Monday, February 26, 2007

Oscar Minus One

I know how important it is to the Readership to get a full day-after coverage of this night of nights. So you are receiving my balcony commentary just in time for your morning coffee.

This is the first year that I have not seen all of the nominated pictures since 1984 when I failed to line up for Passage to India, and probably for the same reason I didn't see Babel or Letters from
Iwo Jima

I don't haaave all day.
(goose your neck when you say this)

Already I have to retract this statement, because I never saw the 2nd or 3rd Lord of the Rings pictures either because, even more than the above statement... I don't give a damn about any of those people.

8:05pm - Lisa Ling just said "leaping out of luxurious limos." So I
shot her.

I have not missed an Oscar ceremony in about 35 years.
1973 is not the year I discovered my love for the movies, but it is the year I discovered grown-up movies, and saw a lot of them. The Sting, American Graffitti, Paper Moon. The Day of the Dolphin. Jesus Christ Superstar. Poseidon Adventure.
Also Bednobs and Broomsticks, Charlotte's Web and Tom Sawyer (oh Jodie! Jodie!)

I remember the Godfather winning the year before, but April 4, 1974 was the first night I had a stake in the game. I wanted American Graffitti, but it was The Sting.

I love it all. I love it when it's bad; I love it when it's good.
I cry through the acceptance speeches; I announce flatly "stupid" to the screen when the dopey production numbers are done.

The way to approach the Oscars is like you might approach any industry awards ceremony you happen to be invited to. Just enjoy the view. I suppose it also helps to really respect the industry too.

Maybe you don't. Maybe you like to sit through the whole 4 hours then come to work all mad about it. Maybe you do the same thing Super Bowl Sunday. Maybe you have no one to blame but yourself.

Me, I think it's nice to see people at the top of their game achieve their wildest dreams thanks to the support of their co-workers, who are also their competitors. You know if you could accept an award in a gown in your workplace, you would elbow your way to the stage.
(said 1991's Emersonian of the year)

The fashion stuff? No, I don't care. But I don't begrudge the people who do. It doesn't last long and is easy to avoid.

8:27 pm the red carpet people have finally shut up.
I am already tired of Abigail Breslin's HP commercial.

I like the presenter pairings. I would like Abby Breslin, Anna Paquin and Tatum O'Neal to present something together.
I would like Jon Voight and Rick Schroeder to come out together.
I would like Jon Voight to finally lose that damn evening scarf.

8:35 - the announcer just stole my copy by saying "top of their game." I demand satisfaction and throw a glove.

8:40 - first look at Jack Nicholson's shaved head.
8:44 - gospel onslaught. See, this is absolutely ridiculous. And why not? You're usually watching Desparate Housewives, which is no more dignified than this.

8:57 - here's how to break down the Comedian at the Oscars number.
Imagine your workplace, where the cool clique gets up and does a skit. Or Henry Becton walks out of a fog of smoke to the theme of Carmen Sandiego. See how I just made an obscure in-joke reference that maybe 5 people reading this will get to explain the in-joke reference?
That's all that is.

9pm - Abby Breslin gets more exposure. Jadan Smith out Elijah-Woods Elijah Wood.
9:07 - first glass of wine.

Whatever happened to Helen Hunt?

9:31 - Did Randy Newman just get nominated for an Oscar...again? And did he just steal the opening bars of Elton John's "Your Song"?
Melissa Ethridge writes another version of her song.

9:38 - Al Gore is played off stage. Funny stuff.
9:41 - the phone company proudly announces that they do not run on electricity. even funnier.

9:50 - now, I love the clip bits. It's like a list. Categorized. On film.

I will not likely buy Apple's new phone. But I like its ad for the same reason. Know your audience.

The Departed is based on a Hong Kong film, in Chinese. Not a Japanese film.

I believe Fran Lebowitz just won Best Costume Design.
I think Gwenyth looks better a little hippy, don't you? I would cut the hair. But that's just me. Ooo... she can rrread e-thpanith naymth. The Academy is determined to make me see Pan's Labrinyth. But they still owe me money for Henson's Labrinyth. Until I get paid, I'm not falling for it.

