Monday, February 26, 2007

Oscar Observations

Again ducking the responsibility of posting substantively on Cheney's surprise trip to Pakistan -- quick take: he's there because Dems are threatening to cut off funding unless Pakistan goes after Al Qaeda more aggressively, ergo, the Dems are arguably more effective at fighting terrorism than the GOP -- here's my take on last night's Oscars.

Best dressed: Reese Witherspoon in purple.

Worst dressed: Jennifer Hudson's jacket looked like it was designed by Frank Gehry. Also, Ellen's purple valour suit looked like a rejected costume design for The Joker.

Best unintentionally awkward moment: The presenter (Rachel Weasel?) who made the crack about Mark Wahlberg getting arrested 25 times by the Boston police. Turns out, Marky Mark actually has been arrested, numerous times, for race-based assault and battery.

Worst unintentionally awkward moment: Clint Eastwood's "Admiral Stockdale" declaration that he'd misplaced his glasses and couldn't read the teleprompter. This in turn leads us to the...

Second worst unintentionally awkward moment: Clint Eastwood's translation of that Italian director who won a lifetime achievement award (I think). In case you missed it, it went something like this:

Italian guy: Un'offerta vasta e differenziata, che comprende le soluzioni economiche e quelle più lussuose, le più semplici e quelle più raffinate: tutte, comunque, in linea con la tradizionale ospitalità italiana, fatta di attenzione, cortesia e premura.

Eastwood: "Thank you, Academy."

Italian guy: Alle nostre banche dati nazionali, che per ora comprendono alberghi e campeggi, si aggiungeranno presto le informazioni riguardanti gli altri tipi di alloggio.

Eastwood: "I am honored by this award."

Not pretty.

Best Picture: The Queen. I know I'm out on a limb here, but I think The Deparated was the worst of the five nominees, and that includes the bafflingly pointless Letters from Iwo Jima.

Surprisingly worst speech: Alan Arkin for Best Supporting Actor. He seemed like a guy who would do something interesting with his 90 seconds, especially after I saw him threaten to punch Ryan Seacrest while walking the red carpet (seriously). Instead, he fell back to the tried-but-horrifically-boring list of shout outs.

Surprisingly decent host: Ellen. I can't remember ever being that annoyed with her. Which, for Ellen, is saying something.

Biggest riddle: How could Pan's Labyrinth win in every category except Best Foreign Language film? Though, for what's worth, that German flick is supposed to be phenomenal. Speaking of which...

Best speech: That German guy for the German movie. How pumped was that guy that he won? Answer: pretty f***in' pumped.

Most intriguing partner: Melissa Etheridge's wife stared at Melissa with the intensity of a mass-murdering psychopath. My girlfriend of course thought it was "sweet" but I say "creepy."

Guy who you should probably add to your death pool: Peter O'Toole.

Awkward Man-robot who irritated me far more than he should have: Random wandering guy Chris Connelly, who served no function whatsoever other than to awkwardly be on camera while the winners were being wisked back stage.

Thing we learned about Will Smith's family that we didn't know previously: His son can't read or improvise. Sure, he's only six, but you'd expect more from the Smith family, wouldn't you?

Guy who remains funny, yet somehow tainted by Michael Richard's racism: Jerry Seinfeld, with pitch-perfect timing, delivered the funniest introduction.

Biggest winner: Wes Anderson/American Express. Yeah, I know, Scorcese finally got his Oscar -- for arguably his worst movie of the last 20 years, and that includes that crap Nic Cage ambulance movie. I think the director who really won was Wes Anderson, who made an absolutely hilarious AmEx commercial that made me (1) remember why I like Wes Anderson so much, (2) get excited to see his next movie, and (3) vaguely made me want to sign up for an AmEx card. Which is the point of a good commercial. So, kudos.


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