Sunday, March 09, 2014
This is exactly how I felt when they opened the envelope and announced that "12 YEARS A SLAVE" had won the Oscar for Best Picture!
That is the Director, Steve McQueen, who jumped up and down with genuine unabashed exuberant excitement...and with the company standing behind him---everyone so moved and deeply deeply thrilled.
I was, too. I hoped and prayed this film would win because it deserved to win.
I know I'm a little late getting to this post, but some of my health issues have kept me from it.....
So forgive this now, 'old news'.
I loved the whole evening!
I laughed out loud and I cried out loud---a perfect kind of show, as far as I'm concerned.
I thought Ellen was just terrific! She brought a kind of gemutlich(?) family feeling to the whole night.
She made the audience so very comfortable and in turn made me comfortable and made me feel really included in this unusual-for-the Oscars feeling of family.
Not an easy thing to do---I mean to make this nervous hungry competitive group feel like one big family.
As to the Awards themselves----the four Acting Awards were all as I thought they would be.
And that thrilled me, too.
In order of appearance:
Jared Leto, Best supporting Actor for "THE DALLAS BUYERS CLUB"...Again, I was thrilled!!!
He Soooo deserved this, and his speech was very moving.
See this film, please.
Lupita Nyong'o.....Oh, her win for Best Supporting Actress in "12 YEARS A SLAVE" made me Whoop with Joy!!! And her speech was so eloquent....and very very moving, too.....
Another film to be sure to see.....
It's not easy, but then, neither was slavery.
Cate Blanchett....She won Best Actress for her role in "BLUE JASMINE".....She is a brilliantly talented actress and was pretty much a 'lock' from the get-go. I'm happy for her, but, in truth, I wanted Judi Dench to come away with this Oscar---I knew she wouldn't, but.....she was my choice.
I had problems with the 'Blue Jasmine'.....but I had no problem with "PHILOMENA".......Do go see this very moving film if you haven't already. Judi Dench is a World Treasure!
Matthew McConaughey won Best Actor for "THE DALLAS BUYERS CLUB".....another 'lock' almost from the starting gate. I thought he was truly wonderful in every way. And it seems the Academy Membership thought so too.....!
There were lots of things I liked about this show.....the different sets---all those Oscars, (You can see them in that first picture of Ellen)....and the Blanket of Red Flowers.....
They could be Roses or they could be Poppy's---in Honor of "THE WIZARD OF OZ". All I know is---they were Beautiful!! And just to the left of the flowers there were the "lights".....
Harking back to the early days of film....I loved that! And something else that just knocked me out was the music used to play people on and off the stage----ALL, Academy Award winners from the past----really great great film music.....
And speaking of music.......
Darlene Love, spontaneously bursting into song ("His Eye Is On The Sparrow") when "20 FEET FROM STARDOM" won for Best Documentary....This is a terrific film about Back-Up singers who can and did sing the hell out of songs, but were basically unknown, though some of them hoped to have their own careers---Luther Vandross was a Back-Up singer who broke out, as we all know, and became a huge star.....If you can find this film on Netflix or any of the other many ways one can see movies now---don't miss it. And for anyone who doesn't know who Darlene Love is---do Google her!
Her breaking into song on the Oscars was a very moving and uplifting Highlight, for me!
And then there was Pink, who knocked it out of the park when she sang 'Somewhere Over The Rainbow' in the tribute section to Judy Garland and 'The Wizard of Oz'. She was perfection---singing in her own style, but honoring the song and Judy, with all the true and real emotion she brought to the song.
It was FABULOUS!!!
And the third musical Highlight for me was the 'Divine Miss M' singing one of her signature songs ('The Wind Beneath My Wings') after the In Memoriam section. Bette Midler is a real 'pro', and to watch her build this song into an anthem was truly glorious. The audience thought so too!
