Monday, February 28, 2011

Oscars 2011: Nothing to see, folks

A friend of mine described this year's Oscars thus: "pretty much a misfire on all levels: host(s), movies awarded, speeches given, red carpet. A quadrifecta (pretty sure not a word but I don’t care) of suck."

(The word he's looking for is actually superfecta, but his works just as well.)

My verdict isn't quite as harsh, but I have to agree that it was a disappointing ceremony and, for the most part, an awfully dull one. I blame the flatness on the writing more than the hosts - except that only one of the hosts really showed up. Props to Anne Hathaway, whom I love more than ever, for her goofball charm and for valiantly resisting the deadly pull of the black hole by her side. Franco - and you know I love him - looked as tuned out as most of his audience probably felt. Some have speculated that he was stoned for the whole thing, but I think that's just how he looks. (Danny Boyle thought he was stoned when he auditioned for "127 Hours.") If he wasn't, he was probably wishing he was - I'm sure he, as much as anyone, would gladly have passed the baton off to Billy Crystal when the latter made his brief appearance.

LIKED:
-They kept it short! (Comparatively speaking. Just a smidgen over three hours ain't bad for the Oscars.)
-The opening montage with AH & JF inserting themselves into the Best Pic nominated movies. (Billy Crystal did it better, though.)
-The autotuned Best Song parody video. That was pretty damn funny.
-The return of the acting clips. Yay, no more stupid, painfully awkward introductions by the nominees' "peers"! Hated that innovation, so glad it's gone.
-All of Anne Hathaway's outfits; yes, even the space-age sapphire-blue number. She made 'em all work. And girl can SANG - though anyone who watched the year Hugh Jackman (sigh, Hugh) hosted knew that already.
-The dude with the crazy hair who won Best Live Action Short. Pure awesomeness, though I haven't seen his film.

DISLIKED:
-Melissa Leo's dress. (Seriously looked like she was wearing a giant doily.) And her train wreck of an acceptance speech. I did love that she dropped the f-bomb - an Oscars first, apparently. And Christian Bale's little self-mocking reference to it in *his* speech.
-"The King's Speech" winning both Director and Picture. It deserved neither. It *especially* did not deserve Director. At least Tom Hooper gave a nice acceptance speech.
-Roger Deakins ("True Grit") being denied AGAIN for the Cinematography Oscar. What's it take, Academy?
-Randy Newman singing AND winning "Best Song." Can the Academy get rid of that category already, or stop rewarding such insipid pap?
-The children's choir at the end: call me a Scrooge, but wtf do they have to do with movies or Oscars?

MOST MEMORABLE DRESS: Cate Blanchett's. It was a fright, and you know we'll all remember it long after we've forgotten what everyone else wore. Almost approached Björk swan territory.

MOST PLEASANT SURPRISE: This is obscure, but I was delighted to see "The Lost Thing" win Best Animated Short; I saw all the animated short nominees this year, and that was my favorite. Also happy to see "The Social Network" win Best Score over "The King's Speech."

LEAST PLEASANT NON-SURPRISE: Annette Bening losing the Oscar AGAIN. She's now O for 4 nominations at age 52. Well, she's in excellent company. She and Roger Deakins should go on a bender with Peter O'Toole.

AWKWARD BUT KIND OF AWESOME: Kirk Douglas hogging the stage and flirting with both Melissa Leo and Anne Hathaway. Stroke? What stroke?

JUST AWKWARD: Christian Bale appearing to forget his wife's name in his acceptance speech. Maybe he was just too choked up to say it; however, the majority of the people in my living room voted memory lapse. And was it mere coincidence that just about every married male winner (and one female) after that made a point of naming and thanking their wives?

BOTTOM LINE: I miss Hugh Jackman.

1 Comments:

Blogger Chelsea said...

Like your wrap-up for the Oscars. I'm not sure how this year's compares to the last few (I've only been sincerely interested for about a year), but the hosts sure spoiled a lot. I disagree with you about The King's Speech though. It so deserved that Best Pic!

2:59 PM  

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