Hello, everybody, and welcome to my 4th annual Oscar commentary blog! The big night is finally upon us and it is time to see who will win what should be an epic battle between Hollywood, Bollywood, Gay Hollywood, the Nazis, and, um, the Ghost of Richard Nixon. Should be very interesting, and while I believe that SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE has the inside track on the major awards, but there is no 100% clear-cut favorite, and I would not be surprised to see the winners scattered all over the place as some nominees cancel each other out. That said, there are also a few that should be no-brainers. Mickey Rourke and Kate Winslet should be locks, and rightly so... and I’m sure that Heath Ledger has his posthumous Oscar in the bag... but wouldn’t it be something if someone else swooped in and pulled of an upset or two? I’m also very excited to see WALL-E, my #1 movie of the year, grab some gold -- Best Original Screenplay may be my most-anticipated award of the night for that reason. At the moment, I am watching some pre-show stuff on E! and getting myself psyched up -- as usual, I’ll be here with a running, moment-by-moment commentary throughout the night, starting with the E! Red Carpet Special at 6 p.m. This blog will be updated constantly, first during the Red Carpet show and then the Oscar telecast... so bookmark this page and check back often!
THE RED CARPET
6:00 -- Okay, I think I've had just about of Debbie Matanopoulos and her band of merry pre-show idiots this year. Well, the Victoria's Secret lingerie segment was pretty good... though I could've done without the SLUMDOG-esque Bollywood dance sequence. Anyway, now it's time to join our old friend Flamin' Ryan Seacrest and see what there is to see on the Red Carpet!
6:02 -- AAAAAHHHH, it's that scary fish-faced woman! She will be haunting my nightmares for the rest of the year.
6:03 -- IT'S MILEY! Oh, and Nicole Ritchie is pregnant... la-dee-freakin'-da!
6:06 -- Here's the thing about the Jennifer Aniston vs. Angelina Jolie thing: Angelina is better than Jen in pretty much every possible way, from looks to acting ability, so why is it such a big deal? If I was Brad Pitt, I'd have chosen Angelina, too. Granted, I might've put my foot down about at least a couple of those kids. Still... those lips!
6:08 -- Once again... IT'S MILEY! I was actually surprised that she didn't get a nominated for her song from BOLT. Not that it was a great song... but still. Actually, nevermind, because this interview is amazingly insipid. ENOUGH!
6:18 -- Oh yeah, Hugh Jackman is hosting tonight. I actually liked Jon Stewart the last couple of years, but it'll be interesting to see someone new. Hugh is pretty cool so I think he'll do a good job.
6:21 -- Wow, according to the ticker at the bottom of the screen, Cate Blanchett has starred in SEVEN Best Picture nominees since 1998. That's crazy! And understandable, since she rules.
6:23 -- Ah, the SLUMDOG cast has arrived. Wouldn't have minded seeing Dev Patel snag a Best Oscar nom, maybe instead of Brad Pitt, since BENJAMIN BUTTON is a bloated piece of shite. I imagine BUTTON will win some technical awards for makeup and such, but if it gets a single major award, I will be pissed.
6:28 -- Yeah, all of a sudden I'm hearing about some buzz for Sean Penn for Best Actor. Eh... in any other year, that would not be a bad thing at all, but this year, it's GOTTA be Mickey Rourke. Or at the very least, Frank Langella. On the other hand, if Kate doesn't win Best Actress, there is truly no justice in this world (with all due respect to the great Streep).
6:30 -- What the hell is going on with Miley, Zac Ephron, Vanessa Hudgens and whoever else? A performance or something? Why?
6:36 -- WHOA! Kevin Kline is married to Phoebe Cates?!? That is wild. I wonder how often he gets her to wear the bikini from FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH? Looks like she could still make it work. Nice!
6:37 -- Hey, there's Richard Jenkins, one of this year's longtime character actors to finally get some Oscar love. He was very good in THE VISITOR, and Melissa Leo was even better in FROZEN RIVER.
6:38 -- AMY ADAMS! Oh man, my girl is looking nice in that red dress and funky big necklace. Though, really, she could wear a bunch of old newspapers and still look super cute. Love her!
