Oscar Recap (2014 Season)

Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu accepting the award for Birdman for Best Picture on behalf of his team!
As the contenders jabbed and went blow for blow in the squared circle, everyone knew that it was going to be close, yet there could’ve been only one victor.  This is why it was so emotional as the spectators almost or were completely there in tears knowing each fighter was going to give it everything they had, leaving everything “on the field”.  Shot for shot, punch after punch after punch after punch, it came down to one last round, one last minute of effort … and now down to the last second, literally.  Just as within that second where Apollo falls to the mat, Rocky (Balboa) skirmishes to find stability, one victor emerged and it came down to that final moment, when Batman himself (Ben Affleck) announced the name of this year’s best director, Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu.  It was pretty clear at this point with the DGA win already in his corner, rooting him on in the fight to the finish line, that his movie that he directed would emerge victorious!  At that moment it was clear, 2014 … belonged to the Birdman!

Insert Michael Keaton’s bird squeal. 

Best director … best director, best director, best director!!!  This was the one category where I was fueled with the impulse of some of my biggest emotions; primarily fear.  I had my assumptions, my predictions, my hopes, and my fears.  Boyhood director Richard Linklater had an honest to God legitimate shot at taking this.  To all my fellow Birdman supporters I couldn’t be any happier, but just know this was a close one and we received this deserved win by the skin of our teeth.  That just makes it so much more amazing of a win as I like to look at it!  I was SO CONCERNED about this!  So much so that I put pretty much all of my focus in this category and was in tears in thankful joy when the outcome showed its face announcing Alejandro’s name.  This is why I didn’t receive some of the wins in other categories and came out with only 15 correct picks, when 18-20 is what I normally end up with.  For this big of a win, I’ll gladly take that!  Worth it!  I’m so excited that I still was a home Oscar ballot winner at my party!

To all my followers, I was at a party in the Hollywood Hills and I received completely NO reception until after I left.  So my apologies for not being able to help with Oscar ballots this season.  It was quite something to get a blast from my phone once in decent reception.  Thank you to my fellow partygoers for an amazing evening.  Everyone ate my Birdman cake first and it was the only one of the 3 there to completely finish!

Now to the ceremony.

One of the things I did predict completely happened, and that’s The Grand Budapest Hotel cleaning house as it did.  A typical Wes Anderson flick, as this clearly is, nothing more, nothing less, should rake in such awards for costumes, sets, make up, etc.  It’s just a shame in my opinion that The Academy chose to recognize this film and not his last one, Moonrise Kingdom (2012) that was by far A MILLION TIMES BETTER and by far his best film in my book, and my favorite of that year. 

It’s always a pleasantry to see Julie Andrews, she doesn’t look a day over 60!  I can’t say I share the same love for Lady Gaga.  But I do like how her “people” are trying to move her out of “pop” and more into an overall appealing artistry. 

Neil Patrick Harris, was a decent host.  If he were to never do it again, would I be upset?  Not in the slightest.  I’ve already started to forget about his performance.  Was it terrible?  No.  I liked his Birdman bit and the “interruption” of the opening number.  But was it amazing and up to the likes of some of my favorites such as Hugh Jackman, Billy Crystal, & Seth MacFarlane?  Not even close.  The “magic trick” with his predictions, I’ve seen magicians do this trick before and couldn’t “believe the magic” as I was supposed to.  Overall a decent job, I want Seth MacFarlane to come back as he wasn’t “safe”, he was who he was, and that’s why he received solid feedback.  You either loved it or not, and 83% of people that night loved it.  This year ratings fell 12% from last year.  The funniest joke in my book came from Jared Leto when he presented supporting actress, “I present to you these 4 actresses and by the law of the state of California, Meryl Streep”. 

What I learned most this season is to trust my instincts a whole lot more.  Reading all kinds of information about what experts think they know about how The Academy will sway puts me into thinking and down a road I don't need to travel.  Last year and this one now what I've originally felt panned out.  I won't always get it right, but I now know to just focus more on how I feel and not what I "think" I should feel primarily based on what I've heard from others and insiders.  

I could get into my opinions of each particular film, how this film deserved this or didn’t deserve that (like with Whiplash), but honestly, I’ll take my 15 wins and happily celebrate the 2 that truly excited me the most, for to me they were the most important:

BIRDMAN IS THIS SEASON’S FILM!  Both in its leadership and the overall moving and brilliantly conveyed story it has placed in my heart.

Balboa for the win!

The Seahawks choking in the Superbowl, Birdman taking home the gold, my parents celebrating their 33rd anniversary, February has been an amazing month!

Happy New Year to all my fellow cinephiles!  I can’t wait to experience what the new season has in store! 

Photo Commentary: Birdman for the big win, and then pictures of some of "my girls" on the red carpet last night (Margot Robbie, Scarlett Johansson, & Jessica Chastain).  With the exception of the last one, Genesis Rodriguez, she's almost there ;-)

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