By Megan Bianco

The 2017Academy Award nominations are out and movie fans are quickly checking to see which films they’ve already seen and which they still need to see. The race for Best Picture appears to be between La La Land and Moonlight, but of course there are dozens of other potential award winners to consider as well. One is Deepwater Horizon, which underperformed in theaters but managed to earn two nominations. Another is Hidden Figures, a financial hit with three nominations.

Horizon, currently on DVD and Video on Demand, recalls the extensive BP oil explosion and spill in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010. Starring Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell, Gina Rodriguez and Kate Hudson, the film is a visual masterpiece of special effects, editing and camera work. Academy Award nominations were deservedly given for Best Visual Effects and Best Sound Editing. The best way to view Horizon would be on a screen bigger than a laptop or iPhone.

Figures still impressively manages to stay in the top five at the box office and most recently won Best Ensemble at the Screen Actors Guild Awards. Based on real events, the movie follows three black NASA employees, played by Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe, who helped calculate important data for Project Mercury with both support and reluctance from different superiors. Nominated for Best Picture, Best Supporting Actress (Spencer) and Best Adapted Screenplay, Figures is probably one of the softest films at the ceremony this year with a simple PG-friendly rating and enjoyment for all ages.

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