Monday, February 23, 2015


Maybe I say this every year, but tonight's (technically last night's) Oscar Award show was one of the weirdest ever it seemed to me. Neil Patrick Harris is mostly adorable no matter how old he is, even in his underwear (if you didn't see it take my word) but at times his adorableness seemed to get a little dismissive and even nasty, or maybe that's because I believe Snowden didn't commit treason, etc.

There seemed to be many moments when the presenters or Harris seemed unsettled or distracted or unsure of what was going on. I saw feathers dropping a couple of times so guessed maybe a bird got into the place and was flying around and it, or people trying to catch it, was the distraction.

But that couldn't explain Terrence Howard's weird almost breakdown when he was introducing three of the nominated films. It seemed like the teleprompter wasn't working, or something, but he could have just said that and not started to cry and seemingly be having frightening flashbacks or worse.

Most of the winners were predictable if well earned. I'm happy Patricia Arquette won for Best Supporting Actress for BOYHOOD, she earned it, and I was even happier to see how terrific she looked in her gown despite the fact she doesn't conform to the usual movie actress skinny or even just slim look. She looked healthy and sexy to me, and she gave the best acceptance speech, which for the most part weren't that memorable. But I think BOYHOOD deserved more than just that award, it's a precedent setting enormously impressive achievement and should have won best picture for my taste.

As usual the show went way over the scheduled time allotted, and the last Harris joke about his predictions could have been cut, as well as the many references to it throughout the show, especially since the payoff did not live up to the build up, and it would have made the show fifteen minutes or more shorter.

The best thing about the show was that the Academy obviously felt stung by all the criticism aimed at how white the nominees were this year (though mostly people meant the acting categories) so there were more "black" faces presenting awards this year than ever, by a lot. And the tribute by Lady Gaga to the songs from THE SOUND OF MUSIC. Unexpectedly moving and show stompingly powerful.

Common and John Legend's performance of GLORY from the film SELMA was also a powerful moment and seemed to have the greatest impact on the live audience of anything in the show, but despite Common's obvious skills his performance and speech, good as they were, seemed a bit forced to me, [I liked John Legend's part of their GLORY acceptance speech better, it felt less "canned"] whereas Gaga sang CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN with such amazing control it brought me to tears (as did GLORY for many in the Oscar show audience, but it's just not as good a song to me despite Legend's superb singing).

Life goes on and by June we'll all have a hard time remembering who was nominated or even who won, let alone who was there. But I'll still watch it next year, as always, because it's live and always on some level, pretty unexpectedly weird.

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