8:30 pm. Hmmm, Laurence of Arabia with a Cugat beat… pretty stage, more “intimate” than usual as promised, but a bit flat — Oh no Hugh Jackman is doing a Billy Crystal. No, Hugh, you’re too good for this. And we mean that literally. It’s like watching Pavarotti play Jackie Gleason.
At last, a good joke: “The Reader/I haven’t seen The Reader.” And the Wrestler joke could have been worse.
Well, at least we’ve had our expectations lowered. And we’re not too fond of the “intimate” set with the shallower front section. It looks like the Golden Globes if someone forgot to deliver the tables.
8:40 pm: Best Supporting Actress. The parade of facelifts! What’s this weird past-winners testimonial thing? They should just descend from the flies and tap the nominees with magic wands. Oh, wait, we get it — no one’s seen any of these movies and they need their awesomeness explained. But it takes much longer than film clips. If they do this for all the awards we’ll be here till dawn. “Taraji P. Henson,” says Goldie Hawn, then laughs gently, as if it were a lovely memory.
Penelope Cruz! We win! She says she’s going to faint, but she seems pretty firmly rooted. But her voice throbs. Almodovar! Applaud, idiots! Thank you! Now she talks about growing up in poverty — remembered the Oscars as “a moment of unity for the world…” And then in Spanish, something that sounded like “It’s not just for me, I’m going to give it everyone later.” Wow, wish we could be there!
8:50 pm. “A blinking curson on a blank screen…” Boy, we wish we had that luxury. Oh no — it’s a writer skit! Not even Queen Faye and King Martin can make this live. And surprisingly, they aren’t doing much with the rest of it. Hmm, I see writers don’t get the ten-minute intros. We’ll be out of here in no time. And no one will be sucked into these movies by this. Original Screenplay — Milk! We win! “I want to thank the real-life people…” Wait, it’s based on a true story? Oh, here’s his conversion narrative. He used to be a Mormon. Now he wants to get married! Well, what’s so tough about — oh.
Adpapted Screenplay. Goes to Slumdog! We win! The guy seems to be reading off a piece of wrapping paper. Very simple. Good. Keep it moving. We want to get to Best Editing before we pass out.
9:00 pm. Oy Jesus, Jennifer Aniston and Jack Black. She gives him sex, he’s very grateful! No, I mean, he gives her funniness. Except he doesn’t. Neither of them do. They’re going to show us a yearbook? We hope it’s Nicholson’s. Ah, we get it: Animators work overtime for Oscar, because it’s that important. Best Animated Film is: WALL-E. We win! “Times like these” — hey, a winner ever so slightly mentioned the New Depression. “My high school drama teacher” — is gay! No, he cast him in Hello, Dolly! Ahhhhh, backstory. The movies are magic.
Best Animated Short is — come on, French movie! — WOW! WE WIN! Wait, if it’s French how come he’s Japanese? Aw, he’s cute though.
9:15 pm. Jackman’s back from the oxygen tent. Designers! Backstage! Carrie Bradshaw and 007! (Now there’s a sequel idea.) Art Direction: Button! We win! They mention David Fincher because no one else will get the chance, except maybe the makeup guy.
Yap yap clothes yap — Costume Design: The winner is — Us! We Win! Nice English fella goes into interview mode… move it along Limey. there’s a good fella. Makeup — oh this is getting embarrassing. Just put this win on the pile, there. Whoa, this guy probably wears this tux on midnight strolls in old Soho.
Young dorks dork it up. “I have three fathers.” What? “Here’s what romance looked like in 2008.” I thought they were going to bring out Madonna and A-Rod. Aw that was kinda sweet. What are all these movies again?