At a lean 199 minutes, the 91st Academy Awards was perhaps among the speediest ceremonies in decades, but the memorable moments may have been fewer than usual because there were simply fewer opportunities for much to happen. A few presenters did their parts to liven things up — e.g., Samuel L. Jackson, Danai Gurira, James McAvoy, Barbra Streisand (a huge fan of Spike Lee, fellow Brooklynite), and a few others. The triple-threat comedy team of Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Maya Rudolph had a few minutes to fill the night’s joke quota up front, and did so with a flair enviable to those of us who didn’t watch Fey/Poehler host the Golden Globes a few years ago and who wish they could’ve been bribed into taking charge here all night long.
That being said, it was a very entertaining evening for any moviegoers who liked some of the biggest winners a lot more than I did.
The following movies won the awards, from most to any-at-all:
Bohemian Rhapsody: 4 – Actor (Rami Malek), Film Editing, Sound Effects Editing, Sound Mixing
Black Panther: 3 – Costume Design, Original Score, Production Design
Green Book: 3 – Picture, Supporting Actor (Mahershala Ali), Original Screenplay
Roma: 3 – Director (Alfonso Cuaron), Cinematography, Foreign Language Film
Bao: 1 – Animated Short Film
BlacKkKlansman: 1 – Adapted Screenplay
The Favourite: 1 – Actress (Olivia Colman)
First Man: 1 – Visual Effects
Free Solo: 1 – Documentary Feature
If Beale Street Could Talk: 1 – Supporting Actress (Regina King)
Period. End of Sentence.: 1 – Documentary Short Film
Skin: 1 – Live-Action Short Film
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse: 1 – Animated Feature
A Star is Born: 1 – Original Song
Vice: 1 – Makeup and Hairstyling
Major (or “major”) nominees that walked out empty handed: At Eternity’s Gate, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Can You Ever Forgive Me?, First Reformed, The Wife
For your entertainment and time code follow-along, rather than indulge in the 3000-word simulated live-blog summaries I used to compile for friends, enclosed instead are the results of my live-tweeting the entire ceremony, which was some 34 minutes shorter than last year’s. I usually insert annotations for value-added context where appropriate and/or to capture memorable seconds that I didn’t mention on the fly, but…I don’t think much is missing. My four cups of coffee are wearing off, so who knows. Oh, and whenever actors’ names are invoked who weren’t nominees, it means they were among the many, many presenters on stage in all the colors of the wind, none of whom ever admitted to being tonight’s Secret Oscars Host. Enjoy!