The 89th Academy Awards is finally here, but before we catch the live Oscars 2017 awards ceremony on February 26, we take a look at eight of the nominated films we feel you simply must watch. More than being visual spectacles, these masterpieces have touched us each in their own special way.
This sci-fi film is destined to become a classic. Amy Adams stars as a linguist who is tasked by the government to communicate with extraterrestrials which landed on Earth. What started out as a pulse-pounding encounter ends as a tale of choices and loss. The ending is one which will make you think long and hard after the credits have rolled.
Arrival is nominated for Best Picture; Best Director; Best Editing; Best Sound Editing; Best Cinematography; Best Production Design; Best Sound Mixing and Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay). Watch the trailer below:
2. La La Land
It has already won much critical acclaim and awards, including a record number of Golden Globes, but La La Land is predicted to be this year’s top Academy Awards winner, having been nominated for a whopping 14 Oscars! The inspiring musical film will make you laugh and cry, and at the end will still make you want to get up to sing and dance – truly hallmarks of a great film. If you haven’t already caught it, do yourself a favour and watch one of the most talked about films of the year!
La La Land is nominated for Best Picture; Best Actor In A Leading Role; Best Actress In A Leading Role; Best Director; Best Original Music Score; Best Music (Original Song); Best Original Screenplay; Best Cinematography; Best Costume Design; Best Film Editing; Best Sound Editing; Best Production Design and Best Sound Mixing. Watch the trailer below:
Many critics call this film a masterpiece. Weaving a coming-of-age story with socio-political issues, the groundbreaking film portrays the struggles of a young African-American man as he deals with identity, love, family and friendship. The film will touch you on levels deeper than you even realise.
Moonlight is nominated for Best Picture; Best Supporting Actor; Best Supporting Actress; Best Director; Best Original Music Score; Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay); Best Cinematography and Best Film Editing. Watch the trailer below:
4. Hacksaw Ridge
Based on an extraordinary true story of an American soldier, Desmond Doss (portrayed brilliantly by actor Andrew Garfield), who fought on the frontlines World War II without a weapon. The film shows the relentless brutality of war, but also the humanising valour it can bring out of men. As with all films director Mel Gibson has made, it proves that the human spirit can rise above anything it chooses to.
Hacksaw Ridge is nominated for Best Picture; Best Actor; Best Director; Best Film Editing; Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. Watch the trailer below:
5. Hidden Figures
This film is a gem as it tells the untold story of Katherine G. Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson – three brilliant African-American women working at NASA during the early years of its space programme. It celebrates diversity and the unsung heroes and heroines who never got recognised, and pays tribute to the strengths and intellect of women.
Hidden Figures is nominated for Best Picture; Best Supporting Actress and Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay). Watch the trailer below:
Based on a non-fiction book A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley with Larry Buttrose, Lion tells the story of one boy’s journey as he searches for his real mother using Google Maps. The heartbreaking tale is supported by a star-studded cast including Dev Patel, Rooney Mara and Nicole Kidman.
Lion is nominated for Best Picture; Best Supporting Actor; Best Supporting Actress; Best Original Music Score; Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay) and Best Cinematography. Watch the trailer below:
7. Manchester by the Sea
A drama with a lot of heart, Manchester by the Sea tells the story of how a solitary janitor is suddenly asked to take custody of his nephew when his older brother passed away. The film speaks to and touches you on many levels. It is both brave and beautiful, and you will never forget it after watching.
Manchester by the Sea is nominated for Best Picture; Best Actor In A Leading Role; Best Supporting Actor; Best Supporting Actress; Best Director and Best Writing (Original Screenplay). Watch the trailer below:
8. Kubo and the Two Strings
The fantasy tale of a young boy named Kubo who embarks on a quest to find his late father’s enchanted armour is brought to life on the big screen by state-of-the-art animation. We promise you that you have never seen anything like this animated film – the visuals are so astoundingly beautiful and imaginative that you will be left spellbound in your seat throughout. A tour de force that deserves the accolade!
Kubo and the Two Strings is nominated for Best Animated Feature and Best Visual Effects. Watch the trailer below: