Hey folks! It’s Oscar time! So I’ll offer some thoughts while the ceremony is going on. Hopefully I can continually update this during the show, so you can see thoughts as they appear. If not, it’ll be (hopefully) a good read once everything’s done.
Before we begin, last night was the Independent Spirit awards, and to the surprise of none, Get Out was the big winner, taking home Best Feature and Best Director for Jordan Peele, which should boost his profile for getting at least one win tonight, likely in Original Screenplay. The only acting award that didn’t mirror the rest of awards season so far was Timothée Chalamet winning Best Male Performer, but that’s only because Gary Oldman and Darkest Hour were part of a major studio release, so not eligible. Lady Bird won Best Screenplay, which gives Greta Gerwig something of a chance to upset Peele tonight. Faces Places won Documentary Feature, but like the rest of the season, there wasn’t really any common competition, as Last Men in Aleppo was the only nominee this evening to go against it. The same can be said for Foreign Language, which went to A Fantastic Woman, but only Loveless was also in the field. Take that with whatever requisite grains of salt are necessary.
Also, one quick note, I’m limiting my Red Carpet coverage with this one thought. “Who are you wearing?” is literally the most asinine question in the English language, and if you care about that answer, I don’t want to know you. One of my bucket list ambitions is to get nominated for a major award, then go to an adult shop to buy a blowup doll of a famous porn star, then wrap it around myself. That way when some vapid model working for E! asks me who I’m wearing, I can lift up the head and say, “It appears to be Jenna Jameson.”
So now, on with the show (all timestamps are PST)!
5:00pm – “Celebrity Street Fighting with Mario Lopez” sounds like the worst show ever, which means it would it would get like 10 seasons. Good jokes in the old-timey opening, though. Armie Hammer was created when a witch cursed a Ken doll, Meryl Streep doesn’t know her kids’ names, Chadwick Boseman makes us yearn for a black leader, Lupita Nyong’o will launch a tweet storm from Trump’s toilet. Good stuff.
5:02 – I’m pulling double duty by blogging and grading my family’s picks. I pray they don’t beat me, given that I saw everything and studied the films and awards season in hopes of being accurate. If I lose, I may as well give up.
5:03 – Token acknowledgement of last year’s Best Picture snafu.
5:05 – Oscar is literally a “statue of limitations.” I’m surprised Jimmy’s allowed to acknowledge the #MeToo issue and Harvey Weinstein.
5:10 – Timothée Chalamet looks like Tilda Swinton. But hey, if we’re upsetting Mike Pence, I can dig it.
5:13 – Pretty low-key opening monologue, but the jet ski for shortest acceptance speech bit was priceless!
5:14 – Why is Viola Davis walking out to the Austin Power theme?
5:18 – To the surprise of no one, Sam Rockwell wins Supporting Actor. I’m digging all the “Time’s Up” pins people are wearing. Rockwell’s story about sneaking out of school to go to movies is very endearing.
5:24 – I won’t comment too much on commercials, but a remake of Mary Poppins? NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO!
5:27 – Kazuhiro Tsuji finally gets his long overdue Oscar for Makeup & Hairstyling! Another no-brainer. If you know at all what Gary Oldman looks like, this was a master class!
5:28 – I honestly thought Eva Marie Saint was dead! First surprise of the night for me!
5:29 – I can’t tell what award she’s giving out. Can they make the font on the envelope a little larger please?
5:32 – Still no surprises, as Phantom Thread takes Costume Design! It’s literally a film about making dresses! No amount of fish costumes were going to beat it.
5:40 – Still perfect as Icarus takes Documentary Feature! He started out making Super Size Me, and wound up exposing the entire Russian doping scandal! Also, my God Greta Gerwig is stunning!
5:43 – As much as I love Taraji P. Henson, thank you Jimmy Kimmel for noting how stupid it is to introduce someone for the sole purpose of introducing someone else, in this case Mary J. Blige. But God I love this song!
5:55 – Nice montage. Now that the Academy’s done sucking its own dick, back to the show!
6:01 – Still prefect as Dunkirk takes the Sound categories! It’s a shame that they brought out the stars of Baby Driver only for it to lose twice, but damn Asa Gonzales looked hot in that dress!
6:10 – Thank you for not pigeon-holing Kumail Nanjiani and Lupita Nyong’o into presenting Foreign Language.
6:13 – In the words of the Looney Tunes from an episode of Tiny Toon Adventures, to describe “Remember Me”: “It’s amazing! It’s stupendous! It’s short!”
