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The Milton Measure

Oscars Exceed Expectations

by Shira Golub on Friday, March 7th, 2014

As the rain subsided above the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles on the afternoon of March 2nd, 2014, the red carpet opened for the 86th Academy Awards, the pinnacle of the awards season. Although most winners were not surprising, host Ellen DeGeneres defied expectations and more than made up for her poor performance in 2007 by humorously engaging the audience.

The Oscars recognized many films for their important messages and meanings, but mixed with the heftiness of pieces such as Pink’s poignant tribute to Judy Garland was Ellen’s charismatic and conversational tone. Although critics may have claimed that Ellen played it safe, her much-needed pizza order and record-breaking “selfie” with famous actors and actresses were intimate touches that the broadcast has been lacking in past years.

Ellen’s wit was not the only aspect of the night that captivated audiences all across the globe. The films recognized this year were remarkable; great nominees including American Hustle, Captain Phillips, Dallas Buyers Club, Gravity, Her, Nebraska, Philomena, 12 Years a Slave, and The Wolf of Wall Street flooded the Best Picture category. The slightly favored 12 Years a Slave, directed by Steve McQueen, took home the Oscar in arguably one of the most competitive awards category all year. Actress, Lupita Nyong’o who played Patsey in 12 Years a Slave won her first oscar for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

However, 12 Years a Slave was not the only movie that was well-rewarded last night. Gravity, starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney, won seven Oscars including many technical-based awards for its 3D space simulation. Dallas Buyers Club, the moving film depicting the struggle with AIDS in Texas circa 1985, stole two categories, Best Actor in a Leading Role with Matthew McConaughey, and Best Actor in a Supporting Role with Jared Leto.

The program of the show reflected the perfect balance in theaters this year. From top box office hits such as Frozen, an animated film, all the way to Captain Phillips, a movie based on the true story of the 2009 Somali pirates hijacking of an American cargo ship, this year gave viewers a spectrum of moviegoing experiences and so did the oscars. Performances such as Pharrell Williams’ Happy juxtaposed with Jared Leto’s acceptance speech showcased the variety that, according to New York Daily News, drew in the largest amount of viewers for the Academy Awards with 43 million in 10 years.

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Posted by Shira Golub on Mar 7 2014. Filed under Arts & Entertainment. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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