But it’s more than just my inability to hear the show that’s got me a little bleary this morning. The gals at Go Fug Yourself have identified what I wasn’t able to put into words – The Clooney Coma. So please forgive anything that I’m missing in this recap, and just blame it on George.
- Jon Stewart – Like I said, you can’t hear squat during the party because everyone’s so loud, but what I heard I thought was really funny – his ad-libs in particular were great. In the post-Oscar chit-chat (it’s remarkable that they do “post-game analysis” of an awards show, as if the award winners are going to watch video of themselves over and over so they can get it right next time) some were comparing him to Johnny Carson, which I thought was remarkably apt. He seemed completely unfazed by the whole thing (I thought even his opening monologue was good), as if he weren’t nervous at all, as if he was meant to be there. I hope he gets invited back.
- George Clooney – I wanted him to win something just to get him in front of a microphone. In addition to being unsettlingly handsome, he’s also smart, funny and witty – a deadly combination. In a post-show interview, his publicist was standing behind him talking on the phone, and Clooney said, “He’s been on the phone constantly since I won – he’s going to get more tail from my Oscar than I am.” Self-deprecating humor from someone that good-looking is, somehow, even more charming. I realize that’s completely unfair for all men who aren’t George Clooney, but the same thing applies for all women who aren’t Rachel Weisz. I fail to understand why Clooney is still single. He’s got a house in Italy, for crying out loud, as if he needed any more selling points.
- Three Six Mafia – When they won, they looked less like rappers and more like kids in a candy store – which is what the damned thing should be about, really. Stewart had it right when he said, “Now, that’s how you accept an Oscar!” They were so excited, so over-the-moon, that I smiled in spite of myself (and in spite of my desire to see Dolly Parton win an Oscar). Their acceptance was a direct antithesis to Reese Witherspoon’s, which sounded scripted, rehearsed, and downright smarmy. (I still can’t believe she actually said, “I didn’t expect to be here” – I mean, really, Reese... You can’t get away with the “I had no idea I was the favorite” baloney. You’re cute and you’re a good actress – you don’t need the “aw shucks” thing on top of it. But I digress.)
- Larry McMurtry – Wearing jeans? To the Oscars? I love this guy.
- Felicity Huffman didn’t get an Oscar – I thought Witherspoon was good in “Walk the Line,” but Huffman was better in “Transamerica.” Much, much better. At the other award shows when she’s won, she’s been an absolute joy in the acceptance speech category, too. At the Independent Spirit Awards, she told the story of a light that went out during a critical scene, and a key grip who fixed it when a replacement bulb couldn’t be found. As he fixed the light he apparently muttered, “This fucking movie better fucking win some fucking awards, because it’s a fucking pain in the ass!” And then she said, “Well, here’s a fucking award!” She’s adorable, gleeful, and she deserved that fucking Oscar.
- David Strathairn couldn’t also win an Oscar – I love Philip Seymour Hoffman and thought he was sublime as Capote, and yet I feel badly that Strathairn’s movie couldn’t have come out in a different year. I feel like he would’ve been a lock if not for Hoffman. Not that getting second place is much of a consolation to not winning an Oscar, but I’d be curious to know the actual voting results in numbers, to see whose year it could have been.
- “The Constant Gardener” being largely forgotten – “The Constant Gardener” was a much better film than “Crash,” and should have been at least been nominated for Best Picture. Weisz’s Best Supporting Actress nomination and award almost seem like a token gesture. I hope that at least with her Oscar more people will decide to rent the film.
- “Paradise Now” not winning Best Foreign Film – I’ve not seen it (or any of the foreign film nominees), but I was sort of hoping it’d win just to see the chaos that would ensue afterwards – not just in the post-show chatter, but in the media later.
- “Crash” was not the year’s Best Picture – It was an interesting movie, a thought-provoking movie, but it was not the year’s best movie. Period. A friend of mine said, “Crash wasn’t terrible but was probably the fifth best picture in the category.” Well, fifth-best ain’t best. At least not in the real world. I was hoping “Capote” might win, knowing it wouldn’t, but “Crash?” Really, now, people. Giving it the Best Picture Oscar doesn’t eliminate racial tensions in Los Angeles, let alone the rest of the world, even if it makes you feel a little better about things.