Seeing Sidney Poitier, a true hero in the fight for recognition of people of color as real human beings---our first Black Sex Symbol----the winner of the first "Best Actor" Award for a man of color----I was moved and touched and I was a little bit saddened by how frail he is now----A reminder of how frail I am now, too.....Sidney is from my time, and me, from his.....And so it was another reminder of all the glorious times past when we were all so young and beautiful, and a mirror on the truth of how old we all are now. A painful reality.
And then, he spoke.
And he was as eloquent and beautiful as ever....
What a man!
And how wonderful that he was on the arm of Angelina Jolie---a Heroine Of Our Times for ALL that she does for those in the world who are in such need.....
Her caring for Sidney----knowing what a pioneer he has been in the fight for equality, on and off the screen.....
Well....this moved me deeply, too.
There was "THE PIZZA"!!!!
A brilliant stroke, in my opinion.
People are hungry, having been on 'the red carpet' forever, and then there will be more than three hours before they will get a morsel of food....
It was fun, and the Nominees and their families LOVED it!
And they all gobbled it up, like hungry little piglets....
There's lots more....but, these were my Highlights.
Congratulations to all!!!
And especially to Ellen, who I thought was Superb!
This is probably the hardest job in Show Business
I hope the Academy uses her great gifts for this incredibly impossible gig, every year from now on!
More To Come......
Note: Please forgive me for not getting around to visiting your blogs.....getting this post together took all the energy I have, right now.....but I will try to visit when I can....Thanks so much for understanding.....
links to this post
| posted by OldLady Of The Hills at 11:34:00 AM
Sunday, March 02, 2014
By the time most of you read this----the Oscars will have happened. And oddly enough, they actually happen about five minutes from where I live, up in the Hollywood Hills......
Here is who I think will win....or.....who I want to win, in 5 categories.
I think Cate Blanchett is a shoe-in. Her performance was quite extraordinary.....although, for me, the film itself was problematic. I preferred Tennessee Williams "Streetcar Named Desire", and Woody Allen should have given him screen credit....but, barring that....I don't think there is any doubt she will win.
Who did I want to win?
Dame Judi! Yes!
A subtle un-showy truthful performance.
Moving in every way.
Less IS really More!
Another shoe-in. His was a great performance, and in an important and meaningful film.
He deserves to win, and I think he will win.
I love Chiwetel Ejiofor--an incredibly talented actor---
"12 YEARS A SLAVE"
I would be thrilled if he won.....but.....I think McConaughey has the edge.....even over Bruce Dern, who has deserved an Oscar for decades!
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
What a debut!
What she had to do in "12 YEARS A SLAVE"
was so very hard and she was absolute perfection.
I love Jennifer Lawrence and I think she is a phenomenal talent.....and it's possible she will walk away with her second Oscar.....
But.....for me, Lupita has the edge!
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
A brilliant performance---not an untruthful moment.
"DALLAS BUYERS CLUB"
He broke your heart in the best way.
A sensitive deep feeling performance.
I have no idea what picture will win this award.
I want "12 YEARS A SLAVE" to win....and it did win at the Independent Spirit Awards last night.....I congratulate them and hope and pray they will win, tonight.
"GRAVITY" may take this, or "AMERICAN HUSTLE"
or who knows.
My very favorite was "PHILOMENA",
but I don't believe it has a chance....
"12 YEARS A SLAVE" is an important film and a true labor of love.
Everyone should see this film.
Now, on with the show.......
More To Come.........
links to this post
| posted by OldLady Of The Hills at 10:26:00 AM
Thursday, February 20, 2014
the game - nye part 2
So we play 'The White Elephant' game after dinner and dessert.
People bring a wrapped gift---it can be something terrible that they want to get rid of, or, it can be something wonderful that everyone will hopefully fight over......
You don't know who brought what and that's as it should be.
We sit in a circle and roll the dice.
And there is a pile of Gifts sitting to the side on the floor.....And when you get a 7 or 11 you go pick out something from that big pile of gifts. (Sometimes people bring more than one thing, which makes it all the more fun.....)
