Sunday, February 22, 2015

Overture, Curtains, Lights

This is it, the night of nights
No more rehearsing and nursing a part
We know every part by heart!

It's Academy Award night again, and like most Oscar viewers, we remember that the foreplay is destined to be more satisfying than the actual show itself... I fear for me, this is especially true this year. Although incredibly talented, I just don't enjoy Neil Patrick Harris and his self congratulatory looks and smug mugging. I am thinking a big production number, some jokes about the Sony Hack, Kanye West, Ben Affleck's penis and even a pasts it's prime Bill Cosby joke. Hopefully Harris will make a fool out of me and do something original, but Ellen Degenerous set a high bar last year.

When searching for an image of Harris to include, I loved stumbling upon the image above. What an interesting threesome to be photographed together from 2012. Harris voiced the 'mirror' in A Snow White Christmas at The Pasadena Playhouse in California. Along with Harris the cast included Lucy Ewing herself, actress Charlene Tilton, and soon to be pop sensation Ariana Grande. A fun, but completely random trio of performers. Mirror Mirror on the wall, whose the best Oscar host of them all?

Every year, FH readers know I do a 'nominations' list featuring the best skin scenes I can find from each the nominee's. This year, every Oscar nominee, with the exception of Bradley Cooper, was also nominated for a Golden Globe. If you missed my naked salute to the Globes, check it out HERE: and see all the nominee's including a few (David Oyelowo & Jake Gyllenhaal) whom I would have included in the list of best actors.

Although I am rooting for Eddie Redmayne, Golden Globe snubbed Cooper indeed put in a powerful performance in American Sniper. Although I respect the strength of Cooper's performance, I really didn't like most ( especially the middle) of Sniper. I think the reason people either loved, or had issues with the Clint Eastwood directed drama, comes down to the editing and the change of focus of how much time Eastwood gave pieces of his film.

To me, the most powerful parts of the film were the beginning, and especially the end. The middle went on far too long and began to feel a bit gratuitous as yet another child was heard crying and put in harms way. I am sure some will think I am missing the point, and that the middle was necessary to show the audience how brutal and never ending it was. I get this, but also believe that I, and everyone, should have gotten that early in the movie after the first killings of the mother and son. I think if Eastwood had cut about 20 minutes from the middle, and given a bit more time to the pain and trauma Chris Kyle endured once he was home, I may have felt it more worthy of the acclaim the film is getting. War is hell, but there were times in the middle, I felt the movie morphed into a video game with the point and focus of Chris's ordeal being lost in the maze of special effects, smoke, gunfire and kills.

Cooper in Bending All The Rules (2002)

So sit back and enjoy my Oscar foreplay with the following Academy Award themed posts!

Cooper by Time Walker for W Magazine.

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