Olivia La Bianca
Online Editor

Courtesy of Getty Images via BBC News

If you were unable to watch the 2015 Academy Awards last night or simply did not care that much, here is a brief recap of the most prestigious wins, the more surprising moments, and the contentions already arising from national media circuits.

The Important Parts

  • Best Picture award went to Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance). 
  • Best Actor went to Eddie Redmayne for his performance as Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything. 
  • Best Actress went to Julianne Moore for her performance as a linguistics professor diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s in Still Alice.

Notable mentions go to both Whiplash and The Grand Budapest Hotel, which did surprisingly well and received four Oscars each.

The Good Parts

  • In a tribute to the 50th anniversary of The Sound of Music, Lady Gaga performed a medley from the famous soundtrack. She was applauded by Julie Andrews herself, who said it “warmed her heart”. Andrews then proceeded to give the award for Best Soundtrack to The Grand Budapest Hotel.
  • Best Supporting Actress Patricia Arquette (nominated for her role in Boyhood), used her time on stage to give a passionate speech for women’s equal pay. She was cheered on passionately by Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lopez.
  • Common and John Legend gave a stirring performance of Selma’s “Glory“, which won Best Original Song, which moved many members of the audience to tears.

The Bad Parts

  • There is some controversy over the fact that American Sniper only won Sound Editing, despite its success at the box office and multiple Oscar nominations. Some people have also pointed out that there was no memorial for or acknowledgment of Chris Kyle, the film’s subject, even though his wife was in the audience.
  • Patricia Arquette’s speech about wage equality also raised some red flags on Twitter, especially when she suggested backstage that LGBTQ and racial equality activists were not fighting the feminist battle.
  • Neil Patrick Harris also got slammed for a hosting performance that was not up to par with expectations. NPR critic Linda Holmes even mourned for the days of Billy Crystal. His lowest point may have been after making a crude joke about Best Documentary winner Dana Perry’s dress two minutes after she talked about her son’s suicide.
  • Finally, Huffington Post is calling this year the worst year for diversity since 1998. This is due to both the lack of Oscar wins for Selma and the fact that most of the nominated films starred white male protagonists.

For a full synopsis of Oscar wins and highlights, click here.


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