The 92nd Academy Awards was on February 9th, 2020. For any avid film lover
(such as myself) this is an exciting time where the best-of-the-best are highlighted and rewarded
for their outstanding work of the past year. Although oftentimes, the Academy fails to recognize
those who really deserve it. Here are some of the highlights of the night along with the lowlights
and the snubbed!
The Best: Parasite Sweeps
Parasite, directed by Bong Joon-ho, took no prisoners this award season. The film took home
best original screenplay, best international feature, best director, and most impressive of all, best
feature overall. With the Academy facing monumental criticism in the past for their lack of
diversity during award season; Parasite being the first foreign language film ever to win best
picture is pretty significant just in itself. Personally, I am ecstatic that the Academy recognized
Parasite for the outrageously clever and fantastical film that it is. It truly proves that originality is
in fact still alive while simultaneously challenging others in the industry to step up their game.
The film does a magnificent job of taking class and status, and turning it into a symbolic
masterpiece that only a true genius could emulate. In the end you could truly see the excitement
radiating from the audience and the cast itself; making it quite a night to remember!
The Worst: Female Directors Are Overlooked Once Again
The Oscars has a long and absurd history of not recognizing the brilliant works of female
directors. Even with the outstanding top-notch female directed films that conquered this year, it
appears that the Academy is still in denial. Greta Gerwig for instance, wrote and directed the film
adaptation for the novel Little Women, which she received not a single nod for from the
Academy. What makes this a particular upset is how the film was critically acclaimed with an
impressive score of 95% on Rotten Tomatoes, and at the least deserved a nomination. The
disappointment from the fans at home and the fellow actresses itself was crystal clear, as Natalie
Portman even made a Dior cape that was embroidered with the last names of those snubbed
female directors that didn’t make the male-dominated lineup. While watching, I was shocked
that Gerwig, along with the rest of the cast, did not take home a single award for all the hard
work put into the film.
The Snubbed: Adam Sandler for Uncut Gems
Before I start, I will say this; Uncut Gems was not my favorite film of the year, but Adam
Sandler gave one of the best performances of his career, and that should not of been dismissed.
Uncut Gems was a captivating and anxiety-inducing film about a jeweler from New York who is
always on the lookout for the best big score. Sandler portrays a man with a serious gambling
addiction who tries to balance family, business and adversaries while neglecting to come to terms
with his addiction. The film excelled in being a whirlwind of chaos while keeping the audience
on their toes the whole time. Sandler is usually type-cast in Hollywood as being “the funny
man,” and while we love to see that side of him, this side was nonetheless a breath of fresh air.
But sadly, it is not surprising that the Academy shut out Sandler’s Oscar-worthy performance, as
it typically does the same to others that experiment outside their typical film element. As I’m
sure critics and fans alike would agree, I would of loved to see Sandler’s name up with the others
at least nominated for best actor.
While the Academy has come a long way — it has serious hurdles to overcome
before we can call the process fair and orderly.