Monday, February 27, 2012


The 84th Annual Oscar's telecast failed to inspire, even with the return of Billy Crystal as host.  There were little surprises, few jokes that hit their mark and a long suffering crowd that tried to pretend they were still happy that Billy was back.

As a fan of cinema, I make it a point to watch the Oscars.  It is the only awards show left that still manages to hold the illusion of prestige, despite the fact that Harvey Weinstein has repeatedly proven that the award can be bought.  So, every year I tune in and every year I am a little bit more disappointed.

Worse still, is the glaring fact that the academy is completely out of touch with both the world of cinema and the industry that props it up.  The academy's members are basically old white males.  77% are male, 86% are over the age of 50 and 94% are white.  This group picks the winners and losers every year, but I can't think of anybody less hip.  These are the tastemakers?

Well, in the end, the telecast was mostly dull.  The only funny moments were the attempts by presenters to deconstruct and subvert the proceedings in their own personal way.  Will Ferrell and Zach Galifinakis clanged cymbals onstage in what appeared to be an attempt to over emphasize the false hype and self congratulatory nature of the show.  Emma Stone perfectly skewered the show's tired habit of giving presenters, canned, pre-written banter than usually falls flat.  These were the moments that felt genuine because they were trying to tell the truth.

The most honest moment was Octavia Spencer's acceptance speech that ended in tears.  She was clearly overcome by the moment and it felt powerful because her performance actually merited the award.

Otherwise?  Meh.


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