What is the biggest night in show business that is centered on a small man dipped in gold? That would be the 87th Academy Awards or as most of us know it, The Oscars.
This year’s Oscars definitely encapsulated the idea of “A night to remember.” It had all the elements that make an award ceremony successful; designer gowns, tears, heartfelt acceptance speeches, and tidy-whites but we will get to the part much later.
Neil Patrick Harris, a first-time host, opened with a witty slip of the tongue saying, “Welcome to the 87th annual Oscars where we award Hollywood’s whitest, oops! I mean brightest stars.” The crowd roared with laughter knowing that this was a great prelude to an eventful night.
After which he performed a musical number that encompassed cinema of both the past and present. Although this was Neil Patrick’s first time hosting one would have never guessed it considering how effortlessly he moved through the opening number.
Halfway through his song and dance Anna Kendrick joined him with a medley from her Oscar and Golden-Globe nominated film Into the Woods. Not too long after her accompaniment, comedian Jack Black joined the pair onstage before being ushered off by Kendrick who eventually exited as well, where Patrick finished the number with a bang.
After thanking everyone for their applause he retorted that the entire number was improvised, which spurned more laughter. After which he introduced Lupita Nyong’o to present Best Supporting Actor. J.K. Simmons won the award for his role as a harsh teacher in “Whiplash.” When giving his acceptance speech he advised everyone to call their mom or dad because having one is a blessing.
Though a well-deserved award, many were surprised that it did not go to Ethan Hawke for his role in Boyhood but instead did the opposite for Patricia Arquette, who won Best Supporting Actress for the film. Her acceptance speech also held an empowering message of equal rights and wages for women.
Grand Budapest Hotel took home several awards; Best Costume design, Best Makeup Design, Best Production Design, and Best Original Score. This was Milena Canonero’s, the costume designer for the film, fourth Oscar in that category.
And it was only befitting that two British actors Nicole Kidman and Chiwetel Ejioford, the star of Twelve Years a Slave introduce the winner for Best Foreign Film which went to Poland for their film Ida. This was Poland’s first win after twenty-seven nominations.
Tegan and Sara and the Lonely Island performed their hit song “Everything is Awesome” from The Lego Movie. Afterwards Harris as well as Channing Tatum, Steve Carell and Emma Stone all held Oscars molded out of Legos to which Harris commented, “This is awesome.”
Following a commercial break and performance by Tim McGraw, Harris came out in nothing but a pair of tidy whites in reference to Birdman. Michael Keaton, the star of the film, laughed heartily as well as the rest of the audience. Harris wittily commented that, “Acting is a noble profession.”
John Legend and Common did a moving performance of their Golden Globe Winning song “Glory” form the picture Selma. Several celebrities wear seen crying including film’s star David Oyelowo, who portrayed Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Chris Pine. The song received a standing ovation.
Not too long afterwards it also won for Best Song, which received another well-deserved standing ovation. Legend and Common’s acceptance speech focused on standing up for justice and equal rights for everyone regardless of race, religion, or sexual orientation.
Another moving performance was done by Lady Gaga who performed a melody of The Sound of Music. Extremely different from Gaga’s usual pop/techno feel, she did an excellent job. And after finishing Julie Andrews, the star of the movie itself, came out to congratulate her on a job well done and, befittingly, present the nominees for Best Original Score.
As the night winded down we were finally down to the three most anticipated awards of the night: Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Picture.
Best Actor went to Eddy Redmayne for his portrayal of Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything. Best Actress was awarded to the very humble Julianne Moore for her role as an Alzheimer’s patient in Still Alice. In her acceptance speech she was very kind in saying, “There is no best actress because all of these women are equally talented.”
And finally, the biggest award of the night, Best Picture, was announced. It went to Birdman. Birdman won several other awards that night including Best Director, Best Cinematography, and Best Original Screenplay.
Mrs. Pekatos, a literature teacher here at North Springs, and a movie buff, thoughts on the night were that, “Birdman was an obvious choice for Best Picture. Although I felt Best Director should have gone to Boyhood. I was most happy about Eddy Redmayne winning for Best Actor though.”
Matthew Ingram, a junior at North Springs, felt the same sentiment. “Redmayne really deserved the award because it is extremely hard to portray a person with such a serious disease such as ALS. I’m so happy he won and Neil Patrick Harris was a great host,” Ingram says.