There are no doubt thousands that turned a blind eye to the Oscars. They have no interest that Jennifer Lawrence was wearing a strapless red Dior, or that she was up for her third Academy Award nomination in four years, and she’s all of 23. But there were millions of others who had one foot in the door, anticipating tucking into a fun night of watching who’s wearing what, and wondering whether this year’s host, Ellen DeGeneres redux, could top Billy Crystal’s Hannibal Lecter skit during the 1992 awards show, when some of us had not even reached 40 years old. Geez Louise, it seems like yesterday. All in all I thought Ellen DeGeneres was a mighty generous, relaxed and comfortable host, although the morning after comments from friends have weighed in with “too much”, “boring”, and “not edgy enough”.
I adored watching Angelina Jolie accompany Sidney Poitier to announce Best Director (Alfonso Cuaron for “Gravity” – that movie swept up). The man who starred in “A Patch of Blue” (1965), “To Sir With Love” (1967), “The Defiant Ones” (1958) and “In the Heat of the Night” (1967) is 87 years old. I can watch Sidney Poitier movies over and over again. He’s such an incredible actor.
I was in complete agreement with Bill Murray about Amy Adams dress. It was a knock-out.
It’s always a trip to check out the cosmetic surgery procedures, and this year, Goldie Hawn sort of made me gasp. I recently watched “Butterflies Are Free” (1972), for the first time and I think she may be 27 in that movie – a real pixie. I guess she is still going for the pixie look – don’t think it quite works at 68. Her smile was the same though.
I rarely relish the acceptance speech because it can be so predictable – the winner rattles through the prepared list of thank-yous, while at the same time making the PC call out to their fellow nominees. Yawn Yawn. However, I applauded Jared Leto for his for Best Supporting Actor for “Dallas Buyers Club” and Darlene Love for singing thanks for “20 Feet from Stardom.” Definitely want to see that movie.
I had seen all of two of the nine nominated movies. “American Hustle,” which I found captivating from the moment you see Christian Bale’s oversized exposed belly, and “Her,” to me a puzzlement as to why it was even on the list. Love with an operating system? I guess the novelty, along with the possibility that, yes, it really could happen in the not so distant future, kept it in the game. It turned out I do not have my hand on the pulse of the voters. Her won for best original screenplay. It was original, even if I found it a bit enervating.
The whole month of February had been one big celebration on TCM because every movie aired was, or starred, an Academy Award nominee or winner. In fact I saw a few starring Jean Hersholt. I mean they always give out the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. It was nice to put a name to a face.
But my favorite part of the evening is when the room goes silent, and the film is rolled for the tribute to the persons that have died during the past year. It is a trip down Memory Lane to see the actors, directors and other legends of Hollywood lore, some of whom I grew up with, that are now cast in movie heaven. In a weird way, it marks how quickly time has flown, and will fly. While I knew Shirley Temple and Philip Seymour Hoffman, both of whom passed away in the past month would be honored, I’d forgotten that Joan Fontaine and Julie Harris and Peter O’Toole had also died this past year.
So now we know that “12 Years a Slave” won Best Picture, and Cate Blanchett won Best Actress, and Matthew McConaughey’s hero is himself in 10 years. I’ll definitely be tuning in next year to see who are the winners for the 87th Academy Awards. I love them!