The Oscars were last night, of course, and while I predicted all of the biggest winners correctly (here’s a list of all the winners) there were some winners and some moments that left viewers scratching their head or shaking their television.
1. Before the night even started, The Dictator star Sasha Baron Cohen (invited for his role in Hugo) made his scheduled appearance to promote the upcoming film. Toting an urn carrying the alleged remains of the late dictator and “friend” Kim Jung Il, Cohen spilled the ashes all over the tuxedo of infamous metrosexual Ryan Seacrest, causing general ruckus and major movie publicity. It seems that he has won again.
2. Here she is, Miss America! Meryl Streep, coming off a 29 year slump since her last Oscar win, looked to have very little chances against Viola Davis for Best Actress in a Leading Role. Davis, as the emotional star of The Help, deserved a win, but Meryl Streep deserved it more for The Iron Lady. Finally, the Academy looked past Streep’s ability to gather up nominations in every decade since the 1970’s and give her a deserved win. It’s about time. Yes, Streep will likely continue to be nominated, but she shouldn’t be punished for being the greatest actress of our age.
3. I know many people don’t pay much attention to Best Score, but I do. John Williams, himself a 5-time Oscar winner, faced the same challenge as Streep. Should the Academy award a seasoned veteran who constantly writes grandiose scores, or should they award the fresh face who may never again be nominated? They chose the latter and awarded Ludovic Bource for The Artist, though Williams composed two superior scores, for The Adventures of Tintin and War Horse.
4. Billy Crystal, back from his hiatus and hosting the Academy Awards for the 9th time, is no Ricky Gervais. And I’m sorry Crystalites, but that’s not a good thing. Sure, he’s now a piece of Academy nostalgia and he kept it classy, but his jokes fell short most of the time and he failed to get the crucial 18-24 demographic that Gervais eats up. I’m not old enough to remember the last time Crystal hosted the Oscars, but if it was like last night I wouldn’t beg for him to come back.
5. The once classy music, in the hands of musician Pharrell Williams, was turned into an odd mix of moaning, electric violins, and drums. I give the “spicy” (in Pharrell’s words) change-up a giant “F.”
6. I’m still a bit salty about The Adentures of Tintin not getting nominated for Best Animated Feature, which I thought would be one of the most obvious choices for any category. Instead, Rango took home the prize. Last year and the year before, respectively, Toy Story 3 and Up were both nominated for overall Best Picture, and I would say The Adventures of Tintin far exceeds Up and almost reaches the level of Toy Story 3. C’mon Academy, what were you thinking?