Archive for February 23rd, 2009

Oscars Recap

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

I lurvvvve the Oscars. I can’t recall a year I haven’t looked forward to watching them, although getting “the big TV” for Oscar night—all night, without interruptions—can sometimes be a challenge. However, this year, My Liege happens to be off on his annual golfing trip, and unfortunately for Youngest Son, I commandeered “the big TV” last night (it’s really big).

I thought I’d offer my thoughts on Oscar night. Big problem, however—I haven’t seen most of the films that were honored. As a story teller, I luuuurvvvve movies, but I live in a town that doesn’t usually get Oscar-nominated movies until way after Oscar night. Does anyone live in a city, where, if you wished, you could watch every Best Picture nominated film before the Oscars?

Okay, let’s start. Number one, the Host: Hugh Jackman. Now, I always love me some Hugh. I’m a Wolverine fan, and who doesn’t want to just squish him to pieces in that old film with Ashley Judd? (The title escapes me at the moment). Mr. Jackman starred on Broadway a year or so ago, so I figured he could sing and dance. But I hadn’t realized just how amazingly well he can sing and dance. Reminded me of when My Liege and I saw Antonio Banderas perform in a Broadway production of Nine the last time RWA National was held in New York. I’d seen the movie version of Avita, so I knew Antonio Banderas could sing and dance, but seeing his talent live, on stage (especially when you’re sitting in the first or second row) is amazing.

Back to Hugh. I’d lurrrrve to see him on Broadway. Hugh, would you mind appearing in a Broadway musical next time RWA National is in New York? (2011, in case you or your agent is reading).

Number two, the Format. I lurrrrved the format. I lurrrrrved how they really honored the Best Supporting Actress/Actor and Best Actress/Actor categories by speaking directly to each nominee. For me, the format especially drew attention to the Best Supporting Actress nominees—because usually that category is announced before I’ve realized the Oscars have started.

Best Supporting Actress: I’m bad, I didn’t write down all the names. All I knew as I heard them read off was that the only performance I’ve seen was Penelope Cruz in Vicky Christina Barcelona, which I just rented last week. I lurrrrrrrrved Penelope Cruz in her role, so I’m very glad that she won.

Best Supporting Actor: I actually had a prediction for this category (who didn’t?). Heath Ledger. I luuuuuuuurved him in The Dark Knight. However, I also lurrrrrrved Robert Downey Jr. in Tropic Thunder. Yes, I actually saw two films nominated in this category!

The only other nomination I recall was Philip Seymour Hoffman, because I think he is such an amazing talent, and while I haven’t yet seen Doubt, I have no doubt that he did an amazing job. He always does. Mr. Hoffman is another whirlwind of the stage My Liege and I were lucky enough to see on Broadway. He played alongside Vanessa Redgrave and Brian Dennehy, and he wiped the stage with them. I’ve been a huge fan ever since.

So my prediction—Heath Ledger—came true. The big question (perhaps) in some people’s minds is, would Mr. Ledger have won Best Supporting Actor for his role as The Joker in The Dark Knight if he hadn’t passed away? Well, I don’t know, and frankly I don’t care. I luuuuuurved Robert Downey Jr.’s performance in Tropic Thunder and think it was every bit as good as Heath Ledger’s. But Mr. Downey already has an Oscar and the opportunity to win several more in his lifetime, which I’m sure he will. So if the Academy wanted to honor Heath Ledger with a post-humous Oscar, I was all for it. That lizard tongue alone was worth it.

Best Actress: I didn’t have a prediction for this category, and last night I realized, quite sadly, that I haven’t seen any of the films. Not a one. But I lurrrve Kate Winslet, and I luuuuurve Meryl Streep, so either of them winning would have done it for me. Ms. Winslet won, and good for her. I can’t wait to see The Reader, and I’m sure she more than deserves it.

Best Actor: My prediction? Mickey Rourke. Years ago, he was a fantastic talent, and who doesn’t love a good come-back story? I thought for sure he would win. Now, I haven’t seen The Wrestler yet. Of the films honored in this category, the only one I’ve seen is The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and, while I enjoyed it, I didn’t understand what all the hype was about, so I didn’t expect it to win in this category or in Best Picture.

Sean Penn won, for his performance in Milk. He’s a truly gifted actor. I luuuuuurve him in about every performance I’ve seen (save, possibly, that movie with Madonna). So I can’t wait to see Milk.

Best Picture: My prediction? Slumdog Millionaire. No, I haven’t seen it—it just arrived in town the other night, so I haven’t had a chance. But it won at The Golden Globes, it’s received a ton of excellent press, and Maureen McGowan recommended it. Who am I to argue with my buddy Maureen? After all, she was right about Across The Universe, so I trust her judgement.

There you have it. I thoroughly enjoyed my night at the Oscars. How about you? Do you watch the show? Do you enjoy it? Did your favorite nominees win? Will you go out of your way to catch the nominated films in theaters or on DVD?

Which nominated film do you most look forward to seeing? For me, despite my prediction, it’s Frost/Nixon and The Reader. Frost/Nixon because I’ve watched part of the real interviews on DVD with Eldest Son, and because I remember when that whole mess was occurring. The Reader I look forward to because the story is so compelling, and I think we’ve already established that I lurrrrrrve Kate Winslet. I also look forward to Milk. Heck, I look forward to them all.