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Chasing The American Dream

February 26, 2007


Is it me or is the annual Academy Awards show becoming more and more boring and predictable? Yeah, I know they’ve always saved the big four awards until the final half-hour, but it seems to take forever and a day to get there. The show really bored me. Three-plus hours of minor ‘who-cares’ awards with little filler in between almost makes the show unbearable. I dunno. Ellen DeGeneres doesn’t do it for me. I didn’t think she was funny. Did you? I laughed more during Jerry Seinfeld’s two-minute schtick on moviegoers picking up their own trash than I did at Ellen’s show-long attempts at comedy. Her impromptu live interviews with the stars in the audience seemed to make them uncomfortable and me as well.

There were some nice moments in the show. The sound effects ensemble was interesting. Some of the presenters were interesting. How cute were Will Smith’s son and Abigail Breslin? I think the annual highlight reel of stars who have passed on is always bittersweet. There’s always someone you end up saying aloud, “Wow, he/she died?” For me, it was Jack Wild. And there are always some interesting acceptance speeches. Forrest Whitaker’s comes to mind.

And then there are the winners. I don’t know why but I have a knack for predicting the winners. It’s strange because I usually don’t see any of the movies or performances. But the Academy is predictable and formulaic. This year, I got five of the six big awards right. I only missed Best Supporting Actor. I had a feeling it was Martin Scorsese’s year. There really wasn’t any Oscar-type competition for him or for The Departed. To me, it was a lock as were Best Actor, Best Picture, and Best Actress. I’ve been picking these winners far too often for someone who never sees the pictures or performances. There’s something wrong with that. Well, I take that back. I saw the first 30 minutes of The Departed before my date couldn’t handle the violence and we walked out. But I’m happy for Scorsese. He seems like a really nice guy.

It seems the show is becoming less of an event. The focus nowadays seems to be the pre and post show hoopla. Red carpet, fashion, and parties are in vogue. I daresay they are more interesting than the main event. But how much Ryan Seacrest and Joan Rivers can one take? So if you actually watch the entire festivities, you’re talking over seven hours coverage. I think next year, I might just have to opt for the day-after highlight show unless Oscar can promise me a witty host and some award surprises.



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