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Category: February 2011

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Oscars: Good to have Randy Newman back with trophy in hand

February 27, 2011 |  8:03 pm

Newman 
So, Randy Newman and the Oscar for his "We Belong Together" from "Toy Story 3" takes the BS gold (for Betsy Sharkey, geez) for one of the best speeches of the night. He wanted to be great television, said he'd been told how to be great television, and you know what, he was. Twenty nominations, some of the most incredible music of our time, about time Oscar checked in on him again.

And when did it become a requirement for actors to be able to sing? All I can say is I'm glad for the ones who can -- Gwyneth Paltrow had her twang, Mandy Moore had her tangle -- both did great. And then Celine Dion, who knew she could sing ... but "Smile," what a wonderful sendoff for those we lost this year.

RELATED:

Red carpet photos

Oscar scorecard

Complete coverage: The Oscars

--Betsy Sharkey

Photo: Randy Newman performas at the Oscars. Credit:  Kevin Winter/Getty Images


Oscars: 'Inside Job' wins documentary

February 27, 2011 |  7:38 pm

Inside job Wow! Someone said something worth remembering. Charles Ferguson, director of the winning "Inside Job," who began his acceptance speech by noting that three years after the worst financial meltdown in our history, the subject of "Inside Job," "not a single financial executive has gone to jail."

The subject was a tough one. Most of us are so exhausted by the financial crisis, meltdown, implosion, that the idea of sitting through a serious look at the whys and the hows was not exactly appealing. And yet it was. Ferguson and the writers did a masterful job of creating tension and handing us the facts to back up all that anger. It was OK, it turns out, to be as "mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore' " (Peter Finch, "Network," 1976).

RELATED:

Red carpet photos

Oscar scorecard

Complete coverage: The Oscars

--Betsy Sharkey

Photo: "Inside Job's" Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs accept the award for documentary feature. Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

 


Oscars: Short films, tough categories but good choices

February 27, 2011 |  7:30 pm

Matheny With "Strangers No More," a film about the school project in Tel Aviv that brings children from 48 countries under one roof, winning documentary short, I couldn't help but feel a sadness that another treatise on the power of school, "Waiting for 'Superman,' " didn't make it into the long-form documentary category.

The live-action category was a tough one -- "God of Love" was a jazzy musical meditation on love that was hard to resist. It was also the most embraceable in a field filled with darker looks at human nature, from the domino effect of a couple of kids and a prank gone wrong in "The Confession," or the way love hurts in "The Crush" and "Wish 143." The darkest by far, "Na Wewe" on the Hutu-Tutsi fights, was an inventive exploration of what makes someone who they are. All were worthy, but it's easy to see why "God of Love" took the Oscar home.

RELATED:

Red carpet photos

Oscar scorecard

Complete coverage: The Oscars

-- Betsy Sharkey 

Luke Matheny accepts the Oscar for "God of Love." Credit: Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times


Oscars: 'Wolfman' and 'Alice' a little bit of that movie magic

February 27, 2011 |  7:15 pm

Dtoro Have to say, I'm always a fan of the makeup and costume categories. These always feel like the old-school movie magic awards, before we had 3-D and special effects. And movies that often would never get a second look get, well, a second look.

How can you not want to give the "Wolfman" guys who gave Benicio del Toro really great facial hair, broken knuckles and those amazing nails a golden boy? I'd check into their spa anytime.

And costumes, this is where the out-of-the-world has a shot. The incredible Colleen Atwood picks up her third trophy, for "Alice in Wonderland." Clearly better with the clothes than in front of the camera. Glad she won and really felt for her in front of the microphone. She could have used an assist from Colin Firth.

RELATED:

Red carpet photos

Oscar scorecard

Complete coverage: The Oscars

--Betsy Sharkey

Photo: Benicio Del Toro in "The Wolfman." Credit: Frank Connor / Universal Pictures


Oscars: 'Inception' definitely a 'sound' mix ...

