"The Reader" - review plus Oscar Night
In my quest to see all of the nominated films before the Oscars, Kitty and I went out to see "The Reader" yesterday afternoon. All I knew about the film was that it involved underage sex and Nazis. Overall it was a very good film. I even gave it an outside chance of winning Best Picture based on my "Jewish Conspiracy" theory. I used to joke with my sister that whenever a movie, particularly in the Best Documentary category, was nominated, the film dealing with the Holocaust would always win. In "The Reader" Kate Winslet plays an ex-SS guard accused of war crimes. To me the movie fell apart when it came down to the choice of the shame over the fact that you are illiterate, or that you were a war criminal with the likelihood that you would be sentenced to life in prison. Obviously I thought that the plot took the wrong turn. We did agree that Winslet turned in an outstanding performance and she was deservedly awarded Best Actress.
We watched the Academy Awards later that evening. Overall I thought the show sucked. If this blog gets discovered by any of the Hollywood-types out there, KILL THE PRAISE-BY-COLLEAGUES FORMAT!!! The old standard was to show a short clip of the actor's/actress' performance for which he/she was nominated. This year they got a bunch of old winners who stood around praising the nominee for his/her performance. It was lame!!! I also see that we're going back to the bad old days of cheesy musical numbers. *facepaws* The other trend I see is that they're going away from having a snarky comedian host the show and rather have a more "dignified" actor host the evening. Hugh Jackman did an admirable job, but I miss the comedic genius of Billy Crystal. Oh, and either the Academy needs to be betchslapped for not inviting Peter Gabriel to perform his nominated song from Wall-E or Gabriel needs to be betchslapped for not wanting to perform. I suppose it doesn't matter because he didn't win anyway. That was also full of suck. I'm glad "Slumdog" won Best Picture and Sean Penn won Best Actor for his performance in "Milk." While I don't approve of stump speeches during the show, I'm glad he said what he did about the fight for gay rights. Now I just need "Benjamin Button" and "Frost/Nixon" to come out on DVD.