And the Oscar goes to: A review of the 2017 Academy Awards and where to see the films

“Moonlight” won for Best Picture.

By Katelyn Kohane


“If you want to view paradise, simply look around and view it. Anything you want to, do it; want to change the world… there’s nothing to it.”

– Gene Wilder in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory


Last year I mentioned a little bit of history for the Oscars. So this year lets dive right into the night of glamor, which started with a great performance by Justin Timberlake.


They had many great presenters including a few from Star Wars including Felicity Jones (Jyn Erso) and Diego Luna (Cassian Andor). Some of the Avengers even “assembled” to present awards such as Chris Evans (Captain America), Scarlet Johnson (Black Widow), and Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury/ Mace Windu). Amy Adams (Lois Lane), Ben Affleck (Batman), and Matt Damon (Jason Bourne) also made an appearance.


The show had some great performances through out the night. Sting performed “The Empty Chair” from Jim: The James Foley Story.  Auli’I Carvalno preformed “How Far Will I Go” from Moana. And Sara Bareilles performed Johi Mitchell’s “Both Sides” for the In Memoriam.


Emma Watson won for Best Actress for “La La Land”

Of course let’s not forget Jimmy Kimmel’s presence as host for the evening. He certainly had his own style for the night even though you could see a little of the Kimmel/ Damon feud throughout the event. However, I did find it funny when Damon tried to trip Kimmel and when Kimmel tried to play Damon off the stage with the orchestra.


The In Memoriam is always a nice touch for the evening and included Prince, Mary Tyler More, Gary Marshal, Gene Wilder, Kenny Baker, Debbie Reynolds, and Carrie Fisher. They even mentioned Bill Paxton who unfortunately passed away over the weekend.


Let’s talk the mishaps. There was Carvalno performance where she was hit in the head with a flag and she continued graciously. And of course, the biggest mishap of the Oscars was the mix up of the envelopes that were given to Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway. No one could believe what happened. The audience in attendance and I would dare say that everyone watching were stunned. You could see their faces drop while watching, however; I thought the cast of La La Land held their own and accepted the mix up with dignity.


And just like that another year has come and gone for the Oscars. And just in case you are wondering where to watch some of these great films, which are still in theaters, you can find them at the following cinemas: AMC Grand Rapids 18 (formerly Star Theater), which has both “La La Land” and “Moonlight.” Many of the Celebration! theaters including North, South and RiverTown are still showing “La La Land;” and Celebration! Woodland has a number of the Academy Award-winning and nominated films including “Fences,” “Moonlight,” “Manchester by the Sea,” “Moana,” and “The Salesman.”


Once again, the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, 2 W. Fulton St., will be featuring the Oscar Nominated Shorts series. There are two sets of documentaries, with Documentary A running through March 26 and Documentary B, which includes the 2017 Oscar winner “The White Helmets,” running through March 28. The animation series, which includes the 2017 winner “Piper,”  and the live action series, which includes the 2017 winner “Sing,” will run through April 1. Check for showtimes at


In Honor of Carrie Fisher (one of my favorites) “May the Force Be With You.”


The full list and the winners of the 89th Academy Award are as follows:


Best Picture: Moonlight

Best Actor: Casey Affleck for Manchester by the Sea

Best Actress: Emma Stone for La La Land

Best Foreign Language Film: The Salesman by Asghar Farhadi

Best Animated Feature Film: Zootopia by Bryon Howard, Rich Moore, and Clark Spencer

Best Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali for Moonlight

Best Supporting Actress: Viola Davis for Fences

Best Documentary Feature: O.J.:Made in America by Ezra Edelman, Caroline Waterlow

Best Director: Damien Chazelle for La La Land

Best Original Music Score: La La Land by Justin Hurwitz

Best Original Screenplay: Manchester by the Sea by Kenneth Lonergan

Best Original Song: City of Stars for La La Land by Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul

Best Writing Adapted Screenplay: Moonlight by Barry Jenkins, Tarell Alvin McCraney

Best Cinematography: Linus Sandgren for La La Land

Best Costume Design: Colleen Atwood for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Fin Them

Best Animated Short Film: Piper by Alan Barillo, Marc Sondhimer

Best Visual Effects: The Jungle Book by Robert Legato, Dan Lemmon

Best Live Action Short Film: Sing by Kristof Deak, Anna Udvardy

Best Film Editing: John Gilbert for Hacksaw Ridge