1. The Host - I am a fan of Family Guy and of Seth MacFarlane, but as an Oscar host, I was a little worried. It was a surprising choice, for sure (especially after the Anne Hathaway/James Franco disaster - I thought that the Academy would stick to "boring" for at least a few years). The problem is that most of MacFarlane's jokes are crude and inappropriate, which is much better fit for, say... the MTV Awards. As the show started, I realized that it was actually a great choice - he is charming, he can sing, he has that old-school Hollywood presence to him; He pretty much embodied a younger, hipper Billy Crystal and guess what??? It wasn't very funny. There were some enjoyable moments, but for most of it, I couldn't even bear to crack a smile. He wasn't a bad host and I think he will likely be asked back. I just didn't see anything special about it.
2. The Show - Such an awkward show, if it weren't live I would blame the editor. It was just so all over the place. Nothing really worked 100%. The opening was far too long and way too much of William Shatner (no thank you.). There were cute moments like Charlize Theron and Channing Tatum dancing and of course, JGL being adorable, but those moments also confused me greatly. WHY? What does this have to do with the Oscars? The sock puppet version of Flight was probably the most relevant skit. The theme of the show was "musicals", which meant that we got treated to performances from great musicals of the past decade (all 3 of them). Just because one musical comes out (and might be good. I still haven't seen it.), doesn't mean it should be more celebrated than the other films. And I know I have a bad memory, but Dreamgirls and Chicago were not that long ago, why pay tribute to them now?? The only song that sounded good was the Les Mis song (Catherine Zeta-Jones lip-syncing was unacceptable and Jennifer Hudson can belt out those notes better than most, but I've seen her do it a hundred times. Can we move on now?). Then there was the "Bond tribute" which was lame. Why not do "Skyfall" after this tribute? Because that would make sense? I'm not a huge fan of that song, but Adele deserved better (whoever did the sound mixing during the performance should be fired). The show felt like it was on for 5 hours (was it?) and there was a huge chunk of time, where I forgot I was watching the Oscars.
3. The Presenters - It's hard to watch presenters bomb, which is why I think most people just stuck to the script. But man, Paul Rudd and Melissa McCarthy were so terrible. I could feel the audience cringing in pain. We all knew that Ted would make an appearance with Mark Wahlberg, but I was really impressed with the effects for that. I also enjoyed Wahlberg's "No B.S., it's a tie" (good job censoring yourself, Mark). No one else really sticks out in my mind, except Jennifer Garner and Jessica Chastain - now that is an inspired pairing (Sydney Bristow and Maya! Terrorists beware!!).
4. The Winners - Even though some of the people I was rooting for didn't win, I still can't really complain. I guess my biggest upset is Jennifer Lawrence (over Jessica Chastain). Lawrence was great in Silver Linings Playbook, but I don't feel like it was an Oscar-winning performance, while Chastain was sublime in Zero Dark Thirty. Speaking of sublime, Joaquin Phoenix in The Master is honestly, some of the best acting I've ever seen, ever. I would love to be angry about his loss, but when Daniel Day Lewis is the winner, I can't really complain (and how cool was Meryl Streep announcing it?? She didn't even pause for a second, causing speculation over whether she even opened the envelope.). I still haven't seen Lincoln, but if people say DDL deserved the Oscar, I have no reason to question that. I would have loved to see Benh Zeitlin win for directing the stunning Beasts of the Southern Wild, but Life of Pi was also a beautifully made film (not my cup of tea, but I appreciate the technicality of the film). We all know that the Director statue really went to Ben Affleck and I am happy that the producers of the film recognized that and let him speak (as the Director) when Argo won. I am incredibly happy that Argo won. While my favorite film of the year is Seven Psychopaths, I can't deny that Argo is definitely a better made film (I can think of a total of zero flaws). It's been a long time since I agreed with the Academy on Best Picture (since 2006, with The Departed). We also agreed on Supporting Actor (Waltz), Original Screenplay (Tarantino) and Animated Feature (Brave). The fact that I'm not even that upset over some of my favorites losing, just proves how great 2012 was for film.
5. The Speeches - Not only did Jennifer Lawrence fall, but she acknowledged that she fell and that is the only reason anyone stood up for her - causing anyone who wasn't already swooning for her, to now swoon for her. The only other speech really worth noting was Ben Affleck - he was speed talking (I would be too, considering Jaws was apparently attacking people for talking too long. Fucking hilarious. Inappropriate, mean-spirited and FUCKING HILARIOUS). Affleck's speech was reminiscent of his speech when he won for Good Will Hunting, which was one of my favorite Oscar moments ever. He seems like someone who is genuinely happy just to be making movies. I think we are going to see him up on that stage quite a bit, over the next few decades.
6. The Fashion - You know how little girls imagine what their wedding dresses will look like? Well, I never did that. I did, however, picture what I would wear to the Oscars. It is statistically more possible that I will attend the Oscars than get married (although, I've succumbed to the fact that I might be there as someones date. Wow. Did I really just write that? That's a pretty depressing statement and not like me at all. I seriously need to get out of this funk that I am in.). If I were to attend the Oscars, I would be fighting my conflicting instincts. My first instinct is that it is the Oscars and since I am someone who is interested in fashion, the dress needs to make a statement. My second instinct is that I hate being the center of attention, so I need to blend in. Quite a predicament, isn't it?? There weren't really too many exciting dresses on the red carpet. I think Jessica Chastain looked divine - I would probably crown her "best dressed". I always hate the wedding dress trend at these events (doesn't everyone realize how ugly wedding dresses are?), and Jennifer Lawrence takes the cake on that one (because she looks like she belongs on the top of a cake). I think the only dress on the red carpet that I would actually wear is the one that Stacy Keibler was wearing. It's modern, glamorous and sexy (and no cleavage!).