The 90th Academy Awards Was All About The Girls

The 90th Academy Awards Was All About The Girls

And the Oscar goes to...female empowerment!

At the 90th Academy Awards, many records were broken, including the oldest winner ever (James Ivory, Best Adapted Screenplay), the first black screenwriter to win (Jordan Peele), and the first science-fiction film to win Best Picture ("The Shape of Water"). But, the Oscars weren't the only awards show this season to participate in moving towards equality and diversity.

The 2018 Golden Globes red carpet sported lots of black in support of the Time's Up Movement and who could forget Oprah's empowering speech. The 2018 SAG Awards were hosted by Kristen Bell, making a woman the first host of the prestigious ceremony. The 2018 awards season has included many record-breaking moments and increased diversity has slowly been showing in the nominations throughout the years.

With many notable women coming forward with sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein and other powerful figures in Hollywood, the #MeToo and #TimesUp Movements have been at the core of all the awards shows this year. However, women in the entertainment industry have really taken advantage of the huge platform these award shows provide to spread awareness of female empowerment and inequality. At Hollywood's biggest night last Sunday, there were several moments where some women truly took the spotlight and focused in on the betterment of the future.

Here are some moments from this year's Oscars that focused on the importance of gender equality and had every female member in the audience and watching the show go, "You go, girl!"

1. Frances McDormand's acceptance speech for Best Actress

Francis McDormand won her second Oscar for her performance in "3 Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri." She gave a shout-out to Chloe Kim's halfpipe run at the Winter Olympics this year, which gathered a round of applause from the audience. Besides taking a moment to thank those who had helped her with her performance, she also summoned all of the other female nominees in every category to stand with her for the remainder of the speech.

Expressing the "stories to tell and projects we need financed." She ended her speech with the term "inclusion rider," a reference to something actors and actresses put in their contracts to ensure racial and gender equality in hiring on movie sets. Frances had a true Cady Heron moment in sharing her win with all the women in the audience.

2. Jennifer Lawrence and Jodie Foster presenting the award for Best Actress

In Academy tradition, the Best Actor winner from the previous year has the honor of presenting the award for Best Actress at the ceremony. This year, that would have been Casey Affleck. However, he decided not to attend this year's ceremony because he "didn't want to be a distraction."

His win last year led to major controversy due to sexual assault allegations against him. The producer's decision to have two women present this award and the Best Actor award (Jane Fonda and Helen Mirren) signify an intolerance for any behavior of that sort.

3. Oscar commercials

Several of the advertisements this year during the Oscars highlighted female empowerment. Among these included Nest, which featured a father-son narrative of the importance of respecting women. Another, Samsung, which show two young women struggling to create something inspiring. Twitter also ran an ad that started the hashtag campaign, #HereWeAre.

4. Rachel Morrison makes history

Rachel Morrison became the first female nominee in the category, Best Cinematography, for her work in "Mudbound." Although she didn't leave with an Oscar, her nomination paves the way for other women cinematographers and made history.

5. Jimmy Kimmel's monologue

Hosting the Oscars is no easy task. In between his comical banter, Jimmy Kimmel took time to include a political statement. He touched on topics such as Harvey Weinstein, Rachel Morrison, Greta Gerwig, and the importance of listening to the message of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements.

6. Greta Gerwig

Greta Gerwig became the first female director to be nominated for Best Director in almost eight years, surrounded by all men in her category. Her film, "Lady Bird," also gathered five nominations for the night. She also didn't go home with an Oscar but gathered plenty of support from other women throughout her awards season run and another nomination for Best Screenplay.

7. Diversity of nominated films

Plenty of films that garnered nominations at the Academy Awards touched on issues and made statements. "I, Tonya," "Call Me By Your Name," and 'Get Out," all had themes of homosexuality, racial tension, and female empowerment and were all nominated for the most prestigious award, Best Picture.

8. #MeToo movement tribute

While the messages behind #TimesUp and #MeToo were present in many aspects of the 2018 Oscars, there was a #MeToo tribute video that was presented at the ceremony. The video features a montage of activists, actresses, directors, and others highlighting the importance of speaking out and the exposure of misconduct. The video was presented by Ashley Judd, Salma Hayek, and Annabella Sciorra; all three have spoken out publicly against Harvey Weinstein and in support of #MeToo.

While the fight for equality is far from over, the platform of the Academy Awards highlights not only the impact of the film, but this year gave a voice to many women to share the importance of equality. Hollywood's biggest night served a bigger purpose than just movies this year, and for that, we can say that the movement is gaining even more leverage and progress is on the way.

All of those who spoke out against it are true girl bosses and activists, whose courageous voices make an impact and positively affect the cause.

Cover Image Credit: Flickr

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9 Reasons Crocs Are The Only Shoes You Need

Crocs have holes so your swag can breathe.

