Needless to say last night’s Academy Awards ended in a way that nobody saw coming and it certainly made for a moment than will never be forgotten. However, since it happened at the end I’ll wait until the end of this blog entry to write anymore about it.
As a whole I liked but didn’t love last night’s Oscars. They were certainly better than last year when Chris Rock sucked as Oscar host.
I liked that the show opened up with Justin Timberlake singing his nominated song from “Trolls” (I still can’t believe he has an Oscar nomination now and Madonna has never gotten one despite all the great songs she’s written for various movies).
It was a fun and entertaining way to start the show, although I wish Justin Timberlake had just done the regular version of the song instead changing it up.
I thought that Jimmy Kimmel did a good, if not great job, of hosting. He was funny enough and charming enough to get the job done. His feud with Matt Damon continues to make for some good laughs.
He also managed to be a tiny bit political without making the tone of the show overtly political or serious
The first acting award of the night went to Mahershala Ali in “Moonlight”. Although Dev Patel in “Lion” was my number one pick I was really happy for Mahershala. Given the current political state of this country I was thrilled that an African-American Muslim won an Oscar for a movie that is about a gay boy, as I said on my Facebook page that is the American I know and love.
As the other smaller awards began to be handed out it was pretty clear early on that despite its 14 nominations there wasn’t going to be a big sweep for “La La Land” but I still thought it was going to win Best Picture.
I also really enjoyed all of the love that Meryl Streep got.
I really do think that we take her for granted. The fact that she is still managing to get nominated for Oscars in her late 60s really shows how amazing she really is. As her clip for “Florence Foster Jenkins” was playing I enjoyed the fact that she was once again a nominee. There will come a time when she won’t be around and who knows, maybe “Florence Foster Jenkins” will be her finally Oscar nomination. I hope not. I really want her to win a 4th Oscar someday to tie Katherine Hepburn.
I love Viola Davis. As much as I loved her performance in “Fences” I actually didn’t rank her number one, I really thought the best performance for Best Supporting Actress was Naomie Harris in “Moonlight”. I also think she was in the wrong category, her role as Rose in “Fences” really was a leading role and I think she should have competed for Best Actress, I think she would have won there too. Still, I was beyond thrilled for her when she won her Oscar last night. She is such an artist and such a classy lady. Her speech left me in tears.
I was so excited when Kenneth Lonergan won Best Original Screenplay. I think he is a brilliant writer. I loved “Manchester by the Sea” but in a way I also consider his win compensation for the Oscar he should have won 16 years ago for “You Can Count on Me”.
When “La La Land” failed to win Best Editing or Screenplay I thought the possibility of an upset was growing stronger but I still thought it would managed to win Best Picture.
I have mixed feelings about Casey Affleck winning Best Actor. Based on the performance alone he should have won and if I was only looking that that I would be one hundred percent happy.
However, one can’t deny that it was a bit of a controversial pick because of the sexual harassment charges that have come up recently. Still, it is worth noting that last night Casey Affleck did something neither his brother nor Matt Damon have ever done. He won an Oscar for acting. Ben has two Oscars and he is two for two when he’s been nominated but those nominations and wins came for writing “Good Will Hunting” and producing “Argo”. Of the three Matt Damon is the most nominated, five in total, in the most variety of categories, one for writing “Good Will Hunting” (which of course he won for with Ben) one for Supporting Actor in “Invictus”, two for Best Actor for “Good Will Hunting” and “The Martian” and one for producing “Manchester by the Sea”.
As I mentioned before I really believe that Viola Davis’ role in “Fences” is a leading role and she should have competed for Best Actress. If she had I think she would have won but with Viola out of the running it was clear Emma Stone was going to win and she did. I did want a surprise by Ruth Negga or Meryl Streep (can you imagine Mango Mussolini’s head if Meryl had won) but I was okay with Emma winning.
She did exactly what the role asked of her. It is strange thought to look back and think that Glen Close, Peter O’Toole and Richard Burton never won competitive Oscars but Emma Stone has…Maybe Glen has one more great role in her. I hope so.
Speaking of not being able to believe that somebody has an Oscar can somebody please explain to me who in the world thought that Jackie Chan deserved to be anywhere near the Dolby Theatre let alone there having received an honorary Oscar.
I was happy Damien Chazelle won Best Director.
I do think he deserved it. I am 39 so it was a new experience having somebody younger than me win Best Director (but I suppose I better get used to it as my decade change birthday comes up later this year).
When Damien Chazelle won Best Director I really thought that “La La Land” had it in the bag. Although the Academy has taken to splitting Best Director and Best Picture much more frequently than it did in the past I just didn’t see it happening this year. How wrong I was.
Before they announced the wrong winner I was struck with how awful Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway looked. It really made me sad. It’s not that they are old; it is that they are both plastic surgery nightmares.
Just like everybody else I thought that Warren was being silly when he delayed and delayed reading the name in the envelope. Part of me wishes that he had just said “I think I have the wrong envelope” instead of having Faye say “La La Land”. I feel bad for the producers of “La La Land” what a moment to have given to you and then taken away but more than that I feel worse for everybody associated with “Moonlight”. It should have been a magic moment instead it got muddled.
But then again the fact that the mixed up occurred made the end of last night’s Oscars truly memorable…And we all know now that Marisa Tomei really did win. Viva Marisa!!!
“Lion” was my number one pick but as a gay man I am so thrilled that “Moonlight” pulled off the upset. Considering that “Crash” upset “Brokeback Mountain” eleven years ago and “Slumdog Millionaire” robbed “Milk” eight years ago I am so very, very happy that an LGBT film finally won Best Picture.
There are so many times that the day after the Oscars I have a bit of letdown. I am feeling a bit of that today but more than anything I am feeling inspired by the winners to get back to creative writing, which I haven’t done since the end of October.
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Here is a description:
Justin Gomez and his sister, Terri, have never been close. Separated by nine years and distant in adulthood, Justin and Terri have little in common, except for the love of her three children. In the days before they embark on a road trip to visit the father that once abandoned them and their now deceased mother, both Terri and Justin are dealing with unexpected changes in their lives. Justin surprisingly realizes he might want more than a series of one night stands after a first date goes unexpectedly well. After a lifetime of being a strong type A personality, Terri is forced to confront the reality of the end of her marriage. As they hit the road, with Terri’s children in tow, they find themselves forced to rely on and confide in each other following a devastating event. Confronted with memories from the past and challenges from the present, Terri and Justin must dig deep and unearth the truth about themselves and their parents in order to build a new family based on their love for each other.