Saturday, February 21, 2015

Live-Blogging the Oscars: For Funzies

Switching to new stuff at the top, for your pleasure...


12:08 - Was fun, but yep, Golden Globes is more fun.  I stand by my original: we need either a separate set of categories or a separate award for comedies/action.  Good Night :-)

12:05 - So Birdman wins.  Hollywood loves stories about Hollywood.  Yawn. This Oscar, aside from the speeches, had no frisson of excitement.  I like the drunken revelry of the Golden Globes much, much better. 

So I'm off to bed.  I would like to thank the Academy, my dear husband for putting the baby to bed tonight, and my kid Harrison for being so patient with me today.  Goodnight!

11:59 - You're right, Redmayne was a surprise if going by the previous wins theory.  That said, My Left Foot.  And Juliane Moore is the Julie Andrews I was looking for.  

Okay, I'm not sure about the magic predictions, there, NPH.

11:53 - Eddie Redmayne!  Wow!  I don't think many people called that one.  I don't want to quote Tropic Thunder I won't.  But he hit the standard formula.

I haven't seen either Birdman or Boyhood, so I can't claim insider knowledge here.  It could be either one, or some dark horse candidate.

Rosamund Pike's husband has to give her serious side eye every morning when he wakes due to that Gone Girl role. 

Julianne Moore wins!  Tropic Thunder rule wins again?  Lol.

11:48 - Yeah, I guess Boyhood or Birdman.  Those are the two that seem the most like a departure from the usual.  Sniper's probably too political, I can't see them giving it to any of the others without more of a trend going.

You know, it's easier for me to come up with the Gaga side of that earlier analogy than the Julie Andrews side.

Eddie Redmayne.  Yeah, biggest physical challenge.  My Left Foot time. - E

11:43 - "Bitches Be Trippin' Yo", as a title, it really works, and sums up the movie Gone Girl quite succinctly. 

Birdman gets best Director?  Did I get that right?  I think it's chances are looking up.  I'm just glad Wes Anderson didn't get it.  Way too twee for my tastes. - M

11:39 - Why does Oprah's stylist hate her?  Arg.  

That was the first for Birdman.  Not a good sign, I think, for Best Pic - though Keaton will probably win for actor.  But what's gonna win Best Pic?

Wow.  Amazing speech by Graham Moore for Imitation Game Screenplay.  

Yeah, I think the speeches have been less flowery/rambly than usual, and therefore more powerful.  The parents thing by JK, the Equal Pay shout out by Arquette, Legend, and now this.  All simple, straightforward.  Well done.

Gone Girl really should have been titled "Bitches Be Trippin', Yo." - E

11:34 - Why does Eddie Murphy even bother to show up to these things if he's going to be all grumpy, strange, and dour?

Was the Screenplay award the first one of the night for Birdman?

This is suicide tribute night at the Oscars, apparently.  Interesting.  For once, I'm not tuning out the speeches.  They are very heartfelt and political, a bit more so than usual. - M

11:26 - What I meant by drag queen is that Gaga is like a lot of performers: she's so much about throwing out show that she can't get to sincerity.  I think she was trying to get to sincerity there, but she like can't help but come off like she's inadvertently making fun of the thing to which she's theoretically paying homage.  

Gaga : Julie as Chevy Chase : Bill Murray.  Or Madonna : Tracy Chapman.  I'm not getting a perfect analogy here.  I'll work on it :-)

Eddie Murphy, phoning it in for two weeks running. - E

11:21 - Julie Andrews is such a class act, the very opposite of Lady Gaga.  Though Gaga has a wonderful voice, she surrounds it with so much distraction that it is hard to remember that.  I do like that she toned it waaaay down for the SoM medley though, it was much appreciated.  Can one be a female drag queen?  That makes my head hurt.

And Grand Budapest wins again.  I lived in the actual Budapest, and as much as I loved it there, I don't get the love for this movie.

11:16 - I like Scarlett's dress.  But the necklace is scary.  

The Sound of Music is the bestest ever.  And damn straight, Christopher Plummer was completely smoking hot.  And there is something about Julie Andrews that manages to be both earnest and yet completely likable.  

