Friday, March 4, 2011

83rd Oscars Review- 4 trophies and Inception was "snubbed"

The 83rd Oscars have come and gone in a flurry. After much anticipation, I am left with mixed emotions now that the thing is over.

Now it was pretty obvious to me that there would not be such thing as a “sweep” this year. It was a very open year for the Oscar contenders this year, with strong claims from all the candidates. And while it is true that it did not exactly sweep the Awards, it is still not a stretch of the imagination to say that The King’s Speech owned. It bagged 4 top awards, Best Original Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Director, and Best Picture.

Inception tied the ultimate “winner” with 4 out of its 8 nominations, which were the 2 sound awards, visual effects, and Best Cinematography, work I hope Wally Pfister continues to do with Nolan. And ah, yes, Nolan the perennial underdog sat demurely watching the proceedings, the epitome of calm, though even he looked a tad surprised when they didn’t call his name for Best Original Screenplay. In fact, I’m pretty happy with the way the Oscars turned out, except for two contentious thorns that are bothering me.

Best Score went to the fantastic work of Trevor Reznor and Atticus Ross for The Social Network (which also got Best Adapted Screenplay and Film Editing). While the score suited the movie beautifully and is a great listen, none of the nominated scores can match up in epic grandeur to Hans Zimmer’s score for Inception. Admittedly I’ve not listened to the other scores much, whereas I have listened to the entireInception album many times. Whether it was the music from the action scenes, or the haunting score that captured the drama and mystery of the more deep scenes, this really was the best score. The track Mombasa is pure adrenaline in the most grand form, and my favorite track Time that was played in the finishing scene, one of the best scenes of the movie, is one of redemption (they also played it every timeInception got an award J). Zimmer was robbed.

Best Original Screenplay went to Tom Hooper’s film. Now while it would be unjust to say that Nolan was robbed, Inception had a great plot and story. However, I can’t really fault any of the other nominees because they were all simply fantastic. Nolan has been shafted too many times, first with The Dark Knight, and now with Inception. Every person who got an award for the movie thanked Nolan effusively, calling him “the master” and what not, and he just sat there with a Cheshire cat smile. Nolan, you will always be the man.

Speaking of the Cheshire Cat, Alice In Wonderland picked up Art Direction and Costumes award. While the other nominees gave stiff competition, they all kind of had something to draw on, whereas with Alice the only limit was the designers’ imagination. So its probably appropriately given (I say probably because I haven’t seen the movie).

Colin Firth picked up his trophy for Best Actor to much applause and had to control his urge to dance on stage. It was a special award considering his competition. Natalie Portman was gorgeous on the night as she picked up her well deserved trophy for Black Swan, the only award for the movie on the night. She’s come a long way since playing the little assassin in Leon at the tender age of 11 :o. I’ve had a mad crush on her since Episode I, so it’s special for me too. However, her fellow nominee Jennifer Lawrence has proved that she has a bright future. Best Supp Actor and Actress were the only 2 trophies for The Fighter, and I don’t think there are any arguments there. Only my heart goes out to the ever so charming Hailee Steinfield. And props to my man Christian Bale, and man who takes his job oh so seriously (you try losing 60 pounds and then putting on 100 again). Way to go, Batman. An emotional Melissa Leo dropped the f-bomb for her speech, she could hardly contain herself. A few of the other winners had a bit of fun with this. Best Director was one of the most open categories of all, and I would have been happy with anything. Congrats, Tom Hooper.

Toy Story 3 was pretty good, but not when you compare it with its predecessors. Meh, call me sentimental. I preferred How To Train Your Dragon this year, but the Academy didn’t.

127 Hours and True Grit didn't walk away with anything, and they would have to have been something pretty special what with their fellow nominees. Except that I thought Franco was brilliant in his movie and thoroughly deserved his Best Actor nomination. I would not have been displeased at all had he won, in fact I would have been quite happy. But more people on the jury thought Firth was the better man.

Anne Hathaway and James Franco were great hosts, filling the show with plenty of humor. Anne brought the energy, while Franco was the anti-thesis, playing it calm and composed. Or so I thought initially... but after some reflection, I came to realize that they didn't really click, thanks largely in part to Franco's cold stance. Nonetheless Hathaway is quite a singer as she put on a nice musical dissing Hugh Jackman (all in the name of good fun). She was a bucket of energy and fun, and I'm not just saying that because I like her.

So, finally, now that its all said and done, with The King’s Speech taking the big part of the pie and many other movies making their mark in history, this is a satisfied movie fan and a disappointed fanboi signing off.