Monday, February 26, 2007

Oscar night

As I said I would, I went to the "Funniest Oscar Party Ever!" featuring The People's Republik of Komedy. Hopefully it doesn't make me sound like too big a dick to wonder how sad that is for the other Oscar nights.

But I had two agendas, and both were fulfilled.

I went to see and hang out with my friend Emmett, better known to some as comic genius Emmett Mongomery, and to meet Lindy West, who was briefly my arch-nemesis... for those of you interested and out of the loop, that saga begins here, continues here and basically concludes here, with a brief coda here.

For the record, my prediction about an unrated Accepted DVD failed to come true and at least partly explains why I have still not bothered to fulfill my threat to watch it to spite her. Sadly, I think this will be the real end of this make-believe grudge match, as I found her quite charming and entertaining, and she remembered that I suggested replacing her with a random word generator, which I had forgotten, and was glad to be reminded as it was a funny line.

I know, you who have not gone back are thinking how could she not, considering the meanness of the line? Arguable, except, looking back I also wrote that I hope she "dies long, long before she ever has to deal with her own sexuality as a older person." My own perception would be that is the meaner line, but maybe I'm crazy.

However, if anyone has a suggestion for an arch-nemesis, I'd appreciate it. I'm going to have much more trouble writing anything nearly that nasty about her in the future. Damn you, Lindy West, and your charming affability!

Anyway, hi to Lindy googling yourself and Emmett googling "Emmett Montgomery genius".

The show itself was pretty troubled.

Lindy and comedian Geoff Brousseau began the show with a Red Carpet commentary. There were a couple of amusing moments, but neither had met or prepared, so it was a shot in the dark bit.

Hosts Kevin Hyder and Scott Moran then did an intermittently amusing bit in which they mispronounced the names of the nominated movies and actors and explained the movies plots as if they were '80s sitcoms.

Emmett did his bit about petitioning the Academy to give Footloose a long overdue Best Picture award. That was probably the singularly best piece of comedy for the evening.

His later spur-of-the-moment stand-up set didn't do that well with most of the audience, but, honestly, I think he, like Johnny Carson, is funnier when he's not going over as well. That might be the kiss of death for the movie we occasionally plan together, though. He may need someone to direct him to be the way he is when large groups find him funny.

An improv group called Blood Squad did a couple of funny sketches, although I have a feeling they're capable of better than they were able to give tonight, which I suspect was true of most of the people.

Two guys from Scarecrow Video did a butt-clenchingly unfunny prepared film that was supposed to parody career retrospectives, but simply made me wish I'd been blinded with scalding vinegar to keep from seeing. I'm considering scalding my brain with scalding vinegar just so I can forget it.

I have to give the comedy folks credit. It was impossible to know the schedule of events, so they were flying by the seats of their pants as to how many slots were available and how long they should last, making it hard to plan an entire evening's comedy.

I suspect they'd do a lot better next year, but I have an equal feeling they won't bother doing one, as they spent most of the evening standing in back looking pained and confused.

Segueing to brief Oscar thoughts. The Ennio Morricone tribute was pretty much as uninteresting as a tribute to someone as challenging and brilliant as Morricone could possibly be. And am I wrong or did Clint Eastwood erroneously claim that A Fistful of Dollars was Morricone's first work as a film scorer?

They also went to some pain to include list every American movie he scored, no matter how awful, and none of the foreign movies, no matter how great.

The comedy, or something like it, interrupted Celine Dion's performance, which didn't bother me, but the fact that it wasn't returned when Morricone took the stage was deeply offensive to me, although not as much as Moran's witless interrupting of Morricone after they finally returned, simply at the expense of his speaking Italian.

Comedy gold.

Perhaps I have found my arch-nemesis.

It seems like I should have more thoughts on the Oscars themselves, but, honestly, they didn't seem to go any better than the night of comedy.

Note to all the people who believe nudity harms a actress's credibility, all five of this year's Best Actress nominees have exposed flesh on celluloid. Helen Mirren, the winner, perhaps more than all the others put together. I'll let the skeptics do their own research on this one.

I have often wondered, however, what it's like being Kate Winslet and being naked in a movie that everyone has seen. You could literally walk down the street and point at strangers at random, "Seen my boobs. Seen my boobs." I think that'd be odd.

For the record, I did enjoy Mirren's tribute to Elizabeth II. Classy move. I suppose it would not have felt as classy if Forrest Whitaker had repeated the gesture, huh?

It was good to see him win. I'm always happy when former Fast Times at Ridgemont High cast members go home with gold.

[EDIT: As I have been corrected, I am deleting my erroneous comment of Mr. William Monahan with apologies. I will leave the comments regarding it below. Thank you everyone for the correction. I clearly spoke too quickly about something I had apparently not been able to pay close enough attention to. I'm sorry to my readers and Mr. Monahan.]

Lesson learned. The Oscars just suck and beer and comedy do not improve them.


Peter Nellhaus said...

I read from a couple of sources that Monahan did thank Alan Mak and Felix Chong. I would be nice if Scorsese gave Mak the chance to do a Hollywood film since the guy has proven his chops in Hong Kong several times over.

Anonymous said...

Monahan: "There's no place to put this down, huh? Valium does work. Anyway, I was going to cut off the beginning of this speech and make it brief, but I'm gonna leave it back in and say, you know, the movie that made me wanna be a screenwriter was Robert Bolt's Lawrence of Arabia. And I don't know what could've happened in the universe to end up at the same Oscars as Peter O'Toole, you know, so it's crazy. He's here, I've seen him.

So anyway, thanks to the Academy, to Warner Bros., everybody at Warner Bros., Alan Mak and Felix Chong who wrote Infernal Affairs, the producers present and not present, the agents, everybody who made The Departed such a success. Thanks to Marty and Leo for reading the script and calling each other and saying, 'Let's make it.' And Thelma.

You know, everyone who worked on The Departed was, you know, it's easy to say was at the top of their game before they started, and under Marty's direction it only got higher after that. Thank you very much."

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