February 25, 2008

Thoughts on the Oscars

I watched the Oscars as I watch most things nowadays, using my TIVO. I start late, don't need to watch any of the boring stuff (including some of the awards) and don't watch any commercials.

From my perspective, the show was just as it always is, too long and too fawning, but it had some funny moments and I thought Jon Stewart did fine especially since he only had writers working with him for a little over a week.

It figures that a site about women and Hollywood would get both its predictions in the actress category wrong, but that's life. I'm still surprised that both Marion Cottilard and Tilda Swinton won. My rationale for Swinton is that the voters wanted to give something to Michael Clayton which was really the only studio film nominated so they gave it to Swinton. She's spectacular but I gotta say that she was even better in the much smaller Stephanie Daley so if you want to see this woman's range, rent that.

Regarding Marion Cottilard's win, I think that the Academy loves biopics where people transform themselves and this woman really went through the ringer for this role. I'm surprised that Julie Christie didn't win since she was, as has been said before, transcendent in Away from Her. Maybe the folks in the Academy don't like Christie because she won't play by the Hollywood rules. Too bad. Hers was the performance of the year.

Diablo Cody was truly overwhelmed by her win (and uncomfortable in a too high slitted dress that was hard for her to walk in) and dedicated her win to writers. I noticed that she wore flats (did anyone else see that?).

Two women did win best director last night -- Cynthia Wade and Vanessa Roth won for directing the documentary short, Freeheld. Freeheld is the story of a Laurel Hester's dying fight to give her police pension to her partner and the homophobia she encountered during her fight. I really need to see this one.

How cool was it that the song from Once beat out the Disney machine of Enchanted. It was even cooler that Marketa Irglova got to come back onstage after getting cut off and say her thanks. Classy moment.

Some fun lines:
Tilda Swinton to CNN:

That's what the professional actress who lives in the U.K. confessed to CNN reporters on the red carpet earlier today while describing her feelings about being at this event as "mellow," adding "Feels like being at a dog show."
Helen Mirren to Regis Philbin:
Unfortunately the roles are often not good enough for the women. But the roles for the men are always wonderful.

"Juno's" Diablo Cody corrected descriptions of her former job as "exotic dancer."

"I was not a dancer. I can't dance," she said, which leaves "stripper" as the correct job description. "If I had the money, I would pay off people in the journalism world to not mention it again."

OK Diablo, Women & Hollywood will never refer to you as a former stripper anymore. You are now officially and Oscar winning writer. How does that sound?