Tuesday, February 28, 2012

2012 Oscar Roundup!

I have some thoughts on the Oscars, as many people do. It was a solid ceremony, predictable but decently presented, with the exception of the piercing electronic scream of a thousand uncalibrated hearing aids that wove its way into the soundtrack just subtly enough to make the viewers at home wonder if their house was about to explode. The Artist was a really good movie, and while there were better I can't really object to its victory.

Each year the ceremony comes around and makes a big deal out of itself, leading many to say that it's totally irrelevant and not worth a damn. They have a case, and this year's proceedings didn't help themselves by not-so-subtly boasting about the wonder and power of the theatrical experience. But let's level here- I love the movies, and chances are if you were watching the Oscars you have at least a somewhat positive opinion of the medium. Maybe they were preaching to the choir a little, but it's hard not to get in just a little on the celebratory mood. (And the segment of Brad Pitt recalling his experience seeing War of the Gargantuas was kind of wonderful.)

Billy Crystal did, well, what he does, and I'm okay with that. However, I'm still wondering where all the time went- the speeches weren't especially long, the pointless segments were also mostly short, and yet they had no time to perform the two songs nominated for awards or to bring up the year's lifetime honorees. Perhaps we could do without the direct addresses of the lead actor/actress nominees, but who knows.

The most exciting development in all this- well for me it's the fact that Community, back March 15, now co-stars the Academy Award winner Jim Rash. Others may go with Bret Mackenzie taking home a little gold statue, or Rango's much-deserved victory, or the discovery that we're finally getting around to nominating Gary Oldman for things. But this is rarely a night of extremes. Some very well-made films and very solidly talented people are given awards, some very well-made films and very solidly talented people are ignored, corny jokes are told, celebrities dress funny, and for a night we all think "Yeah, the movies are pretty neat. In theory."

And as predictable as it is, a substantial portion of us keep coming back. Because the dream is a nice one.

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