Netnet Camomot .
THE women in Hollywood in this era of #MeToo and Time’s Up must have realized by now that even the Academy Awards statuette is named after a man, Oscar.
Way back in 1931, Margaret Herrick, who was then the Academy’s librarian, supposedly said that the statuette resembled her Uncle Oscar. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Watching the Oscars was like a trip down memory lane as we recalled all the movies we had absorbed by then, with some of them ending up as nominees in the series of awards shows that culminated with the Oscars last Monday morning (Sunday evening in the US).
Here’s one example. The nominees for Sound Mixing were “Baby Driver,” “Blade Runner 2049,” “Dunkirk,” “The Shape of Water,” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” The only movie in this category that we failed to watch was “The Shape of Water.” Why? Because I thought I couldn’t take a love story between a syokoy and a woman.
And then, I began to calculate the total amount of movie tickets bought so far and… Oh. My. Gosh. There’s the lunch, dinner, or snacks before the movie; popcorn, hot dog, and diet soda while inside the theater; another lunch, dinner, or snacks after; and coffee or hot choco before going home, with that coffee sometimes morphing into McChicken sandwich, large fries, and diet soda. Add all that and it’s ka-ching ka-ching! Plus this: at least two pounds added to the body weight the morning after. Hmmm. Netflix, anyone?
But “Water’s” victory as best picture definitely inspires our curiosity, with Jimmy Kimmel, who hosted the Oscars again, saying in his opening monologue that “we will always remember this year as the year men screwed up so badly, women started dating fish.” Which gives new meaning to “There are plenty of fish in the sea,” meant to heal the wounds of a broken heart.
This was the 90th Oscars, and Kimmel also included this in his monologue, saying, “Our friend Oscar is 90 years old tonight, which means he’s probably at home right now watching Fox News.”
Oscar’s age prompted some presenters and winners to mention their 90-year-old and even 99-year-old moms.
When Helen Mirren, 70, in presenting the award for best actor, said, “Jane and I are very honored to have been asked to present on Oscar’s 90th birthday!” her co-presenter Jane Fonda, 79, replied, “Especially when we found out he’s older than we are.” To which Mirren responded, “Isn’t that the point? I mean that’s an anomaly here in Hollywood. Having an older man with a younger woman.”
Gary Oldman, who won the best actor Oscar for his role as Winston Churchill in “Darkest Hour,” thanked his mom: “She is 99 years young, next birthday. And she’s watching the ceremony from the comfort of her sofa. I say to my mother, thank you for your love and support. Put the kettle on. I’m bringing Oscar home.”
Kimmel’s monologue, however, didn’t stop at Oscar’s senior-moment age. “After all the years, after all the awards given for achievements in show business, Oscar is still No. 1. No question about it,” Kimmel added. “Oscar is the most beloved and respected man in Hollywood. And there’s a very good reason why. Just look at him. Keeps his hands where you can see them. Never says a rude word and most importantly, no penis at all. He is literally a statue of limitations. And that’s the kind of men we need more of in this town.”
He also remembered last year’s best-picture confusion when “La La Land” was erroneously read as the winner instead of “Moonlight” which eventually became known as Envelopegate. He warned the nominees that “This year, when you hear your name called, don’t get up right away. Just give us a minute. We don’t want another thing. What happened last year was unfortunate…”
He also revealed an idea that might have sounded good at that time: “I’ve not told this story in public because I wanted to save it for tonight. But here’s what happened. This is true. Last year, about a week before the show, the producers asked me if I wanted to do some comedy with the accountants. And I said, ‘No, I don’t want to do comedy with the accountants.’ So, then the accountants went ahead and did comedy on their own. And I have to hand it to them, it was hilarious. But it won’t happen again.”
For the 2018 Oscars, he quoted the chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers who promised that their “singular focus will be on the show and delivering the correct envelopes.” But Kimmel asked, “Just out of curiosity though, what was your focus the other 89 years?”
Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway presented the best picture Oscar last year to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their movie, “Bonnie and Clyde.” They were back again this year to present the same award, with Beatty saying, “It’s so nice seeing you again.” To which Dunaway replied with, “Presenting is lovelier the second time around.”
To kind of rub it in again, before opening the envelope for the best animated short winner, Mark Hamill, who was with fellow “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” cast members Oscar Isaac, Kelly Marie Tran, and BB-8, said, “Don’t say ‘La La Land.’ Don’t say ‘La La Land.’”
Mirren said something more in presenting the best actor award: “From the 1960s to the present we’ve experienced so many changes in politics, fashion, film, science and technology. And now between women and men! In public and in private. Like all of you, we’ve embraced and fought some of those changes.” Her co-presenter Fonda then added, “What was once considered ground-breaking is now considered the norm.”
And, so, there’s “Coco” winning best animated feature, and its producer Darla K. Anderson thanked her wife, and co-director Adrian Molina thanked his husband. Their acceptance speeches somehow brought us back to Kimmel’s monologue which had hints on a homophobic US Vice President Mike Pence: “We don’t make films like ‘Call Me by Your Name’ for money. We make them to upset Mike Pence. Right?”
“Call Me by Your Name” is a movie about 17-year-old Elio falling in love with the 24-year-old graduate student Oliver.