|Index||6 reviews in total|
"The 84th Annual Academy Awards" was not one of the best shows yet, it
was far from the worst. As having funny guy Billy Crystal back as host
improved the pace and laughs of the show. Evening though some of
Crystal's skits and singing gets a little old still his jokes brought
joy and the opening montage of seeing Billy in all of the best picture
nominees was a blast. Interesting during the show was seeing clips of
interviews with stars telling of their favorite movies and explaining
how they felt that film has impacted life and culture, as by watching
film anyone can take something from it and be inspired. Also moving as
always was the tribute to those that we lost during the past year. As
is becoming the norm again the past years winner presented the category
in which they had won in.
As for the awards most went as planned as the academy finally got it right awarding Christopher Plummer(best supporting actor) an Oscar as at 82 he's the oldest to ever win heck he's almost as old as the Oscar's(84 years). However in the best actor race the man himself George Clooney was upset losing to "The Artist's" French macho man the talented Jean Dujardin as evidenced by the other wins including the best picture win "The Artist" proved that Hollywood was paying tribute to the old days of cinema and the silent film era as this picture was the first silent film to win top honors since 1929's "Wings". Nice and fitting was seeing the best actress in the business win for Best Actress as the transformed and always real and believable Meryl Streep(a 17 time nominee) won her third Oscar as she was stunning and direct as Margaret Thatcher in "The Iron Lady".
Overall it wasn't the best Oscars, yet not the worst it was good seeing Billy back and I'm glad the class act veterans like Streep and Plummer came away with wins. And only fitting was the academy paying tribute to old Hollywood's silent era by awarding "The Artist" best picture.
Every year it is the same; people complaining about the nominees,
winners but mostly the award show itself. Nobody can be ever completely
satisfied of course and this also shouldn't be the Academy Awards'
intention. But it's still good to see that they are taking some of the
criticism at heart and keep improving/adjusting the show. I think that
they have now finally reached a point that they have taken the best
elements of the last 5, or so, Academy Awards shows and have combined
it for this year's award ceremony.
I really enjoyed watching it, mostly because there seemed to be a good pace, all throughout. The acceptance speeches were all equally long/short and none of them felt overlong or made me shout out at the TV 'get off the stage!'. Also there were no real distractions this year. Normally the show takes the time to suddenly honor somebody for 5 minutes, or throw in some montages or other videos. This year it all was really mostly about handing out the awards, nothing more and nothing less than that.
Also no distracting Oscar-nominated songs and live performances this time. Sorry to say but most nominated songs are always very boring and horrible to listen to. This year there were only 2 nominees but they didn't let anyone perform them on stage, which was a great move in my opinion!
Another thing that gave the show lots of pace was the order in which the awards were being handed out. For years they always saved the most important awards for the end of the show, with always as a result that people first had to endure 2 hours of other people, that no one has ever heard of or cared about, receiving Oscars, for some very uninteresting categories. This year there was a far better balance in which the awards were handed out.
One more thing that gave the show lots of pace were the presenters. No one that came on stage ever had a long routine before they announced the winner and it was also a smart move to leave all of the comedy up to the real comedians this year. And there were quite a few comedians handing out the awards this year!
The main presenter of the evening, Billy Crystal, was also surprising good. I really wasn't looking forward to him again, after a absence of 8 years from presenting the Oscars, after Eddie Murphy had dropped out. But he simply was really good, mainly since he didn't turned it into a one man's show for himself. He still had some good jokes this year, something that was also lacking during the last couple of years, when they tried out (too) many different, new hosts.
As for the winners themselves; there were no real big surprises this year but it's still always good to see that there is not just one movie, that sweeps all of the awards. Many different movies received an Oscar this year, which should also tell you something about what kind of a year this was. it was a year with many great movies, of which none stood really out as anything brilliant, in my opinion.
Still some of the winners and its predictability annoyed me of course. Christopher Plummer mostly winning just because of his age, the way Meryl Streep acted all surprised she had won, while she was the only true 100% lock for his year, Octavia Spencer being the only one that received a standing ovation mostly because of her ethnicity and out of so called white guilt. I mean, I was hoping and also expecting her to win but really, a standing ovation, just for her win alone? It were all little things like this that still annoyed me about the evening.
