Monday, March 8, 2010

Loose Ends: Oscars n Stuff

- So hey, how about them Oscars, huh? I could complain about how it was long and dull and self-indulgent and not funny, but that's kind of like going to a Dane Cook show and complaining about the jokes being derivative and unfunny. What the fuck did you go in expecting? It was certainly better than last year's Hugh Jackman-riffic abortion, though the interpretive-dancing-to-the-scores segment was horrifying, and the exclusion of a real speech by Lauren Bacall or Roger Corman or Gordon Willis is godamned shameful. Oh, and two guys as frequently funny as Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin had no business being that unfunny. Their writing was not only unfunny in and of itself (seriously, fucking Leno would've tossed some of those jokes), but their back-and-forth was painfully trite and poorly timed; it was like watching two schmucky execs trying to emcee the company awards banquet. Ebert's award post-mortem tries gamely to figure out what went wrong; "Their opening lines would have been funny delivered by one emcee," he writes, "but having them do alternate reads from the prompter was a mistake." Also, I'd forgotten all about the conversion of the Kodak Theater to a giant masturbatorium for the acting awards--it's already the most self-indulgent night of the year, but having distinguished actors standing around at length and just spew praise at each other is pretentious and laughable. Still, sure am glad Avatar only won in the techincal categories--although just about every film lover I know who is technically savvy is scratching their head over that Best Cinematography win. As my friend Matt Frank tweeted, "Avatar winning best Cinematography is like Russian Ark winning best editing. It just doesn't make a bit of sense."

- Salon apparently took it upon themselves to clear up last night's big controversies. Their piece on that awk-ward angling at the mic by the winners of Best Documentary Short is fascinating and telling; there's big drama even in little movies. Also good-- their analysis of Mo'Nique's semi-controversial "talent vs. politics" comments. Gawker covered some of the evening's other mysteries.

- Some good live commentaries happening last night, particularly The Awl's liveblog, Gawker's post-mortem, and the Twitterings of Rob Corddry and Paul F. Tompkins. And not to blow my own horn, but I didn't do too bad myself.

- I only did predictions for five of the catagories last night, but I went 4 for 5, for whatever the hell that's worth. Had I expanded to Adapted Screenplay or Foreign Film, I'd have been wrong more.

- For many, the highlight of the snoozy night was the post-show debut of the new Iron Man 2 trailer. I think I speak for many when I say: Can't. Fucking. Wait.

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