6:44 -- By the way, special shout-out to my friend Jenn, who is at the Oscars RIGHT NOW, probably getting ready for her role as a seat-filler! That means she could potentially get to sit next to, say, Jack Nicholson in the front row... in which case, she'd better be on her toes, 'cause you know how Jack can get! Jenn is wearing a navy blue dress and I will be keeping my eyes open for her throughout the show.
6:45 -- Man, these SLUMDOG kids are cute as hell. I hope everyone realizes that the reason that movie received no acting nominees is because there were really THREE actors for each major character, and you couldn't very well nominate them all! And that's why the SAG award for Best Ensemble exists.
6:48 -- Whoa, why does Melissa Leo's dress match her hair? She looks like a naked Simpson.
6:49 -- I've been complaining about Viola Davis getting nominated even though she has very little screen time... but it turns out that Michael Shannon in REVOLUTIONARY ROAD has even less! Somehow, his performance seems so much more potent, and thus, longer. Though neither of them should win, so it's a moot point.
6:51 -- The action is fast and furious now... and it's almost all SLUMDOG right now, as the cast has pretty much taken over the Red Carpet. Perhaps that is symbolic of what will happen during the big show!
6:55 -- Jeez, I can hear the teenyboppers squealing for Robert Pattinson from here. SQUEEE!
6:59 -- Tons of random celebs popping up on screen now... man, who the hell is Michael Sheen's date? Not too shabby, Mr. Frost!
7:01 -- Hey, it's three-time Oscar nominee Marisa Tomei! That sounds so weird to say... but maybe it shouldn't! She is damn good when she wants to be, and I think she will win her second Oscar tonight!
7:03 -- God I love Amy Adams. That is all.
7:09 -- Can't believe that the chick from MAMMA MIA! is the chick from MEAN GIRLS... you know, the one whose breasts can tell when it's raining. If only it was raining right now!
7:11 -- Seth Rogen is pretty cool... but Mickey Rourke is the very definition of coolness in his white suit. Sarah Jessica Parker, on the other hand, looks more horse-like than ever.
7:12 -- I wish they would show me on the Glamastrator right now. Wonder what they would say about my JUNO t-shirt, champagne bottle PJ pants and white socks?
7:13 -- Wait a minute, is Amanda Sigfried retarded? Though she's going to be in a movie with Megan Fox, written by Diablo Cody, so it's all good.
7:14 -- AMY ADAMS AMY ADAMS AMY ADAMS! Just keep showing her in the inset box throughout the night, and I'll be a happy man no matter what happens with the awards.
7:15 -- Holy shit, Amy Adams played the Sarah Michelle Gellar role in CRUEL INTENTIONS 2?? That is unbelieveable. TO NETFLIX IT GOES!
7:17 -- Well, I'm glad that Natalie Portman reportedly turned down the role in DOUBT that garnered Amy Adams an Oscar nomination, because if she had taken it, it would have sucked. Because unless she's rapping on an SNL Digital Short, Natalie Portman sucks. Yeah, I said it!
7:19 -- Seth Rogen, yeah! Just saw the trailer for Judd Apatow's next film. FUNNY PEOPLE, starring Seth and Adam Sandler... looks pretty good. And speak of the devil, there's Natalie Portman looking pretty in pink, or fuschia or something (hey, she may be a crappy actress, but she's got it where it counts).
7:20 -- Note to the fish-faced host lady: "Gorgeousness" is not a very impressive word. Also, you're a freak.
7:27 -- Seems like Ryan and Marisa are dancing around the fact that she spends half of THE WRESTLER completely nude. Like, he was hoping that she would mention it so he could talk about it... but she didn't, because she's probably sick of talking about it.
7:28 -- I think Mickey Rourke is probably tempted to snap Ryan Seacrest in two and then clear his nostrils on his broken corpse. Also, he has no idea what will come out of his mouth if he wins... please, God, let that happen! Seriously, though, Mickey's dog dying may be the saddest side story to this Academy Awards. :(
7:29 -- My girlfriend (and Oscar-watching companion) Rachel's commentary on Meryl Streep: "She's not an Amazon, exactly, but she's a sturdy woman!" Aww yeah!
7:30 -- I always forget that Josh Brolin is married to Diane Lane. That's a cool couple.
