Oscars: The Worst And Best Moments

photo by chickpokipsie

I have watched the Academy Awards for as long as I can remember. In fact, in twenty years, I don’t believe I have ever missed a broadcast. Generally, I am not a huge awards show person. The only other show I watch is the Emmys.   I watch these shows because there is something intriguing to me about seeing so many actresses and actors gathered together in their fanciest attire. This year’s Oscars had several high points and a few low points as well. Here is my list of the “Best and Worst of the 84th Annual Academy Awards”.

  • Billy Crystal as Host: My first memory of Billy as Oscar Host was when he hosted back in 1991. Dances with Wolves was big that year, and Billy rode his own horse across the stage. He did not disappoint this year, starting off with one of his signature movie-spoof montages and going in to his trademark “Oscar Song”. His ability to instantly riff on what’s happening around him and be funny, yet tasteful, is very rare. Billy, we’ve missed you. Please come again next year. Best line: "Nothing can take the sting out of the world's economic problems like watching millionaires present each other with golden statues," Crystal said.
  • Interviews with the Actors: At several points in the broadcast, there were short pieces featuring various actors reminiscing on childhood memories of going to the movies, what they love about the movies, and which movies were their favorites. I loved these pieces because they gave us a rare, authentic look at the actors not as icons, but as movie fans, like us.     Seriously, Reese Witherspoon loves the movie Overboard and considers it a favorite? Just when I thought I couldn’t adore her more…
  • Michelle Williams’ Dress: As soon as I saw Williams’ on the red carpet, I thought it was incredible. Williams called it coral when asked by Ryan Seacrest to describe the color. He replied that he thought it was ‘fruit-colored’. Either way, it was a beautiful splash of color which I think was delightful. There are enough women walking the carpet in safe, neutral colors. I loved the boldness of the dress.

photo by ibtimes

  • Sandra Bullock: Speaking of dresses, I loved Bullock’s dress. It was so classy and tasteful, and showed that a woman can be graceful and modest and also be beautiful. (Take note, JLo and Cameron.) A friend of mine found it even more attractive that she was fluent in German. As we say at L&P, intelligence is sexy.
  • Chris Rock: I love that Rock was so brutally honest about his experience with animated movies, basically saying, ‘Listen people, doing voiceovers is easy money.’ He pointed out that he pretty much shows up, says his lines in the booth, and gets paid a million dollars for his (minimal) efforts. This capitalism-loving girl says, nice work if you can get it. Who wouldn’t love getting to work in your comfy clothes?
  • Octavia Spencer: Accepting her Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, Spencer thanked the entire state of Alabama. As it came time to wrap up, she blurted, “I’m freakin’ out!” I haven’t seen such a genuinely thrilled winner since Cuba Gooding Jr.’s “I love everybody!” outburst when he won for Jerry Maguire.

    photo courtesy of 2stops

    • Alexander Payne: The Omaha native won Best Adapted Screenplay for The Descendants. Considering I live in the Omaha metro, this was a sweet victory. Even better was the moment when Payne dedicated his Oscar to his mother–so sweet!
    • In Memoriam: Esperanza Spalding provided a heartbreaking rendition of “What a Wonderful World” as the Academy paid tribute to those lost in the past year. As a huge fan of The Princess Bride, hearing Peter Falk mutter, “As You Wish” was almost too much to bear.

    With so many highlights, I would definitely call this year’s show a success. However, there were a few low points along the way. Some things I could definitely have done without…

    • Cameron Diaz and J Lo: Onstage to present the award for Costume Design, Diaz stated that famed designer Edith Head once said a dress "should be tight enough to show you're a woman." JLo added, "but loose enough to show you're a lady”. Meanwhile JLo was rocking a dress so low cut that I’m fairly sure her areola made an appearance. Let’s keep it classy at the Oscars, ladies.

      KEVIN WINTER/GETTY IMAGES; KEVIN MAZUR/WIREIMAGE

    • Sacha Baron Cohen: Speaking of classless, Cohen walked the red carpet in full “Dictator” persona. I am used to his antics, so that didn’t bother me. However I was less than impressed when he dumped his urn of ‘Kim Jong -il’s ashes’ all over Ryan Seacrest. Never mind that Seacrest was in mid-broadcast at the time, later tweeting “My mom always told me to pack two jackets for red carpets, always wondered why. Now I know.” At least he maintained his professionalism throughout the experience.
    • Robert Downey Jr.: It pains me to even mention this man in a negative context. Downey Jr. single-handedly made me a superhero fan with his über-hot Tony Stark Iron Man. However, his weird bit about filming a presenter documentary, which involved sparring with Gwyneth Paltrow, went on too long and just wasn’t funny. It’s ok though Robert–I still love you.