Monday, February 28, 2011

The Academy Awards

I tweeted my way through last night's Academy Awards. As much as I wanted James Franco and Anne Hathaway to do well, I don't think the show came together. Their opening montage was great. Invading Alec Baldwin's dreams to steel hosting secrets, and discovering that Baldwin has Morgan Freeman narrate his dreams (but who doesn't?). But my question was: Why steel secrets from last year's co-host who wasn't invited back? Billy Crystal would have been a better choice, and if you're trying to "young and hip," go with John Stewart.

Having Franco walk out with his iPhone and Justin Timberlake mention apps doesn't automatically mean the show is going to connect with younger viewers (though I was checking Franco's tweets during breaks, so it may have worked) and the telecast seemed desperate to do that. At one point, Hathaway called this "The young and hip Oscars," but the show quickly undercut itself. See my first tweet:

       @DanielWyman: Why are we talking about Gone with the Wind? #oscars

I mean, seriously, I want to know what films are going to win, not be reminded of one that won years ago and I think is overrated. The flashbacks to Oscar history counteracted the Facebook references when it came to making the show relevant for young audiences, much like King's Speech negating The Social Network when it comes to relevance...

      @DanielWyman: Okay the supporting actress presentation was funny, but it took a long time #oscars

Kirk Douglas presented the award for Best Supporting Actress, and while it was funny, going back to my point about "young audiences," I really had no idea who he was (I have since enlightened myself on Wikipedia). Also, I wasn't always certain if the things I was laughing at were supposed to funny. The whole bit dragged on too long and I wanted to find out who won, so that's a strike against it. I hear Melissa Leo dropped the first F-bomb in Oscar history during her speech. I guess that's something.

      @DanielWyman: King's Speech and Social Network win the screenplay awards. But at least Inception won cinematography #oscars

I was disappointed Inception lost Original Screenplay. Since King's Speech was based on a true story, it didn't seem to me like it should have qualified. Still, Inception did win cinematography, and that, along with screenplay and editing are (in my opinion) the most underrated determiners of the quality of a film.

      @DanielWyman: The sound awards are always funny 'cause it's the only time you'll see the academy admit a movie like "Salt" exists. #oscars

Even I didn't see Salt, but it got more nominations than The Tourist...  The sound, makeup and visual effects awards gave nominations to TRON: Legacy, Iron Man 2, Unstoppable, and a victory for The Wolfman. I always find it sad that I care more about who wins Best Visual Effects more than I care about who wins Best Actress, because I've actually seen the films. VFX went to Inception, so with the cinematography win, it explains why the movie is so awesome to watch. 

      @jamesfranco is awesome

I tweeted this when he walked out in a dress, though I was disappointed that no song and dance number followed. It was another moment where things didn't quite click, following Hathaway's jabs at Hugh Jackman, which didn't really make sense. It felt like that whole bit was missing something.

      @DanielWyman: Movie musical montage ftw #oscars

I thought this was one of the best parts of the night, though there's probably better stuff on YouTube. A serious of auto-tuned clips from Harry Potter, Social Network, and Twilight, among others. MTV has part of the video, the whole thing keeps appearing and disappearing from YouTube. 

For the acting awards, I was happy that Padme and Batman won, though I hadn't seen their movies, and Colin Firth's win really was the "No duh" moment of the night.

      @DanielWyman: King's Speech wins pretty much everything, which is okay I guess, but those kids look stoned... #oscars

So King's Speech won Best Picture and Best Director. I think the thing I'm most upset by is actually that Christopher Nolan wasn't even nominated in the director category. I'm sure some people are upset David Fincher didn't win with his history, and I'd have been happy that he did, but Tom Hooper did a great job with King's Speech.

Of course my favorite moment of the night was probably Steven Spielberg walking out to present Best Picture with the Jurassic Park theme playing. Ironically, this points out how irrelevant the Oscars can be, considering Jurassic Park wasn't nominated for Best Picture and it's score wasn't nominated, but now it's one of the most iconic themes they can dig up.

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