live-blogging the oscars.

The awards season comes to a close tonight with the most prestigious of ceremonies: the Academy Awards. It will be an interesting telecast with an unprecedented 10 nominees for Best Picture, and, for the first time in Oscar history, two hosts. The duo of Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin is either going to be great or terrible. I’m hoping for the latter, because I find both of them funny separately, so they have to be funny together, right? I’ll be picking apart the fashions as they appear, since I can’t stomach any network’s red carpet coverage. Check back for my thoughts on Hollywood’s most important evening, and bear with me, because I think I’ve seen one, maybe two nominated movies.

8:30: This intro of the Best Actor/Actress nominees feels like a beauty pageant.

8:32: Neil Patrick Harris! Love him and his sequined tux. Of course he’s singing.

8:33: Loving the SYTYCD alums in this number, courtesy of producer Adam Shankman.

8:35: Meryl Streep is awesome.

8:37: Great “damn”/”dame” joke at Helen Mirren’s expense. BTW, has she found the fountain of youth? If so, please share.

8:39: Gabourey Sidibe’s mom is loving Baldwin/Martin.

8:41: Awkwardddd…James Cameron is sitting behind Kathryn Bigelow.

8:43: I asked why Zac Efron and Taylor Lautner were invited and my mother’s response was, “They’re in movies.” Thanks for clearing that up, Mom!

8:48: And Best Supporting Actor goes to…Christoph Waltz. Can’t say I’m surprised since he won a Golden Globe.

8:50: Ryan Reynolds – one of Canada’s best exports.

8:52: It’s nice to see that the real family from The Blind Side was invited.

8:56: This bit with the animated characters is cute.

8:58: Not at all surprised that Up won Best Animated Feature Film. I haven’t seen it, but it’s Pixar, so it has to be fantastic.

9:00: Go home, Miley. Amanda Seyfried looks lovely, though.

9:03: The song from Crazy Heart is probably going to win.

9:04: I’m three for three with winners so far. Too bad I didn’t take part in an Oscar pool.

9:05: So far we’ve had Ryan Reynolds then Chris Pine introduce a Best Picture nominee. I like the trend that’s being set here…

9:12: Tina Fey. My idol. My mother thinks she looks like “Tarzana” in her polka dotted-ish dress.

9:13: Fey and Downey, Jr. are killing it with their writer/actor bit.

9:15: As a writer (I use that term loosely,) I love when they do nerdy writer stuff like read the stage directions on scripts.

9:17: Molly Ringwald? Did you get lost on the way from 1987?

9:19: This John Hughes montage is making me feel old.

9:22: This gathering of Hughes movie alums may or may not make me cry.

9:24: Now the clip of Up is making me tear up. Get a grip.

9:27: I have a total girl crush on Zoe Saldana, even though she was in the Britney Spears cinematic disaster Crossroads.

9:30: John Lasseter, you are awesome.

9:32: I may love Zoe, but hot damn, her dress is UGLY.

9:35: That red haired lady was pretty intense. I got the impression that she wasn’t supposed to be onstage and/or speak.

9:37: I am not shocked at all that Ben Stiller is dressed as a Na’avi.

9:40: I still love the Will Ferrell/Steve Carell bit from when they introduced Best Makeup a few years ago. I may YouTube it during a commercial.

9:47: I love Rachel McAdams (aka Regina George).

9:52: Queen Latifah always looks classy at awards shows. Her dress tonight is very flattering.

9:54: Cameron Diaz, I see you in the background chewing gum.

9:55: Robin Williams is oddly subdued.

9:59: Best Supporting Actress was a strong group with lots of talent, but Mo’nique totally deserves this.

10:01: Colin Firth is so dapper.

10:06: Of course Avatar won Art Direction. It’s easily the most visually stunning movie I’ve ever seen.

10:09: More Martin and Baldwin, please. These two are getting lots of laughs in my living room. SJP’s dress and hair piece are heinous.

10:11: I like this lady who just won Best Costume Design. Way to thank the under appreciated costumers!

10:13: Ugh, I can’t even escape Twilight on the Oscars.

10:15: I’m getting sleepy and bored. I might not make it to the end.

10:18: Color me shocked…Kristen Stewart’s dress is nice and she doesn’t look as slouchy as usual.

10:19: Do. Not. Like. Horror. Movies. I’m watching through my fingers.

10:22: Zac Efron and Anna Kendrick are very cute together.

10:27: Hmm…I thought these sound awards were a lock for Avatar. Does this mean The Hurt Locker has some big awards in its near future?

10:30: Quentin Tarantino – the Dwight Schrute of directing? Discuss.

10:35: Sandra is looking super shiny tonight. I kind of like the dress.

10:36: Avatar finally wins a technical-ish award tonight.

10:37: Oh no. The death montage. We’ve lost a lot of greats this year. Sad.

10:45: Oh, hello, Sam Worthington. I like your glasses.

10:46: LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY DANCERS! I love them so much.

