81st Academy Awards

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Aside from just being (insert deep voice....) manly, my wonderfully comfortable recliner from Leather Creations (not a paid advertisement) is a regular author of unanticipated consequences.

It has been with me through good times (Clemson football) and bad times (Clemson football). It's seen the thrills of Cylon warfare, the humor and heartache of countless M*A*S*H reruns, the eccentricities of Jeremy Brett's Sherlock Holmes, the... Eh, you get the point. If my recliner happened to not be facing a flat panel TV, it would still beckon me, possibly to read a book, or, more likely, to take a nap. It's just that comfortable.

Though a few shows have caught my interest recently, I don't watch much TV, all things considered. I've been there and done plenty of that. And will again, I know. Last night, one of my weaknesses drew me to the screen, namely "The Amazing Race." It's been a favorite since it first aired, as interesting for the global travelogue as the trials and tribulations of couples expecting "good" to come from a steady dose of publicly televised stress. But then, it ended. What to do... what to do...

It's the recliner, you see.

A couple of clicks later, I'm watching the 81st Academy Awards, thankfully already in progress. I don't often watch the Academy Awards. That said, it's one of those broadcasts,like the movie "Midway" perhaps, where I just get sucked in.


Is it the sparkle of Anne Hathaway that keeps me watching? The challenge of picking out which actors are actually happy for their peer who won in theirannehathaway nominated category? Is it expecting the least but hoping for the best puns from the host and the presenters? A chance to pull for the underdog or a personal favorite in receiving an award? Perhaps a voyeurish and envious admiration for the celebrity life? Did I mention Anne Hathaway? Front row, too.

Years ago, when I watched this regularly, the results somehow mattered. I actually celebrated in some tiny part of me the success of the actors or movies which I liked, and I felt disappointed when they lost. That was then; this is now.

Wall-E should have won Best Picture!!! I mean, c'mon you bozos! It's so obvious! And it wasn't even nominated!

Well, maybe I haven't changed. Aside from who won or didn't win this, that, or the other, there were several things I did enjoy. First, I liked the glamour of the setting; the stage was elegant. I certainly wasn't watching to critique the staging; the thought just struck me repeatedly.


I also liked that the award winners could walk directly to the center stage without having to enter from the sides. It made the acceptance more immediate, and, perhaps, more intimate... not that it shortened the proceedings.

As for the people, well... Jack Black scored mightily with his comment about taking all the money from his voice-over work for Dreamworks' animations then betting it on Pixar to with the Oscar, this just prior to Wall-E winning for best animated movie. Very funny, and very gutsy with his previous employers in the house. This slightly edged what was a personal satisfaction at the assembly's snub of Bill Maher and his self-serving attempt at humor at those who believe in Something rather than Nothing.

Which is to say, I'm as picky and petty as anyone else watching these types of events.

As the evening wore on through one less relevant category after another, I was surprised but pleased at the segment where we pause to appreciate those who have contributed to cinematic art in some way who passed during the previous year. Paul Newman and Charlton Heston were obvious. The lesser known character actors were the ones that were more striking, like familiar acquaintances we won't see again.

If I were to watch this annually, I think that this portion alone would be a better signpost for the passing of time than a birthday, an anniversary, Christmas, or New Year's Eve. We relate to the roles played and the stories told, and, individually and cumulatively, there is definite sense of loss.

And as quickly, we move to the next category. Life goes on.

1 comment :

  1. Anne Hathaway is pretty darned beautiful.... must say....