7:31 -- GET OFF THE PHONE, JESSICA BIEL! "She hasn't been in a movie in like 10 years," Rachel says. And that, in my opinion, is a shame. Meanwhile, Evan Rachel Wood is kind of scary-looking. That's what she gets for shtupping Mickey! I also agree that Anne Hathaway is the hotness.
7:34 -- Okay, Ryan Seacrest just upped his coolness quotient tenfold by asking Ron Howard about the status of the planned ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT movie. Can't wait for that!
7:35 -- Oh man, Marion Cotillard. After seeing her at the Oscars last year, I added a slew of her movies to my Netflix. They weren't that great, but she was just ridiculously hot.
7:38 -- Heeeeeeere's Brangelina, both of whom are nominated for Oscars tonight, and neither of whom has a snowball's chance in hell of winning. But damn are they good looking!
7:40 -- Hehe, I like that commercial for Dunkin' Donuts coffee. I LOVE IT, TOO!
7:42 -- I tell ya, I used to hate Penelope Cruz, but in recent years, I have completely changed my tune -- she is a great actress, and I wouldn't mind seeing her win tonight.
7:43 -- At last, KATE WINSLET is here! This may not be her best dress choice ever, but she is still the epitome of Hollywood glamour. LOVE HER, and can't wait till she wins her first Oscar tonight!
7:50 -- Thanks to Rachel for mixing me a nice stiff martini as the Red Carpet madness winds down! But I think I may need a couple more of these to purge my mind of the memory of scary Tilda Swinton... yikes!
7:51 -- KATE KATE KATE! Oh God, I love hearing her talk. Can't wait for her next film, "Kate Winslet Reads the Phone Book." I'm there for the midnight show, baby!
7:54 -- This worthless E! host's favorite movie of the year is BENJAMIN BUTTON... sigh. Such a waste of 13 nominations that could've gone to any number of far more deserving films.
7:58 -- Okay, looks like E!'s Red Carpet coverage is now over, so I'm going to take a half-hour break and switch over the ABC for the network telecast, featuring Tim Gunn, who Rachel has referred to as her "gay uncle," hehe. But first! Robert Downey Jr., yes! Goddamn it would be awesome if he eked out a Best Supporting Actor win... even though it might cause a riot amongst the Heath Ledger fan base. Anyway... I'll be back at 8:30 for the big show, so stay tuned!!!
THE 81st ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS
8:30 --Aaaaaand here we go! The stage looks glitzy as hell, and here comes Hugh Jackman! Let's see what this Aussie stage star has in store for us. Woo, range! Woo, Kate and Robert Downey, Jr.! Oh man, recession cutbacks... but Hugh is gonna do an opening number, anyway!
8:33 -- I get a feeling that Kate is going to get a lot of ribbing in that front-row seat tonight. Hahaha, the Craigslist dancers! Hey, THE DARK KNIGHT did get 8 nominations (just nothing, y'know, important).
8:35 -- Hehe, Hugh enlists Anne Hathaway for this FROST/NIXON spoof! "Do you really wanna do this, Jackman?" Okay, Anne just skyrocketed up the coolness scale. "Why is your upper lip so sweaty?" "Is it?" "Yes, but I like it!" ME TOO!
8:37 -- This Sprockets-esque interpretation of THE READER may be the greatest thing I've ever seen. "I am Hugh Jackman... I'm WOLVERIIIIIIIIIIIIINE!" AWESOME OPENING! Billy Crystal, eat your heart out!
8:39 -- I like this crowd interaction thing that Hugh has going. Fifteen nominations for Meryl Streep, and when someone puts up numbers like that, it's hard not to think "steroids"... haha!
