Oscar Redux
The Perfesser




Well, Oscar night has come and gone, which means it's time to revisit the First Annual Perfesser Oscar Guess-a-thon to see how I did. Yes, I realize it's been a week, but it took me that long to recover from Julia Roberts' marathon speechifying! Actually, I'm not fully recovered yet. Excuse me while I pour myself another glass of red wine.

Ah, that's better!

A quick refresher: Last week, aided by my intrepid, lap-happy feline, Phoenix, we prognosticated with the best of them. These are the categories we discussed, with actual winners noted:

Foreign Film: We picked Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; it won. Hassare! Best Director: We de facto picked Ridley Scott; Steven Soderbergh won for Traffic. Best Actress: We bucked the trends and picked Ellen Burstyn; Julia Roberts stole it. Best Actor: We picked Russell Crowe; he won. Hassare! Best Supporting Actor: We picked Benicio Del Toro; he won. Hassare! Best Supporting Actress: We picked Frances McDormand; Marcia Gay Harden won. Best Picture: We picked Gladiator; it won. Hassare!

Hmm, that took a while to type. Excuse me while I pour myself another glass of red wine.

Ah, that's better! As you can see, we predicted correctly in four categories and blew three. That gives us an average of 57% correct. I think. Hell, I'm an entertainment arts and literature expert, not a mathematician. Who do I look like, Einstein? Great hoppin' Easter Bunny, I hope not--I'm female!

Anyway, we did slightly better than that overall: out of 23 categories, we got 17 correct, giving us an average of nearly 74%. Hmm, that's pretty good. I deserve another glass of wine. Phoenix deserves a kitty treat, too... Excuse me a moment...

Ah, that's better! What's that you said? You didn't see all my picks, so you can't be sure I got so many correct?

Well, as they say, "In vino, veritas," and I'm full of it tonight, baby! In fact, I think I deserve to Crowe about my success! And no, you blithering philistines, puns are NOT the lowest form of humor. That last one was what you rubes call in the vernacular a "knee-slapper."

And Crowe I shall, as I've been following the career of the mega-talented Kiwi since long before the star-making machine glommed onto him! In your face, Russell-haters! He was overlooked for L.A. Confidential, and he refused to campaign for The Insider, which made it easier for the gifted Kevin Spacey to slip in and take the prize (don't get me wrong--Kevin was very good in American Beauty, but Russell was better in his film).

Yes, the Oscar should be awarded for the best performance in one year, and not be a way of redressing a past wrong, but that's not always how it works, and though I sympathize with Ed Harris, whom I adore, I am ecstatic for Russell. Go, Russ, go!

As a matter of fact, let me toast the wins of Crowe, the superb smoldering Del Toro, the fantabulous flying Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and the epic blood-fest, Gladiator! Hell's bells, let me go ahead and toast the winners I didn't predict: the very fine actress, Harden and the wonderful director, Soderbergh (praise the Heavens it was for the spectacular Traffic and not the craptacular Erin Boobovich!).

And to all the people in the categories I didn't write about the first time, especially the Crouching Tiger winners--I tip my entire bottle to you! In fact, I tip my next bottle to you, too. Er, excuse me. Ah, that's better! Let me dedicate this next sip to the master of ceremonies, the funny and acerbic Steve Martin, who was in fine form that evening.

My next sip goes to Tom Hanks for being a good sport and playing along with Martin's kidnapping joke.

My next sip goes to those who didn't win. Better luck next time! What's that you said? I've left someone out? Ha. Of course I have not. How could I forget the calculated spontaneity of that yawning maw bursting forth with that braying torture? That disturbing display of vagina dentata which caused my male kitties, Phoenix's brother Cato Jr. and his sidekick, Risky, to flee in mortal terror? Why, they're still cowering under the bed! Damn you, Julia Roberts, and your faux Hollywood royalty act! The Oscars should celebrate excellence, and not be reduced to a coronation ceremony for the representatives of mediocrity! What's that, Ms. Phoniest Outburst of Impromptu Laughter ever? You want a piece of the Perfesser?! What, you think that because I'm a high-falutin', big-word spewin' in-ta-lex-oo-uhl that I can't take ya? You wanna try me? I'll beat you with one volume of the OED tied behind my back! I'll bring you down with the force of decades of truly fine CIN-EE-MAH that is preserved in my massive brain! Get thee behind me, Mrs. Satan! And stop tormenting me with the infernal sound of that hideous bray! AIIIEEEEE!!

Ugh, all that posturing has made me a bit queasy. And these floating empty bottles swirling about my head aren't helping, curse them! Before this column has to be renamed "Oscar Upchux," I'd best be ascending my ivory tower of intellectual pursuits... Besides, the rest of my wine is up there. Plus Phoenix looks a bit worried--she thinks she sees Benjamin Bratt coming our way.

Until next time, fellow fanatics of the entertainment arts! I remain, yours— The Perfesser

Dear God MEOW! Perfessor. Guess Julia's off your Christmas / Hanukah list, eh? I kinda like her...I know I'm a pussy...catEmily

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