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Oscars 2008: The Aftermath

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Addictions consume individuals. For some, addictions can be defined by nicotine, alcohol, gambling, or worse. For me, the Oscars devour my persona and provide a high like none other. Yes, the telecast is flawed; it’s pretentious and unnecessarily long. Yet it’s the formal forum in which the year’s finest are honored with golden statuettes. What more could a film fan clamor for?

With Regis emceeing the red carpet, the pre-game show was an overall success. Besides Regis calling Javier Bardem “Xavier,” the Live host did fairly well in catching the eye-grabbing celebs before they entered the Kodak Theatre.

Among the best dressed were Jennifer Garner, Hilary Swank, and Laura Linney — all wore black. By far, Jennifer Garner took the cake this year for best looking. Helen Mirren and Penelope Cruz looked classy and stunning respectively. And who provided Miley Cyrus with a ticket?

Once the show started, Jon Stewart provided a hysterical monologue detailing the writers' strike and introducing the ceremony as, “Welcome to the make up sex.” His words on the cancellation of the Vanity Fair Oscar party, to Diablo Cody, and about the Obama/Clinton race (“Gaydolf Titler”) were uproarious. With the one-two punch of DeGeneres and Stewart, the Academy has found its new Crystal and Martin.

The best moments of the night were when Marion Cotillard was awarded Best Actress honors and when “Falling Slowly” captured the Oscar for Best Song. Cotillard was more than justifiable as the winner and yet so humble and genuinely emotional on stage. Her appreciative reaction made everyone watching feel happy for her. Equally, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova were very grateful and enthusiastic about their small picture making it big. When Irglova was given a second chance to give an acceptance speech, it showed Stewart’s professionalism and the Academy’s heart. Instead of another joke after returning from commercials, we received a memorable Oscar moment.

Without a doubt, the most shocking announcement of the night came in the Best Supporting Actress category. Who picked Tilda Swinton’s name to follow the words, “And the Oscar goes to…?” Even though this unexpected upset occurred, it was in the one category where a surprising choice was certainly possible. Swinton appeared just as taken aback as the audience to see herself clutching the golden man.

The only Oscar that was unjustly handed over was for Best Visual Effects, going to The Golden Compass over Transformers. What’s more, who would have thought that The Bourne Ultimatum would take home as many Oscars as Juno, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, and Atonement combined? On the other hand, I couldn’t have been more satisfied with the outcomes of the “big eight” (excluding no Amy Ryan) as well as the awards for Makeup, Musical Score, and Music (Song).

All in all, my crystal ball was cloudy. I finished 12 for 21 — a measly 57%. Nonetheless, I’m keeping my head up; if this were a political race, 51% is enough to win. Therefore, I consider the 80th Annual Academy Awards a victorious evening.

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About Brandon Valentine

  • “Who picked Tilda Swinton’s name to follow the words, ‘And the Oscar goes to…?'”

    I did. 🙂

  • I noticed, but you also selected Atonement as “Best Picture.”

    Merit for the Swinton selection, but a resounding, “Come on,” for not choosing No Country for Old Men.

  • On my website, I ranked both Atonement and No Country for Old Men as 10/10 perfect films. I gave Atonement the Oscar edge because it was the sweeping epic picture, whereas No Country for Old Men was the bolder film. I actually find both movies to be equally great and would put Atonement as my personal favourite of the two, but I really did think it was going to win the big one last night.

  • The award was definitely between those two films exclusively.