But first: if you’re not watching and don’t care, don’t bother telling me. As a movie fan, regardless of how many others watch the show, I’m always interested in how it’s produced and who wins. After all, I have usually seen most of the nominated movies (all but one this year).
Now, on with the show…
Kudos to Best Director winner Chloé Zhao (“Nomadland”) for wearing sneakers to the ceremony. I’m reminded of a rock radio General Manager who, while interviewing me for a job, asked if I really thought it was appropriate that I wore sneakers to meet her. Then, as now, I wore sneakers all day, every day — including to my own wedding! I knew then that: a) she wouldn’t offer me the gig; and b) I wouldn’t take it as long as she was there. As I recall, the station flipped formats and fired her about a year later.
Here’s a crazy idea. When you’re announcing the nominees for best hair, makeup, and costume design, SHOW US examples from the movies! It’s as if ABC didn’t budget enough to show clips.
Similarly, it would be nice to have seen clips of the supporting actors’ performances rather than listening to Laura Dern praising their work. In a year when most people haven’t seen most (or any) of the movies up for awards, why not give them a free plug with clips?
Smart booking: having Riz Ahmed, who played a rock drummer going deaf in “Sound Of Metal,” announcing the Best Sound winner — his movie! The academy got this one right. The sound design for that film was brilliant and innovative.
Acceptance speeches are always self-indulgent lists of names we don’t know, but letting them go on so long tonight was a mistake. As my friend David Craig said, your speech shouldn’t be longer than your movie.
Could there be a more Biden-era meme than holding the Oscars ceremony in a train station?
Memo to Brad Pitt: the year 2011 called and wants its hair bun back.
There have been more movie clips in the commercials for “West Side Story” and “In The Heights” than the entire first two hours of the Oscars telecast. This is like watching ESPN’s Sportscenter and not seeing highlights.
As a person who wrote and hosted many trivia events for years, I’m here to tell you the Lil Rey/Questlove segment was just laying there — like the stiff in the opening scene of every “Law and Order” episode — until the Glenn Close payoff. She may be 0-for-8 as a nominee, but she sure knows how to sell a joke.
The producers no doubt saved Best Actor for the last category in the hopes of getting a big emotional response when Chadwick Boseman won. But, shocker, the award went to Anthony Hopkins, who wasn’t even there — a fittingly anticlimactic way to end the most boring Oscars telecast in memory.
Anyone who expected more from the show because Steven Soderbergh was one of its producers probably didn’t watch his last movie, the stultifyingly boring “Let Them All Talk” (which I reviewed here).