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Another year, another Oscars

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By DANIEL RUSSELL

3/8/16

As the winter season begins to end, movie lovers everywhere gathered for the award show they cared about the most: the Oscars. On Sunday, Feb. 28, the 88th Academy Awards were hosted at the Dolby Theatre in downtown Los Angeles, as the world of film came together for one night to celebrate the best in the business.

The show kicked off with a monologue by host Chris Rock, who wasted no opportunities to fit in an “#OscarsSoWhite” joke. The monologue went over well, and it seemed as if Chris Rock’s performance was well-received.

When the awards started rolling out, it was clear that the Academy was mad for a certain film. “Mad Max: Fury Road,” won six out of the first seven awards in which it was nominated, winning almost every award in the technical categories of the show. “Mad Max” would go on to win no more awards for the night, losing in the major categories of Best Picture and Best Director. Despite not winning these awards, “Mad Max” was the biggest hit of the night, winning the most awards and a surprising six out of their 10 nominations.

One of the biggest surprises of the night came during the presentation of the Best Visual Effects Award, with low-budget sci-fi thriller “Ex Machina” winning the award. This category almost always goes to a blockbuster film with a budget in the hundreds of millions, this year facing up against “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Mad Max,” “The Revenant,” and “The Martian.” All of these films have budgets at least 10 times that of “Ex Machina,” which was only created with a mere $15 million. In fact, it’s the lowest budgeted movie to be nominated for Best Visual Effects since “Alien” in 1979, budgeted at $11 million, without even taking inflation into the mix.

Relatively early in the show, the awards in the supporting acting categories went to Mark Rylance for “Bridge of Spies,” and Alicia Vikander for “The Danish Girl.” As the show started to move to its close, the big awards for acting in a leading role were finally unveiled.

Brie Larson took home the award for Best Actress for her role in the indie drama “Room,” while Leonardo DiCaprio finally took home his long-awaited Oscar for his role in the revenge thriller, “The Revenant.” He finally took home the gold as this was his fifth nomination, receiving a standing ovation from the crowd, and giving an acceptance speech that could probably win him another Oscar in the process. “The Revenant” also stole the award of Best Director, going to the acclaimed Alejandro González Iñárritu.

With the biggest award of the night left to go, “Spotlight” took home the award for Best Picture. Focusing on the uncovering of the Catholic Church sexual assault scandal by the Spotlight team at The Boston Globe, the film was critically lauded and considered to be a frontrunner for the award for Best Picture when it was released. This award ended the night, as most of the celebrity attendees made their way to after parties, basking in the joy of the greatest night in the world of film: the night of the Oscars.

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