6:15 – Why are people dressed like mariachis doing Riverdance?
6:22 – First Eva Marie Saint, and now Rita Moreno? I’m loving this!
6:24 – I finally take my first loss of the night as A Fantastic Woman takes Foreign Language! It’s somewhat of a surprise, as apart from the Independent Spirit Awards last night, it hadn’t won anything. I guess the LGBTQ and inclusion vote overrode awards season precedent. Congratulations! Not my favorite of the bunch, but still a very well made film.
6:29 – Back on track with Allison Janney winning Supporting Actress. I was hoping Laurie Metcalf could pull the upset, but again, no surprises.
6:32 – This Walmart “short film” (commercial) would have been so much better if it ended like the old cartoons, with the piano exploding when Hans Zimmer hits the right note at long last.
6:36 – Condensing the Animated categories? I don’t like that. BUT WHO CARES? BB8!!!!!!
6:37 – These are the worst jokes of the night. Get on with it!
6:38 – Legit surprise that Dear Basketball won animated short. I guess having John Williams do the score held some sway, enough to overcome the less than savory moments of Kobe Bryant’s past. Kobe Bryant is an Oscar winner. Let that sink in.
6:41 – Back on track with Coco. I still wish Loving Vincent would have won, but it had no realistic chance. Still, only two misses for me so far.
6:44 – “Mystery of Love” is a beautiful song. I just wish I could have heard it in the movie instead of waterfalls, especially since one of the lines is, “White noise, what an awful sound.”
6:49 – It looks like I’ll be on a tape delay going forward, as my roommate just restarted the DVR record so a couple late-comers to the house can see the opening monologue. Assume I’ll be about 10 minutes behind live for a while.
7:03 – Back on track with a win for Blade Runner 2049 for Visual effects. I’m approximately 12 minutes behind the broadcast at this point. Hopefully skipping commercials will get me back up to speed quickly!
7:07 – Another tech win for Dunkirk! I’m honestly waiting for the other shoe to drop and for me to miss every pick for the rest of the ceremony. We’re halfway through and I’ve only missed two so far, and both of those I identified as dark horse contenders.
7:09 – Kimmel’s doing great with the interstitial jokes. Dunkirk was originally a rom-com with Reese Witherspoon before the editor took over.
7:10 – And now for this year’s version of the tour bus, with a secret audience at the Chinese Theatre. I know my life would be made if Mark Hammil invaded my film screening. Also, “Guillermo, meet Guillermo?” Priceless!
7:13 – Ellen Degeneres does a giant selfie (blarg), Jimmy Kimmel and Gal Gadot bring candy! Guess who wins!
7:14 – Guillermo del Toro carrying a giant sandwich is a microcosm of everything that’s great about America.
7:15 – From one of our guests when the hot dog cannons are brought out: “Who wants Armie Hammer to shoot hot meat in your face?”
7:16 – Tiffany Hashid? Does she work with the wickedly talented Adele Dezeem?
7:19 – Two more wild cards with the remaining shorts. Heaven is a Traffic Jam on the 405 is a brilliant film, but I figured it had no shot with all the issue films surrounding it.
7:19 – “Hi, Meryl! I want you to be my mama one day. Let’s get that money, girl!”
7:23 – 0-for-3 on the Shorts! I’m most surprised that DeKalb Elementary didn’t win. Still, these are all great films in their own way. Not a truly bad choice among them.
7:26 – “Thank you for that smattering of applause.”
7:27 – “Tell the NRA they’re in God’s way.”
7:28 – Dave Chappelle said this would be the last Original Song nominee? Did they not perform “This is Me?” Or did we accidentally skip it when we were catching up and fast-forwarding!
7:29 – Common tells everyone watching to stand up for what they believe in. In Washington, DC, Donald Trump just stood up to applaud KFC and jailing brown people.
7:30 – Okay, the announcer just said “This is Me” is coming. Crisis averted.
7:32 – Let’s celebrate new voices with three of the oldest voices still working in Hollywood!
7:33 – This is a good montage, and the message is positive, but if you complain about the show running long, this is the stuff you have to cut, not acceptance speeches or combining multiple categories into one presentation.
7:37 – I’m literally wearing a t-shirt that says, “I speak fluent movie quotes,” and watching Chadwick Boseman and Margot Robbie read classic lines was PAINFUL!
7:38 – Of course Call Me By Your Name was going to win. One, it’s James Ivory. Two, it’s the only Best Picture nominee in the Adapted field.
