Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I'm Counting On You, Anne!!

Well, the Academy Awards telecast is going to be starting in just a little while. Frankly, I'm just watching it as I have the last few years, out of habit more than genuine interest. It wasn't always this way. I used to look forward with excitement to the presentation of the Oscars each year, when I actually used to really love the movies. That's going back to when I started watching the annual telecast back in the 70's and continuing through the 80's. But in the last couple decades my interest has been steadily waning, as with each passing year Hollywood convinces me that they aren't really interested in making the kind of movies that I find genuinely entertaining.

I think the last Academy Awards show that I actually enjoyed was the year that the musical, Chicago swept many of the major awards. I was hoping that last year director Rob Marshall would have a similar success with his film, Nine, as it was my favourite movie by far released in 2009. Alas, neither audiences nor film critics shared my enthusiasm, and Nine was pretty much shut out even at the nomination stage. Instead, last year was a battle between the technological marvel, Avatar, and the gritty war pic, The Hurt Locker, neither of which I much cared for. Actually, I didn't even get around to seeing Avatar until its later reissue, and The Hurt Locker (which won) I'd rented just the day before the awards and really hated it!

Yeah, I know I'm completely out of step with contemporary moviegoing tastes, believe me I'm painfully aware of that. As such, I really haven't had a horse in the race for many years now and I don't even enjoy many of the films getting nominated in the major categories. I've seen several of the Best Picture nominees this year, including True Grit, Toy Story 3, Black Swan, The King's Speech, and (as of yesterday) The Social Network. They're all good films, but quite honestly, none of them can hold a candle to the type of Oscar winning films that came out of Hollywood in its glory years in terms of outright entertainment. Films like My Fair Lady, Lawrence of Arabia, and The Godfather, as diverse as they are, remain for me completely memorable and entertaining in their respective ways. In contrast, none of the films nominated this year I would make a point of watching again. Sadly, it's been like that for me for many years now.

I guess if there's a single reason I'm interested in tonight's Academy Awards, it's because of the choice of Anne Hathaway as one of the two co-hosts. She's not only beautiful but has great charisma to boot. I love watching her on screen and in interviews, as she just sparkles with personality. I thought she was terrific when host Hugh Jackman carried her up on stage from the audience to join him in his song tribute at the beginning of the telecast a couple years back. I'm hoping she'll sing and dance for us tonight too! As for the awards themselves....meh.