Despite mix-up, 89th Academy Awards dazzle

Peter Blanchfield

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Fair Use Image: Moonlightmov Instagram

Although there was confusion, Moonlight prevailed and won Best Picture at the 89th Oscar Awards.

The Oscars have been handed out since 1929. Every year they give out Best Actor, Actress and many other awards praising the many great movies that have come out the year prior. This year there was one film with a record-tying 14 Oscar nominations: La La Land. At the end of the night, they won 6 awards including Emma Stone for Best Actress, but it was the Best Picture debacle that will be what this night is remembered for.

In the culmination of the night, La La Land was announced as the winner of Best Picture. Their large group of cast and crew members ascended on the stage and began to celebrate and deliver their speech. That was when the mistake was discovered, it was not La La Land which won Best Picture, but instead Moonlight had won. The mess-up stemmed from the stagehands handing the announcers the wrong envelope, and it the mistake wasn’t caught until it was too late.

Despite this mess-up, the night was an overall success. Jimmy Kimmel hosted with a sense of humor and refinement that made this one of the more memorable Oscar’s in recent years. Kimmel’s feud with Matt Damon was a great recurring joke which helped keep the night lively and entertaining.

Jimmy Kimmel hosted with a sense of humor and refinement

The Oscar’s also delivered in their more serious moments, including stunning renditions of ” The Empty Chair” by Sting and “How Far I’ll Go” by Auli’i Cravalho. Also throughout the night, actors such as Javier Bardem and Seth Rogen came out and presented awards alongside their inspirations. These touching moments were preceded by short, pre-recorded scenes where the actors would describe how a specific movie and actor inspired them to be artists themselves.

There were many moving moments throughout the night as expected from the Oscars. Viola Davis’ speech brought many in the audience to tears and she received a standing ovation. Later the three lead actresses of Hidden Figures came out and introduced Katherine Johnson, one of the women who was documented in Hidden Figures and also one of the women who helped assist in the US  space program.

Later an Iranian film called The Salesman won Best Foreign Feature Film, but its director was not there to accept the award.  Instead, he sent along a message to be read aloud as he decided to boycott the awards because of the travel ban implemented by Donald Trump. This moving message again brought the crowd to a standstill and set off a huge round of applause and emotion.

At the end of the show came the moment everyone had been waiting for, the memorandum which included many big names. The likes of Gene Wilder, Debbie Reynolds, Prince, and of course Carrie Fischer finished the night off in a sentimental and heartfelt way.