Film Comment: A Reflection on the 85th Academy Awards

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The 85th Academy Awards brought together the artists which made 2012 an unforgettable year for film. When I heard the news that Seth Macfarlane had been hired to host the Oscars, I was surprised but excited. I do enjoy the odd episode of Family Guy but was left disappointed. His jokes were incredibly hit and miss, with the majority of the misses (rather distastefully) directed at women.  The jokes which degraded Jessica Chastain’s Zero Dark Thirty heroine and the ‘we’ve seen your boobs’ song were undeniably mean-spirited and unnecessary. Macfarlane’s singing voice is phenomenal and his jokes concerning the ceremony’s notoriously long run time were admittedly hilarious. It’s a shame that he wasted the opportunity to showcase his talents, and lacked the class of High Jackman or Billy Crystal.

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Whilst the awards were fairly predictable, the use of the Jaws theme tune to speed up acceptance speeches was fantastic, although that did not stop Tarantino. The star presenters sparkled as they took the stage. Not only were (most of) the Avengers united to deliver wisecracks, but we were also treated to appearances from Meryl Streep, Jack Nicholson and Nicole Kidman. Michelle Obama, a champion of the Arts industries also made an elegant surprise appearance as she announced the Best Picture winner, Argo. I still cannot decide which of the best pictures I would have given the award to, but Argo was a deserved winner. I was on the edge of my seat throughout the movie and I think that it’s the only film that I’ve seen where the audience has applauded a scene before the credits have even rolled. Ben Affleck’s speech was incredibly heartfelt and I may have teared up a little bit when he thanked his wife, Jennifer Garner.

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Jennifer Lawrence has experienced a number of wardrobe malfunctions this Awards season, from her ripped dress at the Screen Actors’ Guild Awards to her rain soaked dress at the Baftas. I don’t think that I have ever seen anyone fall as gracefully as she did upon the Oscars’ stage. My heart melted as Hugh Jackman and Bradley Cooper sprang from their seats to assist the young starlet. As she composed herself before declaring, “You guys are just standing up because you feel bad that I fell and that’s embarrassing, but thank you.” With a sense of humour like that, maybe she should host the 2014 Academy Awards?

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The red carpet is always a highlight for me as it’s a chance to see some of the world’s most gifted designers flaunt their latest creations. Amy Adams shone in the silver-grey Oscar de la Renta dress that she co-designed. Amanda Seyfried’s Alexander McQueen dress was equally stunning. Hollywood’s dashing leading men also wowed the red carpet in an array of tailored tuxedos which rivalled those of James Bond.

Although the 50th anniversary of Bond failed to unite the various incarnations, Adele’s rendition of Skyfall set the stage ablaze. The cast of Les Miserables’ live performance also provided an added treat. The 85th Academy Awards were certainly memorable and I cannot wait for next year’s show. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler did a wonderful job of hosting the Golden Globes so fingers crossed they will be hired for the Oscars 2014.

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I am studying Film and English at the University of Southampton and I'm in my 2nd year. My main passion is cinema and my goal is to become a film producer.

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