We were ready to move on. ‘That’s it for Oscar coverage for another year,’ we said. But we can’t stop thinking about THAT moment. We’ve mulled it over and tried to let it go but we just can’t. Yep, we need to talk about why that Oscars cinema-crash sketch was SO not okay.
For the most part, the 90th Academy Awards were pretty slick this year, even a little predictable. The main awards went exactly where we thought they would, the performances were pleasant and Jimmy Kimmel once again was an amicable host.
Yet, if the highlight of the night was Frances McDormand’s ‘inclusion rider’ acceptance speech – in which she called on all her fellow female nominees to get to their feet – the low point was this year’s annual drag-it-out skit.
In the past, we’ve had Ellen DeGeneres’ famous Oscar-selfie (which, unfortunately, includes the now derided Kevin Spacey) but this year the decision was taken to surprise some cinemagoers by crashing a preview screening of A Wrinkle in Time across the road.
Kimmel – along with a-listers: Gal Gadot, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mark Hamill, Lupita Nyong’o, Emily Blunt, Ansel Elgort, Armie Hammer, Margot Robbie and Guillermo del Toro – put the ceremony on hold to dish out some snacks to an audience who clearly couldn’t give two Oscars about the Academy Awards because they’d decided not to bother watching.
If you haven’t seen it already, here is the offending article:
‘What’s the problem?’ You ask. Well, we have beef with this skit for the following five reasons…
1. The Oscars don’t need dragging out!
This year’s ceremony ran on for a whopping 233 minutes – that’s almost as long as Gone With the Wind! – and we frown on anything that unnecessarily contributed to that. What we really object to here, however, is that at the start of the night Kimmel had challenged winners to give the shortest possible speech they could – with the shortest speech-giver promised a jet ski and a holiday. Fair enough, no one wants to sit through a ten minute thank you monologue, but don’t cut off a winner’s emotional chance to shine whilst simultaneously wasting time with half-baked sketches.
2. Enough with the advertising!
Were it not bad enough that adverts punctuated this year’s ceremony like the word ‘motherf***er’ punctuated The Hitman’s Bodyguard, this whole sequence was just an opportunity for Disney – who own the show’s broadcasters: ABC – to advertise the upcoming release of A Wrinkle In Time. Anything that gets people in cinemas is good by us but what this interlude told us is that Disney don’t actually care about the film, they just want the money. Which brings us to…
3. It’s just WRONG to interrupt film screenings!
There are general rules for cinema-going that it’s important to follow so as not to ruin the experience for everyone else: no talking, no phones, no illegal recording etc… Can we please add to that: no a-listers interrupting the film halfway through, ruining the experience and talking over Oprah?! We don’t care if one of you has a lasso of truth and another’s been on the Millennium Falcon, we just want to watch our film in peace!
4. Could those snacks be any less appropriate?
Watching our film in peace also requires that fellow audience members don’t stink out the place with food like hotdogs – here supplied by Baby Driver‘s Ansel Elgort – and make a lot of noise by rustling the packets of a certain brand of sweets! Having interrupted the film already, this gang seemed content on ruining the whole thing by destroying the atmosphere of the cinema.
5. Think about the actual audience for a change!
Maybe points 1-4 had made us bitter but by the end of this overlong skit we couldn’t help feeling a bit miffed. Having tuned into the Oscars (a show that already sees celebrities as being higher beings than the general public) did we really want to see a group of film fans rewarded for not bothering to tune into the Oscars? Whilst we LOVE Gal Gadot, her crying out that ‘this is so much better than the Oscars’ did nothing to lighten our irritation.
Are we overreacting? Yes. Do we actually care that much? No. But now we have it off our chest.