But oh well, like I said before; you can never expect to feel completely satisfied during an 3 hour long award ceremony!
I should start by noting that out of all the movies that were nominated
for anything this year, I've only seen "Beginners", "The Muppets", "The
Adventures of Tintin" and "Albert Nobbs". I'm glad that Christopher
Plummer won Best Supporting Actor, but I was rooting for Glenn Close
for Best Actress.
As for the ceremony itself, I liked Billy Crystal's performance, but I especially liked the scene with the cast members from Christopher Guest's movies (and also Sacha Baron Cohen's prank on the Red Carpet). However, probably the most important event of the night was when Asghar Farhadi won an Oscar for directing "A Separation". Not only was it unexpected for an Iranian movie to win an Oscar, but Farhadi used the occasion to remind everyone what a disaster a war between the US and Iran would be, and also that Americans should remember Iran for Persian culture. In the end, it must have irritated the right wing that a movie from a Muslim country won Best Foreign Language Film (not to mention that a number of French people won for "The Artist").
All in all, I really liked the ceremony. This must be the first time that the "In Memoriam" montage has ever shown a computer CEO (by whom I mean Steve Jobs).
_The Most Truthful : (Chris Rock)'s word. That guy said nothing but the
truth; he's silly, and yet he gets millions for just being the silly
that he is !
_The Most Hot : (J-lo) is standing, along with (Cameron Diaz), while giving both their backsides to the audience in a swift and improvised gleeful moment. Seeing (J-lo)'s assets is always a treat. Sorry (Diaz), you couldn't win that, in the presence of (J-lo) or not !
_The Most Freaky : Naturally (Angelina Jolie)'s knee. And (What a Wonderful World)'s singer's hair (so fit for a Discovery Channel documentary that could be named "Undiscovered yet Jungles !).
_The Most Surprising : The winning of Iran. That director's speech, concerning how some politics' evil could bury a nation's culture, was impeccably brilliant. By the way, speaking about other movies of other nations that were buried by the Oscar's, rather Hollywood's politics; for years and years there was something like thousand movies that should have won, but not even one of them made it to be nominated.
_The Most Funny : One of (The Descendents)'s winner writers goes to imitate the intentionally sexy pose of (Angelina Jolie). Brief note : that pose reminds me powerfully of Shirley MacLaine in one of Irma la Douce (1963)'s posters !
_The Most Hysterical : (Billy Crystal)'s segment of "That's what everybody is thinking.", the parts of (Martin Scorsese) and (Nick Nolte) were beyond fabulous !
_The Most Vengeful : The "focus group" skit. WAW, it bombed the dumb reviewers rightly !
_The Most Smart : The joking speech that the winner of the sound editing award gave "to whoever was born, will be born..", it was a good parody of the Oscar speeches !
_The Most Outrageous : The kiss of (Billy Crystal) and (George Clooney). Absolute gross. It gives the word outrageous a new level of outrageousness !
_The Most Mean : The look upon (Christopher Plummer)'s face while (Billy) was referring to his 82 years, making joke of his aging. He was squeezing his teeth, saying deeply "You son of a bit*h. Ahhh, if you and I were in a boxing match, 60 years ago.."
_The Most Weird : (Nick Nolte)'s way of clapping; as if he's slapping somebody's butt slowly with clear wrath !
_The Best : (Billy Crystal)'s singing. His performance reached the top. It made me sad for all the musicals he didn't make for all of those years !
_The Worst : (Billy Crystal)'s botoxed face, the little hair piece (which I think he puts it), and the way he has to smile after almost every single joke he throws; it assures that he isn't cocky, but nervous. And he didn't use to be nervous.
_The Ugliest : When the music interrupts the speech of poor men like the winners of the best feature documentary. The nasty manner of the Academy that I have complained, complain, and pessimistically will be complaining about, seems to be incurable, ESPECIALLY when the academy leaves ***stars*** talk and yak as long as they want, because they're ***stars*** (think of it; Plummer talked for longer time and no music interrupted him !).
_The Most Sensitive : "Accept me, I have so much love to give." said by (Ludovic Bource) the winner of the best original score. And "My wife deserves a Nobel prize for piece for getting to save me everyday of my life." said by (Christopher Plummer) the winner of the best supporting actor.