Gaga doing these songs is like a drag queen doing these songs.  Or maybe even more meta.  Gaga has a gorgeous voice, but she's the opposite of Julie. - E

11:12 - Agreed on all counts.  The song win is clearly a to salve the conscience of the Oscar voters for not giving Selma more noms.

But Legend's speech was very good and heartfelt.  And the orchestra did not try to play him off. 

And I love The Sound of Music.  Christopher Plummer was completely smoking hot! - M

11:08 - John Travolta.  Is.  Creeping.  Me.  Out.  That chin grab seriously gave me a chill.  Poor Idina.

You GO John Legend!  Voting Rights, Criminal Justice, and simply-put.  Really nice.

The thing that bugs me the most about that win is that it was so clearly the consolation prize for Selma.  They put it on the Best Picture list as a token.  Had they actually valued it, they would have given it ANY of the acting and/or directing noms. - E

11:05 - I like "Glory" just not as good as "Everything is Awesome".

John Travolta's toupee is doing him no favors.

Glory wins.  I called it.  Happy for Common and Legend though. - M

10:57 - I loved the Snowden line.  "Edward Snowden couldn't be here for some treason."  And he came up with it off the cuff.  Nice.

So what we're learning is that everybody has had some Whiplash experience?  Or is it just we theater nerds?  How could you deliver good Shakespeare while worrying about meter?  Or was she one of those memorize the shit first, then add meaning ladies?  Pretty sure I've blocked out why mine threw the stuff she threw, but she was all about method, so it probably was not a meter issue.  She did do the Gilbert &Sullivan shows... ;-)

John Legend makes every song he sings sound the same.  It's amazing.  This song is just not as good as Everything Is Awesome, even though by all rights it should be.  - E

10:51 - Mike Nichols was one of those people I thought was already dead, so I would have never have guessed him.

I also had a theater teacher who threw things at us.  Sometimes for breathing on the wrong words.  It was very useful.  I never get the meter wrong in a Shakespeare play.  Or if I do, I cringe, anticipating an object being thrown in my face.  Good times, good times.

NPH trying to keep it going, throws in a Snowden joke.  I think the Oscars really do need a rogue Kanye type to keep things interesting. - M

10:45 - He'd have gotten the finisher off The Graduate alone, like all Baby Boomers love that movie.  But also: Working Girl, Heartburn, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf.  Yes, I put Working Girl first.  What.  Harrison Ford.  Alec Baldwin, Joan Cusack, Sigourney Weaver.  And that other lady ;-)

I had a theater teacher who threw chairs.  And apples.  And clipboards.  Really whatever she had handy.  I didn't find it her most useful technique.

I now want to see Benedict Cumberbatch get cast as like a non-period romantic lead.  Just to see what he's got in a non-quirky capacity.

10:40 - Mike Nichols?  I would have never called that for the finisher.  I totally forgot about Ruby Dee and Lauren Bacall, so I was like, "if not them, and not Williams, then who?" 

I'm a big bust in the Oscar categories so far.  I got Arquette, JK  and Big Hero 6, like everyone else, so I guess that's something.

10:34 - ...And the Into the Woods soundtrack is now stuck back in my head.  Forever.  Meryl is trying so hard not to cry.  I wonder if that's about more than one person, or Robin or Mike Nichols in particular.  They snuck Robin in the middle - didn't even give it to Bacall.  Mike Nichols.  That's right.  He should be at the end.  Jennifer Hudson has the pipes, man.  

Do you think Angelina could handle Shakespeare?  She'd be interesting with RDJ. - E

10:30 - Angelina needs to be in something watchable and good soon.  She is very fascinating to watch on screen.  You can't train for that. 

Is this the In Memoriam section?  I can never remember who died throughout the year.  I'm calling Robin Williams for the ending.

10:24 - Yeah, anybody who saw Girl, Interrupted or Gia knows that lady has some serious rage sense memories.  Though she is seriously watchable.  The opposite of Gwyneth in about every way.

Big Hero 6 was based on "geniuses" who couldn't form a cogent plan.  Or really any plan.  Serious design flaw.  

