By: Riley Heruska
Every year, the same thing happens: the Academy Awards are aired, and even though you camp out to watch the winners accept their golden prizes and make speeches, you feel a little guilty because you’ve only watched two of the movies on the nominee list. Enough of that. This year, check out the movies before the winners are announced so you can truly applaud them and enjoy the show!
Thankfully, you’ve still got over a month and a half to catch up on the best movies of 2017. Here are the top ten films to check out so you can at least appreciate some of the award categories once March 4 comes around. Jimmy Kimmel is hosting this year, and we all know it’s an event that shouldn’t be missed.
Call Me by Your Name
Although this one flew a little under the radar for many audiences, it certainly made waves with critics. Call Me by Your Name has been nominated for four Oscars, including Best Motion Picture of the Year and Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role (Timothée Chalamet). The story takes place in Northern Italy during the ’80s and follows two young men who must deal with their sexuality, religion, and culture. Beautifully crafted and empathetic, the film continues to win the hearts of viewers around the world.
Everyone knows the story of competitive skater Tonya Harding and her rivalry with Nancy Kerrigan, but now the story takes on a new intensity on the big screen. Tonya is a rising star at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, but an act of violence throws the future of her career into jeopardy. Darkly humorous, I, Tonya turns an old tragedy into a triumphant and thought-provoking tale. It’s been nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Actress in a Leading Role (Margo Robbie) and Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Allison Janney).
This portrayal of the famous British Prime Minister Winston Churchill might be one of the best ever. The Darkest hour details the early days of World War II and Churchill’s uphill battle against Nazi forces, political rivalries, and a struggling nation. Gary Oldman’s electrifying performance as Churchill has earned him a nomination for Best Leading Actor, and the film was nominated for five other Academy Awards, including Best Motion Picture.
Nominated for eight Oscars, including Best Motion Picture, Dunkirk is undoubtedly one of the most impressive movies to come out of 2017. The film depicts the terrifying evacuation of Allied Soldiers from France in a brutal and emotional manner. It has been recognized by the Academy Awards for its directing, cinematography, sound mixing, production design, sound editing, music, and film editing.
Surprised to see a horror/thriller movie nominated for Best Motion Picture of the Year? You’re not alone, but it’s clear that this humorous, dark tale has made quite an impression on viewers and critics alike. In Get Out, a young African American man goes home to meet his white girlfriend’s family, and things take a horrifying turn. You’ll laugh, gasp, and jump your way through this one-of-a-kind film. Along with Best Motion Picture, the movie has also been nominated for four other awards, including Best Actor in a Leading Role (Daniel Kaluuya).
There’s no way on Earth you haven’t heard about this movie from someone already. Ever since it came out, Lady Bird has been establishing a name for itself in the world of film. It now has five Oscar nominations under its belt, including Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best Acress in a Leading Role (Saoirse Ronan), and Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Laurie Metcalf). A coming-of-age story, the film will capture your heart and mind with its witty depiction of 2002 California and a mother-daughter relationship.
With six Oscar nominations and heaps of praise from every audience, Phantom Thread is a film you shouldn’t overlook. Watch as a renowned dressmaker in 1950s London navigates the dangerous waters of love, inspiration, and society. The film’s stellar cast has been nominated for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role (Daniel Day-Lewis) and Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role (Lesley Manville). Phantom Thread has also been nominated for Best Motion Picture of the Year, so don’t wait until after the Academy Awards to see what all of the fuss is about.
Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks are at it again in this compelling film directed by Steven Spielberg. The drama details The Washington Post’s exposure of government secrets, as well as Katharine Graham (Streep) as she battles for her career in a male-driven field. Mery Streep was nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role once again, and the movie itself was nominated for Best Motion Picture of the Year.
The Shape of Water
Thirteen. That’s the staggering number of Oscars this remarkable film has been nominated for, which makes it one of the most important movies to watch this year. Sally Hawkins has been nominated for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role, and her fellow cast members Richard Jenkins and Octavia Spencer have been nominated for their supporting roles. The movie’s beautiful score has been nominated for Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, and the film itself has been nominated for Best Motion Picture of the Year, among other prestigious awards.
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
Murder, mystery, anger, and pain: it’s all there in this dark drama. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri follows a mother as she tries to solve the murder of her daughter. Nominated for seven Oscars, including Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role (Frances McDormand) and Best Motion Picture of the Year, the film is surprisingly comical and 100 percent unlike any other story out there.
So, which of these are you the most excited to check out? Also, what other nominees do you recommend watching? Leave suggestions in the comments!