Do you have fond childhood objects that make you nostalgic just thinking about your favorite Barbie or sequenced purse? Well for me, its my navy Crocs. Those shoes put me through elementary school. I eventually wore them out so much that I had to say goodbye. I tried Airwalks and sandals, but nothing compared. Then on my senior trip in New York City, a four story Crocs store gleamed at me from across the street and I bought another pair of Navy Blue Crocs. The rest is history. I wear them every morning to the lake for practice and then throughout the day to help air out my soaking feet. I love my Crocs so much, that I was in shock when it became apparent to me that people don't feel the same. Here are nine reasons why you should just throw out all of your other shoes and settle on Crocs.

1. They are waterproof.

These bad boys can take on the wettest of water. Nobody is sure what they are made of, though. The debate is still out there on foam vs. rubber. You can wear these bad boys any place water may or may not be: to the lake for practice or to the club where all the thirsty boys are. But honestly who cares because they're buoyant and water proof. Raise the roof.

2. Your most reliable support system

There is a reason nurses and swimming instructors alike swear by Crocs. Comfort. Croc's clogs will make you feel like your are walking on a cloud of Laffy Taffy. They are wide enough that your toes are not squished, and the rubbery material forms perfectly around your foot. Added bonus: The holes let in a nice breeze while riding around on your Razor Scooter.

3. Insane durability

Have you ever been so angry you could throw a Croc 'cause same? Have you ever had a Croc bitten while wrestling a great white shark? Me too. Have you ever had your entire foot rolled like a fruit roll up but had your Crocs still intact? Also me. All I know is that Seal Team 6 may or may not have worn these shoes to find and kill Osama Bin Laden. Just sayin'.

4. Bling, bling, bling

Jibbitz, am I right?! These are basically they're own money in the industry of comfortable footwear. From Spongebob to Christmas to your favorite fossil, Jibbitz has it all. There's nothing more swag-tastic than pimped out crocs. Lady. Killer.

5. So many options

From the classic clog to fashionable sneakers, Crocs offer so many options that are just too good to pass up on. They have fur lined boots, wedges, sandals, loafers, Maryjane's, glow in the dark, Minion themed, and best of all, CAMO! Where did your feet go?!

6. Affordable

Crocs: $30

Feeling like a boss: Priceless

7. Two words: Adventure Straps

Because you know that when you move the strap from casual mode chillin' in the front to behind the heal, it's like using a shell on Mario Cart.

8. Crocs cares

Okay, but for real, Crocs is a great company because they have donated over 3 million pairs of crocs to people in need around the world. Move over Toms, the Croc is in the house.

9. Stylish AF

The boys will be coming for you like Steve Irwin.

Who cares what the haters say, right? Wear with pride, and go forth in style.

Cover Image Credit: Chicago Tribune

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From One Nerd To Another

My contemplation of the complexities between different forms of art.


Aside from reading Guy Harrison's guide to eliminating scientific ignorance called, "At Least Know This: Essential Science to Enhance Your Life" and, "The Breakthrough: Immunotherapy and the Race to Cure Cancer" by Charles Graeber, an informative and emotional historical account explaining the potential use of our own immune systems to cure cancer, I read articles and worked on my own writing in order to keep learning while enjoying my winter break back in December. I also took a trip to the Guggenheim Museum.

I wish I was artistic. Generally, I walk through museums in awe of what artists can do. The colors and dainty details simultaneously inspire me and remind me of what little talent I posses holding a paintbrush. Walking through the Guggenheim was no exception. Most of the pieces are done by Hilma af Klint, a 20th-century Swedish artist expressing her beliefs and curiosity about the universe through her abstract painting. I was mostly at the exhibit to appease my mom (a K - 8th-grade art teacher), but as we continued to look at each piece and read their descriptions, I slowly began to appreciate them and their underlying meanings.

I like writing that integrates symbols, double meanings, and metaphors into its message because I think that the best works of art are the ones that have to be sought after. If the writer simply tells you exactly what they were thinking and how their words should be interpreted, there's no room for imagination. An unpopular opinion in high school was that reading "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne was fun. Well, I thought it was. At the beginning of the book, there's a scene where Hawthorne describes a wild rosebush that sits just outside of the community prison. As you read, you are free to decide whether it's an image of morality, the last taste of freedom and natural beauty for criminals walking toward their doom, or a symbol of the relationship between the Puritans with their prison-like expectations and Hester, the main character, who blossoms into herself throughout the novel. Whichever one you think it is doesn't matter, the point is that the rosebush can symbolize whatever you want it to. It's the same with paintings - they can be interpreted however you want them to be.

As we walked through the building, its spiral design leading us further and further upwards, we were able to catch glimpses of af Klint's life through the strokes of her brush. My favorite of her collections was one titled, "Evolution." As a science nerd myself, the idea that the story of our existence was being incorporated into art intrigued me. One piece represented the eras of geological time through her use of spirals and snails colored abstractly. She clued you into the story she was telling by using different colors and tones to represent different periods. It felt like reading "The Scarlet Letter" and my biology textbook at the same time. Maybe that sounds like the worst thing ever, but to me it was heaven. Art isn't just art and science isn't just science. Aspects of different studies coexist and join together to form something amazing that will speak to even the most untalented patron walking through the museum halls.

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