awards show

2016 Academy Awards

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Best Picture nominees, via Mashable.

Before the best televised event of the year, Robin Roberts said to Leonardo DiCaprio, “Tonight the carpet is red, and the nominees… are dreaming in gold!” This year the Academy is really forcing that We All Dream in Gold line, but Roberts could have easily quipped, “Tonight the carpet is red, and the nominees… are white!” Chris Rock came onto the Oscar’s stage as host and owned it. He made every anticipated joke but in a way I rarely saw coming.  The #OscarsSoWhite controversy goes beyond zero black nominees, and while Rock (unfortunately) didn’t touch on that, overall he made the show feel personable and, consequently, inclusive. Unfortunately in its own attempt to be inclusive, the broadcast included strange pop-ups sharing “accomplishments” of presenters. The music included was also awful. But let’s focus on some positives, like Black History Minute and the clothes worn by Kerry Washington, Kevin Hart (“This is Dolce and Gabanna head to toe, and I’m shinin’!”), Charlize Theron, Lady Gaga, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams…

My Questions: Is Jacob Tremblay’s dad Juan Pablo? Who messed up the live camerawork during the monologue’s mention of Best Cinematographer? Coincidence? Who invited Stacey Dash? Did Jennifer Garner take a selfie with Common and, if so, can we see it? All that laughing during the Minions presenting was pity laughing, right? Why did Sacha Baron Cohen get to present the clip for Room? Who decided to move forward with those Kohl’s Drunk History ads?

The Highlights: Jacob Tremblay standing up for a better view of C-3PO, R2-D2, and BB8. Chris mentioned Girl Scout cookies the moment I began eating my Tagalongs – I absolutely would have bought cookies from those Girl Scouts. Let it be noted, Kate Winslet also began eating Tagalongs. The Weeknd has the greatest focus I may have ever seen, first performing on the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show runway and now surrounded by gymnasts (?) literally circling him. Mark Ruffalo WINKING into the camera, was he trying to kill me?  Lady Gaga proved once again that she’s one of the greatest, and most influential, performers of this decade. Sam Smith’s “Thank You Ticker” included “Barbara Broccoli,” and I hope she’s real. When J.J. Abrams had to stand by winner Alejandro González Iñárritu mid Best Director speech as he’s being cut off by the orchestra, who’s playing the Star Wars theme…

The Awards Themselves: I need to see The Danish Girl now, since apparently Alicia Vikander’s performance in that was award worthy (though she was unreal [ha, but truly] in Ex Machina and yet not nominated). “What another lovely day” was a perfect start coming from winner of Costume Design, Jenny Beavan. The clips prior to announcing Sound Editing were fantastic. Mark Rylance as Best Supporting Actor for Bridge of Spies made me so pleasantly surprised and his speech was the first that made me smile. Louis C.K. presenting an award deserved an award. I’m sorry, “Rehab” was played after Amy won Best Documentary? Not cool. I couldn’t help but wonder if The Academy has avoided giving Leo an Oscar because they didn’t want to hear him talk about global warming. Even after watching several films, including every Best Picture nominee, my ballot may not have been great, but Spotlight winning Best Picture made my night. My week! I know the week has just begun but… how do you top that moment?

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