It’s not often that you’ll find me doing what Everybody is doing, but I did hunker down with Chris last night to watch the Oscars. They’re my annual dose of pop culture. I catch up on names, faces, and scandal that otherwise would not show up on my radar, and I like to see the clothes.
This year I achieved a near-perfect record of having seen only two films (A Very Long Engagement and The Incredibles) that were nominated for anything at all. I’m not a film snob–I just have shamefully narrow taste in movies and Hollywood seldom encompasses it.
Not that you asked, but here are my horribly prejudiced, wholly unnecessary and universally uninteresting comments on the 77th Academy Awards.
1. Chris says his chief problem with the evening can be summed up in one word: Beyonce. Me, I’m not really sure who the heck she is, or why she’d be chosen to sing those two songs, neither of which suited her. Questionable pitch in both songs and execrable French in the first; and when singing the Phantom of the Opera song she kept wiggling around like a lizard was creeping up her inseam. (Of course, close proximity to Andrew Lloyd Webber would make me jumpy, too.)
2. Women of Hollywood: Eat something. The parade of skeletal upper arms was ghastly. Who thinks this is attractive? Is it really what straight men want? If so, shame on you, straight men. Poor Natalie Portman looked like a tubercular Victorian heroine on page 199 of a 200 page novel. A slender waist is one thing, but arms and legs that look like size 10 knitting needles mean something’s wrong.
3. This business of giving out some of the awards from the auditorium instead of the stage is awkward. Also unfair. You work hard, you produce something wonderful, you get nominated for an Academy Award, you win, and then you have to give your acceptance speech from Row PP? Please.
4. And please stop lining up the nominees for some categories on stage, as though they were contestants on “The Dating Game” or ducks in a shooting gallery.
5. Leonardo DiCaprio bugs me. I've only seen clips of The Aviator, but as in every other film he seems to be himself with a new costume and haircut. That reedy voice has no range at all – even when he attempts to bellow he sounds like a 13-year-old who is, like, totally cheesed off because his Mom won’t let him go to the mall. Watching him play Howard Hughes reminded me of one of Susan’s grade-school plays, in which we were asked to accept a 4’7” prepubescent girl as George Washington. A certain aura of authority was missing. (In the same production, Susan carried off the role of the State of Virginia with uncommon aplomb and subtlety.)
6. I’m happy Cate Blanchett won, because she was absolutely robbed the year of Elizabeth. Nothing against Gwyneth or Shakespeare in Love (which I adored), but creating a full-length dramatic portrait of a tortured, fascinating woman is a greater achievement than flashing your plucky apricot breasts and looking winsome.
7. Did Johnny Depp buy that cravat pin from the Passion of the Christ online fan store?
8. Are Rene Zellweger and Drew Barrymore running short of cash? I noticed they had to share the same hair and dress. I hope everything’s okay. I worry, you know.