Image from source, MSNBC
Every year, I watch the Academy Awards. I don't know why exactly, because invariably, I've seen very few of the movies nominated. The show is always very long, filled with schlocky song-and-dance numbers, montages and stilted, scripted "banter" between the presenters.
But you know what? I liked it this year. It would be pretty difficult to dislike the host, Hugh Jackman. He can sing, he can dance, he can deliver a joke, and he ain't hard on the eyes. And with Jackman as the lead in the song-and-dance parts, they were actually good. The "best song" was for some reason truncated to three nominees, none memorable. So, despite Peter Gabriel's protest that his song was cut down to a snippet, it was a wise decision.
The presentation of the major awards by past award winners was great, creating anticipation: "Who's going to come out?!? Cher? Helen Hunt?" The presenters were--for the most part--better than usual, with Tina Fey, Steve Martin, Natalie Portman and Ben Stiller providing laughs. Also, they didn't play the music to give long-winded winners the boot. . .but I didn't feel like anyone went on too long.
Now the bad. The curtain-puller early on in the show goofed pretty badly, and is probably having a very bad night. The "In Memoriam" segment was shot weirdly, with the camera zooming around, making it difficult (even on our big HDTV) to see who was being featured.
And finally, the ridiculous adulation for Slumdog Millionaire. OK, I get it, people liked it. But I'd never even heard of this film before it was nominated. The subject matter, and type of film it is don't interest me at all. And while I don't mind it picking up an award here and there, a virtual sweep was quite tedious. If it was so deserving, why weren't the actors nominated for awards? Fortunately, Heath Ledger (best supporting actor as The Joker in The Dark Knight) and Sean Penn (best actor as Harvey Milk in Milk) won awards, or the awards part of the Academy Awards would have been a bust for me! Those were two of the only nominated movies I'd seen!
Slumdog Millionaire’ fulfills its Oscar destiny
"Slumdog Millionaire” is the Academy Awards champion, wrapping up its ghetto-to-glory story by winning best picture and seven other Oscars, including the directing honor for Danny Boyle. . .
Read more at: MSNBC