Even before Jack Nicholson introduced the first lady of the United States to present the award for best picture, this year's Oscars had developed an unusual political cast to it, both in personalities and in substance.
There was a slavery joke, there was a Jewish joke, there was a gay joke and there was a joke about Hispanic accents. This is lazy.
Seth MacFarlane is a very, very funny guy, I love his TV shows, but sometimes what might seem funny in your head or even in your living room might better go unsaid.
In "Paul Williams Still Alive," the documentary about the popular 1970s singer/songwriter -- and Johnny Carson cut-up -- Paul Williams, we see the mus...
Why not an Oscar category for Best Soundtrack? Or, rather, the best use of pre-existing music?
To round out our Academy Awards-themed week, actor Romany Malco ("Weeds", "40 Year-Old Virgin," "Think Like A Man") performs monologues from this ye...
I believe for the first time in Oscar history, it should not be surprised if the best film of 2012 is handed both to Steven Spielberg's Lincoln and Ben Affleck's Argo.
Since when were movies considered a reliable source, comparable to the many books and primary sources we have at our disposal? My college professors would never accept "J. Edgar" as a scholarly source for a history paper, just as they will never accept "Zero Dark Thirty" as a serious piece of historical evidence.
Championship sports teams get to prove on the field of competition that they are the best in the world -- or at least the league. By contrast, Oscar hopefuls must persuade a jury of their peers that they are worthy of the name "Best." In recent years, that campaign of persuasion has turned into a six-month marathon, costing tens and even hundreds of millions of dollars. It's as if the NFL's playoff contenders spent the entire postseason trying to get the refs to look kindly on their regular season games, instead of playing any new ones.
In category after category significant movement in the likely winner provides a window into the power of certain events that occurred on the road to the Oscars.
Argo is not my favorite film of the year. It didn't even make my best-of list. But it's a populist mainstream genre entry of uncommon craft and intelligence, rooted in character and narrative. In terms of the best representation of what 2012 had to offer, Argo is absolutely the movie of the year.
I like Oscars that go a little crazy. And not in those golly-gee speeches where someone -- say, Anne Hathaway (the inevitable winner tonight) -- reacts with such feigned shock that she giddily exhibits an actorly, cute-as-a-button manic depressive episode.
The goal of this exercise is certainly not to replace social relationships with a reflective surface -- the literally fatal moment of the Narcissus myth -- but rather to motivate you to get off the couch and engage with others more purposefully, meaningfully, and effectively.
From Les Miserables to Silver Linings Playbook to Flight, death and grief are major themes in this year's Oscar nominated films. The film makers and writers must be applauded for daring to expose viewers to such intimate portrayals of the grief process.
This week was spent preparing for an event full of manufactured drama, long-winded speeches, self-congratulation, and fake sincerity. No, not the Oscars -- the Sequester. The crisis might be as manufactured as the ending of Argo, but the consequences are all too real, including a decline in growth and jobs, big cuts to national parks, and air travel chaos. So go ahead and tune that out for a night and take in another -- far more appealing -- spectacle in which people pretend to be something they're not. My predictions: Best Picture: Argo. Best Director: Ang Lee. Best Supporting Actor: Robert De Niro. Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway. Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis. And, in my upset special, 85-year-old Emmanuelle Riva for Best Actress -- a role model of fearless aging.
This question originally appeared on Quora. Answer by Mark Hug...