Into the Woods was beautiful, but looked like it was on a small set. Even in the ads, Grand Budapest looks gorgeous.  Lady gets cut off.  

I like the burgundy coat on NPH.  

I don't understand Jessica Chastain's dress.  It's weird. - E

10:21 - Another for grand Budapest Hotel.  Blech. 

Big Hero 6 was a very serviceable movie.  Just nowhere in the league of the Lego Movie.

Angelina probably has killed someone.  I'm just saying though.

10:10 - Feast was put in front of a Disney movie, that seems unfair.  It was way cutesy.  

Word on the Zoe and Rock.  Zoe just had twins.  Give it up, she looks fab.  She looks way less frail than she did in Guardians, it's a better look.  I kept thinking in that movie that there was no way she could kill anybody.  Even when Angelina is skinny, that lady seems like she could get the job done.  Zoe, not so much.

Okay, I have seen both Big Hero 6 and The LEGO Movie.  And I love Disney.  But the LEGO Movie was a better picture. - E

10:09 - Back after some technical difficulties.  Zoe and The Rock look good together.  They should do some sort of movie.  I don't care who wins the Best animated feature, because the best animated movie wasn't even nominated. - M

9:57 - This is the other damn thing about the Oscars.  If you know who won at the other awards, you know who will win at the Oscars.  They are so predictable 9/10 times.  And this is not to say Patricia Arquette isn't worthy, just that the other ladies did not, shall we say, look surprised.  Meryl and JLo loved the equal pay line.  I feel like maybe JLo wouldn't have been so vociferous had she not been sitting next to Meryl, but maybe I'm too cynical.  - E

9:48 - Holy tighty whities, Batman.  It's really interesting to me which awards get thrust to science and tech and which get to happen night-of.  I think it's at least partially about getting some awards to non-best pic winners.  

And now that I'm thinking about it, maybe instead of comedy/musical, I'd suggest comedy/action.  Musicals do get nominated.  Comedies and Action movies do not, unless they have hobbits. - E

9:37 - What about at least a Comedy/Musical category like the Globes?  It's criminal how many awesome comedy performances get completely ignored by the Academy, especially because Comedy is harder.  Boom, I said it.  It is.  Anybody who's acted in/directed both knows it.  Comedy is harder.

Speaking of movies people watch -

I have mixed feelings about Gwyneth.  The dress is pretty.  I loved her on Glee.  I think GOOP is weird and ever so privileged in its basic assumptions, but I have read the thing.  She's never been in a movie where I was like: that was a great performance.  She barely has chemistry with Robert Downey Jr, who has chemistry with potted plants.  Seriously, though, RDJ is awesome.  I even watch the Iron Man movies because I love watching him act. - E

9:33 - I think some type of Critics Choice award would be great.  But Oscar would never go for that.

David Oyelowe-"Now you like him!"  LOL!

I hate Gwyneth Paltrow, but her dress is pretty.

9:29 - Bwa-ha!  Butter Lamp.  

And while we're on this set of categories that only the more intrepid of Oscar devotees have managed to watch, I ask: do we need another award show - one for movies people actually watch - but not voted on as a popularity contest or a kiss-ass contest (people's choice, golden globes)?  I watched Critics' Choice this year, and I thought they had an interesting (new) award, for MVP - for an actor who was in a bunch of good movies in interesting parts in a year (Jessica Chastain won).  And I thought, well, if anybody should be qualified to give an award like that, it should be the critics, who have seen more movies than most of the Oscar voters.

9:26 - The Phone Call, really?  I haven't seen it, or any of the other nominees in this category, but they had the chance to select Bugaloo and Graham.  Just on the name alone, it should have been a shoo-in.  Runner-up?- Butter Lamp.

9:20 - LEGO Movie for the win.  Aren't you sad you snubbed them now, Academy snobs?  

First good commercial - Goldbergs and Ferris Bueller.  Sigh.  Charlie Sheen used to be so hot.  

BTW - for those who haven't multi-watched the Tonys opening I mentioned earlier...

