There wasn’t too much negative to say about the show. While ABC’s Red Carpet show was pretty lackluster, E!’s garnered one of the best moments in recent Oscar Red Carpet history. Sacha Baron Cohen did, in fact, show up as The Dictator, carrying an urn containing Kim Jong-Il’s “remains.” When Ryan Seacrest stopped him on the red carpet, The Dictator explained what he was carrying. He then “accidentally” spilled the “ashes” all over Mr. Seacrest’s tux. Scripted? No? I’m going with no.
Here are a few other thoughts on the show as a whole:
- Billy Crystal killed it. Remember the duo of Hathaway and Franco last year? It was horrid! Admittedly, anything Billy Crystal did would have been better, but he really upped his game for this one. The opening montage was a bit all over the place at times, but his musical montage was great and he was zinging one-liners all night. Here’s hoping they can get him back next year.
- Chris Rock is still pretty funny. His rant on how easy voice work in animation is compared to the actual production: “I go in a booth and I go, ‘What’s the line?’ And the guy goes, ‘It’s time to go to the store.’ And then I go, ‘It’s time to go to the store!’ Oh, you liked that? Oh, ok well, what’s the next line? And he goes, ‘It’s getting dark outside.’ – ‘It’s gettin’ dark outside!’ And then they give me a million dollars!”
- It was Jean Dujardin who left as the biggest winner and most charming person of the night. He was clearly nervous in his acceptance speech, and admitted after the show to dropping the French f-bomb near the end of it. Couple that with the best red carpet quote of the night and you have yourself one fantastic man. When asked what his favorite things about America are, Dujardin said: 1) turning right at a red light, and 2) the cinnamon rolls. Can’t argue with that.
- Octavia Spencer’s win for Best Supporting Actress made for the most moving moment of the night. After drawing a standing ovation from her peers, she was at a loss for words and visibly broke down shortly after stepping onto the Oscar stage. That’s what these awards are about: recognition where recognition is due, and Octavia’s performance certainly merited her recognition.
- Speaking of the supporting categories, Jessica Chastain (The Help) and Jonah Hill (Moneyball) each brought some support along with them to the show. Chastain brought her grandma, or “Nana” as Ryan Seacrest called her, on the red carpet with her. They were followed shortly after by Hill and his mom.
- One last nugget in the acting categories and I’m done. At 82 years old, Christopher Plummer (Beginners) became the oldest actor to ever win an Oscar. After making his way to the stage, Plummer remarked, while looking at Oscar, “You are only two years older than me, darling. Where have you been all my life?” He also mentioned on the red carpet — jokingly, perhaps, but I’m not so sure — that if he won and didn’t receive a standing ovation, he would demand one. He didn’t have to.
- The Cirque du Soleil performance was a nice touch, pretty cool indeed. But they described it as a trip to the movies — and that was far different from any movie I’ve ever seen. I shall forever be disappointed.
- It was an interesting year in the Best Original Song category. There were only two nominees, and even more odd than that, there were no performances. I was ready to watch Jason Segel and the Muppets belting out “Man or Muppet” on stage! Oh well, I guess.
- On that note, did anybody see Jason Segel while Bret McKenzie was giving his speech for Best Original Song? He was like a little kid in a candy store, grinning the entire time and holding his hands together ready to clap his arms off. After watching that, I would have been even more excited to see him perform up on stage.
- Woody Allen was absent, yet again, from an Oscars ceremony. He has only attended the Oscars once, following 9/11 in 2002, to urge filmmakers to continue shooting movies in New York.
- Every year, the producers cut to someone for reaction shots. In the past it has been Jack Nicholson or George Clooney. This year, they chose Martin Scorsese. I’m not sure if this was because they thought he would provide good reactions or because they knew he’d have a big night. Either way, it provided for some entertainment! Good to see Marty getting some face time.
- While we’re on Marty, how about Rose Byrne and Melissa McCarthy from Bridesmaids continuing the Scorsese drinking game that they presented to us at the SAG Awards? Classic!
- One last note, this from the “In Memoriam” segment, which I thought was very classy and well done this year. Those closing photos and videos of Elizabeth Taylor make you realize how stunningly beautiful she was before all that surgery.