85th Annual Academy Awards Postmortem

Emily White ’16 / Emertainment Monthly Staff

This year’s Oscars event was one of the most anticipated in recent history. With a boom in the film industry, a host with a big name to live up to, a theme for the first time, and so many close-call categories, everyone had big expectations for the most popular awards show of the year. This year’s Oscars lived up to those expectations and more with a night of offensive humor, great music, and plenty of twists and turns.

Host Seth MacFarlane may have shocked audiences with some of his more offensive jokes, such as “You know who really got into Lincoln’s head? John Wilkes Booth,” but he truly delivered as an engaging and entertaining host. The night’s first musical number, “We Saw Your Boobs,” quickly became a trend on Twitter and an internet sensation. Ensuing ballroom dancing with Charlize Theron and Channing Tatum and softshoe with MacFarlane, Daniel Radcliffe, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt caused everyone to swoon.
The theme of the night was “the music of the movies,” a new idea tried out for the structure of the event this year, resulted in amazing movie musical tributes including Catherine Zeta-Jones doing a number from “Chicago,” Jennifer Hudson stopping the show with a number from “Dreamgirls,” and a rousing anthem from the cast of “Les Miserables.” There was also a tribute to the beloved “Sound of Music.” This theme was a great way to make the event more cohesive, more flowing, and more entertaining. There were definitely less awkward pauses and more cheers as a result. Here’s hoping the “theme” concept will continue as successfully in years to come.
When it came to the awards themselves, this was one of the most difficult years to call. Daniel Day-Lewis was perhaps the most expected win, for Best Lead Actor for his portrayal of Abraham Lincoln in “Lincoln,” and it was well-deserved, and the speech well-delivered. Also, of course, Anne Hathaway predictably and proudly took the gold for Best Supporting Actress for her turn as Fantine in “Les Miserables.” Christoph Waltz trumped Tommy Lee Jones and Phillip Seymour Hoffman, other favorites, for Best Supporting Actor for his role in “Django Unchained,” but it was also well-deserved and not too surprising. However, when it came to the categories of Best Actress, Best Director, and Best Picture, the audience was all on the edge of their seats. With an incredible story and journey, “Argo” ended up taking the big one, to the delight of the audience and to an ecstatic Ben Affleck, even though he did not receive an arguably deserved nomination for Best Director. Best Director shocked many with a win for Ang Lee for “Life of Pi.” Up against Stephen Spielberg, David O. Russell, Michael Haneke, and Benh Zeitlin, it was one of the most competitive categories of the night. Any one of them could have taken it home, but Lee was not the favorite, so it was a bit surprising.    The true star of the night, however, was Jennifer Lawrence, who is probably the only person who can make falling cool. In perhaps the most anticipated and hotly debated category, Lawrence ended up winning the Best Actress award for her portrayal of Tiffany in “Silver Linings Playbook” over other favorite Jessica Chastain for “Zero Dark Thirty.” The two had been closely debated in odds, and it was certainly an exciting moment for Lawrence when she won – so exciting, in fact, that she tripped over her own dress. And somehow, it made us love her more. It was a well-deserved win for the young, successful actress.

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