Wednesday, February 29, 2012
It’s the night that all of the Hollywood elite come out and dress to impress with hopes of taking Oscar, now at the grand old age of 84, home to proudly display on their mantel. Last night marked the show that added the cherry on top of award season, the 84th Annual Academy Awards.
For film buffs like myself, this ceremony is the highlight of the season as we sit up until the wee hours of the morning hoping that our favourites will take home the highly coveted gold statuette. A lot was riding on this years show, given last years disappointing Oscar Hosts, the boring Anne Hathaway and James Franco, so we were delighted to see the legend that is Billy Crystal was back at the helm.
Billy did what he does best and brought back a much needed old school glamour feel to the show, he was endearing, funny and ran a smooth show with easy charm. We love Billy; he might have played it a little safe but it really worked.
Aside from the winners, all eyes were on the ladies as they wore impossibly beautiful gowns and looked so perfect that it just wasn’t fair. The Red Carpet coverage was fairly sparse this year, the coverage was stopped just as some big stars had yet to strut their stuff (and they didn’t get Gary Oldman, booooo!) but we did get to see Sasha Baren Cohen throw a heap of white powder over an unsuspecting Ryan Seacrest, brilliant stuff altogether.
Gwyneth Paltrow, J.Lo (who mentioned Ireland in her presenting bit, woo!) and Milla Jovovich all looked stunning, (I would like come back as a combination of all three of them in the next life please) whereas I didn’t care for Sandra Bullock’s or Angelina’s outfit choices – eat some food woman!
On to the awards themselves: Silence roared as loud as it possibly could as it took away five gold statues including Best Picture. It became the first silent film in 83 years to win Best Picture at the Oscars. The Artist also struck gold for director, actor, costume design and original score, a numerical feat that was matched by Martin Scorsese’s Hugo, another homage to cinema that also won five trophies.
Best Director winner Michel Hazanavicius looked stunned and thoroughly delighted at his win and we were charmed by his lovely acceptance speeches. Best Actor winner Jean Dujardin was in one of the few nail-biters of the evening, winning in what was perceived a tight three-way race with superstars George Clooney and Brad Pitt. He truly deserved it and here at the Culch offices, we were thrilled for the whole cast and crew.
Best Actress winner Meryl Streep was in another tight race, the outcome of which no one could predict until the envelope was opened. It was her third Oscar win in a record 17 attempts, and her first in nearly 30 years, honouring her portrayal of former British Prime Minster Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady. Streep’s win caused a little surprise as it came at the expense of Viola Davis from The Help, who many thought would get the gong.
It was an especially grand occasion for Christopher Plummer, who at 82, was the oldest recipient of the award. He won Best Supporting Actor for Beginners, in which he plays a late-blooming gay man. Plummer received a standing ovation, as he happily accepted his first Oscar in his decades-long career.
Non-surprisingly, Octavia Spencer won Best Supporting Actress for The Help, received a standing ovation from the audience. Elsewhere, there were no surprises in the screenwriting categories, which both went to the favoured candidates: The Descendants for Best Adapted Screenplay and Midnight in Paris for Best Original Screenplay – YAY!!
There were some highlights, in the form of the Quebec’s Cirque du Soleil dance troupe, they performed an energetic special tribute to the movies to a beautiful score composed by Danny Elfman, Chris Rock got more than a few laughs as he presented the Best Animation award, which went to Gore Verbinski’s Rango – “..and then they pay me a million dollars!” and I loved Gwyneth and Robert Downey Jr’s comic turn as they presented best Documentary Film. There was also a mix of wonderful odes to cinema by Hollywood stars throughout the show as they spoke about their favourite thing about film. Touching and wonderful, I welled up at some of them! This is what the movies are about.
All in all, it was a great, albeit a slightly predictable show (we had no real surprise winners) but it was thoroughly enjoyable and thanks to Billy Cyrstal, we had a Oscar show as it was meant to be: full of fun, charm and always reminding us what makes movies so magical. Until next year, Oscar.
Sunday, January 29, 2012
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Monday, January 23, 2012
After a 7-year hiatus, famed designer Versace returned to Haute Couture today, officially opening the Paris series of shows with the luxurious, excessive glamour that we know and love. The show was nothing short of decedent; we had Couture glamour at its finest. Stunning gowns from the sheer metallic, brazen cold and tangerine orange all flowed effortlessly down the stairs (call me old fashioned, but I'm a runway girl). The hair was sleek, the make up dark and sensual but it was those gowns that took our breath away.It was a successfully stylish way to open Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week 2012. From January 23rd through January 26th,the world renowned designers will flaunt their most flamboyant and glamorous fashions for the entire world to see and envy. The week is reserved for some of the most dramatic and daring designers, including Jean Paul Gaultier, Christian Dior, Givenchy and a big favorite of mine, Chanel.
Friday, January 20, 2012
But its not to be. While Peppy becomes a huge star, Valentin, still refusing to talk, becomes yesterday’s news. All Peppy can do is look anxiously on and tries her best to help the star get back in the limelight once again. The humor and romance of the film are handled lightly but work wonderfully, and the audience will be drawn in by the beautiful silence of it all. No words are needed when it comes to our two stars; it is a joy to simply watch them on screen. French director Michel Hazanavicius has done his job perfectly; in the odd time that we do hear any sound, it seems invasive, like it just shouldn’t be there. This helps us empathise completely with the unfortunate situation George Valentin finds himself in, and it’s blissful when silence descends once again.
My review of this years recent Golden Globes ceremony also published on Culch.ie:
Friday, August 19, 2011
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
We've seen a few shots from Roman Polanski's highly anticipated new movie 'Carnage' but now the promotion campaign is starting to get into full swing as we now have the official poster for the film. This Andy Warhol style artwork features the lead actors showcasing a varied range of facial expressions and is a colourful change from his usually more serious film artwork.