This year’s 82nd Annual Academy Awards was full of surprises as 10 best picture nominees and a divorced couple squared off for Hollywood’s most coveted award, the Oscar. Although all of the heavy hitters were in attendance, it seemed as if the show’s flow of energy was interrupted with awkward speeches and untimely appearances.
The world’s highest grossing film of all time with over $2 billion in sales, Avatar, walked away with only three of its nine nominations. Of course Avatar won an Oscar for Art Direction, Cinematography and Visual Effects, but did James Cameron really think his ex-wife, Kathryn Bigelow, would win Best Picture for The Hurt Locker?
Not only that, but Cameron lost to Bigelow once again when the Oscar for the best director went to Bigelow, who by the way became the first woman to ever win the award. Avatar may reign supreme amongst moviegoers, but the Na’vi were no match for the Academy this year.
Jeff Bridges finally won an Oscar for his leading role in Crazy Heart, but it only took him five nominations to do so. The dude should’ve won it back in 1998, and Bridges reminded us during his acceptance speech that there’s still some dude left in him.
Sandra Bullock showed up with her first nomination and left with her first Oscar for portraying the true story of a mother who gave her love to a most unlikely recipient. Her acceptance speech showed Bullock’s humble yet humorous side as she paid homage to her fellow nominees saying, “Meryl, you know what I think of you and you are such a good kisser.”
Inglourious Basterds’ Christoph Waltz let us know, if we didn’t already, of his pride in his Austrian heritage and awe of Spanish women when he accepted his Oscar and said, “Oscar and Penélope that’s an über bingo.” Waltz’s role as a Nazi officer who hunted Jews in Quentin Tarantino’s fantasy of World War II gave him the chance to showcase his multilingual skills, while somehow bringing serenity to an otherwise chaotic film.
A rather awkward moment, and it wouldn’t be an awards show if there wasn’t one, came when the Oscar for Documentary Short was presented. Roger Ross Williams bolted down the aisle, leaving Elinor Burkett behind while he began his acceptance speech. Midway through Williams’ speech, Burkett catching up announced into the microphone, “Let the woman talk. Isn’t that the classic thing?” Yes Burkett, it is, until you interrupted Williams on stage in front of the whole country leaving him standing with a fake smile. Where’s the class in that?
The Academy also held a tribute clip in honor of Hollywood’s timeless classic genre, the horror film. Opening with a spoof of Paranormal Activity, Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin’s time lapsed bedroom arrangements showed the two tossing and falling off the bed, at one point showing Martins rear up in the air and also staring down at a sleeping Baldwin.
The stars of the Twilight saga, Taylor Lautner and Kristen Stewart, who claimed the Exorcist was the last horror film to win an award, presented the five-minute tribute. The last movie was in fact the 1991 film, Silence of the Lambs. There was also a clip of Young Frankenstein’s Peter Boyle as Frankenstein, which is a comedy and not a horror. Now where on earth was the Academy’s head at this year?