Monday, February 23, 2009

I hope Dad comments, so I'll know where he's at in the room

If I were in charge, I'd get Hugh Jackman to sign a contract right now for the next few years.  The Oscars are better I think for a little familiarity, and I miss the days of the tried-and-true host who's both a funny man, a classy man, and a music man - and Hugh won on all counts I think.  On the other hand, here's to changing things up - like the prettiest set design ever, the return of the big musical numbers, and the five previous winners honoring personally each nominee in the acting categories.  One of my favorite parts of the Oscars:  Watching them react to each other, and those categories were stuffed full of moving.

Here are some nominees for my favorite moments:  First up, the musical numbers.  I told you I think even life should "periodically burst into song, and dance about the stage," so I was all for the very cool opening number, the heart-stopping "Musical is Back" routine, and the performances of the three nominated songs.  (What happened to five?  For a year in which the musical is back, there was a shocking lack of big movie songs apparently).  I even liked it when Hugh cracked up during the unique song about not yet having seen The Reader.  And, while I'm signing contracts, I think Beyonce should be considered the official Oscar singer.  Remember the year she sang three of the five songs, and they were all in such a unique style?  She's just really, really good.  Plain and simple.

Next I wrote down, "Heath's family."  It was a very gracious acceptance speech from the people who surely knew Heath Ledger the best.  But what moved me most were the tears in the audience.  I wondered which of them had been his dear friends, which of them cried simply because of a young life lost too soon, and which of them - perhaps - were parents too and empathized with the painfully beautiful thought of accepting such a high honor for a child who shouldn't have, but did, go before you.

I like it when people seem to notice us out there on our couches with popcorn soaking in every minute.  I like it when they say, "I used to give this speech with a shampoo bottle," (a la Kate Winslet last night), or when they remind us that, "Anything's possible".  Last night my favorite moment like that was when the director for Slumdog Millionaire complimented the beautiful set design, saying, "I don't know what it looks like at home, but here it's bloody wonderful."  I believe you, Mr. Boyle, yes I do.  And it's so nice of you to tell me that like you're the friend of a friend who lucked out enough to know somebody who knows somebody who got you into the show and then took a picture of it on your blackberry and texted it my way.  I now feel even more like I was there.

I mentioned the musical numbers, right? (Here's a You Tube video of The Musical is Back).

But then, after all this, came my favorite part of all.  I know for sure it was my favorite, because I found the clip HERE, and I've watched it over and over today.  It was Kate Winslet's father whistling to her across that huge room of somebodys.  Her reaction was like end-of-the-movie, thank-God-they-found-each-other, dreams-come-true sublime.  

Of course, the soundtrack to this year's Oscars was apparently Jai Ho from Slumdog Millionaire (some of the cast pictured here by KaushiK on Flickr) - a movie I am SO GLAD I saw before Oscar night.  And what a great movie to win so many Oscars.  It's about rising above, finding your destiny, fighting for love - all the good stuff.  Where I watched the show, we wore bright yellow scarves in honor of the movie and that happy theme.  Jai Ho means, "May the victory be yours."  I am loving that.


Molly said...

I LOVED the Kate Winslet and her dad moment too, and I thought of you. "Dad, just whistle or something so I'll know where you are." And then she waved like a totally uncool, so not movie starish, regular person. SO something you would have done. (And I mean that in the best sense) Loved it, loved it, loved it.

But I hardly saw any of the rest of it. Thank you DVR for saving it for me!

Felicity said...

I saved mine on DVR in case your post mentioned anything that I missed. Luckily, I saw all the best parts apparently because my favorites match yours. I'm going to watch that Kate clip again! : )

Sarah said...

Kate's dad whistling was one of my favorite moments of the night as well! And I love, love, love watching the Slumdog cast react when they win things. And the little Slumdog actors were too cute.
What a great show!


I LOVED the Oscars this year. I'll be honest, I was NOT thrilled about Hugh Jackman as host. I felt like it should be someone American. Yes. This coming from the Canadian. Okay. Someone American or Canadian, but not Australian, for sure.

Well, Mr. Jackman turned this hater into a lover. I was wanting him to sign a renewal contract after the opening act. That man is talented!! He is perfection. And he is an adopted dad!!!! How more perfect can he be!!

Kate Winslet is... I truly have so many words to describe her, but none are good enough to match her. Let's just leave it at that. I love that woman.

The set designs were amazing. My husband was kind enough to point out every single thing to me and rewind a million times so I took it all in. It was inspiring. Jason twittered that the down economy has been great for the Oscars. It was the BEST Oscars EVER!!!!!!!!!!!! And that is coming from someone who prefers to watch the Superbowl!

Slumdog's success was so very important for South Asians. I am involved with the South Asian community in Chicago and was major! The final uniting of Bollywood and Hollywood, and in such a fine manner. Very proud of the South Asian representatives.

serenity said...

I hope more people will write about their favorite parts, because I usually miss some as well. And, Molly, I totally take that as a compliment of course that you even imagined me in that setting. And, Simone, I'm so glad Hugh won you over. I cringe when I read the reviews online, because I don't want to hear anyone say that they disliked him or the musical numbers, because then they might not do them again! There was a "Wally" award given out to the musical is back routine for "the most unnecessary use of Beyonce." I read that and thought, Please don't listen to them, Academy!

Andrea said...

Thanks Serenity for showing me where to look and what to look for. No TV can be a prob at times like this, but I survive, by watching "the best" of the night. I've watched the Kate Winslet and her dad moment over and over too. What a tremendous tribute the fact that some in hollywood are family oriented. I watched the opening number as well, and I'll just say, it wasn't Gene Kelly, or Fred Astair, (I know, I'm old) but "DAAAANNNNG" I just wish it had lasted longer! I don't care what nationality Hugh Jackman is, he can sing and dance for me anytime :)

Anonymous said...

Hey Seren.. I'm whistling. I have to admit I wouldn't be as proud of you if you had starred in this movie as something like "Pride and Predjudice" or that other movie Just like it "Emma" but I would whistle anyway. I also like your choice further down about the Beatrix Potter movie. Especially about buying the farm in the country for mom and I to move in with you( although I realize you didn't say exactly that). I love you and am very proud of you and your hubby. proud dad(I am out here in the cornfield, if you were wondering)

serenity said...

I knew I could count on you, Dad. That's what I loved most - even more than her wonderful reaction - I knew without a doubt that you would have come through for me that way too. I was thinking, "My dad can whistle like that! And he so would if I needed him to. Even at the Oscars.

serenity said...

Also, of course you have to summer in England with us.

Haley Ballast said...

Kate's dad whistling made me tear up, and when it comes to award ceremonies (which I'm sorry to say are not my thing... try not to hold it against me S!) that is really saying something! It was downright precious.

Kelly H-Y said...

I was so bummed to miss most of it ... we returned from a meeting at church just in time to catch the amazing Best Actress and Best Actor tributes! Whoever thought of that format is BRILLIANT! I had tears in my eyes ... could you imagine sitting there, as one of the nominees, and having that kind of tribute paid to you. Just incredible. And, from some highlight clips I saw, I have to agree with what you said about Hugh Jackman! Sounds like this year's show was a winner!!!

serenity said...

Ah, Haley, how could you even wonder if I'd hold that against you? :)

Anonymous said...

My FAV part was what you also mentioned, seeing the five actors/actresses standing side by side on that stage, speaking directly to the nominee about why they're wonderful. TOTALLY loved that idea and I hope they do it again. Anne Hathaway singing with Hugh, brilliant.