One More For The Road

oscars roundup

The student-produced university newspaper asked me to write a piece on the Oscars, so I thought I would share with all of you. I promise the next post will not center on the Oscars! Here goes:

THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY: (MANNERS DURING) THE 2013 OSCARS

You may (not) have noticed, but a week ago the Oscars came and went. I was one of the few here on campus who watched the ceremony live (partly), starting with the red/cayenne carpet. That only means one thing: DRESSES. There were some big failures (I’m looking at you, Jane Fonda), but also some that could blow you away, as well as everything in between. Just being able to see all that happen live, from all the way across the world, all those celebrities being interviewed and photographed, it was quite the emotional moment.

Not paying any attention to my state of mind, the countdown bore down on zero, and the show went on. These 85th annual Academy Awards were hosted by Seth MacFarlane (known to most as the voice behind many of the characters in Family Guy). Most critics (professional and amateurs alike) agree that MacFarlane could not light one single candle to Hugh Jackman’s 2009 performance (the standard these days). In his opening monologue alone, MacFarlane insulted some major celebs, he insulted some ethnic groups, he basically insulted the intelligence of everybody watching.

Luckily, there were some guest performances that could wash that bad taste away. Shirley Bassey gave away a very impressive rendition of Goldfinger, and Adele maybe achieved even more with her Skyfall (although the orchestra almost got the best of her during the choruses). There was a roundup of the decade’s musical movies, including the premiere of the Les Misérables-cast singing all together on one stage. Initially, because of James Bond’s 50th anniversary, there had been rumors that all six Bond-actors would provide a similar premiere. Instead, all the Academy could manage was a half-sapped compilation video (which was immediately overshadowed by the creation of a Dutch 19-year-old student – no, it wasn’t me – featured on most of the prestigious film-following websites).

It wasn’t even just these guest performances that provided some welcome distraction from MacFarlane’s antics, the Oscar-winners themselves were more than willing to help out in that effort too. When Life Of Pi won Best Visual Effects, the team tried to speak about the troubling economic situation of the sector. The Academy replied by trying to play them off with the Jaws­-theme. “Trying” is the keyword here, because in the end they even resorted to cutting the microphone.
The winner for Best Actress also created some diversion: Jennifer Lawrence tripped on her dress when climbing the stairs to the stage. Of course the embodiment of Prince Charming, all-round knight-in-shining-armor, and hero on a white horse (a.k.a. Hugh Jackman) rushed to the stage to help her out. Unfortunately, when he got there his services were no longer needed, but Tumblr still exploded over the incident. Even more so because this wasn’t Jennifer Lawrence’s only instant of awkwardness over the course of that evening (notable too were her encounters with Jack Nicholson and Anne Hathaway).

In the end these 2013 Oscars were certainly memorable, even if it wasn’t always for the right reasons.

Best picture:                                     Argo
Best actor:                                        Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Best supporting actor:                    Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Best actress:                                     Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Best supporting actress:                Anne Hathaway, Les Misérables
Best director:                                   Ang Lee, Life Of Pi

For more on these, and the other winners, visit the official site.
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Please note that minor aspects were changed for wider publication, and obviously links were not included in the original.

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