Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Oscar Extra and Kudos for a Friend

A little belated, perhaps, but I have to sound off about the Oscars, since I'm such an Oscar junkie. I watched the whole show the other night, as I usually do every year, and God help me, I even watched some of the "red carpet" pre-show. ("Who are you wearing?") I’ve only seen three of the nominated Best Pictures so far, and I was kind of rooting for Avatar, which I just saw this weekend.

- T Bone Burnett and Ryan Bingham winning for Best Song
- South Jersey’s own Michael Giacchino winning for Best Score (“Up”) and his great acceptance speech
- Sandra Bullock’s upset win for Best Actress
- Kathryn Bigelow being the first woman to win Best Director (and she looked fabulous)
- The horror movie montage
- The tribute to John Hughes
- Ben Stiller’s Avatar makeup
- James Taylor singing “In My Life” to the “let’s-see-who-died” montage
- The new format, started last year, where fellow actors come onstage to do a mini-tribute to each of the Best Actor/Best Actress nominees

- Jeff Bridges’ acceptance speech: It was sweet that he thanked his late parents, and I’m glad he won, but he just went on, and on, and on….
- What’s-her-name the costume designer who began her speech, “I already have two of these…”: she seemed really full of herself.
- The woman who "Kanye'd" the director of Oscar-winning doc Music by Prudence during his acceptance speech. Is this becoming some kind of trend?
- Omitting the "Lifetime Achievement" awards from the main ceremony. It was always a heartfelt and moving segment, and I would have loved to see tributes to honorees Lauren Bacall and Roger Corman.
- Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin co-hosting: They were often funny, but just as often they seemed strained and awkward together. The producers should have picked one or the other.

Fashion Watch:
I'm no couture expert but I know what I like, and apparently any actress with a last name ending in "z" had the inside track: Penelope Cruz, Cameron Diaz, and Jennifer Lopez all looked fabulous. But Sarah Jessica Parker's dress was hideous, IMHO, and Barbra Streisand looked like a matronly frump.
Helen Mirren and Meryl Streep tied for the "classy lady"award.

Some trivia: What do the following classic movies have in common?

2001: A Space Odyssey
Some Like It Hot
Singin' in the Rain
The African Queen
Close Encounters of the Third Kind
A Hard Day's Night
The Manchurian Candidate
Modern Times

Answer: None of them were nominated for Best Picture by the Academy.

What "profession" has been most likely to win an actress an Oscar?
Answer: Hooker - 10 actresses have won Oscars for their portrayal of "ladies of the night" - the last was Charlize Theron for Monster.

Now for the kudos: Congrats to my friend Kelly Fineman, whose poem "Inside the New Mall" won 3rd prize in the annual Writer's Digest Poetry Competition! Visit Kelly's blog at http://kellyrfineman.blogspot.com/

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