“Billy Crystal’s back!” could have been the theme to last night’s 84th Academy Awards and no one would have batted an eye. The comedian was in top form, bringing back beloved bits like “Look! Billy’s in that Martin Scorsese kid movie”, song-n-dance numbers and “reading” the audience members’ minds. Crystal did not shy away from taking jabs at the long-held belief that the Academy needs to WB-up the show, suggesting only folks in nursing homes watch the show. Someone should have told James Franco and Anne Hathaway that, besides their youth, they should have brought some talent to their hosting gigs last year. The lovable host also managed to keep the show at a length that could be tracked using a watch and not a calendar. Some other highs (and lows) from the awards show:
The “noise”: To those viewers in the Chicagoland area—no, you were not going crazy, there WAS a strange beeping noise in the background during the telecast. I can only assume it was the sound of the Oscar statuettes’ mobile devices, as they texted their other statuette buddies, like Emmy and Tony, as they waited their turn to be handed out.
Milla Jovovich: When the actress/model/awards show black sheep took to the stage to explain she had hosted the Sci Tech portion of the Oscars, she appeared as if she had been playing her own version of a drinking game AND the Bridesmaids drinking game, throughout the show.
Bridesmaids drinking game: A highlight of the show—Best Supporting Actress nominee, Melissa McCarthy and co-star, Rose Byrne, continuing the “Scorsese Drinking Game” started at the Screen Actors Guild Awards
Actors & their love of movies: For all that can be said about the way celebrities are pampered and overindulged, it was refreshing to watch some of Hollywood’s biggest stars candidly gush about their love of movies, their great hopes for a successful picture and the crushing blow when a movie tanks. (Just a suggestion to those celebs in the clip on how to overcome the feeling of rejection if your movie does fail at the box-office—call your accountant. That should perk you right up.)
Chris Rock: Speaking of candid and refreshing, the comedian saw his presenting duties as an opportunity to educate us on the remedial nature of working on an animated film as an actor. Here’s what I walked away with: actors who work on an animated film get paid a s*#@load of money for doing very little. Thanks, Mr. Rock!
Emma Stone & Ben Stiller: Best presenting duo Oscar goes to the team of Stiller & Stone. The actress played her part with full gusto, further proving her quick rise up the Hollywood food chain is no fluke.
Angelina Jolie: Apparently, there is a right way to present an award and then there is the Ms. Jolie way. The actress made full use of the slit in her dress when she purposefully exposed her bare leg bent at a 90-degree angle, as if she were planting her foot on top of her kill from a hunting expedition, placed her pipe cleaner-arms on her hips and turned her body ever so slightly.
Film editing: Call it an occupational hazard. Winners Kirk Baxter and Angus Wall limited their acceptance speech to about two words apiece.
Jennifer Lopez and Cameron Diaz: Hey, girls! I just heard about this great way you can stand when presenting an award. My old buddy, Angelina, shared it with me. It might work better than that, well, whatever you guys were trying to do with the whole turning-your-back-vamping thing.