With the 90th Academy Awards just around the corner, I thought it would be fitting to shine the spotlight on three particular Best Picture nominees that are important for students to see. I believe these films are applicable to young life.
The first film on my must-watch list is “Dunkirk,” directed by Christopher Nolan. You may remember Nolan as the birther of the famous Dark Knight trilogy. Well, “Dunkirk” is a masterpiece for students.
The film tells the violent war story of the battle at Dunkirk. It is brilliantly shot. The primary message students can take from this film is that of heroism and bravery. Patriotism abounds in this movie because nothing — and I mean nothing — unites students more than a hatred of the Nazis and the feeling of victory at the end of a hard day.
Another relatable film for Del Mar students is Greta Gerwig’s vision in the form of “Lady Bird.” It is a coming-of-age comedy-drama film starring Saoirse Ronan as the titular character Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson. The movie is about Lady Bird trying to navigate her way through the trials of high school and growing as a result. The primary theme students can take here is growth and responsibility of character. It is an elaborative and enjoyable movie from start to finish.
The last movie on my list for students to check out is “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” directed by Martin McDonagh. Frances McDormand is front and center of this crime thriller playing Mildred Hayes, a mother trying to solve her daughter’s mysterious murder. This movie is not for the faint of heart and students are in for a wild ride.
There are many messages in “Three Billboards.” The first is vigilantism never brings justice. “Three Billboards” also greatly highlights the imperfections of human beings. Students will also learn that sometimes even when it’s hard you have to let the criminal justice system work itself out. The main message in the movie would be that of accountability. The police have to be trusted to do their jobs. Whether it is murder, rape, stealing, domestic abuse, pedophilia or hate crimes of any kind, justice wins in the end and closure must be realized.
Students will have a great time watching these films. There are significant lessons to be learned when watching these Best Picture nominees. On March 4 we will find out if one of these three films wins Best Picture.
DVD RELEASE DATES
“Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”: Feb. 27
“Lady Bird”: March 6
“Dunkirk”: Available now