8:41 -- This Supporting Actress winner montage is kind of weird. I guess they'll be doing this for every category tonight? Holy crap, various winners are here to present the award? This is the big surprise that everyone has been talking about. Well, all right! That's quite a motley crew. Viola Davis' performance was short but potent, but should not win. Penelope Cruz was amazing and stole every scene she was in, which is no easy task when Scarlett was in a lot of those scenes. "It's not easy being a nun," Whoopi says. Well, I'd pick Amy Adams' nun over Whoopi's anyday! Wouldn't mind seeing her win, but I don't see it happening. YOWZA, Goldie Hawn's boobs are all over the place! Taraji P. Henson is a cutie but that movie is undeserving in every way, so no. Which brings us to my & Rachel's (and George Costanza's) pick, three-time Oscar nominee Marisa Tomei! And the Oscar goes to.......... PENELOPE CRUZ! Muy bueno! "Has anybody ever fainted here?" Ha! Um, now she's getting all sentimental, and Rachel is crying. And now I can't understand a word. But I like it!
8:53 -- Steve Martin and Tina Fey! That's a good combo of funniness. "It has been said that to write to live forever." "The man who said that... is dead." Oh man, nice rip on Scientology! Tom Cruise is going to sue the Oscars for that one. And now it's time for Best Original Screenplay! FROZEN RIVER was taut and sad... HAPPY-GO-LUCKY was effervescent as hell... IN BRUGES was foul-mouthed and hilarious... MILK was a big message film... and WALL-E was nothing short of the best, most emotional, funniest and moving film of the year. Aaaaand MILK wins. I'm okay with this because it was a great film, but man... can we please start giving some mainstream love to animated films that are far superior to their live-action counterparts?? By the way, this could also mean that MILK is poised to clean up tonight. We shall see!
8:59 -- Adapted Screenplay time! But not before Steve orders Tina to NOT fall in love with him, hehe. Oh God, fuck BEN BUTTON. DOUBT has a shot here, because it is dialogue-driven, and the dialogue is damn good. FROST/NIXON is the same way, but more cliched and not quite as powerful. THE READER is going to get overshadowed across the board, and then there's SLUMDOG, which should win. And the Oscar goes to....... SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE! So it begins! And finally, Rachel and I both get one right!
9:03 -- UH-OH, Jennifer Aniston is there, with Brangelina just a few feet in front of her! FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT! Hehe, I like Jack Black's animation strategy (YEAH PIXAR!). 2008 movie yearbook, eh? WALL-E, of course, has to be there because it is the best movie of any kind this year. KUNG FU PANDA was quite good... didn't see MADAGASCAR or that Space Chimp movie (do you think any of those chimps got shot by the police?). HORTON HEARS A WHO... uhh, there weren't really that many animated films this year, come to think of it. Oh yeah, DESPEREAUX... BOLT was good... what the hell, no CLONE WARS?? I know it sucked, but come on! Wait, Rachel tells me they did show it... okay then.
9:06 -- Best Animated Feature! There is no contest here. The Oscar goes to..... WALL-E!!! Probably the biggest no-brainer this year. YAY! And now, Animated Short Film, the nominees of which I actually saw for the first time ever! Not that it matters, since I'm still going with PRESTO. But if by chance it doesn't win, I'm pulling for THIS WAY UP, which was hilarious. And the Oscar goes to... LA MAISON EN PETITS CUBES! That's a surprise! But not an undeserved one, as that film was beautiful and emotional and ... wait a minute, did that guy just say, "Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto?" Now that's funny!
9:15 -- Sarah Jessica Parker's boobs and James Bond are here to talk about what appears to be Art Direction. Some good choices here... but I'm going for REVOLUTIONARY ROAD, which looked pretty amazing, in a more subtle way than the others. Ah crap, and the Oscar goes to BENJAMIN BUTTON, the first of what will likely be a slew of technical awards for that film, which may have been pretty to look at, but as the saying goes, you can't polish a turd!
9:19 -- Costume Design time! I picked REVOLUTIONARY ROAD for this one, too, but I can practically guarantee that it will not win. The lack of love for that fantastic film is absolutely dumbfounding. Aaaaand THE DUCHESS wins... well that's not really fair... Keira Knightley in an old English period piece is like money in the bag. Not a great movie, but it was definitely well-dressed.
9:23 -- Moving right along, here comes Best Makeup! Okay, this time, I actually am voting for BENJAMIN BUTTON, because let's face it, that was some damn good makeup work. On the other hand... that Joker makeup has become pretty iconic. And the Oscar goes to... BUTTON, of course. Enjoy the one award you actually deserve, turd movie! Meanwhile, Rachel just announced that she wouldn't mind looking at Daniel Craig in Playgirl magazine. I can't compete with that!!!
