Random commentary and senseless acts of blogging.
The first Republican president once said, "While the people retain their virtue and their vigilance, no administration by any extreme of wickedness or folly can seriously injure the government in the short space of four years." If Mr. Lincoln could see what's happened in these last three-and-a-half years, he might hedge a little on that statement.
Prisoners of Azkaban
Sunday, February 29, 2004
Lord of the Oscars
Congratulations to the cast and crew of Return of the Kings, which swept tonght's Academy Awards, along with the good people of New Zealand who seemed, from the acceptance speeches, to have been collective co-producers on the trilogy. The awards were well deserved - the final episode was superb and the total series is a genuine epic, without a doubt one of the greatest movies ever made. According to the announcer on tonight's show, the 11 awards for RotK ties it with Ben Hur and Titanic; of those three it is by far the best.
I was disappointed to see Rene Zellwegger win for her overly showy performance in Cold Mountain. I would have much preferred Marcia Gay Harden or Christina Ricci, who wasn't even nominated. I also felt a touch of disappointment at Sean Penn's victory. His win was deserved and overdue, but it means that Bill Murray, who, unlike Penn, rarely gets a shot at genuinely interesting roles, has lost out on the best chance he is ever likely to have.
I also have to congratulate Sofia Coppola. Coppola was still a teenager when she became famous for playing Al Pacino's daughter in the failed 3rd film of the Godfather trilogy. Her reviews were deservedly brutal. The temptation to become a recluse or a career heavy drinker after such an early and unpleasant introduction to celebrity must have been overwheming. Instead, Ms Coppola continued to work in the family business, directed a quite decent movie (The Virgin Suicides, 1999) and has now written and directed a minor masterpiece.
In the other traditional event, the evening gown competition, it's hard to choose a single winner. Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Garner, Catherine Zeta Jones, and Julia Roberts were among many who I thought looked spectacular. The most noteworthy fashion victim of the evening was Uma Thurman. Owen Wilson and Ben Stiller won for lamest tacky promotion of an upcoming movie that is likely to be lamer still.