It actually happened. The #BongHive hype paid off and “Parasite” became the first film not in the English language to win Best Picture at the Oscars, and also the first film to win both Best Picture and Best International Film (previously s Best Foreign Language Film). Beyond the historic win, lots of love, respect, and awards were shared between the nominated films, as all the Best Picture nominees (except “The Irishman”) got some awards recognition.
With a few big surprises, some overly long skits, and weird musical performances, let’s take a look at the best and worst moments of this year’s Academy Awards.
Best: Janelle Monáe’s opening number
The night began with Monáe doing a rendition of the theme song for “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” before dancers came to the stage dressed up as characters from some of the movies that were unceremoniously snubbed, from “Midsommar” to “Us” to “Dolemite is My Name.” Monáe also took the opportunity to call out the Oscars for its lack of female representation. It was an exciting and fast-paced way to begin the night, and the first of the presenters we wish could have been the host this year. – Rafael Motamayor
Best: Brad Pitt’s acceptance speech
To the surprise of many, Brad Pitt has ruled the season with some absolutely hilarious acceptance speeches. He turned a bit more serious after winning his first acting Oscar for “Once Upon A Time In Hollywood” in the Best Supporting Actor category. He started out with a cutting political remark, “They told me I only have 45 seconds up here, which is 45 seconds more than the Senate gave John Bolton this week. I’m thinking Quentin does a movie about it and the adults do the right thing.” Snap! He then segued to praising Tarantino, Leonardo DiCaprio and gave a major shout out to stunt coordinators and crews. “I’m not one to look back, but this has made me do so.” “Once upon a time in Hollywood. I think that’s the truth.” Classy and a lot to say in 45 seconds. – Gregory Ellwood
Best: Director Bong Joon-ho being very excited about his first Oscar of the night
The first big surprise of the night came when Bong Joon Ho won Best Original Screenplay for “Parasite,” setting up the night for a series of historic wins for the Korean movie. The best part of the speech was when Bong’s co-writer Han Jin-won gave his speech while a very giddy Bong stood back and admired his Oscar statue. – RM
Best: Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph proved they should have hosted the Oscars
The problem of not having a host for the night, but still having presenters for all the awards is that you run into the issue of having excellent presenters who make everyone laugh and make you wish they had been hosting the entire time. This year it was Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph, who began their skit with stern looks on their faces, saying they were really ticked off over and over, until they revealed they were acting in order to get better jobs, with Rudolph explaining that there were a lot of directors present and they wanted to show they can do more than comedy. Judging by Martin Scorsese’s reaction, we’re hoping the skit turns into a collaboration soon. – RM
Worst: The idea of a half-time recap rap
The Oscar ceremony is always, always battling to reduce its running time but still, someone was like, we definitely need to do a thing halfway through to remind everyone who’s been sitting here for two hours already of what they’ve just watched? – Jessica Kiang
Best: The actual half-time recap rap
It was pretty good! Utkarsh Ambudkar managed to overcome the fact that a) no one wanted this and b) no one knew who he was by delivering a short, sharp, pithy number that also got a couple of pointed digs in about representation and the second of two very enjoyable Idina Menzel gags, because that truly is the gift that keeps giving. Plus Questlove did the beats. – JK