Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Preparing for Oscar

So, this Sunday I'm going to "live blog" the Oscars, because if one is going to embrace blogging as I have (my blog and I are legally married, at least in the brave state of Vermont), one has to use terms like "live blogging" and even put those terms into practice. My parents are proud. They beam, really.

In addition to answering every year's most anticlimactic entertainment question -- "How will the new host of the Oscars do?" -- I'll mostly be offering some thoughts on the cinematic year just passed while making fun of people's fashion choices and speech preparation. I'm nothing if not versatile. (Whether it's fair for me to make fun of these things while sitting on a decaying futon in a ratty T-shirt and consuming something that involves a lot of powdered cheese, I'll let the jury decide.)

The new host will do this, by the way: He -- Jon Stewart -- will say some mildly entertaining things written by a staff of 40 people; will deal with the incredibly inconducive-to-comedy vibe of thousands of Angelenos simmering in self-regard; will welcome you back from commercials while the chatter of Nicole Kidman et al. dies down in the background; and will send you off to bed with a hearty "Good night." It's like I'm seeing into the future. Forget live blogging, that's old news; I'm a trailblazer -- this is premonitory blogging.

(Speaking of the hearty good night, last year I watched the awards with two good friends at their apartment in Park Slope. Chris Rock finished the broadcast with a spirited yell of "Good night, Brooklyn!" which sent the nerdy three of us enthusiastically leaping off the couch with borough pride. We spazzed out for a second -- a fun second, I must say -- before we settled back in to our seats and my host said, "I don't think he was talking to us.")

I always like to be familiar with the competition going into the Oscars, in a way I never care to for, say, the Grammys. (You never hear me say something like this in late January: "I really need to pick up that new album of duets between Santana and Kid Rock, because the Grammys are next week.") But before Sunday, I do need to see Brokeback Mountain, the only multiple nominee that I've been meaning to catch. Good Night, and Good Luck is also up for a few, but I can't bring myself to see it yet. It looks like the film adaptation of a social studies textbook, if social studies textbooks were written with a smug tone about things that have been accepted wisdom for 40 years. I'm really pre-judging, I know. You'll have to excuse me. For that, and so much else.


Blogger Dezmond said...

Oscars are always fun stuff. We are having a little get together down here in H-Town, complete with big screen TV, Oscar Betting Pool, and the rest.

Any predictions on winners? (As many Oscar viewers know, it is irrelevant whether you have or haven't seen the films to accurately predict the outcomes).

5:53 PM  
Blogger MAW said...

Honestly, you could probably skip Good Night and Good Luck. It was shot well and the acting was excellent, but - frankly - it was a bit boring. See Brokeback Mountain, though. I don't feel that it was the best of what's been nominated, but it is definately a great film and Michelle Williams was (surprisingly) fantastic.

10:11 PM  
Blogger JMW said...

Dezmond, wish I could be in H-Town. Sounds like fun.

As for my predictions, here goes: Brokeback, Hoffman (and even though he's considered a lock, I wouldn't be surprised in the least by Ledger here), Witherspoon, Gyllenhaal (a total lock, I think), Amy Adams (this is just a personal preference; I actually think Michelle Williams will win), Ang Lee for director.

Thanks for the back-up, Maggie.

12:31 AM  
Blogger Dezmond said...

I don't think Gyllenhaal is a lock at all. If Brokeback wins Best Pic (which it probably will, but there is a possibility of an upset), that might be where they reward Crash (along with the Screenplay). I go with Dillon there, they will probably give it to him as a representative of the ensemble Crash cast (they often do things like that). Plus, he's been around awhile and from what I understand, very well liked and respected in Hollywood. That one goes to Dillon.

For the rest? Brokeback, Ang Lee, Hoffman, Witherspoon, Weisz (but maybe Williams), Crash for Original Screenplay and Brokeback for Adapted Screenplay (although, there is tough competition in this category, and if Brokeback takes the bigger awards, this is where they may try and further reward Capote or reward Good Luck, Good Night).

10:16 AM  

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