March 8, 2010

Some Random Thoughts about the Oscars

Did any of you watch the Academy Awards last night?  What did you think?  They always complain that it goes long, but has it ever ended on time?  Maybe the first year, but no one cared and they were probably all three sheets to the wind (Prohibition, shmohibition!).

I thought Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin did a nice job, but what was with Alec's fake British accent?  He launched into it a couple of times during the evening - once when they were talking about the mystical "wood sprites" of Avatar and then later on he did it again - odd.  Also, is there some bad blood between Alec and George Clooney?  What was with all of the sneers and beady-eyed looks with those two?  Anyone know?  Was there some feud that I was not aware of?

I felt so bad for the poor guy who had won for the documentary short, "Music by Prudence".  He obviously had his speech all prepared, and was doing a fine job, thank you very much - when all of a sudden, some lady jumps up onstage and totally steals his thunder!!  At first, Brian and I looked at her like perhaps she was some nut job that could possibly do some damage.  She was never named (could it be Elinor Burkett?), and then the music started to play, so Roger Ross Williams, the director, couldn't finish his speech.  She looked like a fool, whoever she was (okay, I just now went to the Oscar website, and it indeed WAS Elinor Burkett, and they're calling her Lady Kanye.  HA!!).

Was it just me, or did you notice that there may have been an extra laugh track?  There were a couple jokes that Steve and Alec made that got laughs a little too early after they were told, like someone was anticipating the end of the joke.  This seemed particularly apparent in the beginning of the broadcast.  And I don't know about you, but sometimes hi-def isn't always the best, sound-wise, especially if it picks up every little sound backstage.  There were an awful lot of bangs and crashes - it felt like I was back doing community theatre!

I thought the John Hughes tribute was really cool. I also felt supremely old, especially seeing Judd Nelson for the first time in about 20 years or so. Holy smokes! I mean, I realize that the Brat Pack are nearing 50 (YIKES) but it was still a shocker. Now I know why my mom and dad would say stuff like that about Cary Grant and Frank Sinatra back in the day. But it was neat to hear all of them eulogize John in their own way.

Speaking of eulogizing, the set-up for the Best Lead Actor and Best Lead Actress sort of feels that way, doesn't it? Don't get me wrong - I LOVE it. But I would be a puddle of weeping goo if I were nominated in that category and had to be forced to hear someone say such nice things about me like that. Can you imagine what that was like for Gabourey Sidibe?! I mean, it's FREAKING OPRAH for God's sake, and a year and a half ago this girl was just a regular student. Incredible!

As for the winners - everyone seemed most gracious last night, didn't they?  I really thought that the big winners - Mo'Nique, Sandra Bullock, Jeff Bridges, Christoph Waltz, Kathryn Bigelow - they all gave such lovely speeches.  There was no drama in them, no one spouted political rhetoric (agree or disagree - it just doesn't belong at the ceremony), no one got overly emotional - it was just very subdued and nice to watch.  But oh, was I ever thrilled that James Cameron didn't win Best Director or Avatar for Best Picture!  Hooray!  I told Brian that if he did win, and said "I'm king of the world" or "I'm king of Pandora!" or something stupid like that, a brick was going to be hurled through the TV.  The only good thing about James Cameron is that he's Canadian.  Kudos to Kathryn Bigelow for not rubbing her win in his face (you probably know this already, but Ms. Bigelow is James Cameron's ex-wife).  I don't think it was an accident that they were seated right in a row like that, either.  Awkward!!

I've started my list of documentaries and movies that I want to put in my Netflix queue - first and foremost, A Single Man for movie and Logorama for documentary.  If there's one thing the Oscars are good for, it's finding new movies for us to see that we probably wouldn't know about otherwise.  Now, to find more time...

*Postscript:  To whoever is in charge of the singin' and dancin' for every awards show - just do us all a big favor and hire Neil Patrick Harris for ALL of them.  Thank you.


  1. Good post! We have hi-def and I didn't pick up to noises or anything. And being a James Taylor fan, I was happy to see him in the memorial segment. There was a controversy about not mentioning Bea Arthur (she was in Mame, but the movie version?) and Farrah Fawcett (can't remember her on the big screen).
    I think my favorite host will always be Billy Crystal.

  2. I was one of the few who didn't watch. Didn't need to; I've been seeing the highlights on TV and the web all day. Sorry to hear I missed the John Hughes tribute; he was a favorite. I am glad Jeff Bridges won best actor, he deserved it. Oh, and I am so with you on James Cameron . . . neener neener!!!

  3. I saw Logorama, its a very cool animated short. Lots of company logos are used to tell a story. The michelin man is a cop and ronald mcdonald is a psycho rampaging through town.
    Not a huge Farrah Fawcett fan, but she did do a few movies. I checked IMBD and the only one I ever saw was Logan's Run. She had a very small part.