7:41 – Alright, time for Original Screenplay, the only competitive “major” category outside Best Picture!
7:41 – I love the bow on the front of Nicole Kidman’s dress. It’s like you can open up her vagina!
7:42 – And Jordan Peele takes Original Screenplay! It’s great that Get Out gets something. Also, sad that Lady Bird will get shut out.
7:45 – Another montage? I appreciate veterans as much as the next guy, but we still have seven more awards, a musical performance, and the In Memoriam to get to! Come on!
7:48 – That said, the montage is a nice dig at the conservative talking point that we don’t care about soldiers.
7:49 – As usual, Sandra Bullock is annoying.
7:50 – ROGER DEAKINS! 14th time’s the charm! Also, screw you, Sandra Bullock. Way to make a huge deal about Rachel Morrison when we all knew she wasn’t going to win!
7:55 – God I love Keala Settle’s voice! This song still brings a tear to my eye.
7:56 – Viola Davis was so into the song her dress almost fell off.
7:58 – Christopher Walken presenting Original Score. Why doesn’t he sing? He did so well in Jungle Book (sarcasm meter explodes)!
7:59 – Alexandre Desplat wins his second Oscar, and deservedly so. His score helped us all buy into Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy.
8:01 – Fun fact: Lin-Manuel Miranda is contractually obligated to rap his presentation.
8:02 – The two-horse race for Original Song goes to “Remember Me.” If there’s a theme on the night, it’s a shit-ton of Mexico love!
8:04 – I hate to laugh, but we finally found out how to cut off the play-off music. Show me dead mom!
8:05 – I always stand and salute during In Memoriam (something my grandmother had me do that turned into a habit), and excellent choice to have Eddie Vedder perform Tom Petty. But seriously, why is Jennifer Garner allowed on the Oscar stage?
8:09 – If you know of any significant In Memoriam snubs, let me know. I always get too caught up in the moment.
8:13 – One, why is Emma Stone presenting Best Director instead of Best Actor? Two, STOP CONGRATULATING THE WOMEN WHEN YOU KNOW THEY’RE GOING TO LOSE! IT’S JUST A BACKHANDED COMPLIMENT!
8:14 – I was hoping for Greta Gerwig, but we all knew Guillermo was going to win.
8:16 – Okay, del Toro invoked James Cagney from Yankee Doodle Dandy for his acceptance speech. I am fine with this now.
8:20 – So we shuffled the presenters so that all women would present the acting awards. Jane Fonda and Helen Mirren? Would have beat my fan fiction in 1975!
8:21 – “The set looks like the Orgasmatron in Barbarella!”
8:24 – No drama whatsoever, just give it to Gary Oldman!
8:25 – Gary’s stuttering his way out of the jet ski.
8:27 – Gary Oldman’s mom is still alive. Play him off!
8:28 – Okay, time for the last dead giveaway acting award. Frances, just start walking up now.
8:30 – The accusations fly against Meryl Streep! Tripping, two minute minor! No nomination next year! (like that’ll ever happen)
8:33 – I can’t remember a year where all four acting categories were locked up so early. Also, stop trying to invoke our shitty Olympics performance. Unless you want to talk about curling. FUCKING CURLING! USA! USA! USA! USA!
8:36 – “All the women stand up!” I would have paid so much money if the next thing Frances McDormand said was “Now go get me a sammich!”
8:39 – Okay, time for the big one. Who will win the jet ski!
8:40 – Do-over for Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty!
8:45 – They forgot the “The” in The Shape of Water during the montage.
8:46 – And we have history! The Shape of Water is the first science fiction film to win Best Picture! Unbelievable!
8:48 – Final thoughts: We all wondered what the popular wave would be this year, and it was a wave of love for Mexico! Congrats to all the criminals, drug dealers, and rapists! Congrats to Mark Bridges for winning the Jet Ski. I went 18 for 24, missing the Shorts, Foreign Language, Original Song (and I wavered between “This is Me” and “Remember Me” all season). At least I beat my family (my brother-in-law got 14, mom got 12, sister got 8). Good humor, too many montages, not too many surprises (of the six I missed, only Documentary Short and Original Song had winners that I didn’t at least say were dark horses), and no truly undeserving winners. Even if I don’t agree with every winner, there’s not a single award that I thought was improperly given!
Thanks for joining me for this year’s Oscar Blitz! I can’t wait until next year! Regular coverage will resume with the next movie I see and review (likely Gringo or A Wrinkle in Time), and I’ll be adding fairly regular columns on random cinematic musings, hopefully once a week or so.