The 2011 Oscar broadcast was not good. Let's not beat around the bush.
As the Moviefone staff covered the show, providing you with all the big winners, we felt that the show was seriously lacking. Did the wrong movies win? Were hosts Anne Hathaway and James Franco a bad choice for 2011? Were there not enough interpretive dance numbers?
It wasn't just one reason; there were a lot of things wrong with this year's broadcast. Here are the big reasons this show was so boring.
1. It was a bad year for movies
We've talked about this ad nauseam at this point, but it's hard to do a superb show around a lackluster year for movies. This year's theme of "great moments in Oscar history" seemed really vague, and felt like it was reaching for a connection that wasn't there. At the end of the night, 'The Wolfman' was a 2011 Oscar winner, so no wonder they kept trying to remind you of 'Gone With the Wind' instead.
2. The show was produced horribly
Say what you will about Kirk Douglas, but the man was not afraid to take his sweet time as a presenter. But it seemed like after that moment, the show went off the rails; it felt like producers were cutting a lot of winners short to make up for time. They played off Aaron Sorkin, for crying out loud.
3. The Academy doesn't know what "young and hip" actually means
The whole point of getting James Franco and Anne Hathaway to host the show was to appeal to a younger, hipper demographic. And then it was the same old corny show. Gratuitous musical numbers, bad jokes, forced co-presenter patter ... And look, those kids from P.S. 22 were sweet and all, but closing the show on a grade-school rendition of 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow' was a pretty sappy, saccharine, grandparent-friendly thing to do. (Not that we aren't friendly to our grandparents.)
4. Every joke was predictable
We made a lot of jokes in our Oscars drinking game. And a lot of them happened exactly as we called them: Someone claimed to be Banksy, there was a dirty 'Winter's Bone' pun, someone made a 'Black Swan' lesbians joke. You know why we predicted everything? Because the Oscars are predictable! It's the same corny jokes every year. Just get rid of Bruce Vilanch already. He's written the show for over 20 years; shake things up for once.
5. Their priorities were out of whack
Remember when Francis Ford Coppola took the stage to accept his Lifetime Achievement Award and he gave a heartfelt speech, acknowledging his whole career crafting some of the greatest films of all time? Of course you don't, because it didn't happen. Coppola -- along with veteran character actor Eli Wallach, documentary filmmaker Kevin Brownlow and French New Wave auteur Jean-Luc Godard -- were all awarded Honorary Oscars. To save on time, though, the Academy presented their awards at an earlier date, and then shuffled them on stage tonight for a 30-second standing ovation. Because they had to make time for that auto-tuned musical number.
6. That auto-tuned musical number
Seriously. What the **** was that?
7. What was up with James Franco?
No, we don't think he was high. He just looked uncomfortable to be there. Alonso Duralde has more thoughts on the matter here.
And then, when you're done reading that: 5 Stars Who Could Have Done Better As Oscar Host
8. Norm Macdonald's Twitter upstaged everybody
Either he was drunk or he was just being Norm, but the former-SNL comedian's tweets during the broadcast hilariously tore the show apart. Such bon mots included:
- "hey watching this show raises an intersting question. Is there a writers strike or something?"
- On Gwyneth Paltrow's performance: "if you close your eyes and put your hands over your ears shes pretty good"
- "by the time the dead guy montage starts kirk douglas will be in it"
- "the winner of this gets an award plus gets to breathe some of oprahs air"
9. Could they have made it any more obvious that 'The King's Speech' was going to win?
The Best Picture montage was framed as "'The King's Speech' and 9 other movies." If they make it that obvious that it's going to win the top award, just cancel the show and announce it online. Save us all time.
What did you think of this year's Oscars telecast? If you thought it was great, what did you like about it? If not, what would you like to see that's different?
More on the 2011 Oscars
- News: 'King's Speech' Is Big Winner at 2011 Oscars
- Oscar Winners 2011
- Oscars Red Carpet 2011
- Oscars Best Dressed 2011
- Oscars Worst Dressed 2011
- Oscars 2011 Best & Worst Moments
- Why Were the Oscars So Boring?
- 5 Stars Who Would've Been Better Oscar Hosts
- Corey Haim and Peter Graves Left Out of Oscars In Memoriam Segment
- Review: James Franco and Anne Hathaway As Oscar Hosts -- Bring Back David Letterman!