In general, very good spectacle. Better than the Oscar night of the last year which was itself better than the Oscar night of the year before it !
Finally, to the Academy : While (Billy Crystal) is around, don't you ever think of calling (Chris Rock).. for anything !
I've been a Film-Buff since in-time memorial, like literally! Watching
the GREATEST Movie Event, 'The Academy Awards' has become a habit,
missing it is impossible. LIVE & EXCLUSIVE, 'The 84th Annual Academy
Awards', turned out to be An Event To Remember!
Firstly, Billy Crystal was a really charming host. He got his medley spot-on & his jokes, throughout this Spectacular Event, were applaud-worthy. He didn't disappoint a bit.
Now coming to the Winners: The Artist and Hugo each won five awards to their kitty. However, I truly felt that, The Descendants, was the strongest among all the films nominated beside. The Artist took home Best Picture, Best Director for Michel Hazanavicius & Best Actor Jean Dujardin, along-with 2 other wins including Best Original Score for Ludovic Bource & Best Costume Design for Mark Bridges.
Hugo had its glory with 5 wins as well, including Best Cinematography for Robert Richardson. The Descendants did take home 1 Oscar, that being Best Adapted Screenplay for Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon, and Jim Rash. Best Foreign Language Film went to the critical smash A Separation by Asghar Farhadi.
Mr.Cinema aka Woody Allen won Best Original Screenplay for his master-stoke Midnight In Paris.
Among Acting Winners: Meryl Streep won her long-due 3rd Oscar for her mesmerizing turn in The Iron Lady. This was THE Moment of the event! Watching THE Most Influential & Talented Actress of all-time taking home another Honor in her credit, truly was the high-light.
Amongst Supporting Wins: Christopher Plummer Finally won an Oscar for his subdued & believable performance in Beginners. Octavia Spencer proved her mettle by taking away the trophy for her rather convincing performance in The Help.
Any Upsets? I'm a Nick Nolte & George Clooney Fan. Of course, I would've loved it if they won, especially Nolte who's yet to win this magnificent honor. Gary Oldman, Demián Bichir & Brad Pitt also delivered splendid performances, but this just wasn't their year.
A Special Mention to Cirque du Soleil. Their performance was brilliant. 'The 84th Academy Awards' truly rocked! Great Overall Presentation, Great List of Winners & Nominees, Great Presenters, and of course, A Charming Host.
Step one...nominate films that the general public care about...when art
house critic's pets dominate..the award looses credibility. And no, I
do NOT feel making "Bridesmaids" compete against something arty like
"Tree of Life" is the answer.
How about looking back toward the Academy's early history. In 1929 someone had the BRILLIANT idea of giving one award for Artistic Merit...and one for solid popular film-craft..."Sunrise" won for "Artistic Quality Of Production" (and is usually noted as one of last great flowerings of the Silent screen)..."Wings"...a beautifully crafted and exciting audience pleaser won the equivalent of "Best Picture"...rather than having popular entertainment duke it out with artistic triumphs...THEY HONORED BOTH...it seems like a wonderful idea to me...but the "Artistic...." category was deemed unnecessary as of the next awards...
Bring it back...one award for "Film" one for "Movie"...and no it is NOT ghetto-ising popular entertainment...it is celebrating it...
Another basic problem stop with the annoying lead outs...(WHO thought of putting that very out of place musical ensemble up in that balcony...every time they started their cacophony I wanted to turn the channel...and the stupid stunt of having people wandering up and down the aisles handing out goodies...cheap and tacky...
Oh...NEVER do another mind numbing and totally extraneous production number that adds NOTHING to the evening but length (the aerial acrobatics might have wowed the theater audience...they were boring and poorly shot on TV...if you need to provide cheap entertainment for the Hollywood insiders save it for the commercials...
Oh and one last thing CUT BACK ON THE ENDLESS ADS!!!! I watch only one night of TV a year...and the torture of being bombarded with these annoying messages swears me off the medium every year...
Other than that...some writing worthy of the host...and a bit better taste in presenters would be nice...(please no more stoned acting very happy youngsters...Emma Stone seemed to be taking lessons from James Franco...)...
Anyway...I fully believe the awards can be saved...but only if movie lovers are given genuine reasons to continue caring!
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