9:25 -- SQUEEEEE, IT'S THE TWILIGHT GUY, and, uh, the MAMMA MIA/MEAN GIRLS girl. What the hell are they talking about, love stories? Oh, a 2008 montage about love stories. Funny that they showed REVOLUTIONARY ROAD first, since it was about the deterioration of love... but WALL-E, SLUMDOG, WRESTLER, NICK & NORAH... aw man, just keep showing WALL-E and that, like love itself, is all you need.
9:31 -- A bottle of wine has been cracked on my end, and Ben Stiller is doing his best Joaquin Phoenix impression on the show, while Natalie Portman probably looks better than she ever has. Hehe, Joaquin Phoenix is such a tool. "You look like you work at a Hasidic meth lab," hehe. Oh yeah, Cinematography. I'm picking SLUMDOG for this one, but I wouldn't be surprised to see THE DARK KNIGHT swoop in and snag one, because it looked damn good in IMAX. Hehe, what the hell is Ben Stiller doing? This rules. As Rachel just pointed out, you forget about how Funny he is sometimes. Case in point: TROPIC THUNDER, which ruled. Anyway, the Oscar goes to... SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE! Yay. By the way, I have now gotten a pretty pathetic 3 of 9 awards right. Stupid Academy!
9:39 -- I always think it's funny how they get a new hottie to present the Technical awards every year, to provide the geeks with some post-show spank material. This year, it's Jessica Biel, who will do the job just fine, thanks. (Oh, hi Rachel!)
9:42 -- Hehe, Seth Rogen and James Franco run through the Oscar nominees, stoner-style! Hehe, their rendition of "Dancing Queen" is the best... "Orlando Bloom's dad in Pirates of the Carribean!" HAHA, James Franco in MILK putting the moves on Seth. Stapling dollars to one's face is hardcore! Can Seth make the Oscar into a pipe? I hope so! Good stuff from The Apatow Crew.
9:45 -- Rachel says, "James Franco? I would have sex with him." I would not, but I do think it's funny that they keep saying, "DP." Hehe... hey, this wine is working! Oooh, Live Action Short! I saw all these, too, because I am cool. I'm rooting for NEW BOY from Ireland, but THE PIG featured one of my favorite characters of the year in Asbjørn Jensen. And the winner is... the Nazi film, TOYLAND! No fair! Interesting, though... could that possibly bode well for THE READER later??
9:52 -- Hugh Jackman is back with another musical/dance number. He has been doing a hell of a job so far, I must say. Ooh, check out Beyonce, looking as sparkly as she is bootylicious. Okay, so this is a tribute to musical movies. Now they're joined by Amanda Siegfried and Vanessa Hudgens and Zac Ephron and all those kids. This was a pretty cool dance number, but wait, no Miley? Sacrilege! Ooh, that whole thing was put together by Baz Lurhmann... nice!
10:01 -- Looks like we've got ourselves a Supporting Actor montage here. I saw Jack Palance doing the one-handed pushups, which may have been the funniest Oscar moment ever. Heh, man, this is a bizarre lineup of past winners here... but man, get Cuba Gooding Jr. out of there. Tremendous selection of nominees here. You can never count out the amazing Philip Seymour Hoffman. Rachel is voting for Josh Brolin, arguably the strongest performance in MILK. And the black man presents the white man portraying a black man... okay. Heh, the brothers don't need the work... CUBA GOODING, specifically, needs the work! Oh man, Walken. This Oscar telecast needs more cowbell! Michael Shannon was potent as hell in his 8 minutes of screen time. And Kevin Kline introduces the late Heath Ledger, who is so obviously going to win, they may as well have buried him with an Oscar. (Uhh... too soon?) And the Oscar goes to...... HEATH LEDGER. Aw man, his family is accepting. This is gonna be sad.... yep, I was right, because even Brad Pitt is teary-eyed. Seriously though, emotional moment.
