The Worst Academy Awards Show in History

Dear God, can I have that three hours of my life back?  Please. Pretty please?!  The 83rd Academy Awards has to be one of the worst Oscar shows in the history of the ceremonies.  It was boring.  It was tedious.  It was political.  It was classless.  It was gay.  It was sloppy.  It was awful.  Seriously, there was very little to write home about and if not for The King’s Speech, I might have poked my eyes out.


My first complaint was that the show was supposed to begin at 5:00 PM, yet there was thirty more minutes of pre-show.  Did ABC just successfully pull a bait and switch and get away with it?  Bad start in my humble opinion.  And a half hour later, the show begins.  Right out of the gate it peaked as the hosts, James Franco and Anne Hathaway, were cleverly inserted into a montage of the ten movies nominated for Best Motion Picture.  At one point, in amidst The King’s Speech, scene Ms. Hathaway is standing before a very large microphone from the 1940’s and utters, “I have good news from the future.  Microphones get smaller.”  Unfortunately, the entire sequence ended with a non-sequitur scene from Back to the Future.   After this, it was all downhill.

The great Academy Award hosts of the past – Bob Hope, Steve Martin and Billy Crystal – really entertained.  It didn’t matter if it was a monologue, a dance or some other number… they made you smile.  Franco and Hathaway, as talented and as likable as they are, completely bombed.  Franco looked as if he was stoned or as if he wasn’t able to get his contraband through security… he was stiff and pretty inexpressive.  I couldn’t tell if he was paranoid that people might see that he was on something, or if he was so nervous that he was paralyzed with fear.  Poor Hathaway overcompensated and the result was a lack of chemistry and entertainment.  Unfortunately, Franco and Hathaway did not entertain.

It took no longer than the second Academy Award being handed out for the show to get political.  Did some Hollywood elitist stand up and say that the United States should get out of the Mideast and stop the wars or call the President a liar?  Nope.  It was the winner of Best Cinematography, Wally Pfister for Inception, who made a point to thank his union, clearly referencing the politics currently happening in Wisconsin.  Backstage he went further, “I think that what is going on in Wisconsin is kind of madness right now.  I have been a union member for 30 years and what the union has given to me is security for my family. They have given me health care in a country that doesn’t provide health care and I think unions are a very important part of the middle class in America all we are trying to do is get a decent wage and have medical care.”  Whatever talents Pfister possesses in his eyes, he lacks in brains.

And then came the Best Supporting Actress.  The presenter was Kirk Douglas.  Yes, everybody loves Spartacus, I know.  But it was more painful and tedious watching the legendary actor present this award than it was watching Dick Clark do the countdown Dick Clarks New Year’s Rockin’ Eve on ABC last year.  Aside from his dramatic pauses during the reading of the winner in the category, he was coming on to Anne Hathaway as well as the Best Supporting Actress winner, Melissa Leo.  In fact, when Leo made it to the stage, she asked Douglas “What are you doing later?” If anyone had seen ever seen her Golden Globe acceptance speech (or any speech for that matter), they knew the “classiness” of the Awards show was about to fly out the window… and it did.  Not even one minute later, Leo began rambling and stated, “When I watched Kate (Winslet) two years ago it looked so much f—— easier.”  Nice.

Some of the more predictable wins came next.  We saw a Pixar film win Best Animated Feature, go figure.  And The Social Network win Best Adapted Screenplay and The King’s Speech win Best Original Screenplay.  No big surprises, except for the fact that this is where we found one of the best speeches of the evening.  The seventy-three year old writer of The King’s Speech, David Seidler, delivered an eloquent and engaging speech that started with, “My father always said to me, I would be a late bloomer,” and ended with, “on behalf of all the stutterers in the world: We have a voice and we have been heard.”

 

The highpoint didn’t last long as the audience was introduced to James Franco in drag fully equipped with a Charlie Sheen joke, “…I just got a text message from Charlie Sheen.”  While it garnered a laugh, no Sheen-Oscar joke was as funny as the one delivered the night before by the host of Talk Soup, Joel McHale, “The Oscars are this Sunday and I think it’s Charlie Sheen’s year… he might make it into this year’s ‘In Memoriam’ montage!”  Seriously, I would take Charlie Sheen in my death pool.  But the worst Academy Awards show ever forged on.

The next big moment came when the award for Best Supporting Actor was presented.  The winner was Christian Bale, a great actor known for verbally and physically assaulting co-workers and family members.  He made a point not to repeat the Melissa Leo’s foul language, but forgot his wife’s name in the process.


