¨And the Oscar for Best Picture goes to Argo¨
Last night the 85th Academy Awards were celebrated in a big way. Hollywood´s top actors made their way through the red carpet with a lot of glamour. I´m not a fashion expert so I won´t comment on who was wearing what, but I can say that everyone looked beautiful. The ceremony began with a monologue from first time host Seth MacFarlane who got some laughs out of the audience with his song ¨We saw your boobs¨ and with a sock puppet version of Flight while he was interrupted by Captain Kirk (William Shattner) who came from the future to warn him about his terrible hosting gig. He showed us some glimpses of what went wrong and MacFarlane tried to make amends by following Captain Kirk´s advice. The jokes were funny although not that irreverent as the Family Guy and Ted director has us used to. I still enjoyed his opening and I think he did a decent job hosting the Oscars, which once again ran about three and a half hours long. I know many people complain about the length of the ceremony, but I really enjoy this once a year event and loved every minute of it.
Despite opening with a surprise win for Christoph Waltz for best supporting actor, the Oscar were pretty predictable and the heavy favorites won. I loved Waltz´s performance, and he was my favorite in that category but I didn’t think the Academy would give him his second Oscar in three years. I was wrong, and I was happy about that. I was 17 for 24 in my predictions, but I knew some of the categories were going to be close races between one or two picks. So close in fact, that in one category we had a tie which hadn’t happened since the 1960´s. Zero Dark Thirty and Skyfall shared the Oscar for Sound Editing. The biggest surprise of the night was Ang Lee´s victory over Steven Spielberg in the best director category. Life of Pi was one of my favorite movies of the year so I was very pleased once again with the Academy´s decision. The other categories I didn’t predict were both writing categories which did go to the favorites: Argo (adapted screenplay) and Django Unchained (Quentin Tarantino). I loved Tarantino´s acceptance speech and this was his second win after Pulp Fiction. It was a long awaited win, but he finally got his moment. Brave beat Frankenweenie in the Best Animated category (a film I really didn’t like too much), Lincoln beat Anna Karenina in the Production Design category, and Inocente beat my pick Open Heart as the best short documentary. Those were my only misses; everything else went on as predicted.
Argo finally won for Best Picture and Ben Affleck got his redemption for not being included in the best director category since he was one of the producers of the film along with George Clooney. He gave one of the best speeches of the night and reminded the audience of how young he was when he won his first Oscar for writing Good Will Hunting. He never thought he would be back, but he made it and has proved to be one of the best directors of this last decade. Daniel Day Lewis won the Oscar for his portrayal of Lincoln and also gave a gracious speech. He is the only actor to have won 3 Oscars in a leading role. He made a joke about Meryl Streep who presented the award to him and his acceptance speech felt natural and authentic. Jennifer Lawrence was also a big winner as she won for her role in Silver Linings Playbook. She tripped while climbing up the stairs and also made fun of herself while accepting the award. She was gracious enough to congratulate Emmanuelle Riva on her 86th birthday and was very classy. Anne Hathaway won for her performance in Les Miserables in the supporting role. Amour received love in the Foreign Language film category, and Searching for Sugar Man won best documentary (one of my favorite moments of the night because I really loved that doc). Adele was also a big winner for her song Skyfall which she got to perform live on the show. There was also a tribute for the 50 years of the James Bond franchise, and a tribute to musicals as well as we saw some of the cast from Chicago, Dreamgirls, and Les Miserables perform.
The awards were pretty much scattered throughout as there wasn’t one movie to take home a lot of awards as it usually happens. This is because there were a lot of strong contenders this year. Life of Pi was the big winner of the night as it took home 4 Oscars (Director, Visual Effects, Cinematography, and Original Score), Argo 3 (Picture, Adapted Screenplay, and Editing), and Les Miserables also took home 3 Oscars (Actress in a Secondary Role, Sound Mixing, and Makeup) and Lincoln only managed to win 2 (Lead Actor and Production Design) out of the 12 nominations it had. Django Unchained won two as well (Original Script and Best Supporting Actor). Zero Dark Thirty and Silver Linings Playbook each took home one Oscar, so the only Best Picture nominee to leave empty handed was Beasts of the Southern Wild, but that small independent film was a winner simply by being nominated.
It was pretty much an even race, but Argo won the biggest prize of the night in a ceremony which I really enjoyed. I thought it was one of the best in recent memory. I don’t know why people watch the Oscars if they always complain about how bad and long it is; I watch them because I really enjoy them. My favorite moments were the big acceptance speeches from Ben Affleck, Daniel Day Lewis, Quentin Tarantino, Chris Terrio, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Lawrence, and Ang Lee. If you missed them then perhaps you might want to look them up in YouTube. I also loved the musical performance from Les Mis cast, from Adele, and from Barbra Streisand who sang during the touching memorium tribute. We can´t leave out the most expected star of the show: Ted who entered with his co-star Mark Wahlberg and made some funny remarks. I thought the was a great show and hopefully next year I will improve my score, but for now satisfied with the overall picks.