The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has just finished handing out the 90th Annual Academy Awards, ending in a rather surprising finish. Guillermo del Toro's romantic fairy tale "The Shape of Water" has claimed Best Picture, along with Best Director (Del Toro), Best Production Design, and Best Original Score. Christopher Nolan's "Dunkirk" was not far behind with three wins: Best Film Editing, Best Sound Editing, and Best Sound Mixing.
The victory for "The Shape of Water" is rather surprising because, for the first time in over 20 years, a Best Picture winner has won the top prize without having a nomination for Best Cast from SAG, along with another big surprise of not winning its respective Screenplay category on the way to the top. Granted, it was a decent film, but it was hardly the best of these nine. However, I guess it was just the one that the Academy was able to agree on the most.
The only rather large disappointment of the evening was seeing Jordan Peele win Best Original Screenplay for the overrated "Get Out" over deserving nominees like "Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri" and "Lady Bird." However, this mistake was offset by getting to see James Ivory win Best Adapted Screenplay for the wonderful "Call Me by Your Name," as well as finally getting to see Roger Deakins claim the Best Cinematography Oscar on his 14th try.
Overall, it was a rather mixed evening, where great things happened (Sam Rockwell won Best Supporting Actor and Frances McDormand won Best Actress), but where things kind of ended with an unceremonious thud. Will anyone even remember "The Shape of Water" a year from now, let alone ten? It doesn't seem very likely, but sometimes that just the kind of film that The Academy gravitates towards: decent, but rather forgettable. That being said, at least they've taken a step in the right direction. The last two Best Picture winners ("Spotlight" and "Moonlight") were rather mediocre films, so having a decent film win is certainly a step up.
And so, we end another awards season on a somewhat downer note. As usual, all we can really say is that hopefully things will go better next year. Until then, please see below for a complete list of this evening's Oscar winners:
Best Picture: The Shape of Water Best Director: Guillermo del Toro, The Shape of Water Best Actor: Gary Oldman, Darkest Hour Best Actress: Frances McDormand, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri Best Supporting Actor: Sam Rockwell, Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri Best Supporting Actress: Allison Janney, I, Tonya Best Original Screenplay: Jordan Peele, Get Out Best Adapted Screenplay: James Ivory, Call Me by Your Name Best Film Editing: Dunkirk Best Cinematography: Roger Deakins, Blade Runner 2049 Best Production Design: The Shape of Water Best Costume Design: Phantom Thread Best Makeup and Hairstyling: Darkest Hour Best Original Score: The Shape of Water Best Original Song: "Remember Me," Coco Best Sound Editing: Dunkirk Best Sound Mixing: Dunkirk Best Visual Effects: Blade Runner 2049 Best Animated Feature: Coco Best Documentary Feature: Icarus Best Foreign Language Film: A Fantastic Woman Best Live Action Short: The Silent Child Best Animated Short: Dear Basketball Best Documentary Short: Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405