More predictable winners followed: The Social Network for Best Score, Inception for Best Sound Mixing and Best Sound Editing, and Alice in Wonderland for Best Costume Design.  Again, with the politics… Gary Rizzo, who won for sound-mixing on Inception, thanked “all the hard working boom operators and utility sound people that worked on the production crew. Union, of course.”  Fortunately, we got to quickly forget this nonsense by having the great pleasure of witnessing a really goofy looking white kid with an afro, Luke Matheny, win for Best Live-Action Short.  If you look at him up close, he kinda looks like Vinny Barbarino’s dorky little brother.  Good for him.

Too bad Matheny’s moment was short lived when the Hollywood Leftists, who just can’t help themselves, gave Inside Job a win in the category of Best Documentary.  The film was narrated by Matt Damon and was about global financial crisis of 2008.  The winner, Charles Ferguson, couldn’t help himself and began his acceptance speech by saying it was wrong that executives whose banks were bailed out by the U.S. government had not gone to jail. “Forgive me, I must start by pointing out that three years after our horrific financial crisis caused by financial fraud, not a single financial executive has gone to jail, and that’s wrong,” he said to major applause.  Naturally, the Obama zombies in the audience would applaud, they have no clue.  If they did have a clue, they would understand that this documentary gave a one-sided view of the crisis and completely ignored Clinton’s hand in the financial crisis which included the push for sub-prime lending, the birth of derivatives and the massive deregulation legislation he signed.

So, I was happy to be done with the Hollywood elitists elevating unions to sainthood status and demonizing CEOs and private financial institutions that lend money to “the working class.”  I knew that with the Best Documentary category over with, I would no longer need to be worried about being subjugated or indoctrinated by their Left wing perspective.  Right?  Then came Best Song.  No, it wasn’t the terrible auto-tune montage.  No, it wasn’t listening to Gwyneth Paltrow’s horrible singing.  No, it wasn’t being tortured by whatever that crap A.R. Rahman was producing.  Nope, it wasn’t any of this.  No, I had to look at Barack Obama tell me how he is a big fan of Oscar nominated music.  I almost vomited a little bit in my mouth.  Why in the last decade did they never invite President Bush to be a part of the Academy Awards?!

There were two other notable highlights before the presentation of the Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Motion Picture awards.  One was seeing Obama’s buddy, Jennifer Hudson, looking absolutely fantastic (shout out to Weight Watchers) and the other was watching Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law exhibit some extraordinary chemistry.

There were no other surprises from this point forward.  Natalie Portman won Best actress for Black Swan.  Colin Firth won Best Actor for The King’s Speech.  And The King’s Speech won for Best Motion Picture.  One of the producers had to thank his boyfriend Ben, which was a reminder of a half dozen terribly boring lesbian references and jokes throughout the show.  The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences were really off.  This was Ellen’s year to host and they blew it with Franco and Hathaway.


If not for all the talented Brits that won tonight, and there were many, and if not for The King’s Speech doing well with four major Oscars, I would’ve had to poke my eyes out.  Seriously, this had to be the worst Academy Awards show in history.

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18 Responses to "The Worst Academy Awards Show in History"

  1. getyourfactsstraight · Edit

    Christian Bale was never accused of physically assaulting his sister and mother. He got into a heated argument with them and was arrested for verbal assault. The charges were later dropped. Also, he didn’t forget his wife’s name. If you watch any of his previous acceptance speeches, you’ll notice that he doesn’t use the name of his spouse or daughter when mentioning them. His pause was due to being choked up.

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  2. There are multiple problems with the Oscars:
    1. After so many award shows leading up to the Academy Awards, there is little to no suspense left about who will win. Why Watch the Oscars?
    2. This was the first Academy Awards I watched in years because I had tired of so much left leaning political speech in the past. Besides all the lesbian comments, this show wasn’t as political as in the past. Some might still not be watching in expectation of too much political content.
    3. Reduce the best picture nominees back to five.
    4. The show has little coherence. It needs a thematic element. I am nostalgic and usually want to see the part of the show recognizing those who passed on during the recent year. Even though Celine Dion has a lovely voice, there was no introduction to this section of the show. She started singing and down came the screen showing the deceased. Lena Horne got a quick nod. The segment was ackward.
    5. The best song category is generally horrible. Can’t the category be dropped to save time and the TV audience from lousy music?
    6. Give context to some of the categories. I remember in the past, the costume award was given more time with sketches, etc. I found these segments interesting.
    7. Maybe the thematic element could be each year showcase a more technical award. Focus on visual production, sound, or costumes. Educate the audience then maybe we would care about some of these awards.
    8. Not to be unkind, but most of us don’t give a rat’s behind about the short live action or animated categories, the documentary categories, or the foreign language films. Gives these awards at a different time/place with an audience that cares. Use the extra time to deal with items 6 and 7.

