Monday, March 08, 2010

Post-Oscars Post

As you may have noticed, I didn't do my annual Oscar nomination post. Mostly because...well, who really cares this year. The movies were so bad that I could really care less about who wins or loses. In fact, if they just took all the Oscars and handed them out to the cast and crew of The Hurt Locker, that'd be fine by me.

But I watched the damn show anyway, because I've watched it for the last 25 years; why stop now?

My assorted thoughts and observations:

-If Neil Patrick Harris hadn't already come out of the closet, that tuxedo and musical number would have outed him;

-With those glasses, Steve Martin looks like approximately everyone's grandmother;

-It's nice to see they reinstated the Jim Crow Laws and put the cast from Precious waaaaay off stage left;

-Again with letting Penelope Cruz talk. What, Roberto Benigni was unavailable?

-Finally, they figured out a way to do the Best Animated segment without putting animated characters with humans. And of course Coraline lost. Best Animated Film: Why would it win that?

-I guess I had no idea T-Bone Burnett was eight feet tall;

-I kinda like the Six Degrees of Separation thing they did with the presenters for the Best Picture nominees;

-Why is it that Tina Fey always looks like hell when she's trying NOT to look like hell? And pleeeease stop it with the fucking Reading of the Screenplays;

-Wow. Where the fuck did they find Molly Ringwald? Matthew Broderick was so stunned, he nearly fell down the stairs. And douche chills aplenty when all the Brat Packers came out. Time is very cruel;

-I couldn't tell: Is Roger Ross Williams gay? You may not have been able to tell either, what with the distraction of Mrs. Garrett from Facts of Life running up on stage;

-So...we're just gonna dress Ben Stiller up in a Halloween costume every year? Believe it or not, he's pretty funny without any props;

-How 'bout that: Roger Corman got an Oscar;

-I believe this marks the first time in history that Robin Williams didn't do his Sassy Black Woman impression, chiefly because I think the sassy black woman that proceeded to win the Oscar would have kicked his white ass;

-Line of the night: "I don't think the plural of 'whores' is 'whoreses'";

-How do you win a Cinematography award for a movie that's 75% computer-generated?

-I wonder if they realize that James Taylor has his own catalog of songs;

-I found it humorous that two of Jennifer Aniston's former boyfriends presented an award together;

-It took Paul Newman 30 years to finally win an Oscar; Fisher Stevens wins one on his first try;

-I didn't think a wig could be gay, but Pedro Almodóvar's just proved me wrong;

-Remember when Jeff Bridges was nominated for Thunderbolt and Lightfoot 30-odd years ago? No? Well, no one else does, either, but it's good to see that he's still the same guy all these years later;

-Sandy Bullock accepts a Razzie AND an Oscar within 24 hours. Who else can say that?

-Here's why James Cameron deserved to lose the Director Oscar: He dumped Kathryn Bigelow, who is pushing 60 and looks great, for Linda Hamilton, who is much younger and...not so much. And...

-He also loses the Big One to his ex-wife. He is now officially an Oscar cuckold.

All in all, the most predictable Oscars ever. If I had cared, I could have handicapped this thing to within about two. But, I didn't, so I didn't. Maybe next year will be more exciting.

BTW, I DVR'd the whole thing and fast-forwarded through all the horseshit, and watched the entire three and a half hours in just under two.

Just a helpful little tip for those who think these things tend get a little long.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Lost Pretty Much Sucks A Dick This Year

So, Lost, the show that everyone simultaneous loves and hates, is coming to an end. Before the season started, I think that fans of the show thought this was a godsend, as all the questions that had been bothering them for five years would finally be answered. The problem with this final season is that, now that we know the answers, we kinda wish we didn't.

Take, for example, the strange case of Richard Alpert, the seemingly-ageless member of The Others. When Locke asked Juliet how old Richard was, Juliet's answer was simply, "Old." He doesn't appear to have aged in over 50 years. I think that at some time or another, every fan has put together some theory as to why Richard hasn't aged. And now, after last week's episode, we finally know why.

But the thing is...I wish we didn't know. Rather than find out that Richard was a slave on the Black Rock and that he was granted immortality by Jacob, I would have been satisfied not knowing Richard's backstory at all, just leaving the whole thing a mystery. Like maybe someone asks what Richard's deal is and someone else says, "I dunno. He's just always been here" (which is exactly what Juliet told Locke). I'd rather have the ambiguity than the awful answer I was given. And the awfulness doesn't end there.

I've learned to tolerate a lot from Lost. The Others, the Dharma Initiative, the power struggle to control the island, the temporal shifts that caused everyone to end up in the '70s. All crazy, nonsensical stuff, but it all worked in the context of the show. In a setting where more questions are asked than answered, you can pretty much do whatever you want. It's a confusing mess, but it's a fascinating confusing mess.

And now we're getting the answers we've waited for for five years, and they're some of the most unsatisfying answers ever given. It's like if I asked you what the answer to life, the universe, and everything was, and you told me this.

I think what's going on is that the writers came up with all this crazy shit and now they have to come up with reasons for everything. I'm reminded of that episode of The Simpsons where they're digging to the buried treasure and someone asks how they're going to get out of the hole. Chief Wiggums' answer is "Dig up, stupid."

That's what we're getting from Lost this year: A lot of digging up. And that's how we've ended up with the Smoke Monster Guy and Jacob, who apparently brought everyone to the island (even though the reasons for everyone being on the island have been explained before); the Planet of the Apes rejects who live in the temple and look for the Keeper of the Island; the Ajira flight people who are apparently Jacob's bodyguards; the alternate reality where the island doesn't exist; and, the worst of all, not-dead Locke, who, for five seasons, was literally dying to know the secrets of the island, but doesn't get to find out because, well...he's dead and is now nothing more than a skin suit for the smoke monster (yet another revelation I could have lived without).

This show has exactly nine episodes to turn into something decent. If it continues down the same road it's on right now, it's going to turn out to be the most disappointing conclusion in history. Ooooooo, I hope friends aren't pitted against each other in a war to control the island!!