We are left with much to ponder after the 88th-89th Academy Awards on Sunday night, a show so long that it officially qualifies as two telecasts.
Among the things we have to chat about a day later:
- What’s with The Weeknd’s hair, and does it require implants? Is it some sort of flotation device? Looks to me like a giant canoe.
- If that robot skit were any worse, the LAPD would’ve called out the bomb squad.
- Same goes for Stacey Dash, a C-list actress and political commentator whom no one even knows. Even if you did recognize Dash, her line was not audacious enough to be funny. Yet, here we are talking about it.
- Tonally, host Chris Rock nailed the opening. Without being militant, and while remaining upbeat, he made his points. It didn’t kill. The audience looked appropriately squirmy. I’d give the monologue a B-plus and his performance for the evening a B-minus.
- The writing was generally terrible (see robot skit and Stacey Dash). I’d give it a D-minus. Yeah, OK, Tracy Morgan was hilarious and should've been part of a bigger bit.
- The normalization of Lady Gaga continues. She hardly seems weird at all anymore. In fact, she’s so conventional, she makes me feel weird. And I’m about as weird as a bowl of milk.
- Olivia Munn must be the least funny person on the planet. Or any planet.
- I no longer like white people. I used to be OK with white people, but now I see how horrible we all really are.
- Next awards, they ought to let the Minions host.
- Cate Blanchett seems our most-actorly actor. By that I mean there might be a missing Oscar statuette stuck somewhere.
- Hollywood continues to celebrate innovation over imagination, and storytelling has suffered at the hands of the digital wizards.
- More than anything in life, I want to see actors and actresses happy. So I want to see an Academy Awards show that does justice to their strange and glorious careers.
By the way, here’s a tip: Writing and performing are so much about surprise. Sunday’s awards show had little surprise, other than Dash’s bizarre appearance, and that silly, drawn-out bit with the Girl Scout cookies. Morgan's "Danish Girl" was one of the few laugh-out-loud moments.
You have to be leery of any awards show in which Sarah Silverman isn’t even funny. Usually, Silverman sneezes and I laugh.
Louis C.K. was very funny, with his whole “This Oscar is going home in a Honda Civic,” then repulsive with: “It’s going to give them anxiety to keep it in their crappy apartment.”
Have you ever hated elitest Hollywood more than at that moment?
It’s the folks in the crappy apartments who give C.K. a career. If it wasn’t for them, he’d be working the weekend shift at some tire store in Pacoima. And living in a crappy apartment, counting quarters to see if he could do laundry that week.
Props to young Brie Larson as the only winner of the night gracious enough to directly thank movie fans.
And how come no one in Hollywood can give a speech anymore? Mark Rylance gave one of the few notable acceptances for best supporting actor, then the orchestra cut him off. Obviously, notable speeches are to be a discouraged.
Loved what Pete Docter had to say about the benefits of a creative life: “Anyone out there in junior high school or high school working it out, there are days you’re going to feel sad ... but you can make stuff -- make films, draw, write -- it’ll make a world of difference.”
In the end, Sunday’s Academy Awards likely left many Americans with this sentiment: “Oh, you spoiled, indulgent children. You seem a bunch of fretful crybabies. Quit belly-aching about the social justice behind the awards you give to overpaid actors. Just make some movies we all really love. ... Make films, draw, write. For us, that’d make a world of difference.”