So apparently last night's Oscar ceremony was the second least-watched in history (at least in the history of televised ones). I find this ironic, because this was the first year in quite a while when I had actually seen a number of the nominated movies. By my count, I saw 10: Munich, Good Night and Good Luck, Crash, Pride and Prejudice, Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Batman Begins, Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Syriana, and Mrs. Henderson Presents. I find that to be a nice mix of movies, including blockbusters and smaller films, period pieces and sci-fi/fantasy flicks, social dramas and escapist fare. Really, I thought it was a great year with something to suit everyone's taste. So I don't really understand why box office was so sluggish. Granted, recent years have really saturated us with movie "events," like the LOTR trilogy, the early Harry Potter movies, and those way over-hyped Matrix sequels. So maybe we're just falling back towards equilibrium. There was no big event that began in 2005. Instead, we got the end of the Star Wars films (which was pretty cool, despite the fact that ROTS had some flaws) and the continuation of well-tested franchises like Batman and Harry Potter. Nothing truly new to stir things up. Of course, we (or at least I) don't really have enough data to say whether this is just a consolidation or really a total shift in the market. Frankly, I think that 2005 is a year I will look back fondly on as far as the movies it produced.
The Oscar ceremony itself was suprisingly short (it finished at about 11:30 PM Eastern). I thought Jon Steward did a great job at being funny while still respecting the atmosphere. I'm happy that Ang Lee won for Best Director, as he has been the pride and joy of Taiwanese film culture for years. I am also glad that George Clooney won for Best Supporting Actor since he was quite good in Syriana and because I've liked him in almost everything I've seen him in. I was a bit startled when Crash won for Best Picture. That movie is profoundly affecting, though perhaps contrived. Regardless, it is an impressive achievement. I will admit that I liked Good Night, and Good Luck and Munich more, but I guess I have to accept that this wasn't their year.
In related news, Mike can't do arith-i-mAtic, Gus is a vigilant member of the spelling police, and neither Amy nor Gus is someone you want to pick lotto numbers with.