Sunday, March 05, 2006

Partially Blogging the Oscars

I didn't start at the beginning, but whatever.

Nice to see Lauren Bacall, but she's having trouble reading the teleprompter. This is really uncomfortable.

The Daily-Show-style negative campaign ads for Best Actress were really good.

J.Lo looks awful, unrecognizably awful. She barely looks like a person.

The best song number from Crash is even more irritating than the movie. There is a burning car on stage and people reaching out to each other in slow motion. Man, is it pretentious.

The songs in the commercials are better than the songs nominated for best song. The song in the Diet Coke ad is pretty good.

Oh, good, Jon Stewart made fun of the Crash number. "If you are trying to escape a burning car, my suggestion would be not to move in slow motion."

Wow, the MPAA president and Jake Gyllenhaal are really hard-selling the theatrical experience. "Good luck enjoying [epic films] on a portable DVD," Gyllenhaal snits clumsily, which elicits a small chuckle, seemingly for the moment's sheer awkwardness. Poor guy. It's not his fault someone wrote a commercial for him to recite. Please see movies in theaters, everybody! When you don't, all this fanfare seems awfully silly. I like how every year, you can tell what's making Hollywood desperately insecure--like a couple years ago when Steve Martin had all the jokes about downloading.

Lily Tomlin and Meryl Streep are doing a "spontaneous" bit where they pretend to go off the script. It's supposed to be Altman-esque. Pretty impressive considering how many people are botching the teleprompter reading for real. Okay, it's going on way too long now. How long can they talk over each other? What is going on?

Listening to Salma Hayek is like playing a guessing game. When she starts a word, you guess what word it's going to be. Then she inevitably surprises you. When she says Pride & Prejudice, "Pride" ends up with three syllables.

The only thing worse than long speeches are short speeches that are 50% lamenting the lack of time left in the speech. Especially when you get a few in a row. At least the microphones don't disappear into the stage this year.

Reese Witherspoon needs to hurry up and book a terrible action movie to follow in the tradition of Charlize Theron and Halle Berry.

Last year Dustin Hoffman seemed doped up or otherwise somehow brain-addled. It was embarrassing. He seems to be in better shape this year, but still awkward. Standing in front of everyone must make him uncomfortable. Why is it so hard to write about the Oscars without overusing the words "awkward" and "uncomfortable"?

Wow, Larry McMurtry is weird. He's like a bobbing, squeaky cartoon character. Larry, Brokeback wasn't a book, was it? Didn't Diana Osana just say it was a short story in the New Yorker?

Paul Haggis just collects Oscars now, doesn't he?

McDonald's commercial: A cute little Asian boy sits on a bench with a Ronald McDonald statue. It's snowing. The Asian boy puts his scarf on Ronald McDonald and walks away. "You did what with your scarf?! What's the matter with you? That scarf cost ten dollars! We're going back there right now!"

Oh wow, Crash for Best Picture? Paul Haggis has too many Oscars for two years. Can we just agree now that he can never have one again?


lyan! said...

Crash = political choice. [fart noise] Whatever, the Oscars piss me off. I'm most pissed off that Howl's Moving Castle didn't win Animation. Some other movie called "The Moon and the Son" won, though, when I went to investigate what the hell this was, I found nothing. Only a synopsis (yet no poster) on IMDB which also mentions it's a short. I assume this is from ATOM films. Bullshit.

Last thought. It was mentioned that Howl didn't win the Oscar here on Japanese television, but they didn't say anything else. No mention to who won, no mention of anything other than Best Picture. Weird. Oh, but did you know a Japanese person won a gold metal for Figure Skating?


cyshas said...

Why did you think J.Lo looked so bad? From the photos she looked pretty good...I didn't watch the actual show last night though...

Tommaso Sciortino said...

I think you misread there, Pauly. The Moon and the Sun won for "Best Animated Short", a catagory in which Howl's moving castle was not elligable. it was nominated for "Best Animated Feature" I believe, but lost to Wallace and Grommit which, while arguablly not as good as Moving Castle, at least isn't embarresingly worse.

Anonymous said...

It's hard to tell with The New Yorker sometimes, because many of their "short stories" actually seem to be excerpts from novels. I first saw "Brokeback" in the New Yorker, but Annie Proulx had a bunch of her Wyoming stories go there first, before they ended in a book that was all stories about Wyoming. I would guess that the eventual book was planned all along.

You can in fact buy "Brokeback" as its own separate book now. Maybe McMurtry was just trying to help a fellow author out with some royalties.


Kenny said...

Crash=political choice is not as bad as the fact that Crash=completely undeserving.

When J.Lo was presenting she looked terrible. Her hair was pulled back too tight which made her face look freakish and she was holding her arms in a position that made them look lumpy and misshapen.

Ryan, at least Wallace and Gromit wasn't American, right? So your foreign-film elitism can take some solace in that.

Kenny said...

Oh, and yeah, I heard about the Japanese figure skater. Congratulations.

lydia said...

Shizuka Arakawa was beeeeeeeaaaaauuuuuutiful on the ice. I'm super super glad she won, although I think Slutskaya should have gotten silver. NBC's Olympic coverage pissed me off.

Also, I agree that Howl also should have won. For any category with the word "animation" involved.

Zack said...

It's not NBC's fault that Slutskaya got bronze. It's the judges' fault. It's NBC's fault that the Olympics, which are supposed to be about coming together as a global community, continue to be spun as GO TEAM USA.

Howl wasn't even all that, you guys. For Ghibli, I mean. It's not anybody's favorite Ghibli film. It's lovely, but it's not unassasilable. It's short and doesn't entirely make sense, and ends rather abruptly. Does anyone like Howl more than Spirited Away?

C said...

Do you really think Reese Witherspoon and George Clooney are sitting around watching anime?? It had no chance.

Kenny, I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought the McDonald's commercial was the most bizarre one-- Obviously you don't care about your kid if you leave him alone on a bench in the middle of a snow storm, therefore continue with your neglect and fatten the brat up at McDonalds. Then at least the witch who eats children will give you a good price for him

and what was up with that epic film tribute? when was the last time you were able to watch ben-hur, or any of those movies on a big screen? were they trying to point out that all of our lives are tiny and miserable nowadays?

Kenny said...

Maybe you'll never catch a Ben-Hur revival, but the point is that seeing Cheaper By the Dozen 2 on the big screen is just as important.

cyshas said...

I actually like Howl's moving castle more than Spirited away. Granted the ending had me confused and unsatisfied. But I liked the overall story and characters. I actually went and read the book later. The ending for the book was the same as the movie's, but was more complete because the characterization was a lot more simple.