10:12 -- Jeez, I was so caught up in the Ledger moment that I didn't even realize they'd begun running through the Documentary Feature nominees. I saw two of these, and I'm going for MAN ON WIRE, which was sensational, and a record of something that we will never, ever see happen again in this post-9/11 society. Uhh, shut the fuck up, Bill Maher, this isn't about you! That "religion movie that didn't got nominated" wasn't good enough to even mention at the Oscars, let alone right after Heath Ledger's moment. Motherfucker. Anyway... the Documentary Oscar goes to...... MAN ON WIRE, yeah! Oh man, the dude is actually there! Awesome. This guy rules! Everyone needs to watch this movie, seriously.
10:17 -- Documentary Short Subject now. No idea about any of these. Rachel is going for THE FINAL INCH because the title was reminiscent of HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH. I'm picking this WITNESS FROM THE BALCONY thing. And the winner is, uh, SMILE PINKI? Okay, congrats, toothy red dressed chick! Next year, I am gonna do my damnedest to see these bad boys....
10:23 -- Hehe, that Jimmy Kimmel commercial with Tom Cruise was pretty funny. And now, an Action movie montage! Good stuff here, with the BATMAN and the IRON MAN and the HULK and the SPEED RACER and the BOND. Not good stuff, too, with the WANTED and the HANCOCK and the MUMMY and, unfortunately, the INDY. Basically what this montage says is that action films are very hit-or-miss, which we didn't really need a montage to tell us. Funny, also, that in all these montages, they show the same five movies the whole time.
10:25 -- Will Smith, one of the great action heroes in modern years with films like ID4 and MEN IN BLACK under his belt, is here to introduce the nominees for Best Visual Effects. Gotta be BEN BUTTON here, though IRON MAN was pretty sweet-looking, and THE DARK KNIGHT was... ah, to hell with it, BUTTON wins. I got that one right!
10:28 -- Will Smith sticks around for Sound Editing, which absolutely MUST MUST MUST go to WALL-E, since that movie was all about sound. The first 30 minutes was ALL SOUND, for God's sake! If the Academy can't be bothered to give it a Best Picture nom, at least get this right... AHH FUCK, it's THE DARK KNIGHT! F'ing ridiculous.
10:30 -- Why did they just play "Mr. Blue Sky" when that Sound Editor guy walked off the stage? Man, I don't even care about Sound Mixing now, because it's probably not gonna be WALL-E, which deserves it. And the Oscar goes to... SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE. Bah.
10:33 -- Hehe, Will Smith is STILL HERE, because Hugh is napping. Best Editing now. Oh yeah, this has to be SLUMDOG. Though if there was an award for LACK of editing, the 12-hour BEN BUTTON would be sure to win. Actually, FROST/NIXON would be a good choice, too. But the Oscar goes to.... SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE! The sweep continues!
10:41 -- Academy Award nominee Eddie Murphy, oy vey. He's presenting the Humanitarian Award to Jerry Lewis, who is one of the few old-time actors who DIDN'T die in 2008, which reminds me that the In Memoriam segment is going to SUCK. Ohh yeah, that's right, there's THE NUTTY PROFESSOR connection between Eddie Murphy and Jerry Lewis... I was wondering why Murphy was there. Jerry Lewis is a good man, and he still looks pretty good -- for some reason I thought he was way older and sicker than that. Keep on keepin' on, Jerry!
10:50 -- Hugh Jackman is back, and here comes a montage of this year's nominated scores! BEN BUTTON's score is as boring as the movie itself. DEFIANCE sounds all Jewish, which makes sense since it's about a bunch of ass-kicking Jews. God I love that sub-genre! Nothing too special about MILK... I've already forgotten how it goes. WALL-E is the one that should win, as this movie said more with music and sound effects than most movies ever do with words (though it already lost for sound effects, so fuck it all). SLUMDOG will probably win because it's winning everything, and it's not exactly bad. And Zac Ephron and Alicia Keys are here to tell us that the Oscar goes to..... SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE. Okay, fine.
10:55 -- Best Song is kind of a bullshit category this year, because the best song in a movie this year, "The Wrestler" by Bruce Springsteen, was deemed ineligible. That being said, I hope these two SLUMDOG songs cancel each other out so WALL-E can snag one. Though, the fact that the Bollywood dancers are still out there for WALL-E's song doesn't bode well. My guess is that this song "Jai Ho" song wins because it made for one of the more memorable closing credit sequences in recent memory. And the Oscar goes to..... "JAI HO" from SLUMDOG. At least it's a good song. Ain't no stopping this one now, as we get down to the nitty gritty!
