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10 things I learned from this year’s (2015) Academy Awards…

Posted on February 27th, 2015
Posted on February 27th, 2015

by Coop Cooper

1. Funny actors don’t always make the best hosts. Just because Neil Patrick Harris won a Tony and had a hit TV sitcom doesn’t mean his jokes or timing are going to work. His racial references were clumsy. Even more cringe-worthy was an ill-timed joke about an award-winner’s dress after she dedicated her win to her son who committed suicide.

2. There will be an upset or two. I thought for sure Eddie Redmayne was the last actor in the category who would win Best Actor but I was sorely mistaken. Likewise did I underestimate the Academy’s love for “Birdman” which won best picture, nearly shutting out “Boyhood” from all other categories except for Best Supporting Actress. Additionally, I was very pleased “Whiplash” won Editing and Sound Mixing along with a well deserved win for J. K. Simmons as Best Supporting Actor.

3. There will always be longwinded acceptance speeches by people you’ve never seen before. Speeches thanking everyone from their agent to their dog are hard to sit through. Even more so when their English is poor and they refuse to stop when the exit music plays. Granted the winners were excited but the Academy didn’t do a good job keeping it under control this year. Now they have let it slide, it might get worse.

4. The filler musical numbers and skits aren’t always gold. The opening number was yawn-inducing despite some amazing live special effects involving projection and well-timed choreography. The ‘Neil’s Oscars predictions’ running gag did not work at all. Producers could’ve saved time having Jennifer Hudson sing during the ‘In Memoriam’ instead of after. Lady Gaga, however, completely stole the show with her better-than-perfect “Sound of Music” medley.

5. People are getting tired of Meryl Streep always getting nominated. Jared Leto made a pretty funny joke about it. She’s been nominated a record nineteen times and has won three times. It’s not that people dislike her and it’s not like she doesn’t deserve it, but it’s getting a little out of hand.

6. The award-winning actors aren’t always good at presenting awards. It’s almost hilarious when Oscar winners like Ben Affleck can’t muster up enough charisma to present an award without looking completely indignant and bored while Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson comes across as both charming and affable in the same position. It almost feels like we are giving awards to the wrong people.

7. Politics will always play a part in the ceremony. This year the focus was race, government spying and women’s rights. Next year, who knows what the hot topics will be, but considering that celebrities know you make headlines when you go off topic with politics when accepting your award, I’m surprised more don’t do it.

8. The “In Memoriam” segment will always omit someone big. They forgot Joan Rivers this year. It seems like a massive slight considering she practically invented the red carpet interview. It’s a possibility her conservative, pro-Israel views may have rubbed the Academy the wrong way but it is probably a careless a mistake. Actors Elaine Stritch, Jan Hooks, Taylor Negron and James Bond villain Richard Kiel were also omitted.

9. The best speeches are the short ones that come from the heart. J. K. Simmons’s ‘call your Mom and Dad’ speech and “The Imitation Game” writer Graham Moore’s plea to bullied gay youths were the best speeches of the night. The Polish director of “Ida” who refused to get off the stage and wouldn’t stop thanking people tested everyone’s patience and unfortunately emboldened others to do the same.

10. My prediction skills are far from perfect. I correctly predicted fifteen out of twenty four categories, excelling mostly in the lesser categories while failing to predict Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Director. This year was more difficult than the last two to predict but it’s always fun to take a stab at it. Until next year!

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