Monday, March 8, 2010

Best Of Times/Worst Of Times

She came trailing a raspberry for worst performance of the year in ALL ABOUT STEVE. But no one was blindsided when she took the stage for best performance (THE BLIND SIDE) of the year: Sandra Bullock pulled off the historic dual win with uncommon grace, honesty, and humor as she clutched her Oscar and named Meryl Streep her lover! It was the night's best speech, but not its only history-making moment.

Soon Kathryn Bigelow would become the first female best director in history(and the happiest ex-wife)with the little film that could: THE HURT LOCKER defused ex-husband James Cameron's blockbuster with six Oscars to his three. It remains explosive at the box office.

And then there was Geoffrey Fletcher, the first African American to win for Best Adapted Screenplay:PRECIOUS took our breath away,and his words; he left overcome and speechless,only to have Oprah give him a second chance to say "thank you" during her Oscar wrap show on that very stage today!

In spite of the history it made, the show lacked precisely that: HISTORY. Somehow Zac Efron and Miley Cyrus spoke, but Lauren Bacall did not. Somehow a horror montage made the grade, but a retrospective of Bacall's lifetime achievements on celluloid did not. The hosts, while funny, never did what "hosts" like Hope,and Carson, and Crystal would do--guide us through the evening, playing off unexpected moments with well-timed quips and funny repartee holding it all together and somehow making us feel like we're all in on that big golden Hollywood thing.

But last night, Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin had only scripted (though funny) bits, as controlled as the couture on the red carpet. Thank god for Charlize's cinnabon-ed breasts. I want a show where someone shows up wearing a swan a la Bjork; Or "demi" bicycle shorts; or a headdress as big as the Ritz--thank you Cher. I remember covering this event--and I covered it up close and personal for 25 years-- when Kim Basinger showed up wearing half a purple dress designed by PRINCE. And then there was the over the hill bombshell, Edy Williams (jiggle flick director Russ Meyer's ex) who would show up in practically nothing but a dazed look in her eye until security gently escorted her away.

I thought we were in for some real fun after last night's opening number full of be-feathered chorus girls, but soon it was one lackluster "star"(Amanda Seyfried?) after another (Chris Pine???).Where were Halle and Nicole, Julia, Salma, and Sarandon, Eastwood and Cruise, Pitt and Jolie, Jack and Denzel?

Give me more Michelle Pfeiffer. Or Jeff Bridges saying "groovy." Or newcomer Gaby Sidibe weeping the Hollywood dream come true. Gimme a stiff shot of tinseltown glitz and glamor.

And don't be stingy, baby.

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