The tears, triumphs and total surprises at the Oscars 2015. Oh, what a night!
And with one last golden statue being lovingly awarded to Birdman at an extremely late hour (especially for you East Coasters) at the 87th Academy Awards, the Oscars 2015 (and all of awards season) officially came to a close.
Fall asleep early? Confused by news reports of Meryl Streep cheering along with JLo? No worries—I’m here for you.
For the top moments of this year’s Oscars, the awards go to…
Big Winners (Two of my top predictions proved right—and a major upset!):
Birdman. I gave my predictions on live radio shows across the country leading up to every major awards show, and this year I was called a broken record for insisting this was Birdman’s year. And I was right! (This is rarer than I’m making it sound.) I was shocked that none of the actors in the movie were awarded, but it really was on the shoulders of director Alejandro Iñárritu. The movie was shot in 15-minute increments so the whole she-bang felt like it was done in one take. This cinematic feat took home four awards, including Best Director and the evening’s top prize, Best Picture.
Julianne Moore for Best Actress–another one of my picks that I just wasn’t backing down from. Nominated five times, this was her first win, and I knew it in my bones that this was her year. People argued that no one had even seen this movie. So not many people saw Still Alice – so what? Didn’t matter. Related: Go see Still Alice.
The upset: Darling Eddie Redmayne for the win! What a muffin this blushing British newlywed turned out to be, floating through awards season so gushing and wide-eyed. He was phenomenal as Stephen Hawking in The Theory Of Everything, so I don’t know why it was such a surprise that he beat out heavyweights Bradley Cooper (American Sniper) and Steve Carrell (Foxcatcher), and the Comeback Kid himself, Michael Keaton in the movie of the night, Birdman. But I screamed when his name was announced – and so did everyone else. What a moment!
Best Dressed (Top 3):
Lupita Nyong’o had some fashion growing pains this season, sporting some earlier misses that were a letdown after she so wowed the couture elite last year. Turns out she was saving the best for last, baby. She glided down the red carpet in a Calvin Klein stunner made of 6,000 pearls.
Then there’s JLo, who mysteriously has started to age backwards before our very eyes. Say what you want, but that woman knows how to make an entrance. Her low-cut, sparkly Elie Saab Haute Couture confection was absolutely to die for.
Rosamund Pike: most improved. If you missed her skin-tight, red-hot little number, Google it. Yowza! The beautiful Best Actress nominee is back in action after a slight miss of a drapey dress with cut-outs worn too close to having just had a baby. Although she could wear a paper sack and look mesmerizing. But why not wear ravishing red Givenchy instead?
What everyone’s talking about:
I’m not sure how Jennifer López and Meryl Streep ended up sitting next to each other, but it didn’t seem the latter Miranda Priestly-ed Jennifer as they prattled on like new BFFs (MerLo?). And then the fabulously quirky Patricia Arquette gave her acceptance speech win (Best Supporting Actress, Boyhood), about gender equality, and the clip of Meryl and JLo whopping it up was seen around the world. Truly epic.
The “In Memoriam” montage is always (by definition) a sobering affair, but Robin Williams’ odd portrait not only made him look 30 years old, but he looked eerily like Bradley Cooper. I was incredibly saddened that that was his official good-bye from Hollywood. And then there’s the legend that didn’t even make the cut—I swear a piece of my heart was ripped out when I realized that the original red carpet siren herself, Joan Rivers, was left out completely. I have no words. The Academy owes the world an apology. Shame.
First Common and John Legend brought the house down with their Best Original Song performance of “Glory,” from the powerful and mostly-overlooked film, Selma. Then there wasn’t a dry eye in the house as their acceptance speech ranged from poetic to political. And then, the internet caught on fire as everyone learned that the nominees—Lonnie Lynn and John Stephens—were actually the stars’ real names. (The other performances featured famous singers Rita Ora and Tim McGraw – who poignantly paid tribute to the ailing legend Glen Campbell—performing numbers written by someone else, who would have picked up the Oscar.) It was quite a roller coaster.
Lest we forget a singer named Lady Gaga, who with one five-minute, four-song medley of The Sound Of Music’s most beloved (and vocally challenging) songs not only paid homage to the film’s 50th anniversary (and a ringing endorsement from living legend, Dame Julie Andrews), but literally shut the party down with a virtuoso performance that has—in an instant—reignited the trajectory of her career. Lady Gaga won the Oscars. Period. It was THAT good.
Whiplash turned out to be the sleeper hit that quietly took home three statues—including Best Supporting Actor J.K. Simmons, whose romantic speech at the beginning of the (long) show was probably mostly forgotten hours later. But not only did he dedicate everything to his wife and kids in the most cinematic romance-isn’t-dead speech, he then ended it by begging everyone to call their moms. What a class act: swoon.
And with that, the curtain closes on another drama-fueled awards season. Time to sleep.