24 February 2008 | lee_eisenberg
I've only seen two of the movies that got nominated for anything!
Yes, it's true! I, the ultimate cinephile, have only seen two nominated movies: "I'm Not There" and "Charlie Wilson's War". I've just been working so much that I haven't gotten to go to the movies much (and I frankly think that they should have nominated "Grindhouse" for at least something; I mean, they nominated f**king "Norbit" for an Oscar).
But anyway, on to the review. I really liked that during the pre-awards ceremony with the people arriving, two people made solid statements: Julie Christie wore an ACLU pin to call for the closure of Guantanamo, and Michael Moore apologized to the world for everything that the US has done. I wonder what would happen to anyone who attended the Oscars and called for continuation of the Guantanamo base.
When Jon Stewart hosted two years ago, I named him best host ever (at least during my lifetime). This year, his true highlight was noting that despite the lack of recognition for movies about Iraq, we have to stay the course and keep the movies in the theaters...otherwise the audience wins! In fact, Arianna Huffington noted that the Best Picture nominees all sound as though they allude to John McCain: "No Country for Old Men" (election season!), "There Will Be Blood" (his foreign policy), "Atonement" (how's he explain to his wife all this stuff about the lobbyist?), "Michael Clayton" (he needs a fixer), and "Juno"...well, let's keep an eye on Vicki Iseman.
The montages were about what I expected (why do they never show Kevin Kline?). I get the feeling that a lot of the young people watching this see the montages showing people from the days of yore and have no idea who any of them are. Heath Ledger was probably the most recognizable person in the "In Memoriam" montage.
But like I said earlier, I watched "The 80th Annual Academy Awards" completely numb to most of the nominees. I have no idea whether the winners deserved their wins or not; hell, I've never even heard of Marion Cotillard or Robert Boyle. Although you gotta admit, who would have guessed that Best Original Song would go to an Irish movie ("Once") over a Disney movie ("Enchanted")? The kind of people whom Stephen Colbert spoofs must have gotten angry about Best Documentary Feature going to one about Iraq (and Best Documentary Short Subject, if I remember right, went to a movie about a same-sex partnership). Of course, these sorts of individuals consider the Oscars an excuse for America-hating, Democrat-backing celebrities to promote the "gay agenda". In fact, Stephen Colbert should host the Oscars - in his right-wing commentator persona - and bash everyone for being the blame-America-first crowd (because let's face it: how many movies has Hollywood made saying anything good about the United States?).
All in all, it's neat to see Steve Carell, Cameron Diaz, Harrison Ford, Tom Hanks, Helen Mirren, Hilary Swank, Forest Whitaker and the rest doing their stuff. Even though the two movies that I saw didn't win anything, I still liked the broadcast. Any pet peeves? Well, when they showed Bob Clark in the deceased montage, I think that instead of "A Christmas Story" next to him, they should have shown "Porky's"; or maybe "Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things".
Overall, I liked it.