Monday, March 8, 2010

And the Winner Is.....

I tried, I really and truly tried, but in the end, it was impossible.  I could not avoid it.  It's  7:05pm and I'm bored to tears and embarrassed already but I know I'm going to watch it til the very bitter end. 

Yes, I'm posting about the Academy Awards show.  Sigh.  I won't be angry if you decide it's just too facile, too empty, too full of descriptions of self-congratulatory nonsense to spend any time with at all. No hard feelings;  I'll see you tomorrow.
 *****
Neil Patrick Harris..... I know 20-somethings who think he's the cat's meow (ok, that's old even for me, but I'm feeling crotchety this evening so bear with me) but all I see is that pre-pubescent sitcom guy.  Neil Patrick Harris was crude and overtly sexual at 6:30 in the evening. I really wasn't up for "prisoners drop the soap" and "do it alone" sung while he was surrounded by naked-but-for-a-feather-or-two dancers.  Full frontal nudity doesn't bother me if it's a part of the story.  But naked for titillation is pandering. 
 *****
Randy Newman.....of course, every year, it seems, and then..... Randy Newman, nominated again.  His voice is distinctive, but T Bone Burnett's song just makes me smile and fills my heart with warm fuzzies.  And the actors actually stood up for him
 *****
Sarah Jessica Parker was shot chewing gum while Robert Downey Jr and Tina Fey were funny and smart and maybe, just maybe, there's hope for this show.   
 *****
Who was the woman in grey at the end of Mark Boal's row?  She looked genuinely shocked that he'd won. Then she stood up when Hurt Locker won another award and I realized that it was Kathryn Bigelow and her amazement was real. For that second, she couldn't believe that this was really happening to her movie. 
 *****
Molly Ringwald and Mathew Broderick had a hard time walking down those little steps on the chintzy set.  But then they began to speak of John Hughes with such love and warmth and the clips were so beautiful that I forgot it was the award show.  Of course, they managed to ruin the moment by toting out every child star Hughes had given their 15 minutes of fame for a reprise of my 3rd grade play when everyone had a line and some people forgot theirs.
 *****
So many of the young actors and actresses who were presenters treated the experience like a club scene.  They stumbled, they giggled, they misread the cue cards ...and yes, I am crotchety tonight but they showed no respect for the process.  Not that it deserves much respect, but still.  
 *****
Geoffrey Fletcher is a man who feels deeply and wasn't afraid to show it.  Precious is not as hard to watch as you are afraid that it is, and that's because it's redemptive and not preachy. Mo'nique gave a love note to her husband and the Academy and she was powerful.  See the movie, I'm telling you, see the movie. 
 *****
Queen Latifah was fit and comfortable in her own skin, and Robin Williams bounced down the stairs. Barbra Streisand needed help getting down those steps and I'm sure it was the ridiculously high and spiky heels she wore.  Sigourney Weaver and Penelope Cruz were only two of the women looking fabulous in red; Sarah Jessica Parker is just way too skinny and if she couldn't stop fussing with the silly satin noose around her neck then she should've worn a different dress. 

Sandra Bullock looked great poured into her lacy dress with the long train although when she stood still there was a frightening resemblance to the Statue of Liberty.  Demi Moore is reverse aging.. through surgery, it seems.  James Taylor sings a ballad better than anyone I know these days.
 *****
Sandy Powell was wearing a fabulous slinky long dress, which went up the steps held lightly in her hand without causing a hitch in her step.  This is what differentiates costume design from fashion design - the clothes have to work.  Anyway, she was funny and gracious and her posture was impeccable and she moved with grace and I realized that I know Edith Head and Irene and Orry-Kelly  but no one more modern.  Well, now I do.  I'm going to be looking for Sandy Powell designs in the credits from now on. 
 *****
We had to ff through the tribute to horror films; it was just too horrible.  Morgan Freeman should be the default narrator for everything in every genre and medium but other than that the talking and the snippets and the tributes to the best actors and best actresses sounded more like eulogies and they were making our skin crawl and for the first time George Clooney smiled as Vera Farmiga was going on and on about his crinkly eyes and his general wonderfulness and TBG is so pissed that he's ranting about "intravenous ego infusions.... more needles, please...."  but there is nothing on any other channel and I've invested 3 hours of my life in this I'll be damned if I will miss the winners  but every time we un-mute it we started feeling creeped out and so, silenced again, we watch with great discomfort.  If not for you, Dear Readers, I think I'd have given up long ago.
 *****
I do like Jeff Bridges although I think he was a bit maudlin (or drunk?).  James Cameron worked for 10 years and didn't win anything fancier than "Earned the Most Money."  Meryl Streep didn't leave with a statue but she did have the best seat in the house - front row on the center aisle.  
And I guess I'll have to decide to be brave and see The Hurt Locker. 
 *****

3 comments:

  1. My favorite entertainment reporter! Thanks for the encouragement to see Precious; I'll try when I get back east to a TV...I'm thinking mid-afternoon, small screen. Hurt Locker is available to me here and I've been trying to get up the nerve to see it for two weeks. It's time for me to take a stance on our war in Afghanistan; viewing Hurt Locker will probably take me as close to America's modern wars as I can bear. Following an EOD unit...that strikes awfully close to home for us. Lord, I'm such a cinema sissy! And I'm glad Robert Downey, Jr., comported himself well; I love that guy!

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  2. Just going to pass on a note that surprised me. I have a few friends who work very closely with EOD techs, and their facebook feeds last night were unending vitriol against Hurt Locker. They claim it is a total fraud and in no way accurately depicts the life of EOD techs. I have no original opinions about this, but these are people with first hand experience whose opinions I respect. Take from that what you will...

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  3. Nance,
    RDjr was fabulous - he seems to have come out on the other end of his travails with the sense to show up on stage with a smart funny woman. Precious on the small screen would be easier, I think.

    Saw a clip on the news of our soldiers in Iraq - they were young young young and wishing they were able to fight instead of build.... I'm thinking that a whole re-working of the roles of the military and social service organizations is in order....

    Thanks for the shout out, too.... E! Network watch out... Ashleigh Burroughs is on the case!

    Ah... Billy.... just when I thought I could believe in something.... I liked the truthiness that Hurt Locker is real.
    a/b
    a/b

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