Monday, February 29, 2016

"Spotlight" - I Believe I Had That....and Other Oscars Thoughts

Your Best Picture of the Year, and as predicted by The Grandstander, "Spotlight".  Terrific movie and a deserving winner, and I am glad that it won.

Indulge me while I boast a bit about my Oscars Predictions.  As seen in this space yesterday, I made predictions in nine categories, and was correct in six of them, including the biggie, Best Picture of the Year.  Doesn't always work out that way, but I had it going for me this year, it seems.  For the record, I missed on Adapted Screenplay, Director, and Supporting Actor.

Some other Oscars observations....
  • The elephant in the room, the #OscarsSoWhite issue, was capably addressed by Chris Rock in his opening monologue.  Then, as often happens in such events, it was beat to death throughout the show.  As NPR's Scott Simon observed on Facebook, as soon as the issue became a comic prop, the message became hopelessly diluted.
  • Chris Rock did what a host has to do....a good opening, then he kept the traffic moving.  His comic bits were okay. I thought that his interviewing movie goers in Compton was pretty funny.  As for the Girl Scout cookie bit, cute, and if they REALLY sold $65,000 with of cookies in that auditorium, then too many people were walking around with too much cash in their pockets.
  • I thought the speeches of the four acting winners were well done.  Classy.
  • For the second year in a row, the single best performance  on stage was turned in by Lady Gaga.
  • Fashion trend - women wearing over sized eyeglasses with very dark frames.  It's not a bad look.
  • Another fashion note - Best dress of the night was that backless number worn by Rachel McAdams.  Gorgeous.
  • Final fashion note.  What was up with Kate Winslett's hair?
  • "Max Max: Fury Road".  Six Oscars.  Really?  As my friend Dan Bonk observed, they could give it a thousand Oscars, and I'm still not going to go see it.
  • I've said it before and I'll say it again, they need to ditch the Oscar for Best Original Song.  All it does is eat up a lot of time during the telecast.  In fact, the nominated songs were so mediocre (to be kind), that only three of them were actually performed during the show, thank God.
I will close by saying that two of the best movies that I saw all year, "The Martian" and "Brooklyn" received no love at all from the Academy.  Multiple nominations, zero Oscars. It's to bad, but it happens.  I sometimes like to go back and look at past Oscars Awards for any given year.  It is interesting to see that sometimes movies that win big, become quickly forgotten, while the movies that they beat are still being watched and loved by audiences.  For example, in 1995 and 1997 "Forrest Gump" and "The English Patient" beat out, respectively, "The Shawshank Redemption" and "Fargo".  Of those four movies, which two would you rather watch today?  Twenty years from now, when people look back on the 2015 movie year, I am guessing that they will still want to watch "Spotlight", "The Martian", "Brooklyn", and "Bridge of Spies".  Those same historians may be scratching their heads over "Mad Max" and "The Revenant".  Time will be the ultimate judge of what the Best Movies of 2015 were, and I think that this year, the Academy got it right for the most part.

As for me, I am looking forward to watching my newly purchased Blue-Ray of "Spotlight", perhaps as early as this afternoon.

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