By Ruth 66
The Artist and Hugo tied with five apiece, but The Artist took home the major awards, Sunday night, in Los Angeles at the former Kodak Theater. Both films were a homage to the earliest days of film making, but The Artist won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Costumes and Best Music. Hugo was shut out of the major categories, but swept in the technical categories for Cinematography, Art Direction, Sound and Editing.
Billy Crystal returned to host his ninth Academy Awards telecast. I thought he was funny and did a great job. I especially enjoyed the opening film montage where he kissed George Clooney and chatted with Justin Bieber.
It was an evening short on surprises and long on veteran talent. Screen legend Meryl Streep picked up her first Academy Award in nearly three decades for her performance as British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in "The Iron Lady." This is her third Oscar. Christopher Plummer picked up Best Supporting Actor for his work in Beginners. At 82, he's the oldest actor to ever win an Oscar.
George Clooney was favored to win Best Actor, but the unknown French actor Jean Jardin won for his role in the silent film, The Artist. The Help was my personal favorite, so I was thrilled to see Octavia Spencer collect her award for Best Supporting Actress.
Let's get to the best part of the show - the fashions! I thought, basically, everyone looked pretty well put together. I didn't see anything gone horribly wrong -- except Bradley Cooper's 70's mustache. But mostly, the red carpet was packed with really glamorous women. My favorite was Angelina Jolie's sexy black Versace dress, slit sky high, although she looked kinda bony The one shoulder, sparkly, white Ellie Saabe number on Milla Jovovich was stunning. I also loved her retro hair and red lips. The fashion risks that worked the best were the Tom Ford white cape and gown on Gwyneth Paltrow and Jessica Chastain's black and gold Alexander McQueen - both so gorgeous! Stacy Keibler was another stand out in a gold Marchesa with a giant bow at the waist. The custom made, dark blue, Carolina Herrera worn by Tina Fey was really beautiful.
Some of the dresses that were less than spectacular were Berenice Bejo's mint green Marchesa. I loved the dress, but the color was too light on the leading actress of The Artist. Emma Stone wore a red dress with a bow at the neck that looked almost the same as the one worn by Nicole Kidman a few years ago. I liked comedian Kristen Wiig's ruffly dress, except for the lack of color. I don't understand when pale white women wear pale colors like that. They disappear right into it. Same with Rooney Mara - loved her dress, but hated the lack of color next to pasty white skin. I liked Sandra Bullock's Marchesa from the back, but didn't like the way it made her waist look so big from the front. 20-year-old Shailene Woodle from The Descendants wore a high necked, white, Valentino that was lovely, but way too mature for her.
Here are a few others worth nothing, including Cameron Diaz, who wore $800,000 in Tiffany diamonds.
I really enjoyed the Oscar's this year and hope Billy Crystal returns next year.