Ranking The Best Picture Nominees Of 2017
Start writing a post
Entertainment

Ranking The Best Picture Nominees Of 2017

Having watched all of these films over the last month, I have some thoughts on which ones were the best.

103
Ranking The Best Picture Nominees Of 2017
Bustle

It's become a tradition for my friends and I to watch as many Oscar movies as we can between the nomination announcement and the ceremony. In the two previous years, I've done well enough, watching most of the Best Picture winners and some others, but this year I have been on top of it. With a little over a week until the Oscars ceremony (on my birthday nonetheless), I've finished all nine Best Picture nominees and quite a few more. And it was exciting to watch nine distinct films, all very different in tone, style, and substance.

So in case you don't want to sit through all nine nominated movies, here's my ranking, based on my personal enjoyability of the films. Though some rank higher than others, I will say all nine films were well made and good in their own way.

WARNING: Light spoilers ahead.

9. Fences

I really wanted to love this one. It was filmed a neighborhood over from me in the Hill District of Pittsburgh, so I was excited to see it. But this wasn't a movie. This was a play performed on film. For the most part.

Sanitation worker, Troy Maxson deals with family drama in this adaptation of the famous August Wilson play. Troy is a truly unlikeable man, arrogant, abusive, and hypocritical. I couldn't get attached to anyone in this film because of the long rambling monologues and boring stage direction, whoops, I mean film directing. Let's be honest this is a direct adaption of the play with no changes. The lines were delivered so quickly to keep the runtime down that I could barely comprehend what was being said, and definitely couldn't garner an emotional response.

Denzel Washington was solid, but he seemed too rehearsed. Others actors nominated had to go to deep places of grief or happiness, completely embodying an emotion. Denzel never let himself lose control in a character he played on Broadway and knew like the back of his hand. Viola Davis on the other hand, gave me chills. She has one scene that will singlehandedly win her an Oscar and I couldn't be happier for it.

8. Hell of High Water

Ugh. I know some people love this film, but I just couldn't get into it. I can objectively see that it is well made and well acted, but I was so damn bored I can barely remember what happened.

Brothers Tanner and Toby rob banks in Texas to pay off their deceased mother's mortgage with a soon to be retired ranger on their tail. And until the last twenty minutes of the movie, that's all they do.

The only reason this ranked higher than "Fences" is because it felt like a film, while the former felt like a stage play poorly adapted into a movie.

7. Hacksaw Ridge

I don't like war movies. There are some very well-made ones, but I don't like all the blood and gore and frantic movements that seem commonplace on the filmed battlefield. That's why I was glad that most of the movie didn't take place during a fight.

Desmond Doss enlists as a conscientious objector in the US Army during World War II to be a medic and help people. He is harassed by his fellow soldiers and higher ups because he does not want to touch a gun due to his father's violent outbursts in the past. But when they arrive at Okinawa, Doss proves that firing a gun does not make a man brave.

When the fighting started, I had to look away from the absolute horror. It was scarily gruesome and despite my fierce hatred toward Mel Gibson, he did really good job directing the busy war sequences.

6. Hidden Figures

This family-friendly inspiring story doesn't really fit in with the rest of these films. It is mostly light-hearted while the others are clearly made for adults, but that's what makes it exciting.

African American mathematician Katherine Johnson finds herself working as a "computer" for the Space Task Team, the first of her race and sex to do so. Following is the typical segregation story with a satisfying ending of empowerment. So it's a little cliche, but it's still inspiring, not just for blacks, but also women.

This is the only Oscar film I would recommend to kids and adults alike. It is easy to understand and connect with.

5. Arrival

When I saw that this was about aliens, I was not excited, but this film surprised me. Linguist Louise Banks is brought to a military camp set up next to one of twelve spacecrafts that have landed on Earth. Her job is to communicate with the aliens, but are they friends or foes?

I dragged out watching this one for a while. I'm not a big science fiction fan, despite my Star Wars love. This film is hardly sci-fi. There are aliens and spaceships, but there is no journey into space or destructive attacks. It is about one woman and her past, present, and future as changed by these aliens. There were some major twists that shocked and excited me. It's an entertaining and mind-twisting watch.