So as I said, if you get a 7 or an 11, you can open a present, and then roll the dice again, and if you get another 7 or an 11, you can open another gift---and so on and so forth....We go around the circle and after everything is opened and visible.....well, that's when the fun really begins....
This was just one side of the room......and there were certainly a
variety of things---good, great, and silly and ugly, and wonderful!
Let me get in a little closer so you can see some of the things better.
Starting from right to left---a BIG Chocolate Bar (yum); some Teas and cookies, some books and a few DVD's; a couple of snow Globes that light up; a Great Cat Calendar for 2014, and a big Chicken Cookie Jar, and a piece of china known as
'The Creamer' was making a re-appearance in The Game.
The last time we saw it was in 2006....
Here below, a picture of Betty G., Charley Berliner and
'The Creamer', New Years Eve, December 31st, 2006.
I don't remember who put it back in the game that year---it had been in and out of the game for about 8 or 9 years before that----But, I ended up with it that night back in 2006.
And I kept it where it could be seen by one and all and then, I forgot about it.....Till.....this year, when I decided to put it back in the game.
Oddly enough, it was the very first Gift that was opened. Odd because I had put it in the game and it was way over on the side on the bottom of a large pile of prettily wrapped packages.....
Seemah had rolled the first 7 and she went over to the pile of presents and picked this box.....In a way, it made it very special. I mean, that the first gift opened was this rather pornographic piece of China, with which most everyone there was familiar, and we all had a good laugh.....
Seemah did enjoy it, a lot!
It's too long a story to go into, but let's just say, I am acting as custodian of 'The Creamer' till the person who actually ended up with it decides to take it. So, for now, it is sitting right where it's been since January 1st, 2007!
Now on to some somewhat more High Brow items.....
There was this terrific book about the History of The Oscars, by the wonderful Bob Osborne of TCM. It's something I would have wanted myself, but I just don't have any place for any more books---especially such a gorgeous Coffee Table Book.......I hate that I have no room for books anymore. It hasn't stopped me buying some, but, there is no place to put them.....!
There were some other wonderful books---a terrific Time-Life book and a very beautiful book on John Kennedy in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of his assassination and The Diaries of Richard Burton, to name a few.
And there were some charming Cookie Jars....The already mentioned Chicken with Babies----it really is darling and if I had had the room....
Chickens seemed to be very popular this year.....Someone else put a Chicken Cookie Jar in the game---smaller than the above, but still----what are the chances of two Chicken Cookie Jars showing up on the same New Years Eve White Elephant Game?
Lee opened this one, but I think someone else ended up with it.....
You know what? I don't think it is a Cookie Jar---in fact, I don't know what it is---well, I know it's a Chicken but I have no idea what it is supposed to be used for....Funny.
Going back to that Beautiful White Elephant at the top of this post....A very dear friend of Earl's sent that to him last year so he could put it in the game-----which he did.
I never did post any of last years New Years Pictures, sorry to say.....
And this year, she sent another Elephant, made by the same company--Breyer.
Here are both of them, below.
The company that makes these is called Breyer.
And, the second one has the figure of Mikey Dolenz on it based on a TV show he did as a boy---"Circus Boy", where it was his job to take care of an Elephant named Bimbo.
I was not familiar with "Circus Boy" or Bimbo the Elephant. I only knew Mikey Dolenz from "The Monkees", and I really didn't know them very well either.
But, this is a collector's item!
It was lovely of Ronda to send these for the game---So, if you are reading this, my dear, Thank You So Very Very Much.....!
Below, another collector's item of sorts......
A 'Duck Dynasty' Cap......For those of you who have never seen this show, (And that includes me) it is about a family who makes Duck calling thingy's, and there was a lot of hoopla about some remarks that Daddy Duck Dynasty had to say about Homosexuals and Black people here in America.
It was, in my opinion, like The Dark Ages! OY!
