Jordan Peele came away with the award for Best Original Screenplay for “Get Out.” In some ways, it truly did feel like Peele’s night as the Dolby Theatre erupted into cheers when “Get Out” was named in the nominees. What made Peele’s acceptance speech unique and emotional was the genuine appreciation he expressed by thanking every fan of the film for assisting in making it the enormous success it was.
However, what was easily the most emotional moment of the night was the acceptance speech of Frances McDormand for Best Leading Actress. She was so shocked and nervous that she fumbled over her words a little as she spoke on stage, but at a certain point in her speech, she asked every woman in the room who was nominated for an award to stand up to receive some recognition and be taken seriously in the future. McDormand’s sharing of the spotlight was the tear-jerking moment of the night.
Other big winners include “Call Me By Your Name” for Best Adapted Screenplay, Allison Janney for Best Supporting Actress for her role in “I, Tonya,” Gary Oldman for Best Actor for his portrayal of Winston Churchill in “Darkest Hour” and “Coco” for Best Animated Feature.
The Oscars was not all serious, though. There was a contest to see who could deliver the shortest acceptance speech, with the winner receiving a jet ski. Mark Bridges, costume designer for “The Phantom Thread,” won the jet ski. Jimmy Kimmel gathered a group of actors to go surprise an audience at the nearby movie theater with snacks and a hot dog launcher.
Overall, the 90th Academy Awards had its serious moments and its fun moments, and anyone who tuned in definitely enjoyed the show.