    Cancel the other award shows like the SAG, Golden Globes and maybe more people will care about the Academy Awards. Saturation of award shows kills the excitement for the Oscars. Kill the segments of which the general TV audience really has no interest and use the time explain the other awards. This might help to make the Oscars interesting even if the host is lack luster.

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  3. It didn’t seem as overtly political (in re snide remarks in acceptance speeches)but the bias not surprisingly still was evident – Waiting For Superman not even nominated for best documentary?

    Can’t upset the teacher’s unions.

    When they replayed Bob Hope as host it was a mistake – for reminding us what entertainment he gave – with class.

    I was disappointed True Grit didn’t get anything and Hailey Steinfeld – what a first time performance! – but overall I would say it wasn’t the worst Academy show – but not for the hosting but decent content – F Bombs and all – so many of the Hollywood “stars” these days don’t have the class or allure or mystery (?) – because of the old Studio system? – but I enjoyed it.

    But then I didn’t watch the “pre-show”.

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  4. The main reason why the Oscars is irrelevant now is it’s whole power was the Collective Experience. It was never really that interesting of a show (the only past Oscar moments I can remember is when Jack Palance did those impromptu push ups and one from the 50s where one of the losers thought her name was called and started to walk up. BFD) or that relevant to anyone’s lives. It’s just that EVERYONE watched it and most people had seen most of the movies. Now neither is true. Mainstream Media is trying desperatly to keep these awards shows relevant to help ‘feed the machine’ but its just not going to happen. Too many other entertainment sources and tastes are becoming too diverse.

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  5. I believe that in 5 years the oscars will no longer be televised. it might be a pay per view for the die hards who need to see it, but network will drop it. One of the reasons for the decline has been the loss of star power and mystique. With a 24 hour news cycle, internet, endless talk shows, twitter, and political messages, we are overloaded, and dont like or care for “stars” anymore..We know too much about them, there is no glamour, and no aura.. and that is what Hollywood was built on..it is dead.. good riddance.. the oscars are dead..

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  6. I like Tim’s work!

    I’m mostly a fan of old Hollywood. Sad but not surprising that the only time I laughed during this year’s broadcast was from a clip (60 years old) — Bob Hope, “It’s Academy Awards night. Or, as it’s referred to in my house: Passover.”

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  7. Anonymous: Some thoughts on the “Worst Academy Awards Show in History.”

    What a wonderful respite, a small window into humanities soul. It took the Hollywood artifacts of our culture to expose the current condition of the “American Dream” with a riot, a boycott or a demonstration happening here and around the world, very prominent during WWI and WWII. It was that marvelous tool best represented by the Walt Disney philosophy of distraction, entertainment, all efforts with a message, some more profound, in very difficult, local, national and global times.

    The popularity of this blog “the Worst Academy Awards Show in History” says many things. It speaks to the unpleasantness around us all, with its staged distractions, representative of a privileged and blessed group, a group hardly suffering anything, being more “important” than world unrest and conflict. There were minor incidents of misdirected passion, rambling nothingness and even something worthy of our attention. Throw in Charlie Sheen and one can have a lot of fun or a wake. He needs our serious prayers. You make the call.

    It speaks, with its’ pomp, circumstance, spectacle and ceremony to the exceptionalism of principled capitalism. One wanted more for the documentary “Waiting for Superman” but the “truth begets hatred”.

    This would be the time to remind unions, and unprincipled capitalism, that any unreasonableness and unwillingness to engage in shared pain and sacrifice, and to address “parity” between the private sector, who pay the bills, create the jobs, and the public unions is problematic, will rip at the fabric of our nation. The “I’ve got mine” never works out well.

    In today’s hostile climate for capitalism one wonders if Hollywood, Intel, the San Pedro docks, Microsoft or Apple would ever have been born. These companies today are a few of the remaining pillars of prosperity in California as it struggles to recover solvency, at a time when companies are leaving California in droves. Will Hollywood be next? Most production fled along time ago.

    The unintended, or maybe intended consequences of this blog, was a comment on an escape of fantasy, it was welcomed…always in difficult times. It that respect the Oscars are always the “best.”

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