11:05 -- Liam Neeson and Freida Pinto, that's an odd combo! Qui-Gon must've used the old Jedi Mind Trick to pull this one off. Oh, it's Foreign Language Film time. I'm going with WALTZ WITH BASHIR and Rachel is picking THE CLASS.... and the winner is DEPARTURES from Japan! Man, no fair, I don't think I even had the chance to see that one! Or maybe I did and missed it. In any event, I have now gotten a horrendous 7 of 20 winners right, while Rachel has gotten a slightly-less-horrendous 9 of 20. Hmph!
11:10 -- OH NO NO NO NO!!! The In Memoriam segment!!! This is going to suck so much. And here we go..... okay, wait, this Queen Latifah singing thing is cheesy and killing the moment. Bernie Mac, sad. No OCEANS 14, I guess. OLLIE JOHNSTON, one of the original Disney animators!!!! Michael Crichton, the author of JURASSIC M'F'ING PARK! Crap. I don't like how they're doing this montage, by the way. Just give me one screen and stop this moving-around bullshit. Oh man, Roy Scheider... fuck. I wanna watch JAWS right now. Isaac Hayes was a Scientologist jackass, but still sad that he died. Ricardo Montalban... KAHHHHHHN!!!! Stan Winston, jesus christ... what a horrendous loss for movies. James Whitmore. CHARLTON HESTON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FUCK!!!!!!!!! Anthony Mignella... Sidney Pollack... two great filmmakers. And of course, PAUL NEWMAN. God fucking dammit.............
11:18 -- Oooh, cutie Reese! "I am not into the dress, though," Rachel observes. Whoa, we're up to Best Director already?? Okay, here we go. Danny Boyle is a lock, now that SLUMDOG is cleaning up, as it should. Okay, she read those nominees too fast for me to type about them... but DANNY BOYLE wins! Man, who would've thought, after TRAINSPOTTING and 28 DAYS LATER, that he'd be up on that stage? Good stuff.
11:25 -- Am I a cynical bastard for only focusing on the bullshit entries in this Best Actress montage? I'm talking to you, Julia Roberts and Halle Berry! Love the GONE WITH THE WIND music that they're playing, though. Fuckin' A, Halle is among the motley crew they've assembled here, too. Gimme a break... she can't hold a candle to Sophia Loren, or even Marion Cotillard. Wow, Anne is really touched by Shirley Maclaine's tribute. Aw, I don't think that was scripted, cool. I think I've had fantasies about Marion talking to Kate, right before they start making out. Seriously, though... I LOVE KATE!!! If I was Melissa Leo, I'd be pissed that I got stuck with Halle Berry talking about me. WHOA, Sophia Loren... she's like a solar system all to herself. And Meryl Streep is right there with her! Nicole Kidman, meh... she was very good in THE HOURS and I guess deserved the award, but I don't remember who she was up against. Angelina, however, deserves absolutely nothing this year. And the Oscar goes to..... KATE KATE KATE KATE KATE KATE KATE KATE!!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HER FIRST OSCAR IN SIX TRIES, THOUGH SHE REALLY COULD'VE WON IT EVERY GODDAMN TIME!!! AMAZING. Hahaha, her dad whistling is awesome. This is amazingly sincere and emotional speech... I'm getting all teary eyed! LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE!
