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Monday, February 28, 2005

tiny bronze men

The Oscars are becoming a bit of a tradition amongst my Chicagoan friends. We're not exactly high brow when it comes to films. We saw the first Tomb Raider in the theatre for god's sakes. So while some may watch the Oscars for some simple entertainment, or to see their favorite celebs - some of us do it practically out of penance. It's not that we even terribly enjoy the show - I find it to be an orgy of Hollywood self-love, and not in an attractive way. But I did like this year a bit more, and here's why:

Chris Rock knows that the Oscars are too pretentious for the average joe, and did a damn fine job of taking it down some necessary notches.

Charlie Kaufman won. After that hack Akiva beat out Memento and Fellowship of the Ring, I had pretty much assumed that nobody on the voting committee knew a good script when they read it. Nice to see the trend reversing.

The ads were nearly as good, if not better, than the Super Bowl.

The overt patriotism wasn't nearly as annoying as the Super Bowl.

One film didn't just sweep. I thought it odd that Clint beat out Martin, but at least it didn't become apparent that the Oscar voters were only aware of a movie or two.

Worst part - Sean Penn needs to lighten the hell up. I'm fairly certain Chris Rock was aware of who Jude Law is and what he's done. Rock brought some much levity to the show and Penn seemed offended by it. If Hollywood keeps taking itself so seriously, the rest of us will just start wondering when the Razzies will be televised.

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