Monday, February 26, 2007

Tepid Oscar Wrap-Up

I think last night was the first time (in a long time) that the best movie I saw in a given year won the Best Picture Oscar. I was very pleased to see Scorsese win Best Director and his movie get Best Picture, but what a giant slog to get there. At least I predicted that last night (even if I got Best Supporting Actor and Best Picture wrong). Since I'm having trouble forming coherent sentences right this minute, I'll just do a quick Liked and Disliked in a listish form.

LIKED: Ellen's hosting. The musical number with Will Farrell, Jack Black and John C. Reilly. Very funny but a little wobbly in places. And Jack Black making eyes at Helen Mirren was pretty funny. The little factoid that appeared during the Cameron Diaz interview in the pre-show that her childhood nickname was Skeletor. I laughed and laughed at that. She DOES look like Skeletor! Children can be mean, but they can also be witty little bastards. The Al Gore/Leo DiCaprio presentation where Al ALMOST announces his run for the Presidency, Michael Mann's movie montage, Scorsese's win, "The Departed"s win. The part where Ellen asked Spielberg to take a second picture of her and Clint Eastwood. "Maybe center it a little more?" Funny. Maybe that's it.

DISLIKED: The speeches. God, the speeches. Didn't they do away with speeches one year in the seventies? They need to try that again. Or maybe require that everyone submit one and have a group of Academy members screen them for any mentions of anyone who works in the entertainment industry. I didn't even like Forrest Whitaker's speech. The song performances. Uniformly dreary. And Melissa Etheridge's song for "An Inconvenient Truth" was probably the worst Best Song winner since, well, last year's win for that "Hustle and Flow" rap song. Man, it's really bad just about every year. Pretty much all of the other film montages. Ennio Morricone's all-Italian acceptance speech. (Does Clint really know Italian?) The chorus of "foley" artists, who made the art of foleying sound pretty much like something anyone can do. All those damn "Pan's Labyrinth" wins. Scorsese's Oscar speech. I thought he was maybe going to say something he'd prepared, talk about film from a film historian's perspective, but it was just more of the same thanking bullshit. I guess everyone in Hollywood still gets jazzed at the idea of having their name mentioned in front of a live television audience, and hold it against you if you forget their names.

Anyway. This show just seemed more boring than in recent years. I don't know if it's because the movies were kind of lackluster this year (and that "Children of Men" didn't get more nominations), or if it was just a straight-up boring as hell show. Probably a bit of both.


Speck said...

Children of Men and The Prestige got screwed. Plain and simple.

Pans Labyrinth was a fantastic film.

I missed the beginning 2/3's of the show. But I thought the silouhette artists were cool.

And even though Etheridge's song might have sucked. I found it even MORE hilarious that the she beat the dude who had THREE....THREE nominations in same category as her...Talk about getting fucked by the odds, it was great.

Anyway, yeah...another lackluster year.

Craig Moorhead said...

"The Squid and the Whale" was good, but it never really got to me. Obviously well made, but in the end I think maybe I'm just too jaded towrad dysfunction on film.

"Employee of the Month" I just don't get. You're right, there wasn't a single solid laugh in the whole thing. Dane tried to play the wounded hero. Why? Why would anyone think that the audience for this movie wanted to see anything but Dane's explosive dork/frat boy persona? I think that would've been great! But this - this was terrible. But it wasn't exactly a flop. Worldwide it made back three times its budget. But man - what a missed opportunity.