Here is another picture of the two Elephants below......
I like them a whole lot better than that Duck Cap!
So....that was our New Years. At Midnight we went on my Deck and heard the city bring in the New Year---and we all yelled, too----a very unifying feeling, and, we even saw some fireworks.
A lovely way to bring in 2014!
More To Come........
links to this post
| posted by OldLady Of The Hills at 4:19:00 PM
Tuesday, February 11, 2014
new years eve??
I know, I know.....But.....'Better Late Than Never'.
So....it's already almost the middle of February.....There has been a lot going on.
I watched almost 50 films in preparation for The SAG Awards and The Oscars....
(I vote on the SAG Awards but not on The Oscars)
That took a lot of time!
But I'm going to go back to December 31st and show some pictures of my really sweet New Years Eve Party.....
I'm grateful to Dianne Travis for taking lots of pictures that night!
And there she is, sitting next to the oh so beautiful Maddy Claire Parks, Betty G's. granddaughter---(Now 18, as of January 12th....can you believe that? For those of you still blogging and still reading my blog....she was just a tiny baby girl on her first New Years Eve, here...)
Someone took this picture of Dianne above, with her camera, and I'm so glad they did.
Because of my now quite limited way of getting about, I cannot take as many pictures as I used to and I'm limited to positioning. So I'm very grateful to Dianne.....
And here I am with the very handsome and dear Andy Parks---Betty's younger son---and that is darling Craig Curtis in the blue stripped shirt, next to the lovely Seemah Wilder.....
Above....eating an Hors D'euvre and having a bit of wine is the adorable Bridget Hanley and next to her, the beautiful Lee Meriwether and her darling husband Marshall Borden.....
We had some lovely yummy goodies before dinner.....Here below is Garrett parks, Betty's older son and Maddy's dear father......
Way over on the left is a Leather Jacketed arm---That's Maddy's boyfriend Chris---we will see more of him as we go along....Then there's Garrett eating something delicious---shrimp, I think, and his daughter Maddy next to him----and Mary, who is part of my wonderful Caterer Will's great crew....then Marshall B. and the special Katy Melody, Andy Park's wife.....
And....there is Maddy, her Aunt Katy, her beautiful talented Mom, Karen Culliver Parks and Maddy's wonderful beau, Chris---a talented singer and musician.....They make such a perfect couple!
And then.....my dear dear old friend, the wonderful Earl Holliman. I have known dear Earl since 1964! And his is a friendship that means so very much to me.....
Earl is a wonderful wonderful actor and a truly devoted Animal lover----he was the President of Actors and Others for Animals for forty years.....A wonderful organization that continues it's great work. He is still very much involved, involved but retired as President.....If you want to know more about Actors and Others For Animals, take a look right here....
And above, some of the gang just before 'dinner is served'.....One of the things that always makes this evening special---aside from the fact that it is New Years Eve----is the loving caring feeling that always prevails. We have all known each other for such a long time---there is a close 'family' feeling when we get together.
I find this more and more meaningful as the years go on.....and as we lose more 'family' members......Pray God, we will all be here next year, too!
And.....then there was dinner.....!
These next couple of pictures were taken with Karen's Cell Phone.....Above, Dianne with Dinner in front of her.
Chicken Kiev, Buttered Rice, Asparagus Spears and a lovely Salad---my favorite--Butter Lettuce, Pears, Caramelized Pecans, and Gorgonzola Cheese with a lovely Vinaigrette Dressing.....
Below, Katy, picking up an Asparagus Spear at the Buffet table, with her darling husband Andy looking on.....
Then, there were Chris and Maddy having their dinner......
And Garrett and myself, eating over on the other side of the Living Room......
I know I showed this picture above, before.....but I thought it would be fun to show it again so you can see 'dinner' a little better......
Of course, there was dessert and 'The Game'.....but that will be part two.......
More To Come........
links to this post
| posted by OldLady Of The Hills at 2:29:00 PM