This year's Academy Awards was filled with powerful messages of standing up for human rights, celebrating our differences, and supporting marginalized groups. The #TimesUp movement promoted wearing bright colors on the red carpet to display the wide array of people affected by injustice. Symbolism aside, there were also a lot of pretty dresses. And really...that's what this is about.
Who Wore it Better?
Gal Godot in Givenchy vs. Jennifer Lawrence in Dior
Both of these ladies were presenters, but one of them looked like, well, a presenter, and the other looked like she was nominated for every award in the book. Gal's beaded fringe Givenchy was one of the best looks of the night, and her glamazon jewelry is worthy of Daisy Gatsby. JLaw's gown looks like a cheap prom dress in comparison, and her hair and makeup was just wrong for the overall look.
Emma Stone in Louis Vuitton vs. Armie Hammer in Armani
We all know I'm not a fan of non-traditional suits on men during the Oscars, and we all know I am a fan of Emma Stone playing with menswear, but in this case the tables are turned for me. Emma's look is way, way too casual for the Oscars, and she has pulled out more formal pants and jumpsuits in previous years that would have suited the event better. I'm all for breaking the glass ceiling, but there is a certain level of decorum at the Oscars that just demands a gown. Armie's suit is luxe, sharp, and suits the formality of the event.
Black and Gold
Lupita Nyong’o in Atelier Versace vs. Sandra Bullock in Louis Vuitton
Sandra's dress isn't terrible, but her styling killed it; wearing her hair down and piling on the eyeshadow makes her look heavy-handed and dark. Lupita, on the other hand, looks like a light, bright, golden goddess. She's a flawless Wakandan queen, and she can do no wrong on the red carpet.
Sally Hawkins in Armani Privé vs. Laurie Metcalf in Christian Siriano
I have grown up watching these two fantastic actresses on the screen, and I was thrilled to see them both nominated. The Shape of Water may have taken the awards, but Laurie was a clear winner on the carpet. Her Siriano gown fit beautifully and her styling was clean and polished. Sally's gown is frumpy and unflattering on her petite frame, and whoever did her hair should be immediately fired.
Soirse Ronan in Calvin Klein by Appointment vs. Viola Davis in Michael Kors
Viola Davis is hit-or-miss on the carpet, and this was a very, very definite miss. If Barbie was making a doll of Viola, maybe this would be an appropriate look to model, but it was all wrong for the Oscars. The neon color was terribly unflattering, and the cheap jewelry and matchy-matchy bag just made things worse. And her hair. HER HAIR. I'm all for letting your natural hair do what natural hair does, but slicking back the top was a terrible choice. Soirse's look was simple, sweet, and reminded me of Gwynneth Paltrow's infamous 1999 Oscar dress.
Photos courtesy of EOnline, Vogue, and DailyMailCeleb.
Best Party Looks
They Should Have Changed...
Ruth Negga in Valentino and Oscar de la Renta
Red is a tough color to wear on the red carpet because the reds can easily clash, and Ruth's Valentino gown was one of the worst. The mass of red blew out on camera, and the full-coverage of the gown was overwhelming on her small frame. She looked like a Victorian vampire. The Oscar De la Renta, on the other hand, was the perfect note of formal and whimsical. It's a sculptural, unique work of art.
Alicia Vikander in Louis Vuitton
Dressing Alicia Vikander can be difficult because of how tiny she is - bodice proportions don't always work for her, and the long waist of the weird Spanish flamenco gown she wore on the red carpet just wasn't flattering. I don't really know if that many lace ruffles would look good on anyone, really, and styled with a high bun and a glitzy diamond necklace, the whole look was just wrong. Her after-party look was elegant, mature, and styled to perfection.
Dakota Johnson in Gucci
I understand the concept of wearing two looks by the same designer, but I don't know how anyone could look at Dakota's first gown and be remotely okay with it. I'm not thrilled with the super-shiny satin in either look, but the red carpet gown looks like she pulled her grandmother's yellowed wedding gown out of the attic. The party look, at the very least, has a breath of skin and, well. Looks like it's from this century.
Naomie Harris in Calvin Klein
I can be lenient toward a tea-length gown at the Oscars, but a dress at the knee simply isn't appropriate, and paired with a weirdo miss-matched shoe, the whole look was off. It would have been a better move to wear the gown on the carpet and the short dress at the party.
Leslie Mann in Zac Posen and Carolina Herrera
I have a hard time believing that Zac Posen designed this yellow Beauty and the Beast monstrosity. It's rumpled and crunched and the draping looks like a bad prom dress. The nude Carolina Herrera is so much more elegant and airy.
Photos from EOnline, Harpers Bazaar, CNN, The New York Times, Vanity Fair, and PopSugar.