The 2013 Academy Awards attracted some of the biggest and brightest stars of the film industry, and in doing so failed to deliver any big surprises. The three and a half our live television event, hosted by “Ted” creator Seth Macfarlane, went more or less to plan. Academy President Hawk Koch said in his speech that this years gathering was to “usher in the future of the movies”, and one can only hope that he's wrong.
The Oscars are supposed to be a celebration of excellence within the film industry, but from from the red carpet to the end credits the event seemed to be more of the film industry glorifying itself. First-time host Macfarlane failed to make any friends, and made off color jokes and underhanded stabs at nearly everybody in the crowd, as well as those watching at home.
When so many entertainers gather in one room the result is usually not entertainment. It wasn't just movie stars either, Adele, Areosmith, Nora Jones, and the great Barbara Streisand were all on the bill. Even Mr. Macfarlane sang a song or two, though not without first creating a social media shit-storm with the low brow show tune “We Saw Your Boobs.” The best musical performance of the night was easily William Ross' orchestra, who played classic film scores, from “Jaws” to several iterations of the classic “Bond Theme”.
The franchise celebrated it's fiftieth anniversary and won a modest two awards to mark the occasion. One for Best Original Song, the other for Best Sound Editing. This makes sense considering that Adele sounded much better in the movie than she did in her live performance.
The other tribute was to the best musicals of the last decade. Catherine Zeta-Jones gave an exhilarating rendition of “All That Jazz” that put the cast of Les Mis' performances of “Suddenly” and “One Day More” to shame.
Director Ang Lee beat out favorite Stephen Spielberg for best director, and when it was all said and done “Life of Pi” received a total of four awards. Maybe Tarantino was right is declaring this year as the “year of the writers”, but the ceremonies indicated it as more of a year of the celebrities. The stars were the main attraction, not the films, and the Oscars aren't nearly as much fun watching from home, without the open bar.