2016 Plugged In Movie Awards: Winners

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Just in case you didn’t check out Jake and Paul’s Plugged In Movie Awards vodcast yesterday, here’s the written rundown for the 2016 Plugged In Movie Awards (which are selected from all the movies that came out during the 2015 calendar year).

PIMA-Kids2016BEST MOVIE FOR KIDS

Nominees: Cinderella, The Good Dinosaur, Inside Out, The Peanuts Movie, Shawn the Sheep Movie

Plugged In’s Pick: Inside Out
Despite some strong support for The Peanuts Movie and its wonderful messages about perseverance and being a good guy (if not a particularly good pitcher), Pixar’s colorful, multilayered take on the inner workings of an 11-year-old girl’s mind won the day in this kids’ category … with the Plugged In team knowing full well that this flick may end up being more of a parent pick than a kid fave!

Readers’ Pick: Inside Out
Seems that many of you loved this Pixar movie as much as we did. This movie takes us all through a gamut of emotions, quite literally, but the main one it seems people walk away with is joy.

PIMA-Teens2016BEST MOVIE FOR TEENS

Nominees: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2, My All-American, Spare Parts, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Tomorrowland

Plugged In’s Pick: My All-American
In a category typically dominated by big-budget blockbusters (Mockingjay – Part 2 and The Force Awakens were both Top 10 grossing movies for 2015), Plugged In picked a football movie with a small audience but a big heart. My All-American, based on the true story of Freddie Steinmark, is a movie we feel is worth standing up and cheering for.

Readers’ Pick: Star Wars: The Force Awakens
This contest was no contest. While several readers favored the likes of Mockingjay 2 and Tomorrowland, The Force Awakens sped away with this win like a souped up X-Wing (which is sort of redundant when you think about it). Given the movie’s themes of courage, family and trying to do what’s right, we can hardly blame you.

PIMA-Adult2016BEST MOVIE FOR ADULTS

Nominees: The 33, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, The Martian, Mr. Holmes

Plugged In’s Pick: Mr. Holmes
Plugged In shunned three Academy Award Best Picture nominees and the deeply spiritual The 33 in favor of this under-the-radar gem. The movie gives us a Sherlock Holmes getting along in years and whose fabled mental acuity is beginning to fade. But thanks to a little help from a young protégé, Holmes finds a way to take on one final case. This is a strong bit of moviemaking, and one almost completely devoid of problematic content.

Readers’ Pick: The Martian
How much money and time should we spend to save one man? In The Martian, the answer is an encouraging “whatever it takes.” Despite an unfortunate smattering of foul language (and some potatoes grown in what Plugged In would call an “other negative element”), this inspiring story of a man stranded on Mars earned some planet-sized support from our readers.

PIMA-Christian2016BEST CHRISTIAN MOVIE

Nominees: Beyond the Mask, Captive, Old Fashioned, War Room, Woodlawn

Plugged In’s Pick: Old Fashioned
Coming out last February in a Valentine’s weekend face-off with the controversial Fifty Shades of Grey, Old Fashioned was practically the very definition of counter-programming. It lost that box office battle, sadly. But it won the movie war as far as we were concerned. True to its name, this is an old-fashioned love story, filled with strong messages, sweet romance and some timely, countercultural advice for those looking for love in the 21st century.

Readers’ Pick: War Room
This was an insanely spirited contest with lots of support for all the nominees. But in the end, you chose the Kendrick Brothers’ latest and greatest. Though it was made on a shoestring budget (at least compared with its secular competitors), War Room earned more than a sneaker-full at the box office ($67.8 million). More importantly, it earned its earnestly spiritual way into your hearts.

Who wrote this?

Steven Isaac served as editor for Plugged In’s NRB- and EPA-award-winning website for more than a decade, orchestrating, managing, scheduling, shaping and tweaking at least 750 reviews and articles annually. He’s a husband and a father of a teenager.


Have something to say? Leave a comment.

