Because I Care: To prepare a bit, I snuck in a viewing of Michael Clayton late last night and into the wee hours of this morning. I agree with Spike Nesmith, who was kind enough to guest review the film here some months ago. It's a riveting, well told story with powerful performances. Clayton definitely deserves a spot in the final category.
The Razzies: The Lindsay Lohan vehicle I Know Who Killed Me picked up the most awards as Worst Film of 2007. The flick was so bad, it received the most jesus-what-a-terrible-movie wins in the 28-year history of the Razzie. In addition to two nominations for Lohan as worst actress (she played two roles), I Know Who won for "worst picture, director, screenplay, remake or rip-off, screen couple and excuse for a horror movie."
What Did She Mean By That? During my late-night Michael Clayton experience, Mrs. Film Geek says, quietly:
"Did you know Tilda Swinton has an open marriage, and lives with and travels with her 20-something male lover?"
As she said it her voice sort of trailed off, and I thought I saw a wistful smirk...
Making The Grade: If you're up for it, Moviefone presents The Ultimate Oscar Quiz, twenty questions that are sure to test your film geekiness. Click the link (the blue "Making The Grade") and give it a shot. My score was a woeful 7 out of 20 correct!
Non-Award Prediction: My prediction for the most over-used cliche on the red carpet: "Baby bump." (Running total: 1,1,1,1)
Red Carpet Observations:
Pre RC Coverage: E! has six hours of pre-red carpet coverage, followed by two hours of Ryan Seacrest and Giuliana Rancic Red Carpet Celebrity Ass Kissing. I just learned from the newspaper today that Rancic is the wife of original The Apprentice winner, Bill Rancic.
Bill really does know how to cash in.
Kim Who?: I'm always annoyed when a "socialite" is inter-mixed with true film artists. Having Kim Kardashian and her sisters involved in red carpet discussion is rather like having The Film Geek talking about the Theory of Special Relativity. She's just out of her element. Of course, the only film work she ever did was her own sex tape.
Are Those Bat-Nipples? The TV Guide Channel just did a quick interview with George Clooney. It's true Clooney is as cool and as talented as they come. But for the life of me, I don't think I can ever forgive him for being part of 1997's Batman & Robin. It was the movie that put nipples on the bat-suit.
Just 'Cause I'm Curious: I wonder how celebrities decide when it's the right moment to show up at the Academy Awards. I'm sure many work that fashionably late mojo, but when is it too early to start up the red carpet. One of the first carpet walking couple was Heidi Klum and Seal.
I think that answers my question.
Retro: Who talked Jillian Barberi into wearing a Farrah Fawcett hairstyle?
Starting To Make Me Feel Inferior: All this talk about George Clooney being The Man is starting to make me suck in my gut a little harder...
Clooney was just interviewed by Ryan Seacrest. I'm reminded that he's so hot that given the right conditions, even I might do him.
This Just In: Jason Bateman just confirmed there may be an Arrested Development flick!
GRRRRR!: Steve Carell's wife, after being the butt of a joke from Seacrest, looks as if she'd like to punch the American Idol host in the mouth. Which makes two of us.
I Just Don't Get It: John Travolta's success, that is. Never have.
Uh oh...: Gary Busey is in duh house! The red carpet could get interesting. Seacrest looks like he wants to call security. Busey keep blabbing about wanting to talk to Seacrest, because he "likes [Ryan's] energy."
Seacrest was successful in shooing Busey away. It was funny seeing him want nothing to do with the actor.
Go Patriots: Some fat thirty-something guy from George Washington (WV) High School and his buddies are sitting around their living rooms, watching former classmate Jennifer Gardner, and yelling: "Oh yeah, I totally hit that!"
But they didn't.
The Awards Show
The Monologue: Jon Stewart is on top of his game, as usual. Less picking at the audience this year (last year he went hard at Clooney), and stuck to an eclectic set of jokes that seemed to go over well. It was a low-key opening set, and it worked.
Costume Design Award: Damn it!! The designer from Elizabeth won, and I picked Sweeney Todd. There goes my chance at winning the Oscar office pool!
The First :45 minutes: Sorry, I was in the kitchen making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Did I miss anything?
Male Actor In A Supporting Role: Javier Bardem was the easy money, but I sure liked Tom Wilkinson's work in Michael Clayton. Wilkinson's been a favorite of mine for a long time, and he seems to always give terrific performances. But Bardem's Anton Chigurh is a classic character.
Oscar Flashback: Anyone remember the Three Six Mafia? Didn't think so.
Female Actor In A Supporting Role: As good as Tilda Swinton is in Michael Clayton, her win is a bit of a surprise to me. I just didn't think her role was large enough for the award. My pick was Amy Ryan, from Gone Baby Gone.
Female Actor In A Leading Role: Marion Cotillard's speech was sweet, and reminded me of Roberto Benigni's speech from a few years back. What happened to that guy?
"Stop Eating Really Sour Candy": What someone needs to remind Rene Zellweger before she gets on camera.
The First 2.5 hours: The show feels a bit slow, and even scaled down. I'm curious how much the writer's strike affected the development of the show. A montage now and again is nice, but the production seems to be relying too much on them.
Am I wrong?
The Person That I Didn't Know Died This Year: Suzanne Pleshette
Diablo Cody: Who's the last one-hit writing superstar you can name? Seriously, Cody's got it going on. We're gonna see a whole lot of this lady's work in the future. (And cool dress, too.)
Male Actor In A Leading Role: (Crossing my fingers for Clooney. Say it...say it...c'mon, say it...) And the award goes to... Daniel Day Lewis. Well, that' just as good. Day Lewis doesn't male many movies, but when he does make one he's remarkable.
Achievement In Directing: Joel and Ethan Coen win in what was, I think, the lock of the night.
Best Picture: Hooray! A movie I've seen wins! No Country For Old Men is deserving. It's a near-masterpiece.
The 2008 Academy Awards was one of the least entertaining productions I've seen. The red carpet was mostly uneventful, and the awards show crept along and seemed scaled down. At least the movies it honored were terrific.