The Movies You 100 Percent Need to See Before the Oscars
Who got nominated, and who we think will win.
They’re here: the nominations for the 89th annual Academy Awards—aka *the Oscars*—have finally been announced, inspiring us to fire up our laptop/TV/whatever kind of viewing device and do some binge-watching before the show. But when you’ve got things to do (ugh, life), fitting every. single. film. into your schedule can seem a bit daunting—and admittedly unnecessary once you’ve got a list of highlights.
Ahead, we’ve made our picks for each category, movies and performances we think are worth a watch, trophy or not. Take a few days, lounge around, and play catch-up. At the very least, it’s one less “didn’t see that” come Oscars night.
- Hacksaw Ridge
- Hell or High Water
- Hidden Figures
- La La Land
- Manchester by the Sea
- There were so many amazing films this year, but Moonlight is the winner in our book.
Actor in a Leading Role
- Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
- Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
- Ryan Gosling, La La Land
- Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic
- Denzel Washington, Fences
- Ryan Gosling wins everything.
Actress in a Leading Role
- Isabelle Huppert, Elle
- Ruth Negga, Loving
- Natalie Portman, Jackie
- Emma Stone, La La Land
- Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins
- That first audition scene in La La Land? Unbelievable. Emma Stone is our pick for best actress.
Actor in a Supporting Role
- Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
- Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
- Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea
- Dev Patel, Lion
- Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals
- Mahershala Ali gave an incredible performance in Moonlight, and we hope to see a lot more of him in 2017!
Actress in a Supporting Role
- Viola Davis, Fences
- Naomie Harris, Moonlight
- Nicole Kidman, Lion
- Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures
- Michelle Williams, Manchester By the Sea
- We don't think we'll ever forget Naomie Harris' performance in Moonlight. If we could give her the Oscar for it a hundred times we would.
Animated Feature Film
- Kubo and the Two Strings
- My Life as a Zucchini
- The Red Turtle
- This is actually a tough one, and we’re calling a draw between Moana and Zootopia.
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
- Florence Foster Jenkins
- La La Land
- The costumes in Jackie are just the *dream*.
- Fire at Sea
- I Am Not Your Negro
- Life, Animated
- OJ: Made in America
- In a year of incredible documentaries, OJ: Made in America was an absolute winner. Even if you don’t care at all about football, it’s a great primer on American culture and racism in the ’90s.
Makeup and Hairstyling
- A Man Called Ove
- Star Trek Beyond
- Suicide Squad
Our Pick: Perhaps the best indicator of who will win here is Halloween. How many people did you see trying to nail Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn makeup? Case closed.
Music (Original Song)
- “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” from La La Land
- “Can’t Stop the Feeling” from Trolls
- “City of Stars” from La La Land
- “The Empty Chair” from Jim, The James Foley Story
- “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana
Our Pick: It’s impossible not to dance whenever we hear “Can’t Stop the Feeling”—and that’s even after we’ve labeled it as “played out.” J.T. really knows how to keep those hits coming, and we totally think he deserves an award for this earworm.