10:22 - blind joke! oh, how droll.
10:23 - Catherine Deneuve's still got it. And another clip sequence. See more foreign films! Did someone just thank Schwarzneggar?

I haven't commented on the shadow puppet/tumblers because it's just too easy.

10:35 - Jennifer Hudson proves again that Supporting Actress is the ingenue's award. Thank you for not winning it for playing a hooker.
Actresses who got their start with this award: Eva Marie Saint ~ Rita Morena~ Patty Duke~ Goldie Hawn ~ Meryl Streep ~ Jessica Lange
Actresses we never heard from again: Tatum O'Neal ~ Anna Paquin ~ Olympia Dukakis ~ Marisa Tomei ~ Kim Basinger

10:49 - Jodie shot. Notice how I mention that instead of Al Gore accepting the Oscar. Because I am shallow and blinded by her intensity. I don't even know what Al said, but I know she agreed with it.

I think Clint Eastwood might be having a stroke. How can we be sure? Smile, Clint! I had to know what instrument that is that makes the whistle in the The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly theme. This took some doing. It is called the arghilofono, and is related to the ocarina, which perhaps tells you less than you knew before. And along the way I had the opportunity to buy it as a ringtone.

11pm - 2nd glass of wine. Notice how I practice alcohol in moderation. You know what else is nice - a little dark chocolate. The Russell Stover's heart box is now 75% off. Buy one for your desk at work.

11:28 - where've I been? I got distracted during the Dreamgirls music sequence and started searching Netflix for Oscar nominated pictures I had not actually seen (LOTR chapters not included). I decided maybe I really should see A Passage to India and the next thing you know, I had lost half an hour somewhere.

11:40 - the "America" film sequence was a little odd. I would have traded that for the In Memoriam rollcall, which should have happened by now, and I am wondering if it is going to at all. And now The Departed gets its first award as Thelma takes the stage. I have delayed announcing my best picture pic, which is The Departed. The others (that I have seen...) are quite good -- Little Miss Sunshine is an impressive first film.

SHUT UP! IT'S JODIE! I had to interrupt my own thought. May I point out she is reading the roll call.

so - who is Randy Stone and what's the story there? He may be the father of her children, Charlie and Kit. He was a producer, casting director and otherwise movie-maker who died Feb 12 at 48 of heart failure. His other contribution is The Trevor Project.

12:01am - Lead Acting awards. Peter O'Toole's moment? Is he there with Angelica Houston? I rather like Forrest Whitaker.

Three cheers and a Tiger for me! What's with Forest's eye? Strabismus. Look it up. I can't link everything.

12:07 - Director - I am actually predicting the United 93 guy over Marty. And I am wrong. But how happy we are for Marty. It is only 9 o'clock in LA. They are just getting started. Now, seriously, go see this film. And Good Fellas. And Taxi Driver. maybe Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore. But not Gangs of New York. or New York, New York.

12:13am - Departed should be a shoe-in now. And Scorcese may be right about the first movie he has ever made with a plot. here's a crazy-ass Scorcese moment - Robert DiNiro's Scorcese impression as Lou Cipher in Angel Heart. Really... really no other reason to watch that film.

I have to post this now. The back of head hurts from the laptop. I have a meeting at 10:30. And it might be snowing.

Goodnight everybody!


  1. this is so much better than the crap review over on

    I never missed an Oscars until I had a child. Damn kid. Gets the pukes the night of the show.

  2. Oh my god. were you stoned when you wrote this? i am laughing out loud. i think i peed a little.

  3. i meant this comment to go on the endless family fun post, not oscars. your fancy template confused me. sorry!

  4. Thanks for the excellent commentary. I did not watch the Oscar show because I rarely go to the movies. I did recognize the photo of Lawrence of Arabia at your blog header, and wondered about the name on the photo("Arthur O'Toole ?). I thought that he was played by a Peter O'Toole.


  5. I managed to stay up until 11:30 but finally gave in. After reading your post, I'm not sure I watched the same show you did. Guess I don't focus on some of the details as much as I should. Thanks for the very informative post. Marn


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