Sunday, February 22, 2015

Oscar Notes, Past & Present

It's Oscar Sunday.  I've seen all the Oscar nominees for Best Picture.  All except one, that is.  I'm still trying to get through BOYHOOD.  Or, as I call it, 12 YEARS A CAUCASIAN.  If this movie had been shot in one year, like most movies usually are, would it have received all those Oscar nominations?                                
A half hour into it, when I saw white kids playing golf, I said "Lord, help me, Jesus.  And there are two more hours of this?"  Part of me still feels that Boyhood got the Oscar attention that Richard Linklater's 2011 film, Bernie, should've gotten but didn't.  Jack Black should've been up for Best Actor and Shirley MacLaine should've been up for Best Supporting Actress.
Tonight, we'll see how the Academy feels about Boyhood.  And another thing -- Patricia Arquette is the lead female character in Boyhood.  How the heck did she get nominated for Best Supporting Actress?  She's the mother.  Who is she supporting?  To me, the daughter is the supporting character. The mom is the main woman.
The only time the Oscar ceremonies telecast was ever postponed until a later day was in 1968, out of respect for the assassination and funeral of civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King.  America was in mourning.  King was killed in early April, the time when the Oscars were usually presented.  This year, there's controversy over the Academy's lack of racial diversity.  This friction arose when the widely acclaimed SELMA got only two Oscar nominations -- for Best Picture and Best Song.  Nothing for actor David Oyelowo who gave a brilliant, compelling performance as Dr. Martin Luther King and no nomination for director Ava DuVernay.  I think Hollywood will try to smooth things out tonight by giving the song performance a standing ovation and/or giving a standing ovation to actor David Oyelowo when he takes the stage as a presenter.

Other than that, I would not be surprised if Clint Eastwood's AMERICAN SNIPER pulls off a sort of Grace Kelly over Judy Garland/Crash over Brokeback Mountain surprise victory.  I would've given the Oscars to Judy Garland (for A Star Is Born) and Brokeback Mountain.  But that's just me.

To get you in the mood for Hollywood Prom Night, here are some short clips with Oscar recipients.  Kirk Douglas received a special 1996 Academy Award.  His son, Michael, was Best Actor for 1987's Wall Street.  His first Oscar came for producing One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, Best Picture of 1975. The legendary star of Spartacus, Lust for Life, Paths of Glory, Ace in the Hole and The Bad and The Beautiful was my sole guest on the premiere edition of my VH1 talk show.  Here, we chatted about his Oscar-winning son.
Michael Caine had won a 1986 Best Supporting Actor Oscar for Woody Allen's Hannah and Her Sisters when he was on my show.  He'd win another for 1999's The Cider House Rules.  He made his screen debut in 1964's Zulu, a historical war epic.  The producer, Joseph E. Levine, told young Michael Caine that he'd never be a star.
Shirley MacLaine won her Best Actress Oscar for 1983's Terms of Endearment.  The film also won the Best Picture Oscar.  The director, James L. Brooks, threw the actress a curve ball the night before principal shooting began.  She told me about that on VH1.

Cameron Crowe won the Best Original Screenplay Oscar for his wonderful 2000 film, Almost Famous.  He interviewed and was greatly influenced by famed director/writer Billy Wilder.  Crowe told me that he wanted Kate Hudson's Penny Lane character in Almost Famous to have an endearing quality like Shirley MacLaine's Fran Kubelik in Billy Wilder's The Apartment.

In a special 2000 hour interview, Crowe talked about his movie and his mentor.
Thanks for letting me take you down memory lane with a few Oscar owners.  Have fun watching the big show tonight.  If you're having an Oscar pool and need to print out lists of nominees, go here:

1 comment:

  1. Glad somebody else feels about BOYHOOD as I do !


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