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Sunday, February 24, 2008

Oscar's Craptacular Night - A Preview

It's that time of year again, when the glamourous glitterati of high society Hollywood gather together at the Kodak Theatre and rub their wealth and success in the noses of the humdrum moviegoer, by giving one another awards for what is, at best, mediocre cinematic work that would make Kurosawa, Welles, and a dozen other world-class filmmakers shrug their shoulders and pour another glass of Paul Masson.

Add to that the overproduced, underimaginative show that is the Academy Awards, and you can easily imagine an early nap this evening... one that either preempts or is precipitated by the big Oscar programme.

Why do we watch then? Well, normally, we watch in order to make fun of the whole enterprise, live and in real time. However, since Blogger is still set up, so far as we know (because the Blogger Tech Support has yet to answer the help desk request from last year's Oscar blog, the careless simpeltons) to not allow the kind of repeated short term blogging that would let us continue this tradition, we're not doing a live Oscar blog this year. This breaks a three year tradition. Thanks, Blogger!

So, the reasons we watch and you watch are more or less the same: To see what ridiculous things the celebrities and celebrity press will do. The one exception to this rule is for those of you who are seriously interested in what certain people wear to the event, and even then, for 80% of this audience, "ridiculous" is still part of the bargain.

Fortunately, Hollywood loves to repeat itself, even at the awards shows. So, even though we're not doing a live blog tonight, you can still recreate the experience! Simply print out a list of the following lines and then read them out at appropriate times during the red carpet programme and the awards show. It's almost as though we were there with you during the programme! This way you get the live blog experience, and we get to sleep ...erm, watch the programme like normal people for a change.

So, here are the things we expect to see (again) at this year's Oscars. Enjoy!:


  • Can the red carpet reporters just save everyone a little time and physically kiss the arses of the celebrities they're interviewing? This way, we avoid all the inane chat, and the more prurient among us get to see a little tail.

  • Is it me or does the Oscar Red Carpet programme feel like an episode of "The Next Big 'E!' Star?" It's all the people who are too crass and servile to actually qualify for E! What B-movie audition line did they have to raid to find this lot, anyway?

  • They invited Jon Stewart back? I thought they said his hosting stint was predictable, tentative, and lacking energy? Oh, that's right. Those are all pluses for this programme.

  • My, Jon Stewart's looking old. Oh, wait... that's Oprah. Looking good, hon!

  • Sometimes I wonder if Jack Nicholson's smile isn't just botoxed on? I mean, he could be asleep or even dead underneath the sunglasses and so long as someone nudged him to make it look like he was laughing, we'd never know.

  • Quiet, the annual self-righteous George Clooney acceptance speech is about to begin! Pass the limoncellos and earplugs!

  • Is it true that Michael Moore is nominated for Best Documentary each year, not simply because the Academy members love his politics, but because he makes the other Documentary nominees look glamourous by comparison?

  • And now it's time for "Best Sound Editing," also known as the "Refrigerator and Loo Expedition Award, " because that's where everyone will be whist the winner is given their speech.

  • Just once, I wish one of the small category winners would chuck their Oscar at the conductor right after he starts to play them off stage.

  • Is this the dead film star montage? No, false alarm! It's just a montage of a century of dentistry in film. I haven't seen this much expensive porcelain since the lavatory at Shoji Tabuchi's.

  • There's Clint Eastwood, packing heat as usual. No, I meant guns, why do you ask?

  • While I miss, "and the winner is," I must say that "and the Oscar goes to," is much more accurate. It's like saying, "Here you go, you lucky bastard. It's not like you actually deserve this." I must say, the candor is bracing.

  • Sean Penn looks angry tonight. It's nice to know some things never change.

  • OK. this is the montage of film stiffs, right? Nope, just a montage of Hollywood in Education: Three Sidney Poitier films, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, The Breakfast Club, and Ferris Bueller's Day Off

  • Was that Beyonce' lining up to do an Oscar nominated song? Just make her the bloody host and be done with it.

  • Oops! Susan Saradon tried to give the "peace" sign and got the hand backwards. Bet the British tabloids are loving that one.

  • That last musical number was a show stopper! No, I mean this thing won't end before midnight, now.

  • Now it's time for "Best Animated Short", or as they call it in Toronto, "Canada's last chance."

  • The montage of dead film types this time? Nope, it's just a montage of Billy Crystal's Oscar opening numbers. Why, oh why didn't they start the programme with this?

  • I just read Sir Ian McKellen's lips. He said, "Enough of this boring old tripe! Can we just get to the s***ing Wolfgang Puck buffet?"

  • I'm telling you for the last time, the Coen Brothers are NOT Siamese twins! They're just extremely close.

  • If you're ever at the big Oscar programme, here's a little thing to try. When the Best Foreign Language Film award comes up, start applauding and shouting, "I loved those films! Who saw them? Show of hands!" The advantage of this gag is that the only people who saw them probably can't understand a word you're saying.

  • I thought it was great when The Dirty Dozen won "Best Make Up." The rouge job on Lee Marvin and John Cassavettes was world-class.

  • Enchanted's got three song nominations? What's the over under that the kid from August Rush can beat the crap out of Enchanted's songwriter?

  • Now, for the most dramatic and spine-tingling part of the evening! They're about to explain how the Oscar voting procedure worked.

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