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Random thoughts about sound and vision.

After The Gold Rush

So, it's finally over. As hundreds of tuxedos are sent to the dry-cleaners, millions of dollars of diamonds returned to safes and thousands of champagne bottles cleared away, a quick check as to how my Oscar predictions fared.

Over at Gold Derby, I took a stab at all 24 categories; I predicted 14 correctly. Not too great, not too shabby. Must try harder.

Argo won the Best Picture trophy - tainted somewhat by Ben Affleck not being nominated as Best Director. With four wins - in Direction, Visual Effects, Cinematography and Score - Life Of Pi ended up with the most statuettes of the evening. 

Seth MacFarlane

Seth MacFarlane

Of the Big 6 (Picture, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress and Director), I managed to get four right. Christoph Waltz's win as Best Supporting Actor came as a surprise - although, in retrospect, it shouldn't have, as Waltz had already nabbed both a Golden Globe and a BAFTA for his performance. I wasn't expecting Ang Lee to pick up the award for Best Director. Then again, neither did Steve Spielberg, who looked pretty grumpy at the result. Never mind, Steve, you can have another shot at the little gold guy with your next cinematic offering - Robopocalypse. Or maybe not. 

I haven't had chance to look at the whole ceremony yet but what I've seen so far hasn't been encouraging. Picking Seth MacFarlane as host was certainly a gamble - but sadly looks to be one that didn't pay off. The opening, with its jambalaya of dance numbers, pop culture reference, celebrity jabs and crude humour, just didn't work. The best kind of Oscar host appears to be playing the game on the surface - respectful of their peers, deferential of the Academy - but always have the iron fist ready, hiding in the velvet glove. At least MacFarlane can relax knowing that, no matter what brickbats are currently being slung at him by the critics, he's still not the worst Oscar host of all time. Step up, James Franco.

Expect next year's show to be played very, very safe...and with veteran host Billy Crystal inevitably back at the helm.