Now that the Oscars have been engraved (only the second time backstage), it is time to dig the notes out from the bottom the suitcase and get a bit snarky.
Why snarky? Because shows and events like this always bring it out in many people, whether it is deserved or not. But, let’s be honest. Even when Bob Hope and Johnny Carson hosted it, these things were not the best thing ever put on TV. They are simply Hollywood awarding themselves. And the 39 million viewers almost matched the recent Grammys, which had Adele, and sadly, the tragic events of Whitney Houston’s death.
So, to get that many viewers, when a black and white silent film dominates, is good. Furthermore, the acceptance speech by Meryl Streep perhaps hit the snarky and cynical nail on the head. Even she admitted the viewing public is probably upset she won. She echoed that the rest of the night. Sure, Viola Davis was the favorite to win best actress, but word was getting out that some were sensing a Streep win. The public’s mantra is “she always wins” and that is not true. Over the past few months that changed to “she is always nominated” and that is true. It’s not her fault and to keep one of the best actresses ever from being a perennial loser was to give it to her. The snark started when the L.A. Times did a fine piece of the demographics of Academy members and found the majority where white men.
Here’s the truth about the show. It skewered international and did not last four hours. That is two bits of pretty good news. But the sound was awful and host Billy Crystal seemed to be amused by his jokes. The crowd might have been to if they had heard them. He was a fine host, though. Again, it’s an award show. The host is not doing a Mass at St. Peter’s. There were funny bits, including the focus group of the “Wizard of Oz.” A note here is that the film was a bomb when it was released in 1939. “Gone With the Wind” won best picture, but that year is considered one of the finest years for motion pictures. The show needs to be a show about the movies, not just comedy bits. Show more scenes from the nominated pictures and even from Oscar’s past. If your favorite movie is “Titanic” or “Casablanca,” it doesn’t matter, that night, a clip or two will make it all seem worthwhile. The set was perfect for just that idea as it brought back memories of those old movies houses. Too bad the bits didn’t match it.
Now, enter more on the subject snark. The Academy was right on the mark for not allowing Sacha Baron Cohen on the red carpet. But, then they bended. He was later kicked off for the ridiculous ashes bit. Here’s something to ponder when eating your Cheerios. Why on earth did the crowd stand and applauded so loudly for Cirque de Soliel? Are they that deprived of entertainment that they thought this was the best thing since sliced bread. It was fine but come on.
These types of shows are more about emotion than actual entertainment. So, if one likes the movies and performers who won, they will like the show. It’s not hard to figure out. Or there are those who will not like it no matter what. Those are even easier to spot. Just head to the social chat rooms and chase their thoughts. And not just of movies. On all things from politics to what brand of diaper they prefer. In the end it really isn’t the show, it is more about the sarcasm and rudeness that follows, no matter the outcome. It is fashionable these days to hate.
That’s the sad part.