2014 Oscars lacked excitement


Courtesy Photo

Courtesy Photo
Courtesy Photo

The 86th annual Academy Awards aired March 2 on ABC. The scheduled three hour program ran over 30 minutes, making the Oscars last three and a half hours, which was about two hours too long. Countless video montages, musical guests and speeches made by winners of categories that most people could care less about made the Oscars seem rather boring this year.

The host, Ellen DeGeneres, played it safe with her opening monologue. She poked fun at Jennifer Lawrence who fell at the Oscars both last year and this year. She also poked fun at the 84-year-old Best Supporting Actress nominee, June Squibb. However, there were no politically incorrect or shocking jokes that caught people’s attention and made them laugh hysterically.

DeGeneres redeemed herself somewhat during the Oscars by ordering pizza for the star-studded audience and for taking the best selfie of all time. She grabbed Meryl Streep, Jennifer Lawrence, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Lupita Nyong’o and several other A-list actors and actresses to take a selfie for Twitter. The picture broke a record for the highest number of retweets -over a million- and even crashed Twitter for
several minutes.

Pharell Williams performed his hit song “Happy” and had Meryl Streep shimmying to the music. Pharell even wore his infamous hat that he wore to the Grammys during the performance. Pink, sans trapeze, performed her own rendition of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” which was met with mixed reviews. Bette Midler performed the classic song, “Wind Beneath My Wings” during the in memoriam tribute which was a bit of a yawn to most viewers. Julia Roberts was very moved, however, and cried like a baby. Idina Menzel’s highly anticipated performance of the song “Let It Go” was met with disappointment. John Travolta introduced her and butchered the pronunciation of her name. Kaelyn Wolfe, a sophomore communication studies major tweeted after the performance that, “maybe she’s mad her name was mispronounced? Idk” in regards to why the singer did not perform as well as usual.

There were no surprising upsets. Out of the major categories, the frontrunners all took home the Oscar. Best Supporting Actor went to Jared Leto of “Dallas Buyers Club” where he played a transgender stricken with HIV. His speech was aimed at thanking his mother and urging viewers to not be ashamed of who they really are.

Best Supporting Actress went to Lupita Nyong’o, the first time Kenyan actress, who recently graduated from Yale University. Her speech was given with poise and class, and viewers expected nothing less.

Best Actress went to Cate Blanchett of “Blue Jasmine.” There was absolutely no surprise there seeing as how she has won at every possible award ceremony this season. She chose to direct her speech to people who do not appreciate films with women as leading characters. She said, “to the audiences who went to see (‘Blue Jasmine’) and perhaps those of us in the industry who are still foolishly clinging to the idea that female films with women at the center are niche experiences: they are not. Audiences want to see them and, in fact, they earn money. The world is round, people.” If you were not already in love with Blanchett, this speech was sure to make you change
your mind.

Best Actor was awarded to Matthew McConaughey of “Dallas Buyers Club.” While he was the frontrunner to win, a lot of people were pulling for Leonardo DiCaprio to take home the Oscar. DiCaprio, the five time Oscar nominee, has yet to win the award. This had led to several hilarious memes on the Internet dedicated to his losing streak.

McConaughey’s speech was a tad odd. He advised viewers to choose themselves in 10 years as their hero. While I did not really follow his logic, McConaughey redeemed himself by ending the speech with his signature line, “all right, all right, all right.”

Best Director went, unsurprisingly, to Alfonso Cuaron of “Gravity.” The film took home several awards for visual effects, totaling seven Oscars.

The big award of the night, Best Picture, went to “12 Years a Slave.” The Oscars ended its program with director Steve McQueen and members of the cast and crew excitedly accepting their award with huge smiles on their faces.

Maybe the 2015 Oscars will provide more upsets, more shocking jokes and less musical performances and montages. Until then, Americans have the best selfie of all time.