Tuesday, February 26, 2008


• All those awards for NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN, and it's the same movie the Coen brothers made 12 years ago, the one called FARGO. Meanwhile, a really human, great piece of filmmaking, ATONEMENT, barely gets a nod for original soundtrack.

• Did Marion Cotillard have a speech prepared at all? Why can't the non-English speaking contenders know enough to be ready with a few words? Or in her case, at least honor Piaf for inspiring the movie and her performance. "You rock my life" wasn't quite it.

• I'm definitely flat out of the loop. I didn't know who 75% of the presenters were.

• All the women were dressed in the best of taste, makeup and jewelry, head to toe. But they were all going strapless and looked like they were dressed by one person. The only women whose clothes told you something about themselves were Tilda Swinton and JUNO's writer Diablo Cody, a name obviously meant to be lived up to. Her outfit turned out to be by Dior. But Dior-on-acid compared to Cameron Diaz's baby-pink dream and demure Dior. Diablo took one for a moment in time, back to the old Cher appearances, when one could never guess what she'd turn up in. Diablo's coda as she was finally swept off the stage by emotion was a thanks to her family for loving her exactly the way she is. Boy, was I was jealous.

• The Best Song FALLING SLOWLY is made up of 4 notes. But I was bored even before the granola couple started. Folkies are back, if this couple is any example of it. Damn dressing for the occasion or even combing your hair. Do I sound like my parents now? Anyway, all the songs were dreary, even the one with a gospel beat. Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen, Jimmy McHugh, I could hear you all collectively turning in your graves.

• There's usually one real and poignant moment in the show every year. Tonight it was Javier Bardem, lapsing into Spanish and dedicating his award to his mother (in the audience) and family and to Spain. There was a third instance of winners thanking parents, Daniel Day Lewis and the composer of ATONEMENT did as well.

• Another moment came later when a 98 year old production designer received a special award and gave a slow, measured speech, which probably made for the only suspense in the whole evening. We're really too conditioned by too many soundbites these days to know how to deal with complete sentences.

• Julie Christy, the one bona-fide Star in the room, and all she did was seat in the audience. But maybe she declined participation. The red carpet man obviously didn't know his ass from his elbow and spent the12 second segment on Sara Polley, ignoring Julie Christy, looking pleasant and composed, like she was waiting to get a ride home after the interview was over.

• No Legends presenting or receiving tonight. No Loretta Young or Olivia de Havilland. I suspect, with a heavy heart, that there are none left. Well, there's always Cyd Charisse, and she still looks sensational. Good thing Debohra Kerr got her Oscar just in time.

• It would have been too much to expect that either Ruby Dee or Hal Holbrook would win. But these are the dark horses (no offense, Ruby) that sometimes come through when the vote between the usual suspects get split.

• Passe thought it may be in 2008, it was still a feel-good moment when Scott Rudin thanked his partner and called him "honey" in front of a billion people.

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