Tony Monk II More than 1 year ago
Thank you so much for this! 
Linda Jimenez Wiley More than 1 year ago
I am so happy to see Old Fashioned win in the Best Christian Film category.  It's a wonderful movie and I appreciated the fact that it wasn't preachy.  In addition to its charming story, beautiful cinematography, and great music, the movie provides thought provoking and inspiring dialogue on forgiveness, values, respect, and grace while delivering hope and healing for anyone who has felt "broken" at some point in their life.  It is a definite "must see" for everyone.  Congratulations Old Fashioned!!! 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by Smith.

I've got a lot of catching up to do, but as far as I've seen, I'd say Inside Out is THE towering achievement of 2015.
Ethan Tang More than 1 year ago
Great stuff! I just watched Inside Out last night. It gives you more every viewing. I saw Mr. Holmes in theaters. It dragged a bit, but it was good nevertheless.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As usual the movie that is the spiritual and psychological antithesis to everything FOFT represents, wins all the awards, gets all the praise. I'm sorry, but my vitriol for that movie cannot be contained. Our culture has been gone for awhile, but it seems PluggedIn slips further down the slopes every year. Use the discernment that you once helped me discover! 

As for the rest of the picks, I'm not too enthusiastic about any of them. The best movies of 2015: Max, Little Boy, Cinderella, Woodlawn, and The Peanuts Movie.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What movie are you talking about?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was purposefully ambiguous because I am tired of getting berated for my opinion about this particular movie. A movie that, according to everybody else in the whole world, is a "masterpiece".

I definitely recommend Max and Little Boy to anyone who hasn't seen them and likes movies that skew to a teenage audience. Max is a classic American family-friendly action adventure throwback, and yet has so many layers and still remains balanced. Little Boy is a faith-friendly art film (at least that is how I categorize it), and again is perfectly balanced and layered film. In my opinion, those two are amongst best movies that have come out in at least a few years. I just saw The Hundred Foot Journey and I would have added that too, but it was released in 2014.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by Smith.

You? Berated? You who had just finished berating Plugged In for choosing the movie? I'm sorry, Anonymous, but do toughen up if you're going to be opining about movies which other people appreciate.

(By the way, if "everbody else in the whole world" - except you, apparently - truly does consider a film to be a masterpiece, perhaps you should reconsider your own outlook. Perhaps you're missing something.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
There you go berating--can't respect an opinion, even an unwritten one. I would hope that the comment section on this particular article allows for one to disagree with the winners of the PIO Awards. Nevertheless, I change the subject by mentioning movies I'd like to share with my fellow PIO readers (I have probably been here a lot longer than you Smith) that I wish were nominated; yet, what gets the focus is an offhanded comment. Have you seen Max or Little Boy? If not, check them out. 

I have debated back and forth about whether to use an indicator like you, maybe I'll try it out one day, as my former comments were callbacks to other comments that you, coincidentally, have responded to.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by Smith.

"Off hand comment?" It was practically a screed. Let's not kid ourselves.

You started by condemning Inside Out( I assume you were talking about IO) as being the antithesis of everyting PI stood for. How anyone can find that much fault in so beautiful and moral a work of art is beyond me. But then you went even further: you actually questioned the character and convictions of those at PI for praising the film.

Come now. You should have expected some objections to that. I may question your taste in movies (which I do), but I certainly would not be so presumptious as to judge your own spirituality for having those tastes.
MichaelHovey More than 1 year ago

I couldn't have said it better myself Smith. Inside Out is a truly wonderful movie about kids not being ashamed to show their emotions, so how anyone can find fault with it is beyond me.

Marwan Hasoon More than 1 year ago
Woodlawn hands down a cut above the rest 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It got my vote even though I found it a bit slow and disjointed--it kept promising off the field drama without payoff and it felt like it was missing scenes (as a lot of plot points were unexplained and characters were underdeveloped). The Irwin brothers make some of the best Christian movies--October Baby and Mom's Night Out are among the best written, directed, and acted in the Christian film industry.