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After months of red-carpet warm up — from the Golden Globes to the SAG Awards — Hollywood's biggest (and most stylish) night arrived on Sunday, when the A-List turned out en masse for the 89th Annual Academy Awards. We often lament that celebrities tend to play it safe with their sartorial choices on evenings like these (lest some "expert" on E! mock their dramatic or directional gown), but on this particular occasion, an impressive number of nominees and presenters wowed us with their bold looks.

Emma Stone, whose film "La La Land" was favored to be the big winner of the evening, looked as flawlessly statuesque as a Best Actress nominee should in a gold, fringed gown by Givenchy Haute Couture — further bumming us out that Riccardo Tisci recently departed the label. Janelle Monae, who had incredible roles in both "Hidden Figures" and "Moonlight," cemented herself as a straight-up style icon in a stunningly embellished Elie Saab Couture gown that, in our opinion, no other human could pull off quite as successfully.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, a handful of the most breathtaking looks were also the most classic. For instance, "Hidden Figures" star Taraji P. Henson chose a body-hugging, blue velvet Alberta Ferretti dress with a simple, elegant sweetheart neckline and thigh-high slit. Kirsten Dunst also went the Old Hollywood glamour route with her voluminous black Dior Couture gown that not only wowed us, but also transported us to another era. Finally, Michelle Williams, a longtime muse of Louis Vuitton's Nicolas Ghesquière and face of the house, blew us away in a chic halter gown with a delicately beaded skirt by the French label.

Much like on the runways at New York Fashion Week, there were subtle political statements aplenty as well, with women like Negga, Karlie Kloss and Busy Phillips adorning their gowns with blue ribbons in support of the ACLU. In addition, Emma Roberts opted for a vintage Armani Privé gown instead of a fresh-off-the-runway look to benefit the "Red Carpet Green Dress" program and promote sustainability. So, to all of those folks who say politics and fashion shouldn't mix, we say: take that.  

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Click through the gallery below for our picks for the best-dressed women of the 2017 Oscars.

Homepage photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

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