9:18 - Harrison is still up for whatever reason, and he is clapping along to the "Everything is Awesome" song.  It should probably win Best Song, but my guess that will go to "Glory" from Selma, so some Oscar voters can  feel better about themselves, and use that to justify the other Selma snubs.  I'm also still butthurt from the Lego movie not even getting a best Animated Film nomination.  Total highway robbery.  A travesty! - M

9:12 - Botox is especially dumb for actors.  Go drunk Polish people!  I love that they stopped trying to play him out when he mentioned his late wife.  That was at least a nice thing.  Shirley Maclaine now looks a lot like Lily Tomlin - am I wrong?  She also kind of talks like her now.  That's weird.  I love me some shiny threads, though.  

This compounding of vastly-different films in one presentation for best pic is very strange.  I can't see how it's worth the time saved.  I would feel like the love story in The Theory of Everything was way more touching if I didn't know they then divorced.  (Spoiler Alert, I guess.)

Steve Carell makes everything he touches better. - E

9:09 - Nicole Kidman blathering about being human while looking like a robot.  The Botox must go.  I'm going to go with Wild Tales for Foreign Film, based on nothing.  And it goes to Ida.  Go Poland!

9:02 - Yeah that was a positively embarrassing version of Ring of Fire welcoming Reese on to the stage.  Noses are huge with the whole makeup design thing (which is to say, all it looks like Foxcatcher was up for was the nose on Steve Carell).  I can't say I'm a Wes Anderson fan, either.  So do we think impending director win bc of that wave, or the wave is because no director win?  Channing was wearing a lot of makeup.  Or maybe my TV is better than I think.  Who are these kids? Ah, 60-second films.  I'm sure they are all great, but it looks terribly like they cast them to hit every demographic. - E

9:00 -  Having see all of one of the movies that was nominated for Best Costume Design, I firmly believe that Maleficent was robbed y'all.  I love the Johnny Cash honky-tonk music that they play to introduce Reese Witherspoon.  

Guardians of the Galaxy for the win for Makeup y'all!  Damn.  I guess Grand Budapest will sweep all the technical awards.  I'm not a fan of Wes Anderson, so I'm not getting all the love.  Sigh.  It's going to be a long night. - M

8:55 - Yeah, you love a hate watch.  I guess I must, too (coughVanHelsingcough).  Hee.  The Dependent Spirit Awards.  The Revolution will be on YouTube.  And Vine.  It'll be seriously funny on Vine.  Please welcome Jennifer Lopez, and her boobs.  If it weren't for the plunging neckline and camouflaged color, I'd like that dress.  She is impossibly beautiful, though.  PS Chris Pine.  He's dreamy. - E

8:51- Dakota Johnson is a terrible reader off the telepromptor.  Not looking forward to seeing 50 Shades next Saturday if this is a reflection of her acting.  Who am I kidding?  I love a good hate watch!  This song is interminable.  Adam Levine sucks.  I did not call my dad.  My father is definitely not watching the Oscars. lol. -M

8:47 - Yeah, so JK told me to call my parents.  I did.  I even beat my brother to it.  #Winning.   

So I like Dakota Johnson's red dress.  Particularly because she's left her hair darker.  Adam Levine has a largely unpleasant voice.  There, I've said it. - E

8:44- NPH did a great job with his obligatory song and dance routine.  I can't see JK without thinking he's the rapist white supremacist from the tv show Oz.  Completely chilling.  Now I just think that character is now teaching jazz.  Great.  But he has his Oscar now, so congrats. - E

8:40 - NPH, give it up for getting the whiteness out there at the outset.  Everybody looks nervous for NPH.  Can't decide on these special effects.  Maybe more Lucas than Peter Jackson.  YAAAS!  Jack Black and Sondheim-ish.  It was an okay opening.  Cute.  I'm utterly spoiled by repeated watchings of his Tony openings.  You cannot beat his "Let's Make It Bigger" opening.  

