Besides the massive blunder at the end, I felt the 2017 Oscar show was one of the best ever, at least as far as I can re-call. The goofy dance numbers and most, not all, the boring segments from the past have been removed. Thank you! Jimmy Kimmel's humor as the Master of Ceremonies, was extremely engaging and entertaining, on par with Ellen Degeneres.
The challenge and criticism of Mr. Kimmel, which in complete honesty I didn't even notice, was regarding his remarks in reference to ethic names. The small detail illustrates our evolution in the melting pot of the US. Clearly Jimmy Kimmel is a fairly open minded fellow, but not as conscious as he may think. We are living in an age and a country where respect of individuals and how we refer to them has become more obvious in peoples mind and criticism. The audience is not only those sitting in the audience but a very vocal public which will make there opinion know within seconds due to social media—no one can escape this.
Living in Los Angeles, still the main hub for the motion picture / entertainment industry, conversations relating to the field is in every molecule of the cities air. We breath it in whether we want to or not. Almost all of us living in this city of stars or angels, works in some capacity within the industry or knows people who do. Although I don't "watch" the news, listen to the radio or even forage on facebook, I am constantly hearing from friends, family and acquaintances what is transpiring in the latest TV shows, media outlets, etc.
My daughter Eve attempts to watch most of the films that are getting a buzz and those that are nominated. I, in turn, accompany her to see many of these. One film that I felt was excellent that received absolutely no attention by the Academy was Queen of Katwe.
Why this film was completely shunned is not clear to me, perhaps the film makers and distributors choose not to promote it with the same fervor that the others were. I was convinced that at the very least Lupita Nyong'o's portrayal of a single mother raising her children in a slum in Uganda would have received a nod. As much as I appreciate Emma Stone, her performance was not worthy of the golden statue. I also do not agree with La La Land receiving the award for best cinematography, especially when compared to Arrival, or even Moonlight.
When the nominations were first shared it was generally thought that perhaps the academy had chosen to make a nod toward La La Land because it was up-lifting. Well, hello, did they actually watch Hidden Figures? That was one heck of an uplifting film, and more poignant because it is based on real lives. This is a good reminder of how an "award" does not represent the best work.
MOST INSPIRING ACCEPTANCE SPEECH: Viola Davis, hands down!
I am most thrilled that Moonlight (eventually) won best picture, what a turn in the story, not necessarily very well done though. Generally turns in a story are a good thing in terms of story telling. That massively embarrassing moment at the end is going to be discussed for decades and will most likely show up in a SNL skit.
Another small faux pas was that the academy forgot to include Eliseo Subiela in the In Memoriam Tribute. Eliseo is an Argentine drama-science fiction film writer and director who received an academy award for Hombre Mirando al Sudeste, Man Facing Southeast, in 1986. Regrettably Eliseo left this plane on December 27, 2016.
I wish I could have been a little insect flying around the Dolby, formerly known as the Kodak, theater and sniffed what perfumes were being worn and by who. Perhaps the pre-show commentators will one day ask that question.
Some of the trends I noticed at this years award gala were fishtail gowns, lots of sequins and lace, velvet jackets on the dudes and a couple pretty eclectic hairdos.
Arrival photo: Paramount Pictures
Movie Monday: 2013 Oscars