February 27, 2011 |  6:58 pm

Inc
Dinner break, but rumor is that "Inception" nabbed sound editing and mixing. Whew, that was a nail biter.

RELATED:

Red carpet photos

Oscar scorecard

Complete coverage: The Oscars

— Betsy Sharkey

Photo: Leonardo DiCaprio, left, and Cillian Murphy in "Inception." Credit: Stephen Vaughan / Warner Bros.


Oscars: 'The Social Network' wins original score

February 27, 2011 |  6:56 pm

Tsn
Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman and orchestral interlude. Cool.

And the winner? "The Social Network." Here's what a score does: It's the mood music for the movie. And "The Social Network" was a tough cookie if you think of it. Computer-nerd fights as an action thriller -- for all that the director, actors and script did to make it so, it was the music that put the cherry on top (or the chill in the trills...). I'm humming, are you?

RELATED:

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--Betsy Sharkey

Photo: Jesse Eisenberg in "The Social Network." Credit: Merrick Morton / Columbia Tristar


Oscars: Melissa Leo apologizes for swearing

February 27, 2011 |  6:52 pm

Leo 
Melissa Leo offered one of the most spontaneous moments of tonight's Academy Awards when she dropped an f-bomb during her acceptance speech for supporting actress. But the 50-year-old said she didn't necessarily want to draw attention to herself that way.

Backstage, she told reporters she was sorry she let a swear word slip out. "Those words — I apologize to anyone if they were offended," she said. "There’s a great deal of the English language that is in my vernacular." She went on to call it "an inappropriate place to use that word in particular."

The f-word is particularly on the minds of filmgoers this season — the rating for "The King's Speech" was just downgraded to a PG-13 after the Weinstein Co. removed a few swear words from a key scene with Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush.

— Steven Zeitchik

Photo: Melissa Leo goes colorful as she accepts her supporting actress Oscar. Credit: Associated Press.


Oscars: Christian Bale gives best speech yet

February 27, 2011 |  6:43 pm

Bale 
Yeah! I love it that Christian Bale won. One of those actors who is always provocative. Heartfelt, and a great shout-out to Micky Eklund, the recovering addict/boxer he played in "The Fighter." That he ended with a word for his wife, voice-breaking, best acceptance yet.

SAG and Globes had already weighed in saying he was the best. He's already created an incredible body of work, with "The Fighter" only the latest in what I hope will be a very long string.

--Betsy Sharkey

Photo: Christian Bale and his wife Sibi Blazic at the Oscars. Credit: Chris Pizzello/AP

 


Oscars: 'In a Better World' wins foreign language film

February 27, 2011 |  6:39 pm

Bw

The Oscar for "In a Better World," from director Susanne Bier, is well deserved. This filmmaker is becoming a master of the intimate, and in the drama of family relationships and world events, she created something extraordinary.

RELATED:

Red carpet photos

Live blogging: The Oscars

Oscar scorecard

— Betsy Sharkey

Photo: Mikael Persbrandt stars in "In a Better World." Credit: Morten Søborg / Sony Pictures Classics


Oscars: 'Social Network' and 'King's Speech' take writing honors

February 27, 2011 |  6:27 pm

Ds Javier Bardem and James Brolin -- two guys who know their way around words-- good choices to give out the screenplay awards. Love Bardem's accent.

Aaron Sorkin and "The Social Network" was the favorite going in. He'd already picked up the Writers Guild top honor. So the Oscar was almost, almost, a given. But really, Aaron, you write, couldn't you have done something besides list the management team behind you? Really? Yes, there was the Paddy Chayefsky/"Network" mention. But we deserved something more from you. Oh, yeah, I did think he deserved it. "

But cheers for David Seidler for "The King's Speech." Now that was a kingly speech. Warm, wonderful, the whole age thing. It all began with an extraordinary script, an extraordinary story. Well done. Is this the start of a sweep for "The King..."?

--Betsy Sharkey  

Photo: David Seidler arrives at the Oscars. Credit: John Shearer / Getty Images


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