Why does everybody love JK hitting that poor boy?  I love him from The Closer (yea, I am a girl who loves procedurals, sue me), but geez. Mandi's locked out and will tell me I'm wrong shortly. - E

8:27 - Michael Strahain is ever so awkward.  Just caught up on my Tivo, now LIVE and enjoying the stupid car commercial.  CANNOT WAIT FOR NPH.  Agree on Lupita.  She is just lovely and makes good, fun choices. Gaga, lord.  And why oh why did Emma Stone wear that yellow? - E

8:22 Lupita's dress is everything.  That is all.  Watching celebrities blather on about nothing in particular is excruciating.  But Lady Gaga looks more normal than I've ever seen her...still terrible, but more normal.  David Oyelowo in the red suit is ridiculous, but kudos to him for putting himself out there. - M

8:10pm - and I've already heard one interviewer specifically reference "Ask Her More."  Reese Witherspoon did an okay job talking about the idea and about her producing and acting work.  And FWIW, I loved her dress, too. - E

PS David Oyelowo in his red suit.  Give it up for a brave choice, and he looks good.

PPS Felicity Jones looks like a chandelier.  Which means somebody's gonna sing that song to her all night.

So Mandi and I like a good live-blog.  And we're thinking about live-blogging the Oscars.

In the meantime, some fun, Oscar-type reading...


  • Do you like a printable follow-along ballot? 

  • Wanna hear predictions?


First idea to watch for: will they "Ask Her More?"

1pm - I'm actually kind of shocked at how few of those "pretty dresses" from above were actually pretty.  So many ugly, ill-fitted, wrong-colored, very-dated choices.  I'm interested to know which ones people like.  I liked Audrey Hepburn's, and then a looong gap until Shirley Maclaine's in 1984, and then I actually kind of like Cher's craziness (and want to hunt down whomever chose Marlee Matlin's dress and Meryl Streep's sad maternity sack), Jodie Foster's suit in 1992 holds up pretty well, and then there's a lovely string from Reese Witherspoon, through Helen Mirren, Marion Cotillard, (skipping Kate Winslet) Sandra Bullock, Natalie Portman (that's a real maternity gown), and of course Cate Blanchett (who can do no wrong in my book, ever).  That's a lot of pale and beige-y dresses where I usually love color, but so many of the dresses/outfits were just the wrong color for the lady that maybe the beige-y and off-white things look best. - Emily


  1. It must be exhausting to be Gaga. Does she ever wear jeans and no make-up?

    1. Word. And much like Christina Aguilera, I always want to less stuff.

  2. Holy crap that was fun -- especially Jack Black as the "witch."

  3. Hahaha, someone stared down the hurry-up-and-finish-music!

    1. High time. Though hopefully everyone won't do that.

  4. Botox for actors is especially stupid! Who cares if you can no longer emote, as long as you can pretend to look younger, right?

    1. I mean, If it was good enough for Katherine Hepburn, it's good enough for all these silly ladies. Earn your age.

    2. Right! And seriously, we are never going to defeat the "women's value is in their youthful appearance" nonsense if women don't allow themselves to age.

  5. Ok, I had to make G's lunch so I'm only now watching "Everything is Awesome!" and the Academy sucks for not nominating them for animated picture.

  6. "What about at least a Comedy/Musical category like the Globes? It's criminal how many awesome comedy performances get completely ignored by the Academy, especially because Comedy is harder. Boom, I said it. It is. Anybody who's acted in/directed both knows it. Comedy is harder."

    That's a REALLY good idea. The Oscars are too caught up in Important Movies, so they miss out on a lot of fun and worthy stuff. Also, they play it safe -- Inoffensive, Non-Threatening Important Movies -- so they lose that way too.

    1. That's a good point, inoffensiveness is a big deal, too.

  7. Argh! Animation is a form, not a genre!

    1. Damnit! Sorry, I felt I had to amen you :-)

  8. So how do they determine the order of the in memoriam? Why don't they just do it in alphabetical order?

    Late to the Jolie/Saldana thing, but Jolie has a toughness to her attitude/personality that can overcome any physical spindliness (because she can be very skinny too sometimes).

  9. Lady Gaga being "normal." And she was still very mannered (but good singing). And aren't they way behind schedule?

    1. They've got to be. I can't figure out why, because they haven't had anything out of the ordinary time-wise.