Oscars reviews roundup: Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!

USA TODAY: “Give this to MacFarlane: He threw everything he had at it. He dressed up like the Flying Nun. He played with sock puppets. He radiated charm, if not cool. And, of course, he told jokes. A tad nervously, perhaps, but he did manage to land a fair number of them. He even got Tommy Lee Jones to laugh at a joke about getting Tommy Lee Jones to laugh, which has to count for something. Oh, and he sang and danced. A lot.”

WASHINGTON POST: “MacFarlane, the potty-mouth cartoon mogul turned latter-day lounge lizard, did a fairly middle-of-the-road job as host on a fairly middle-of-the-road telecast. He occasionally found the balance between the knifey, pop-savvy humor of his TV shows and his other side as a show-biz sycophant who sings all the standards at the top of his lungs. What you got was a combination of sicko and retro, an Oscar show hosted by someone who waited until Oscar night to discover that he’s only so-so at stand-up comedy.”

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: “Listen — a billion people are throwing up. That’s a rough estimate of course, but every year somebody at the Oscars says a billion people on the planet are watching the program; however many watched this year’s Oscar show, they may well have felt sickened by it. It was a stomach-churning, jaw-dropping debacle, incompetently hosted and witlessly produced. Hollywood historians will debate whether the 1989 Oscar show, disastrously produced by Allan Carr (with Rob Lowe singing to Snow White), will remain the worst ever or if this year’s, sadistically concocted by producers Neil Meron and Craig Zadan, will take the dishonor as all-time most horrible. Both, let’s face it, will live in infamy, like Pearl Harbor. “

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: “Some of this stuff was pretty funny. But by calling constant attention to the naughty factor, MacFarlane also created an echo chamber of outrage, working a little too hard to top himself with faux-scandalous gags about race, Jews in Hollywood, and the the killing of Abraham Lincoln.”

VARIETY: “Much like Hugh Jackman’s spirited stint a few years back, it felt like the Tonys had a baby with a Vegas revue, albeit on a much larger stage.”

L.A. TIMES: “Well, that didn’t work. Despite the valiant efforts of Adele, Barbra Streisand and a surprisingly witty Daniel Day-Lewis, not to mention a last-minute surprise appearance by First Lady Michelle Obama as co-presenter of the best picture award, touted as the first Oscar telecast with a theme — a tribute to musical Hollywood — was long, self-indulgent and dull even by the show’s time-honored dull-defining standards.”

HOLLYWOOD ELSEWHERE: “The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences got the show they deserved last night. They owned it and one day, trust me, they won’t feel so good about this. As usual the show felt a little schmaltzy, a little out-of-time in a gay Las Vegas sense. The show’s producers, Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, got to remind us what a great film ‘Chicago’ (which they produced) was and how much we miss films of this calibre.”

THE WRAP: “He delivered the Oscars producers pretty much exactly what they signed up for, because it felt an awfully lot like a ‘Family Guy’ episode—a few jokes, some ‘zany’ pop culture references, some music, and a gay-panic joke.”

DEADLINE: “This is one of the lamest show openings I’ve ever watched. The worst part is that Seth is killing every punchline by laughing over it. And here comes the inevitable Mel Gibson putdown. This is going to be a loooooong night. ‘The room is dead,’ says one agent from inside the Dolby Theatre.”


7 thoughts on “Oscars reviews roundup: Ouch! Ouch! Ouch!

  1. Truth be told, IMO, while the Oscars are the biggest awards show, and hence perhaps the ‘most important’ ,but, to me, its always been the dullest. Seth was just fine as a host – He was around a lot and introduced many of the presenters and commercial breaks and was there when the break came back, and that was probably my favorite part of the production, and I believe, after the opening, there weren’t that many jokes, just him being a host , it really exposed the awards show and how , again, IMO, badly not only it was produced last night, but nearly every year. Most tend to evaluate the hosts performance on the funny they bring, and that’s fair, but if they are funny, I think it masks a lot of the unnecessary and poor production. I think they can scale the show down to golden globes standards but because of the venue and the grandness that is the Oscars, its wouldnt make it feel like the globes. Stop with all the musical performances, the bad presenters ( I doesnt take a genius to know Kristen Stewart and Selma Hayek have zero personality) – presenters should only be funny IF they are- dont give actors badly written material and expect them to get laughs, it always fall dead. And something I really missed and that I think is necessary is the lovely explanations they have done in the past about the tech awards, telling us what sound editing is and showing short clips of the production designers sketches and the final products of it. They Oscars tend to do and try to be ‘too much’ – just go simple and elegant and keep the show moving. Just worry about being funny in the opening, and if you hire someone like Seth, let him do the writing for the opening and jokes throughout the show and let the writing staff write for the presenters, again, not jokes, but lovely descriptions of the categories. Anyway, thats only one viewers opinion 🙂

  2. What a pig Seth was. And the program was boring. The musicals that were featured were ho-hum to begin with, and they haven’t aged well.

  3. I’m wondering who decided to let this show be about the host. Why lame bit with Shattner? Why so many cringe-worthy non-jokes? It’s not the Laugh Factory! Agree that Nathan Lane would have been fun.
    After this, even the Academy Awards are devisive. Why the wife of the leader of the free world presenting?
    Had to change channel, and go back to see who won best picture. Why segment on next night’s news about Michelle’s gown? New catagory: Best Performance by Chicago Politicians in Peter-Principle Roles! Love Hugh Jackman; more about talent, less about crude t.v. show creator. . .please.

  4. Oops. . .category, not catagory. HONESTLY, I’m nobody from nowhere, and I believe with all my heart that I could have produced a better show. I’d start with Nathan Lane as host, and the show would an honor to all of the hard work, and brilliant achievements by all who create positive movie experiences.
    No nastiness; that’s for the brick wall comedy clubs. Daniel Day Lewis is admirable, but Hugh Jackman performed the equivalent of a triathalon. IMO, Les Miserables was the one. “Do you hear the people sing?”

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