9:00 pm: Spotlight wins the Best Picture Oscar! OMG! OMG! OMG! Amazing. The preferential ballot thing kicked in! Buy some Girl Scout cookies! Black lives matter!
8:53 pm: Julianne Moore presenting the long-assured Best Actor Oscar to Leonardo DiCaprio. Who gets a standing ovation. Leo thanks Hardy, Alejandro, Chivo, Arnon, Scorsese, Rick Yorn, my friends. And this: “Climate change is real, it’s happening right now, and we need to work together right now and stop procrastinating and support leaders who don’t [kowtow] to the big polluters and for our children’s children…let us not take this planet for granted…I do not take tonight for granted.”
8:51 pm: Chris Rock has done a really great job — he hit the right notes, said some wise things, handled it well and smoothly. A real pro.
8:44 pm: Eddie Redmayne presenting the Best Actress reel, and then the Oscar to Room‘s Brie Larson. “Oh, wow.” She thanks Telluride, Toronto, Lenny Abrahamson, her family, friends and the audience for seeing Room. Simple, elegant. And she looks terrific.
8:36 pm: J.J. Abrams announces winner of the Best Directing Oscar, which will presumably be The Revenant‘s Alejandro G. Inarritu. Yes, Mr. Revenant has won twice in a row, historically measuring up to Joseph L. Mankiewicz and John Ford. Heartfelt thanks to Leo, Chivo, Tom Hardy, Arnon Milchan. Inarritu stands up to the orchestra, refuses to be played off, and says something fine and true about the symbolism of the moment, future opportunity and past discrimination.
8:29 pm: Sascha Baron Cohen amusingly satirizes the whole “what about fairness for us?” diversity thing. Got me.
8:25 pm: Common and John Legend presenting the Best Song Oscar. I feel as if it should go to “Until It Happens To you.” But Sam Smith‘s Spectre song wins.
8:20 pm: Quincy Jones and blonde Pharrell presenting Best Original Score Oscar. It should be going to Ryuichi Sakamoto for his Revenant score. The Oscar goes to Ennio Morricone for his Revenant score, which was okay but honestly wasn’t my idea of great. This is basically another gold-watch Oscar for a legendary composer, and that’s fine. Morricone conveys thanks in his native tongue…cool.
8:09 pm: Standing ovation for Joe Biden! Biden (in response to applause): “I’m the least qualified man here tonight…thank you!” More: “We must and we can change the culture, so that no women or man will ever have to ask themselves ‘what did I do?’ They did nothing wrong.” Lady Gaga singing “‘Til It Happens To you.” A couple of dozen victims standing in formation, all wearing temporary tattoos that say “I’m a survivor: and “It happened to me.” Moving. Best moment of the show so far. Second best: Rock interviews Compton moviegoers. Third best: Rylance beats Stallone.
8:07 pm: Sofia Vergara and some guy presenting Best Foreign Language Feature Oscar. Vergara: “And the Oscar goes to Son of Saawuhhl…Hungary.” Hooray for the Saul guys!
8:05 pm: Jacob Tremblay and Abraham Attah presenting action for Best Live Action Short Film. What just won? Attah said “Stuttaahh!” Oh, right: Stutterer.
8:03 pm: The Oscar telecast has been rockin’ and rollin’ for two and a half hours now.
7:56 pm: Death Reel — who will be snubbed? Former Time critic Richard Corliss makes the cut! Holly Woodlawn! Frank Gilroy, David Bowie, Leonard Nimoy…blackbirds, fly. Tweet by Forrest Wickman: “Paul McCartney wrote “Blackbird” about the Civil Rights struggle. Now the Oscars use it to memorialize (mostly) white people.” With an oblique nod to the evening’s diversity theme.
7:55 pm: Cheryl Boone Isaacs quoting Martin Luther King: “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stand in moments of challenge and controversy.
7:52 pm: Whoopi Goldberg could spend a little more time on the treadmill. Sorry but she could.
7:50 pm: $65K for Girl Scout cookies?
7:38 pm: Louis C.K. handing out Best Documentary Short Subject Oscar. They’ll never get rich, they’ll be going home in a Honda Civic, they’ll keep the Oscar in their crappy apartment. Winner is getting played off. Dev Patel and Daisy “who’s Cary Grant?” Ridley handing out Best Documentary Feature Oscar, which is supposed to go to Asif Kapadia‘s Amy. Yes! Amy! Congrats to Asif! We made this film to show who Amy really was, etc. A magnificent singer who killed herself, you mean?
7:32 pm: Bridge of Spies costar Mark Rylance wins Best Supporting Oscar. More to the point, Sly Stallone loses! The first shocker of the evening! The blogaroonies (myself included) were wrong. Imagine all those people down in Compton going, “Who the fuck is Mark Rylance? Who the fuck saw Bridge of Lies?” This is what’s called an upset. HE advice to Stallone: Don’t pull an Eddie Murphy and leave the Kodak. Stay to the end, be gracious, give Rylance a hug, go to all the parties.
7:27 pm: Chris Rock interviewing several low-information Compton residents about which “white person” Best Picture nominees they’ve seen. None, zip, doughnut. But they saw Straight Outta Compton. Why would they ever want to see Spotlight? Just some white-ass movie about white people up to some white-people shit…right? The same mentality, I’d guess, that led South Carolinians of color to not vote for Bernie Sanders…right, Chris? Talk to Spike Lee and Cornell West about that.
7:22 pm: Kate Winslet, Reese Witherspoon announcing Best Picture clips…zzzzz.
7:14 pm: Kevin Hart shares his diversity thoughts. A musical number. That I already hate. Nice haircut, Weekend! Return of the mullet in 2016.
7:10 pm: Woody and Buzz Lightyear’s patter is slightly better. The winner of the Best Animated Feature oscar will be, of course, Inside Out — fucking Pixar guys own this category. Good words: “Make stuff..make films, draw, write…it’ll make a world of difference.”
7:08 pm: The Repulsive Minions are boring my ass off. Who wrote their material? Just being on stage isn’t enough, guys. You’ve gotta open your heart, pour out your soul. Oh, right…above your pay grade.
7:05 pm: Steven Spielberg and a whole lot of others have their cash out, ready to buy those Girl Scout cookies.
7:00 pm: BB8, R2D2 and C3P) are boring my ass off. Who wrote their material? Just being on stage isn’t enough, guys. You gotta open your heart, pour out your soul. Oh, right…above your pay grade.
6:54 pm: Andy Serkis presenting Best Visual Effects Oscars. An anti-Donald Trump joke. One, two, three….give it to Ex Machina or The Revenant>/em>! They wouldn’t dare give it to Max again, would they? No — Ex Machina! Congrats!