4. Manchester by the Sea

Wow. This movie was depressing.

The film follows Lee Chandler who returns home after many years to take care of his nephew after his brother Joe's untimely death. Oh, you thought that was the sad part? Just wait. The film has many flashbacks to show how the Chandler family got into this situation, including a twist that will devastate you. I won't spoil it because it is the epitome of a gut punch.

So why do I like this depressing film? It's brilliantly written and perfectly acted. Each actor has a scene that in my opinion is worthy of an Oscar. Despite the controversy surrounding him, there is no doubt in my mind that Casey Affleck deserves to win Best Actor. And it deserves the screenplay award for making me laugh at the dark humor in between trying not to cry.

3. La La Land

While it's definitely overrated, "La La Land" is a good time at the movies. The story follows aspiring actress Mia and jazz pianist Sebastian as they struggle for success in sunny Los Angeles. This movie is being lauded as a masterpiece, and while I think that is a little too far, it is one of the most re-watchable of this year's Oscar films. Brightly colored and stylishly filmed, "La La Land" is for the dreamers out there.

What else can I say? You've probably already heard a hundred people talk about it. Go see it. You'll have a good time.

2. Lion

This is a true story that will inspire. Young Saroo, and Indian boy out with his brother, falls asleep on a bench and gets stuck on a train that takes him hundreds of miles away from home, where he is eventually adopted by an Australian couple. Twenty years later, Saroo begins searching for his home, hoping to find his mother and brother again, using Google Earth.

This was such an emotional story about the dedication of family and the love we share. I usually hate subtitles, but I was enthralled by the adorable little boy, who got separated from his family and fought to find his way back home.

1. Moonlight

It's difficult to put into words why I loved this movie so much. It's not a flashy story.

Similar to "Boyhood" two years ago, the film follows Chiron, a black boy living with a drug addicted mother, through three stages of life, as a quiet boy, a sexually confused teenager, and a twenty-something drug dealer. However, "Moonlight" does this with three separate actors who seamlessly merge into one complete character.

So why is this my favorite Oscar movie of the year? I really don't know. "Lion" is more emotional. "La La Land" is more flashy. "Manchester" is more depressing. But, "Moonlight" moved me. It took me outside of my comfort zone and made me love a character I have absolutely nothing in common with. And I'm still trying to figure out what the pink and blue lights mean. It's not for everyone, but "Moonlight" is the 2017 Oscar movie that I loved the most.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Student Life

Social Media Or Soul Media

To the generation that cares way too much about affirmation.

142
Emma Smith
  • This semester I am taking the ever so famous class, Writing 101. Walking into it, I had heard the horror stories about each major assignment. I have to admit, it’s not a class that I am fond of. But, major assignment #2 got me thinking, we had to create a research question based off of a topic that we are interested in.

Two weeks prior, I watched a very interesting documentary on Netflix. Miss Representation was recommended to me by one of my friends and I have to say the topic is absolutely mind blowing. Social Media and Female Body Image. How Social Media makes girls see this unnatural perfection of ‘beauty’ that really doesn’t exist. But female body image isn’t the only thing affected by social media.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Sex And The Church

A letter to fellow believers.

714
Amanda Hayes
  • I know many of you just read that title and thought it was scandalous to see something so “risque” in the same setting as something holy. Well guess what – sex is part of that. Everyone seems to think they are separate, which makes since because most people treat them as though they are complete polar opposites. Shall we think this through?

Who created the Church body? God. Who created the body? Also God. If we know God to be the creator of all things, we cannot leave sex out of that equation. God created sex, people! Praise Him! Like all great things, the world has twisted and perverted it. The world has stained it so badly that even many church congregations see it only as stained and keep quiet about that part of God’s word. Many people know that God told Adam and Eve to “be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:28), but a lot of people overlook the entirety of Song of Solomon. The entire book is dedicated to telling of the love and sex between man and wife. God blessed us with the gift of intimacy, one to be shared between husband and wife. Church if we teach of sex as the blessing that it is, more people will start treating it as such. If we stop viewing sex as this unspeakable act, the temptation would be lessened. With the fall of man, humans naturally desire things they should not have. So if more people speak of it with gladness and praise, and do not hide it in the darkness as if it were vile, fewer people would be drawn to it for the wrong reasons. More people would appreciate it for what it is: a gift from God.