10:54: Do you think Gerard Butler and Bradley Cooper talked about Jennifer Aniston while they were waiting backstage?

10:55: A big “DUH” that Avatar won Best Visual Effects.

11:02: Matt Damon – smart, talented, and a writer. Yes, please.

11:08: Dear Keanu, please shave. Thanks.

11:13: All the big awards are coming up, and just in time too, because I’m by myself now and I can barely stay awake.

11:14: I rest my case re: Quentin/Dwight.

11:19: Kathy Bates, you own Dunder Mifflin now.

11:20: I got chills watching the Avatar clip reel. It truly is a story that sucks you in and keeps you emotionally involved until the end credits.

11:23: There is a GIGANTIC spider crawling across the wall towards me. I just want this awards show to be over so I can get away from this speedy arachnid.

11:28: These personal tributes are actually quite interesting and touching.

11:31: Oh my god, West Coasters, it’s 11 freaking 30. Wrap it up, already.

11:33: Best Actor goes to…Jeff Bridges. No surprise there.

11:37: All right, I have to close up shop. I needed to go to bed like, an hour ago. Unlike everyone at the Oscars, some of us have to go to work tomorrow and earn a living : )

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‘the office’ recap: we’re having a baby!

Having been Office-free for a while, thanks to the Olympics, made the anticipation for this momentous event even higher. I had so many questions going into last night’s episode: Boy or girl? What kind of Michael Scott antics could we expect? And, most importantly, would Pam make it to the hospital or would it be a Dunder Mifflin delivery?

Since this is my first time blogging about the Office, I need to admit that I’m a total Office-aholic. I own all the seasons on DVD, and I have calendars, posters, Schrute Bucks at my desk, etc. I can quote the show at length, and now that I’m a receptionist, I feel like Pam Beesly and I are kindred spirits. (Except for the whole married and pregnant thing.) I anticipate big Office events, such as weddings and birthdays and mergers more than things that happen in my life.

Now that that’s out of the way (because the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem), on to last night’s episode. I was a teeny tiny bit worried as to how this episode would unfold, but I had faith in the stellar Office writers, who always take a potentially saccharine, sentimental moment and turn it into the awkward, true-to-life comedy that has become the show’s trademark. See the “Niagara” episode for proof. I think the baby-related plotline was handled well; I could see a young couple like Pam and Jim trying to make the most out of their HMO, but after a while I just wanted to shout, “Get in the car, Beesly!” John Krasinski and Jenna Fischer do a great job of playing frazzled father-to-be and panicked mother-to-be trying to play it cool. I’ll admit, I had tears in my eyes during the scene where Pam accidentally reveals the gender of their baby, and hopes Jim isn’t mad that it’s a girl. The reaction shots of Jim processing the news in the car were touching.
After 19 hours of labor, Cecilia Marie Halpert was born, and the other Dunder Mifflin-ites were there to celebrate, safely confined to the waiting room, of course. I thought the whole lactation plot was handled in a funny and realistic way, although the whole nursing-the-wrong-baby thing reeked of lesser sitcoms. I’ll give it a pass, however, because the rest of the episode was great. I was very glad that Michael actually acted like a real person instead of the caricature he’s become lately; the moment where he held Cecilia was cute.
His desire to then play matchmaker for everyone else in the office because of his “success” in matching Jim and Pam? Not so cute, although I did enjoy his description of the new parents before they became Pam and Jim: “She sat here, engaged to an animal, and he sat here, being tall and lanky.” (Not verbatim, but close.)
Obviously the spotlight was on the Halpert family, but in true Office form, the supporting players had some great moments too:
-Dwight had some great moments this episode, including,”I’ve been noticing a gaping hole in my life. Sometimes I wake up cradling a gourd,” being recognized by name by the Scranton police department, and destroying the Halperts’ kitchen to eradicate the mold, although I take the latter act to be a Schrute-ian form of affection.
-Kevin and Pam’s marathon meals together
-Angela’s reaction shot to Jim putting a diaper on her cat
-Meredith vowing to never get married because she’s “like Clooney!”
-Andy attempting to give Pam and Jim advice by saying, “Speaking as a former baby…”
-“I don’t want the first thing the baby hears to be the 8 Mile soundtrack!”
-Michael offering to set up the singletons in his office: “Who wants to live in a world where Stanley has two lovers and you don’t have any?”
-Hands-down my favorite little joke of the evening was Oscar telling Michael to bring a thesaurus, because “the hospital provides a dictionary,” complete with a sidelong glance at the camera.
-The nurse who was having no part of Jim and Pam’s know-it-all parenting: “Oh good. You know everything.”
-Ryan’s ever-evolving hipster look. There has to be a reason behind it, and I can’t wait to find out what it is.
-I like the potential of the Angela/Dwight parenting contract to fall to the wayside because Dwight may still have feelings for Pam’s pediatric hygenist friend Isabelle.
Now that baby Cecilia has entered the world of the Office, it will be interesting to see how big of a role she plays in the plot going forward.

Photo courtesy of the Halpert Baby Blog/NBC.