Big winners this year include Drive My Car getting Best International Film and Summer of Soul which showed the importance of archiving historical events directed by The Roots’ Questlove got Best Documentary.
‘Coda’ makes history at this year’s Academy Awards
By Jerrison Oracion, Senior Columnist
It has been slightly more than two years since the Academy Awards happened in person at the Dolby Theatre and when Parasite made history being the first non-English film to win Best Picture. Last year’s edition was considered the worst edition of the awards given the fact it had the lowest ratings in its history. It was low-key because it happened in a train station and there was pandemic confusion during that time.
However, they did emphasize movie theatres making a comeback and we got some highly anticipated films that were surprisingly great. The red carpet was finally rolled out again to celebrate those films at the Academy Awards this year and even brought back hosts including Regina Hall, Wanda Sykes, and Amy Schumer; its theme was movie lovers unite.
Out of the three hosts, Sykes was the funniest host and the only time that I was laughing a lot during the long broadcast was when Sykes dressed up as the Williams sister’s father from King Richard, Hall dressed up like Tammy Faye from The Eyes of Tammy Faye, and Schumer being Spider-Man from Spider-Man: No Way Home. Coda got Best Picture this year making it the first film that was released exclusively on a streaming service and the first film with a mainly deaf cast to win.
I watched the film on Oscar Sunday this year and it resonated with me as it involves a girl living with a fishing family who is mainly deaf while working to pursue her career in singing. It also got Best Supporting Actor for Troy Kotsur who is the second deaf person to get an acting award after fellow co-star Marlee Matlin and Best Adapted Screenplay for director Sian Heder’s script. The writing in the film looks good on the page without even showing it which works well in ASL and amplifies comedic scenes.
This is a big win for Apple TV+ and an upset for Netflix which was trying to get Best Picture for many years. Dune got the most awards with six awards mainly in the artistic categories but some of the categories were not shown live to fit time for some of the performances. There was also a section where they showed the top five films and film moments of last year which wasn’t important since it only takes a few seconds for a winner to get to the stage. Other big winners this year include Drive My Car getting Best International Film and Summer of Soul which showed the importance of archiving historical events directed by The Roots’ Questlove got Best Documentary.
In acting categories, Ariana DeBose became the first Hispanic queer actress to get Best Supporting Actress for the new version of West Side Story, and Jessica Chastain got Best Actress for The Eyes of Tammy Faye. Will Smith finally won Best Actor for King Richard though he might lose it after slapping Chris Rock in the face when Rock made a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith having hair loss. Despite not being injured by the slap, the joke went too far in talking about Pinkett Smith’s illness. This controversy led to the ratings of the award show going up and might have brought light to the diversity amongst Academy Awards winners this year.