Tonight’s artwork: my favorite of the movie poster series that my amazing wife, Elizabeth Ho, created for the 2015 Pawscars.
Tonight, the final award show of the “season” *finally* happened. The Oscars anointed “Birdman” with their top honor, something I believe I predicted back a couple months ago when we saw it in theaters. They also gave “The Grand Budapest Hotel” some love, tying Birdman with 4 wins. Lady Gaga and Julie Andrews were a fucking boss, Chris Pine cried after hearing “Glory,” and I went to Dayna & Matty’s oscar party as Eddie Redmayne as Stephen Hawking with the Ho as my first word board. We won Best Dressed, which is the second time in a row that’s happened for us at Dayna’s Oscar party…Coops won last time as Lincoln.
Also, the Instagram contest that the Ho was running called the 2015 Pawscars finished today, and they got a write-up about it on Barkpost, which is like the buzzfeed for dog shit. Big deal. We just found that part out. Oh, and Coops and Coco hit 3000 followers. Major big deal.
I personally thought that Michael Keaton was going to, and should have won for Birdman. I also think that Richard Linklater should have won the oscar for Best Director for doing “Boyhood.” I mean, dude, that movie took 12 fucking years to make. It wasn’t the best movie of the year, but that is a massive DIRECTORIAL achievement. He should have won *that* award, if none of the others.
But, as I’ve talked about already this year…2014 was finally FINALLY a good year for movies. There were some legitimately fantastic movies, with some edge, and some innovation, and some execution to them. Basically, with a couple singular exceptions each year, and not even that every year, it’s been a shitstorm in my humble opinion when it comes to the “best” movies of the year. And, that sad thing is that it’s not even that the Academy is choosing the wrong movies to nominate…it’s literally that there are no really good movies out there. Like I said, with a couple exceptions…maybe ONE movie each year, if even that. I know there have been a couple years where there literally hasn’t been a single movie that I thought deserved to be heaped upon with praise and be called a “best picture.” But…this year there were! And several of them! Oh, happy days.
Whiplash was fantastic, for reals. Tense, musical, great performances, simple story. And, the last sequence in that movie is INSANE. SO GOOD.
Boyhood. Spotty, but had genuinely amazing and touching moments, and overall just an incredible achievement and SUPER ambitious and innovative.
Birdman: takes the cake for edgy and innovative. Keaton was a fucking boss in that movie, the concept was fucking cool, it was immersive, maybe not my *favorite* movie of the bunch, but it hands-down 100% deserved to win Best Picture. It was ARTISTIC, as in it showed me things in ways I’d never seen them before.
The Theory of Everything: NOT a phenomenal movie, but still solidly good. Eddie Redmayne was genuinely fantastic and believeable and convincing as Stephen Hawking. He co-star was not, and the film ultimately just lacked any real balls, or intensity, or any deep-producing reaction for me…but it was still SOLIDLY GOOD. It didn’t make any stupid annoying fucking mistakes. It was well done.
The Imitation Game: again, NOT a phenomenal movie. A good third of the movie was incredibly clumsy and forced, and several scenes were super on the nose…BUT…the subject matter was genuinely fascinating, as was what happened to this clearly brilliant and ultimately totally betrayed man. I’d have been pissed for it to win something like best picture or even an acting win…but it certainly deserved to be in a discussion of the top movies.
The Grand Budapest Hotel: SHOULD have walked away with the most oscars of the night. It was robbed at the Best Screenplay stage, which would have given it 5. Probably was my favorite movie of the group. Not even probably, it WAS. Wes Anderson infused a seriousness to this movie that was absolutely superb. I knew it wasn’t going to win Best Picture, it was simply too whimsical for the Academy, but it was my favorite, and I think Wes Anderson’s best movie since…well, maybe ever.
That’s SIX movies, guys, that I really liked. And, THREE of them I genuinely loved. That’s more than the past five oscar seasons combined, all this year. It made me feel a bit better about my industry…there are still some new ideas out there. Here’s to hoping next year brings as many.