Well regardless of what anyone says, the Oscars were much more enjoyable for me than years past. They seemed much better integrated, the sets were beautifully detailed and the show had a distinct narrative running through it.
Bonus points for having the hugely talented Hugh Jackman as host. Honestly, its nice to have a host whose only talent isn't to go up on stage and make fun of people. Heck, making fun of people is all good - we do that constantly on this blog - but that can't be your only real talent.
Before the Academy pats itself on the back and invites the entire production team back to do it again next year, I'd like to say: this is exactly the kind of show that used to put people to sleep years ago. But years of groanworthy PJs from people like Whoopi and Letterman had so lowered expectations, that this all looked so good. Yet if the Academy does it again next year, I'm willing to bet it'll not only be snoozeworthy but it will - gasp! - drive younger people away. We are talking the stuff of nightmares for network execs here.
So my phaltu Drift advice to the Academy is: change it all again next year. Keep surprising your audience by keeping them off balance. Do keep those music videos in the mix though. Loved them!
I'd also like to take this occasion to hand out some of my own Drift Academy Awards for Best Entertainment provided before the show.
The Bride of Frankenstein Award - Sophia Loren
All right come on now, its not about being old. Its about not acting your age and pretending to be Beyonce. We all know what happens when Rekha tries to do that. When Sophia was singing the praises of Meryl Streep on stage, she scared the living daylights out of me.
Most Chaatu Moment Award - The Quorum of Past Winners
I quite loved the whole sinister looking quorum of past winners who would come and do massive maskaa-polish of the nominees. It was cute the first time. But by the time the Best Supporting Actor category had rolled around, it was so gagworthy that I began to enjoy it. I kept looking forward to which past winner would outdo the previous one by heaping superlatives on their adopted nominee. At one point Christopher Walken didn't quite heap enough love on his assigned hopeful, thus short-changing Michael Shannon compared to the others. Hilarity!
Best Unkempt Hair Award - Diane Lane
How does one spend hours getting ready - and still look like they forgot to run their comb through their hair? Some hairstylist is going away soon on a vacation - a very long one
Best Unkempt Hair Honorable Mention - Mickey Rourke
Mickey's downgraded in this category because he wore a taveez of his dear departed dog - Loki. That is just endearingly In Your Face quirky. And what a cool dog name. Diane, suck it up!
Best Helmet Hair Award - Kate Winslet
Ok, Kate's hair is tough to style. Its wispy and usually cut at a length that would drive any stylist crazy. So I can see someone going: how about I just lump it all together and make a nifty little swoosh in the back. Now, can I have all the hairspray in Georgia? Fortunately for all of us, Kate is a very good looking girl.
The How to Gift Wrap Yourself Award - Amanda Seyfried
I haven't seen Mama Mia yet, but that Amanda looks hot - like a cross between Kat Dennings and Cameron Diaz. I guess gift giving on Valentine's Day must be easy.
The How Not Gift Wrap Yourself Award - Jessica Biel
Clearly Jessica started from home wearing a bow. But along the way someone untied it. Jessica was too toked to notice.
The Whoot! I'm Married And William Shatner is Still Not Invited Award - George Takei
Seriously, has a psuedo-star jhagda ever been so much fun?
The Bhoot Makeup Award - Alicia Keys
When I was in Standard III, there was a little kid who would always walk into class with way too much powder on his face. We would all make fun of him. Bad foundation remains one of fashion's biggest disasters - simply because its unforgivable.
The Best Multi-purpose Cleavage Award - Anne Hathaway
Form married with Function! This is every man's dream because now no date has to hold his chick's clutch while she adjusts her earrings. She can put it right up on that mantelpiece under her chin.Too bad Anne didn't have a date to put that magnificently jutting neckline to good use.
The Scariest Combover Award - Steven Spielberg
Hey, you can be a super rich producer and director, but that doesn't mean you are immune from bad taste. At the awards, Steven came out at serious risk of resembling a Hammerhead shark.
The Revenge is Sweet Award - Miley Cyrus
These days both my boys are so not into girls that I often will pull them up for sticking their tongue out whenever Hannah Montana is on screen. They've taken to teasing me about her. This reached ridiculous proportions this Valentine when Youngling came and deposited all his Miley candy on my desk and said "For you Daddy, because you love her so much"
So when Miley came on screen, I yelled my head off and told the boys to come down to see something really special. They came running down and boy, was it fun to see their expressions of dismay.
The Best Picture Award - The kids of Slumdog
Ah, really cute - the cast of the movie without the extended family all around them. Especially Unkil Anil.