Hollywood’s biggest awards ceremony commenced on March 12 with the 95th annual Academy Awards.


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Ke Huy Quan becomes the second Asian actor to win Best Supporting Actor for his role in ‘Everything Everywhere All at Once’.

This year’s Oscars were highlighted by a mix of crowd-pleasing blockbusters nominated for Best Picture (Top Gun: Maverick, Avatar: The Way of Water, Elvis) and smaller, lesser-known arthouse films (The Banshees of Inisherin, TÁR, Triangle of Sadness). With last year’s disastrous ceremony being headlined by Will Smith marching on stage and smacking Chris Rock, the 95th Oscars had to really turn around the bad reputation of the show.

Welcome additions were made to the presentation this year. The cringe-inducing forced humor that killed last year’s Oscars before Will Smith did was gone. Jimmy Kimmel hosted the show, but really just took more of a background role, which made the ceremony feel faster. The musical performances by Rihanna, Lady Gaga, and others were actually good. This year’s awards were uncharacteristically not controversial. The Oscars seemed to have everything working this year and it feels like this was a step in the right direction for the ceremony.

The actual awards were dominated by A24’s science fiction multiverse absurdist film, Everything Everywhere All at Once. Days before the Oscars, the film passed The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King as the most-awarded film of all time, so there was almost no doubt about what was going to win Best Picture. Beyond the night’s biggest award, Everything Everywhere also won Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Actress (Michelle Yeoh), Best Supporting Actor (Ke Huy Quan), Best Supporting Actress (Jamie Lee Curtis), and Best Film Editing. Yeoh and Quan are both historic wins. Yeoh became the first woman of Southeast Asian descent to take home Best Actress, while Quan became only the second Asian actor to win Best Supporting Actor.

The shock of the night was Jamie Lee Curtis’s Best Supporting Actress win. The other nominees in that category were Angela Bassett (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever), Hong Chau (The Whale), Kerry Condon (The Banshees of Inisherin), and Stephanie Hsu (Everything Everywhere All at Once). The expected winner was Angela Bassett for her role as Queen Ramonda in the Black Panther sequel. Bassett gave a cathartic performance in that film as a grieving mother that channeled her very real grief from the death of Chadwick Boseman. Jamie Lee Curtis is, no doubt, a fantastic actress. This was both her first nomination and win, which is surprising, because she’s had some incredible performances. But she was a minor character in Everything Everywhere All at Once, so it came as a surprise to most people that she won over Angela Bassett. Curtis wasn’t even the favorite within her own film. The fan favorite to win was Stephanie Hsu, and most executives and critics considered her a runner-up behind Bassett to win, yet she was snubbed by Curtis’s win.

Beyond that surprise, many films which people expected to receive plenty of love at the Oscars did not. The big one is Top Gun: Maverick, a fan favorite film that was likely the most popular of the Best Picture nominees. Although it wasn’t ever really in competition with Everything Everywhere for Best Picture, there was hope that it would win Best Adapted Screenplay (which Women Talking won) or some other awards. It only went home with two statues, which was surprising, because most would agree that it was the film of the year. Although genre films like Maverick aren’t usually popular at the Oscars, this film generated love and attention that made its way into the hearts of even the Academy. Other films like The Fabelmans and The Banshees of Inisherin scored many nominations but went home empty-handed, which was surprising to many.

This year’s Oscars were definitely an improvement from last year. Everything Everywhere headlined the night, but solid entertainment and good speeches throughout pointed the prestigious awards in the right direction.