I’d like to spank the Academy, redux

Random thoughts on the Oscars, in the style of a 2006 post.

1. So glad The Curious Case of Bradjamin Pitton flopped! I’m no Pitt-basher, but all his best work in this movie was done by the makeup department. Seriously, his facial expression never changed in the entire 5 hours and 27 minutes of the film. He showed much greater emotional range as that half-wit, porcupine-haired trainer in Burn After Reading.



2. Why does Mickey Rourke always have one hand down his pants? Is he checking to ensure his spleen is still intact after all those wrestling stunts?


3.  A great debate is raging in Britain about whether Kate Winslet is an embarrassment to her countrypeople, what with all those emotional outbursts she keeps having at various awards shows. The Brits are cringing, as if being forced to relive their national Di-funeral weepfest over and over. Meanwhile, she’s so darn pretty I can’t imagine who cares what she does up at the podium. Perspective, please.


4. Slumdog kids fly to America, dance on red carpet, reveal most fascinating movie secret of the year: SPOILER ALERT! For the outhouse scene, the kid who played little Jamal fell into a giant pool of CHOCOLATE!

Jai ho!


5. Hugh Jackman = one sexy wolverine. Even though I’d rather have seen Tina Fey and Steve Martin co-host.


6. Best moment of the night = Ben Stiller channeling Joaquin Phoenix channeling his inner hip-hop artist. Or was he supposed to be Sheikh Omar? Okay, it went on a little too long, but so does the whole damn show. Symmetry.



7. Where is G-Lock? Can we get G-Lock in the house for some Oscars commentary?

8. Once again, I went to the grocery store just before the show started, only to get trapped behind hordes of shoppers buying deli platters. I will never learn.

9. Jerry Lewis is an old homophobe. But he has helped a lot of kids, admittedly.

10. Number 10 Downing Street, call your office. Kate Winslet is on the line.

11. That’s what time it is now, as I’m finishing this post. Time for sleep.

12. Just trying to get to 14, here, to match the original post.

13. Nothing to see here. Move along.

14. I’d like to thank Mickey Rourke’s dogs.

21 responses to “I’d like to spank the Academy, redux”

  1. Jane says:

    The Tina Fey/Steve Martin presentations were the best by far.

  2. I didn’t watch the whole show because I was feeling sick, and had to go to bed midway through. But I loved the Steve Martin/Tina Fey thing too; and the acceptance speech by the Man on Wire producers with that guy doing the magic trick? That made my day. (Hopefully I am remembering correctly that the guy who did the magic trick was a producer of Man on WIre.)

  3. Also, I can’t see how Benjamin Button flopped — it won all the awards for which it was a serious contender. Awful movie, to be sure, but it’s nominations for Picture, Actor, Director were just a joke, right? My big beef with the Academy is that Marisa Tomei did not receive best Actress in a supporting role — she was just magnificent. I mean I like Cruz, she was great in VCB but on a much less impressive level of “great” to what Tomei did in the Wrestler.

  4. j-man says:

    Parrish, you a funny lady. More please!

  5. Dave says:

    I didn’t see the show, but I saw a few clips on TV at the gym. The magic trick, if it was the vanishing of the coin or whatever, was by none other than Philippe Petit, the Man on Wire himself. I loved that movie, but agree with Yglesias that Encounters at the End of the World was a better doc.

    That controversy about Kate Winslet is hilarious. I saw her chatting with Oprah yesterday — she’s fully Americanized, I guess.

  6. none other than Philippe Petit, the Man on Wire himself

    OK, so I was definitely nearly asleep by that time — having the object disappear startled me out of my stupor a bit, then I realized I needed to go to bed. I liked Encounters a lot, did not (but ought to) see Man on Wire, can’t really cast judgement here.

  7. G-Lock says:

    Thanks, Lisa, for awakening me from my stupor!

    Even though our cable was on the fritz the entire broadcast (stuttering, sputtering, and digitizing), we were troupers and, of course, sat through the whole thing, enrapt.

    The grouch in me needs to just let this out first and foremost: “Slumdog” is hideously overrated and the latest in a line of recent Best Picture winners (beginning with “Million Dollar Baby”) that will be looked back upon as merely meh in hindsight. (“Crash”, “The Departed”, and “No Country For Old Men” [over “There Will Be Blood”, mind you!] were the others.) “Slumdog” was a great concept on paper but the cliches came fast and furious by the end. The thing had plotholes big enough for a semi to drive through! That being said, the performances were great, Danny Boyle deserved that hardware, and … and … the music was cool? The film was a shoo-in, so there was no shock per se at the ceremony. Once Sean Penn beat Mickey Rourke (phew!), I didn’t care anymore about the “big” award; “Slumdog” was a lock.

