It may not be saying all that much, but the ceremony proceeded without either patriotic posturing or, fortunately, an “Obama moment” of any kind. One suspects that the Occupy movement has had something of an impact on this social layer, at least to the extent Sunday night of restraining some of their most celebratory and self-congratulatory impulses. Most of those on stage managed to keep their narcissism under control.
Streep and Plummer were gracious as winners, as were Colin Firth, Sandra Bullock and Christian Bale as presenters, while Emma Stone was delightful. A mock 1939 focus group responding to The Wizard of Oz, with Christopher Guest, Fred Willard, Catherine O’Hara, Bob Balaban and Eugene Levy, was amusing.
Of course, no one, other than Farhadi, had a word to say about the situation in the US or the world, including the great question of social inequality. This central problem puts everything else in perspective.
There are many skilled individuals in the film industry, and many appealing personalities. As we’ve suggested many times before, that is not where the problem lies. The performers, technicians and crew members are generally more talented and remarkable than the material they are given to work with. Each year the choices in the best picture, best director and best screenplay categories tend to be the bleakest.
So there you go. And that's a better bit of coverage than what I offered. Again, I didn't watch. Life's too short for three hours of handing out awards for me. Sorry. And no one says anything of importance because they always get cut off. I did watch as a kid and they got to talk a little more and had some strong performances. But these days, the best songs don't even get nominated.
For example if Bruce Springsteen has a song in some movie, it'll get nominated. That includes that crappy song he had for "The Wrestler." It's not about talent.
I remember being really happy when Carly Simon won for "Let The River Run." That was a song I heard first not on radio but in church. Our choir director (I was in the youth choir) brought it in and it became one of our biggest crowd pleasers.
And it was this amazing song with these great lyrics and this marvelous melody. It was like nothing anyone else wrote. And it was a real thrill to see Carly win for it. And then I watched as Carly went up to get the award. I don't think I'd seen her before that. She had her hair short. And I think she wore a black and white striped outfit. And she thanked her then-husband and said something funny. I don't remember what but I thought she was really amazing.
Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"