Wish I'd Said It

Weeds are flowers too - once you get to know them.

- A. A. Milne

Monday, March 06, 2006

Opinin' on the Oscars

I sort of watched the Oscars last night for the first time since Dave ("Uma-Oprah") Letterman hosted. I was semi-interested this time in seeing how Jon Stewart would do in that role. I haven't been a regular Oscars watcher in over 20 years. Maybe 30. The production numbers annoyed me. The insincerity of the glitterati and their exaggerated sense of importance rankled. I also pretty much stopped going out to movies during that time, content to wait until they were released on video. Hence I often hadn't seen any nominated movies until well after the Oscars were presented.

What I tended to do over the last couple of decades was tune in to see the host's opening bits and then let my attention drift. Thinking back, Johnny Carson was pretty good. Steve Martin - ditto. Whoopi Goldberg - not so much. Billy Crystal was probably my favourite. Being part of the Hollywood crowd, he knew how and where to insert a playful needle.

I figured Stewart would be well-received by the audience in the theatre, being as they largely shared his left-leaning politics. His early jokes got a lukewarm response though. I got the impression the crowd was nervous. They seemed to come around when he delivered the Cheney-shot-Bjork joke.

If there was a production number this year I must have dozed off and missed it. I confess to picking up my newspaper now and again and I was on the phone for a while too. Ben Stiller's bit was funny. I liked how genuinely gobsmacked the large cast of Crash appeared when they learned it had won Best Picture. I guess Brokeback Mountain was considered the fave.

Despite the fact one woman in the crowd's breasts kept threatening to escape the confines of her dress as she bounced with delight when her movie won something, it was a ho-hum affair. Perhaps if they had managed to escape I'd feel differently.

Letterman's stint as host was largely panned by the critics. I have a hunch they won't be too kind to Stewart either. Both men have a cool, dry, cerebral wit that serves them well in a smaller, more intimate setting. A great Oscar host needs that wit but also needs to be part clown. And it would help if s/he knew, truly knew, the intimate workings of the movie business.

In other words - I vote to bring back Billy Crystal and tell him the job is his as long as he wants it.

12 comments:

Dawno said...

Good points. I enjoyed Jon just because I enjoy Jon. I thought the political ad clips were great, too.

Hey, you should do the meme I just posted! It's about the Oscars. :-)

Not that I'm shilling my blog here, uh uh, not me...

Unique said...

For the life of me, I can't imagine why anyone would want to watch the Oscars unless they were up for an award themselves. It baffles me completely. What a big 'who cares'.

It reminds me of one of those corporate functions where they pass out awards for the *most insurance policies sold* or whatever -- only with more hoopla.

Yawn.

Frank Baron said...

Dawno, I sorta did your meme. Partially. In your response thread. :)

Unique - Why watch? DUH! HELLO?! Did you skip the part where I mentioned the lady with the bobbling bosom? ;)

doc-t said...

The oscars insecere? That is so unfair...

Most definitely bring back billy crystal!

When steve martin hosted a few years ago i thought it was going to be great... i thought it was embarrasingly dull. i felt bad for him.

bring back billy.

oh... i left a note for you over on mac's page!

Frank Baron said...

Saw it doc, and responded. Thanks for stopping by. :)

Dorothy said...

I second the motion. Love Billy Crystal. I haven't seen the Academy Awards in years. Don't get to watch much television with all this writing stuff going on, but I'd love to get back in the habit. I did watch Wife Swap last night. That was hilarious. And I love American Idol but I've missed the past few episodes. Anyway, nice blog post!

Unique said...

Frank -
If you just want to see bodacious ta ta's out in public - move somewhere warmer. :)

Frank Baron said...

Thanks for stopping by dorothy. I don't watch a lot of tv either. Aside from some sports, I only carve out time for Monk, Six Feet Under and The Trailer Park Boys.

Unique - yeah, I could do that. Or I could just wait a couple of months 'til the Canadian femmes slip into their summer parkas. On a clear day, if not too far away, I can sometimes discern bumps. :)

Kira said...

Like you, Frank, I quit watching TV award shows a long time ago. I wonder if it's sad or liberating that I didn't even know they Oscar's had happened until I read your blog...

Othmar Vohringer said...

Sorry Frank but I relly can't comment to this post. Because I never watch the Oscars. To be frank I can't stand that whole bunch of inflated self-flattering clique who in their vain think of themdelf that they actually have anything meaningful to contribute to society.

It gets still worse when they jump on political bandwagons and proceed to lecture us on how to lead and conduct our lives and what's best for us. Which I always find rather anoying coming from people and a place that seems devoid of any morals and common decency.

Hey what you know I made a comment. :)

Have a good one Frank.

P.S. What's the weather like in Toronto? Here in B.C. it dumped a load of snow on us.

Othmar Vohringer aka huntwriter.

Frank Baron said...

Kira, I'd vote for "liberating." :)

Othmar, I always apply the 1st rule of Journalism when it comes to expressing opinions, political or otherwise: consider the source.

I think everyone has a right to express their opinion but I don't think because a person is paid 20 million dollars to play pretend their opinion is worth more than yours or mine.

Weather report: Showers this morning, clearing later this afternoon. Very windy and temps should rise to about 12C.

I'll take it. 2 or 3 more days like this and the lower creek will thaw and I might get my line wet.

Anne C. Watkins said...

That Uma-Oprah thing didn't do Dave any favors, did it? Haunts him to this day. lol