    I felt gratified during the ceremony very early on, with Dustin Lance Black’s acceptance speech for Best Original Screenplay. (No, apparently Hugh Jackman singing the opening was not gay enough for my tastes.) I needed to hear Mr. Black’s empowering words. Thank God tens of millions of Americans – and plenty of Californians – got to hear his message about love, religious intolerance, and equal protection. (Sean Penn’s book-ending chastisement for Prop 8 was icing on the gay wedding cake.) “Milk” may not have won Best Picture – though I genuinely feel it deserved it absent “Doubt” as a contender – but those two wins and the resultant messages from the podium were egregiously satisfying.

    I am a HUGE Meryl Streep fan, but Kate Winslet can do no wrong and “The Reader” was a strong movie versus the strained, flawed “Revolutionary Road”. Kate did not deserve a nomination for her forced American accent in the latter; the Academy actually got it right by bumping her submitted nomination from Supporting to Lead for the former. Glad Kate pulled it out on her sixth go at the Oscars. By all accounts in the industry and otherwise, she is awesome.

    As for Heath Ledger, don’t get me started on “The Dark Knight”….

    The rest of the awards were okay, if not exactly earth-shattering. I liked the vaguely creepy indoctrination of the newest acting nominees by past winners. I did not like Beyonce mangling “Grease” or any of the other “classic” movie musical selections on which she and Hugh and the teeny-boppers decided to take a collective poo. I liked Queen Latifah gracefully singing over the “In Memoriam” montage (and mercifully over the appurtenant applause. Always with that rude applause!). I did not like Ben Stiller’s overlong Joaquin Phoenix impersonation that spilled into and stole the thunder from the award for achievement in cinematography.

    And, seriously, Tina Fey should be host next year.

  8. My feelings about Best Picture: why the hell was WALL E not in the running. Seriously: Waltz With Bashir ought to have been Best Animated Feature (and it was not even nominated???? And Kung Fucking Panda was???) and WALL E should have been Best Picture.

  9. LP says:

    Ooh, I love a man who spells both “troupers” and “shoo-in” correctly.

  10. Natasha says:

    Hey, TMK, back off the Panda, he and I do Kung Fu! :)

    #7 G-Lock, that was one cute and grumpy comment, but I disagree with you about Mickey. He was pretty humble about his nomination and said that he was happy just to be working again. I don’t think he was expecting to win. It’s neat that he was nominated though.

  11. G-Lock says:

    Natasha, “The Wrestler” was a decent movie. Marisa Tomei and her pert little breasts, especially, knocked it out of the park. I did, however, like the movie better when it was called “Rocky”. (Ohhhhhh, snap!) Actually, Mickey was great. He deserved a lot of the critical acclaim he got.

    But Sean Penn was a revelation. He dissolved into that role; Mickey was that role, a la Courtney Love in “Larry Flynt” or Madonna in “Evita”. Not acting as much as living out their lives on film.

  12. PB says:

    We need a gown report:
    Alicia Keys pink origami thing – lovely!
    Kate W – too complicated – one side matron, one side whore.
    Meryl (love you!) – pretty and sexy swoop on top, ug ug on bottom.
    Natalie Portman – perfect.
    Tina – can she do no wrong? Elegant and yes, I have curves and am proud.
    Queen Latifa – nice color.
    Tilda – You know I would run away with you in a hearbeat – but my unrequited love, you need a stylist.
    Amy Adams – please, what is up with that painted pasta from summer camp necklace?
    I watched this year with five 15 yr olds – they had seen most of the movies, were rooting for Slumdog – but we got some major squeals for Edward Cullen. From me.

  13. Dave says:

    It must also be said that this post is another triumph of Parrish photo-editing.

  14. LT says:

    I liked Jennifer Aniston’s hair.

  15. lane says:

    #9 but what about his use of “egregiously” . . . hmmm . . .

    (ok ok, i too give it up for “shoo-in” and “troupers”, i’d never really thought about it, and now i know.)

    and what would we expect coming from one in “the industry” (it kills me how “entertainment people” use that phrase, like it’s . . . “rocket science” or something.)

  16. Hey speaking of TV happenings, anybody watching the Top Chef finale?

  17. G-Lock says:

    Lane, FYI, “egregiously” can mean “remarkably good”. Thanks for trying to catch my vocab, though. We in the industry (not the fine arts, mind you) need all the help we can get.

    Are we really having this conversation on an Oscar post? Buzzkill.

  18. lane says:

    ok i’ll take the buzzkill rap. that may be true.

    however, my google of “egregiously” turns up uniformly negative connotations.

    just sayin’

    (FYI – snap! snap!)

  19. Hey where can I find the Google connotation add-in? Is that in google.labs?

  20. lane says:

    seriously G-Lock, i’ve been smiling about this for the last hour, i didn’t mean to piss on your parade.

    u lawyers are always so fun to shoot the shit with.

  21. lane says:

    TMK i was talking about the various dictionary sites that pop up on a search.

    (like . . . FOUR . . . ALL NEGATIVE!)