The 78th Annual Academy Awards
But what everyone surely wants to know: was Jon
Stewart funny? Someone
wrote about how Stewart was an odd choice, given that he's all about New York, and news, whereas Hollywood is about
Los Angeles, and fiction. I didn't see the disconnect - don't most of today's stars have homes both in LA and NYC? -
but, still, I was worried. Jon seemed pretty nervous on his Daily Show performances leading up to the Oscars.
Jon's the sort of guy who (despite his ever-present sarcasm) wears his heart on his sleeve. He uses the comedic device
of truth, and geekiness. And that's what is oddest about having him at the Academy Awards. Self-effacing
truthful geekiness is so out of place next to Jessica Alba (who, to follow a tangent Stewart started me upon, I
definitely would not pick to repopulate the earth).
One thing I loved: the mock "political" advertisements for Best Actress. In one, a senior couple is talking about all the strange names of the nominees ... Keira, Charlize, Felicity, "Dame Judi." So foreign! And what's with all the letters? They decide, Reese Witherspoon is such an American name. The ads made me laugh.
It was a rare laugh. Although I greatly enjoyed watching the luscious Salma Hayek in the most lovely turquoise asymmetric gown, and wanted to reach out a helping hand to the very hot (and so clearly, breastfeeding) new mama Jennifer Garner, who almost fell while walking out on beautifully-teetering heels, it was only the watching that was any fun. I totally didn't understand the layers of meaning of the completely odd presentation given by Lily Tomlin and Meryl Streep (although they looked great). I only was rapt by three speeches; Reese's impassioned and somewhat repetitive, women-power acceptance of Best Actress; Gavin Hood's excited speech for the foreign language film, Tsotsi; and I can't even remember which award it was, but one of the smaller winners kept letting us know what the prompter was telling him. I loved how revealing and self-referential that was.
I love to watch the Academy Awards, but they rarely hold my attention for three hours. Next year, I'll probably leave the show on mute and just watch the pretty dresses float past.