Austriauna Brooks | Staff Writer
Many people like to guess which of their favorite movies will win at the Oscars, but few people do this for all 62 Oscar-nominated movies. Senior Annie Campbell takes on the challenge of watching all the films from the time the nominations are released in late January to Oscar night. Campbell was never into movie marathons until her freshman year in Baldwin-Jenkins during fall break, where she built forts by herself in the the dorm lounge and watch movies all night, she said.
Campbell creates Excel spreadsheets for the nominated films organized by categories, her rating for the movies and why, her personal top 10, the movies she think the academy will choose, movies that she thinks should win based on quality and the movies that will surprisingly win.
“I was really committed when I saw there was a lot of good movies,” Campbell said.
Campbell takes this commitment seriously even though this is her first year doing this challenge. She recently went to the Magic Lantern theater to watch the live action shorts nominees. Her favorite was “Timecode,” a film about the interactions between two parking lot security guards.
“It was light hearted and made me laugh, even though it was light on dialogue,” Campbell said. “It was a delightful love story with just the right amount of relatable awkwardness.”
Campbell’s pick for Best Picture is “Moonlight,” a movie about a young black man on a journey of self-discovery from childhood to adulthood, Campbell said.
“It’s important to tell the stories that no one tells,” she said. “‘Moonlight’ has a longer impact than ‘La La Land.’ It’s a movie about the challenges a guy faces through his race and his sexuality.”
Campbell thinks that the politics as a theme is prevalent between throughout the documentary nominees. Politics are not just making an impact in everyday lives but also through film. It is an indicator of what society and culture value.
“So many of [the nominations] address issues in today’s politics,” Campbell said. “The past year or so has shown a lot of racial tensions in the United States, with the Black Lives Matter movement and the immigration ban Each film about the refugees takes a different approach. One approach is about the refugees themselves, another is about helping refugees.”
Campbell’s dream job is to work with Disney Pixar. She sketches often but she wants to help the company with marketing and advertising.
“I don’t feel like I’m good enough for animation,” Campbell said. “I just want to be creative and help produce and shape stories.”
Whitworth hosts an annual showing of the Oscars in the HUB MPR. The viewing party has snacks, a photo booth and activities to win prizes. One of the activities is a ballot where students can select the films they think will win the main categories.
Campbell is passionate about movies but so far has not guessed Whitworth’s Oscar ballot correctly. Senior Lynn Dickerson, the HUB manager who coordinates the Oscar viewing party, said she would be shocked if Campbell does not get all of the categories correct because of her commitment to watching all the nominees. Following Campbell’s progress in finishing the movies is just as fun, or even more fun, as watching the Oscars themselves, Dickerson said.
“I don’t know how she has time for this,” Dickerson said. “If I could do it without stressing about homework I would.”
Senior Hannah Walker has known Campbell since they were in the same hall freshman year in Baldwin-Jenkins. Walker has watched two movies with Campbell but has never done a full movie marathon with her.
“She’s an extremist,” Walker said. “I love seeing her Facebook statuses when she’s updating on how many movies she has left to watch.”
Although Walker has not taken up the challenge to watch all 62 nominated movies, she watches all of the best picture nominees. It is a good opportunity to watch movies and discover something new if she did not watch the category nominees, she said.
"They’re movies I wouldn’t watch if I was told to,” Walker said.
Campbell will continue with the new tradition of watching all of the Oscar nominees as long as she’s in school. When she leaves Whitworth, she will not have breaks where she can have movie marathons.
“I think having this challenge will be a good way to find new friends who will nerd out about movies with me,” she said. “It’s also a good way to see some of the best movies each year.”
Contact Austriauna Brooks at email@example.com