Keep Reading... Show less
Tumblr

Chick-fil-A, I love you.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

An open letter to my father

What you did sounds dumb to me

2444
An open letter to my father
The Truth About My Parents' Divorce

Considering im 18 now & you're one of the best men i've ever met since you have a child; me. I want you to know that I love you, more than anyone, I love you. I don't forgive you for the way you hurt my mother. I'm hurt because you broke our family. Thing went down hill the day you found Laquita. You we're distant & shortly after my mother turned into the coldest, saddest women to walk past me. She's my best friend & so are you. Not one day goes by where I don't wonder what she did wrong. How on earth could you trade your family & the women who loved you unconditionally for a home wrecker? Sounds dumb to me.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Is God Reckless?

Exploring the controversy behind the popular worship song "Reckless Love"

2853
Is God Reckless?


First things first I do not agree with people getting so caught up in the specific theology of a song that they forget who they are singing the song to. I normally don't pay attention to negative things that people say about worship music, but the things that people were saying caught my attention. For example, that the song was not biblical and should not be sung in churches. Worship was created to glorify God, and not to argue over what kind of theology the artist used to write the song. I was not made aware of the controversy surrounding the popular song "Reckless Love" by Cory Asbury until about a week ago, but now that I am aware this is what I have concluded.The controversy surrounding the song is how the term reckless is used to describe God's love. This is the statement that Cory Asbury released after many people questioned his theology regarding his lyrics. I think that by trying to clarify what the song was saying he added to the confusion behind the controversy.This is what he had to say,
"Many have asked me for clarity on the phrase, "reckless love". Many have wondered why I'd use a "negative" word to describe God. I've taken some time to write out my thoughts here. I hope it brings answers to your questions. But more than that, I hope it brings you into an encounter with the wildness of His love.When I use the phrase, "the reckless love of God", I'm not saying that God Himself is reckless. I am, however, saying that the way He loves, is in many regards, quite so. What I mean is this: He is utterly unconcerned with the consequences of His actions with regards to His own safety, comfort, and well-being. His love isn't crafty or slick. It's not cunning or shrewd. In fact, all things considered, it's quite childlike, and might I even suggest, sometimes downright ridiculous. His love bankrupted heaven for you. His love doesn't consider Himself first. His love isn't selfish or self-serving. He doesn't wonder what He'll gain or lose by putting Himself out there. He simply gives Himself away on the off-chance that one of us might look back at Him and offer ourselves in return.His love leaves the ninety-nine to find the one every time."
Some people are arguing that song is biblical because it makes reference to the scripture from Matthew 28:12-14 and Luke 15. Both of these scriptures talk about the parable of the lost sheep and the shepherd. The shepherd symbolizes God and the lost sheep are people that do not have a relationship with God. On the other hand some people are arguing that using the term reckless, referring to God's character is heretical and not biblical. I found two articles that discuss the controversy about the song.The first article is called, "Reckless Love" By Cory Asbury - "Song Meaning, Review, and Worship Leading Tips." The writer of the article, Jake Gosselin argues that people are "Making a mountain out of a molehill" and that the argument is foolish. The second article, "God's Love is not Reckless, Contrary to What You Might Sing" by author Andrew Gabriel argues that using the term reckless is irresponsible and that you cannot separate Gods character traits from God himself. For example, saying that God's love is reckless could also be argued that God himself is reckless. Reckless is typically not a word that someone would use to describe God and his love for us. The term reckless is defined as (of a person or their actions) without thinking or caring about the consequences of an action. However, Cory Asbury is not talking about a person, he is talking about God's passionate and relentless pursuit of the lost. While I would not have chosen the word reckless, I understand what he was trying to communicate through the song. Down below I have linked two articles that might be helpful if you are interested in reading more about the controversy.


Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments