Oh Oscar. How I love thou.
If you’re looking for whining about how long the show drags on or the silly amount of attention paid to celebrities and fashion, read some Hollywood hater blog. Here at Carpool Candy we celebrate the Academy Awards!
This year’s Oscar fashions had very little drama. The theme seemed to be neutral-toned sheath dresses with subtle beading. Here are the highlights….
Who stood out from the crowd:
Kate Hudson had my favorite look of the night. First off, her body is to die for and never looked better than in that sleek, white, fitted satiny dress with a sexy low-cut neckline, caped shoulders and long train. Sun-kissed and glam….like a classic Hollywood starlet. Perfection.
Angelina Jolie– It’s so boring to put her on a best dressed list but she really earned it. Her sophisticated sexy, Elie Saab metallic dress with illusion windows hung on her beautifully.
Cate Blanchett– Not sure if I loved the Armani dress or hated it. From far away it looked like a holiday art project my 1st grader might bring home, but on stage it hugged her in all the right places and the details of the beading against the illusion nude shape worked on her. Her dangling earrings were fabulous.
Jessica Biel- Her Chanel strapless sheath dress with silver beading and long, flawy tresses showed off her gorgeous body and hair. Her stylist gets an A+.
Sandra Bullock looked very regal in a navy strapless McQueen dress with gorgeous curled Rita Hayworth hair. Classy.
Kerry Washington and Olivia Wilde-- These two pregnant gals are in my top 3 fashion winners. Loved Washington’s flowy purple satin Grecian goddess number with dark lipstick and long loose hair. Wilde barely showed her baby bump in a long, flattering black dress, a messy up-do and funky earrings. Oscar brought out their glow.
It was the night of white tuxes for the men. Ryan Seacrest, Jared Leto, and Matthew McConaughey were among those going with a classic white jacket and dark tie. Very original Brat Pack, very debonair. I also liked Will Smith’s twist on black tie with an open shirt and grey scarf thingy that looked cool, sexy and modern.
Who could have tried harder:
No one embarrassed themselves and no stylists will be looking for a job tomorrow. but there were a few duds. I expected more from….
Lupita Nyoong’o-- I’ll probably be the only one to say this but fashion darling Nyoong’ has wowed on every red carpet this year. It was a pretty dress–I loved the baby blue color and the diamond headband in her hair, but the low cut halter didn’t flatter her. It accentuated her chest and arms, looking severe and masculine.
Lady Gaga- MEH. She got the memo on neutral frocks and paired the ho-hum dress with dowdy up-do and pasty makeup. I appreciate her reverence for the Oscars but where was the wow?
Ellen DeGeneres– Her black tux jackets were shiny and sparkly in a Vegas kind of way that didn’t suit her (see what I did there?) and the long tied bow blouse channeled a pilgrim. She made up for it when she changed mid-show into a white tuxedo suit with sparkly sneakers that made her steel blue eyes pop and seemed more her speed.
Wilson and I LOL-ed several times at Ellen’s monologue. Her easy confidence and command of the room set the prefect tone for the night. Her bits between awards were clever and funny, offering consolation prizes to losers (Bradley Cooper got lotto tickets) and ordering pizza for hungry stars (Jared Leto and Harrison Ford ate a slice.) Her humor is original, positive and quirky. I loved it and so did the sometimes hard-to-win over audience.
Her finest moment was probably getting a bunch of A-list stars together for a giant selfie on live TV. She said she was looking to break a record for most retweeted photo but she was also commenting on our present self-obsessed and social-media-dependent culture. The huge worldwide response briefly stalled Twitter.
According to Time magazine, the post broke the retweet record surpassing a million retweets in less than an hour. (Previously, Barack Obama’s election night photo of him hugging Michelle got retweeted more than 778,000 times.) At last count, the tweet was reposted over 2,280,450 times.
It’s always great when something unexpected happens. Like when the long-time singer Darlene Love broke into soulful song when accepting the award for the feature documentary “20 Feet from Stardom” and received a standing ovation. She took her moment and ran with it.
Bill Murray sneaking in a plug for old pal Harold Ramis while giving the best cinematography award was a sweet and goofy moment.
Most of the acting awards were expected but best speeches go to Jared Leto for best supporting actor in “Dallas Buyers Club,” Cate Blanchett for best actress in “Blue Jasmine,” and Lupita Nyoong’o for “12 Years a Slave.”
Leto spoke eloquently and lovingly about his mother, and also spoke to those fighting for freedom in Ukraine and Venezuela, and paid tribute to AIDS victims, and the gay community.
Blanchett was gracious in her thank yous but made sure to point out that movies with women as lead characters are not only important and liked by audiences, they also make money. You go sister.
Nyoong’o closed her thoughtful, touching speech by saying when she looked down at the golden man, she saw proof that no matter where you’re from (she’s from Kenya,) “your dreams are valid.” Am I the only sap who cried?
Musical highlights: Bono led U2 in a powerful acoustic performance of “Ordinary Love” from the movie “Mandela “that had the crowd on its feet by the end. Let the iTunes downloads commence!
Pharrell singing his hit “Happy” from “Dispicable Me 2″ was fun. I’m not sure how he does it, but he makes an Adidas sweat jacket, red metallic high tops and his trademark mounty hat look cool. And he got Meryl Streep and Lupita Nyoong’o boogying in the aisles.
The most awkward moments included painfully hair-plugged John Travolta butchered actress/singer Idina Menzel’s name before she sang the nominated song from “Frozen.” ….and when actress Kim Novak (from Hitchcock’s “Vertigo“)– once a Hollywood ingenue– got a lot of bad attention for her pulled face. Poor old gal looked like Jack Nicholson as the Joker. (Best comment I saw on Twitter : “Frozen wins. The movie, not Kim Novak’s face.)
I did some due diligence before the show and it was tough to predict who would win best picture because there were so many nominated movies (9) and the race was tight.
But the glitterati consensus forecasted a race between Alfonso Cuaron’s 3-D spectacle “Gravity,” Steve McQueen’s historical odyssey “12 Years a Slave” and David O. Russell’s corruption comedy “American Hustle.”
Mexican filmmaker Cuaron won for best director, and became the first Latino winner in the category. When “12 Years a Slave” won best picture, it was the first time a film directed by a black filmmaker (Brit Steve McQueen) took the academy’s top honor.
One fact I found noteworthy was the lack of diversity among Academy members. Most of the group’s 6,000 members are older white men, according to an AP report. A 2012 study by The LA Times found that Oscar voters are almost 94 percent white and 77 percent male. African Americans, the Times found, make up about 2 percent of the academy, and Latinos are less than 2 percent.
The median age of Oscar voters is 62! That’s a lot of white geezers deciding which Hollywood careers will be made and broken. We need more women and minorities in the Hollywood elite to make more movies we want to see.
What were your favorite Oscar moments? Tell me in the comments.