11:36 -- Best Actor montage! Lots of good stuff in there, but holy shit, look at the lineup they've assembled here! Robert DeNiro, Ben Kingsley, Anthony Hopkins, Adrien Brody and Michael Douglas! WOW! Doesn't get much better than that, folks... though it would've been cool to see Daniel Day-Lewis up there, too. Douglas introduces Langella, whose portrayal of Richard Nixon was nothing short of astonishing. Bobby D. wonders how Sean Penn managed to get all those jobs playing straight men over the years, ha! And a Spicoli reference to boot! I'd have no problem with Sean Penn winning, even though I am not picking him. Man, Adrien Brody is looking kind of... grody? (I got a book coming out!) Richard Jenkins is pretty cool, but for him, just being nominated is his award. SIR ANTHONY HOPKINS, for Christ's sake! Always good to see him. He introduces Brad Pitt, his co-star in MEET JOE BLACK, which I saw on the big screen in '98 solely so I could see the STAR WARS: EPISODE I teaser trailer both before and after the film, heh. And lastly, SIR BEN KINGSLEY, who had an up-and-down year in his own right, with ELEGY (yeah) and THE LOVE GURU (ugh), gives us the soon-to-be-winner, Mickey Rourke! Come on, he's gotta win for his late dog! And the Oscar goes to........ SEAN PENN?!?!?!?!?!?!?!? Wow.... I am seriously stunned. I mean, he was great and in any other year, I'd be all for it... but wow. Worst of all, we're denied a Mickey Rourke speech... awww man! Hehe, "You commie, homo-loving sons of guns," okay, that was funny. But man... what a shocker!!!
11:47 -- Oooooh, Steven Spielberg comes out to some JURASSIC PARK music to present BEST PICTURE! Well, here we go. On one hand, SLUMDOG has been cleaning up all night and seems primed to win the ultimate prize as well. But on the other hand, MILK has snagged a couple of pretty major awards (Screenplay & Actor) and it wouldn't shock me to see it snag one more. Weird what they're doing here with the nominees being intertwined with past, similarly-themed movies? Sure, why not. Heh, I love THE READER mixed with other old-young affairs, such as THE GRADUATE, LOST IN TRANSLATION and AMERICAN BEAUTY. Hehehe, MILK and BRAVEHEART and NETWORK, of course! This is cheesy but fun. Okay, showing THE GODFATHER with BEN BUTTON is a fucking insult to the Corleone family. Anyway... according to Steven Spielberg, the ultimate Oscar goes to SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE! The sweep is complete! Eight Oscars, I think, and well-deserved indeed (except for the ones where it beat WALL-E). Also worthwhile to have those little kids up there again!
11:56 -- Wait, wait, wait! Upcoming 2009 movies! SHERLOCK HOLMES with Robert Downey Jr. FUNNY PEOPLE, the new one from Apatow & Co. Pixar's UP UP UP UP UP! Uhh, a new FAME? More like LAME.... right?? TERMINTOR, starring a very pissed off Christian Bale. 500 DAYS OF SUMMER, I heard about that one. AMELIA EARHARDT movie with Hilary Swank, who will likely be nominated for another Oscar. INGLORIOUS BASTERDS with what's his name from The Office. Hey, Rachel, I liked the first NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM. MONSTERS vs. ALIENS will be in 3D and I will see. POTTER POTTER POTTER POTTER POTTER! ANGELS & DEMONS, hell yeah! OLD DOGS will not be awesome. How many fucking ICE AGE movies do we need? Crap.. crap... crap... and this montage ends with G-FORCE, about animated Gerbils? Oy vey!
And there you have it... another Oscar Night has come and gone, and well... it's definitely a mixed bag. I am indeed happy that SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE walked away with 8 statuettes, because it was definitely the superior film amongst most of these nominees. But frankly, I was more interested in some of the smaller awards, and that is where I was disappointed. I mean, for fuck's sake, WALL-E not winning for Best Sound Mixing & Editing may be the biggest load of horse shit in recent memory. THAT MOVIE WAS ALL SOUND, and Ben Burtt is a God. But what can ya do. Big surprise with Sean Penn winning Best Actor, and a glorious moment with Kate Winslet getting her first gold. BUTTON got a couple of technical awards, which is all it deserved, so the Academy got that right. All in all, I got a total of 10 of 24 winners right, which would not have won me any Oscar pools, but hey, I vote my heart, dammit. Rachel, meanwhile, got 12 of 24 right, so she wins this year! And lastly, here are my top 5 hottest hotties, in no particular order: Amy Adams, Natalie Portman, Anne Hathaway, Marisa Tomei, and Meryl Streep's daughter! Plus Kate, of course, by default. Rachel also wants to include Frieda Pinto, and I can't argue with that. Oh, and by the way, I never did see my friend Jenn seat-filling during the show... unless of course I missed it while typing! And now, I think that's it. If you've made it through this entire opus, I salute you and love you!