The main talking point going into the 89th Academy Awards was La La Land being nominated for a record-levelling 14 Oscars, despite it being incredibly racist and self-indulgent and whatever else The Guardian said about it. But after tonight’s ceremony there’s only one story worth discussing and that’s the alien invasion that took place half way through the show.
La La Land did in fact win Best Picture – I’ll explain why that was correct decision in a minute – but the handing out of golden statues just doesn’t seem as important as extra-terrestrials taking over the event.
It started when this year’s host, Jimmy Kimmel, took to the stage and immediately proceeded to tell everyone how much he hates Donald Trump. The esteemed audience cheered and applauded in a vague attempt to look like actual human beings, but then Nicole Kidman’s face fell off to reveal a slimy, insect-like being with pincers.
As the evening proceeded, the same happened to various other members of the audience. Eventually, pans of the auditorium revealed a swarming green mass of the creatures, crawling over each other and secreting highly noxious pheromones. It generated a stench like dog shit sprayed in Lynx deodorant, which was strong enough to kill three of the cameramen. Unfortunately, their lifeless bodies collapsed on the cameras and steered them back towards the stage, forcing us to watch the remainder of the show.
Things got considerably worse when La La Land was awarded Best Picture and director Damien Chazelle, Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling crawled up to the stage on their six legs. While trying to explain that the majority of the film’s visuals are ironic and the entire fucking point is that life isn’t like a song and dance, an angry audience heckled them with clicking noises, like a bag of crickets set on fire. They wanted Moonlight to win because they thought it would make them look more human.
I thought La La Land was brilliant. Sure, the premise of two people with first world problems, illustrating their love for each other by singing and dancing, might sound like the most obnoxious fucking thing ever, but it’s actually really clever if you bother to understand it. The sun-drenched Hollywood setting is used merely as a vehicle to convey the film’s message about ambition and how it can take two people in different directions. Emma Stone’s character wants to become a movie star and Ryan Gosling’s wants to own a jazz club, but it could quite easily be set in Bradford, with the characters vying for management positions at Burger King and Specsavers respectively. It wouldn’t be as pretty, but it’d stop you writing articles like ‘Why La La Land is Hitler in film form’.
Coincidentally, I think it’s a fucking disgrace that Emma Stone won Best Actress. It should have gone to Natalie Portman for her performance as Jackie Kennedy in Jackie, a film about Jackie Kennedy. I thought she was over-hamming the First Lady’s accent until I saw footage of the actual woman and realised she genuinely used to talk like an exhaling pixie. Portman nails it, but she’s also heavily aided by the fact that the camera hardly ever strays from her impossibly perfect face, as if one of those awful GoPro things has been attached to her chest. The film itself is like a vanity project, which is really clever when you consider how it’s mirroring Jackie’s life, one that involved wearing a lot of lovely hats to make her feel better about her husband being shot in the head.
I also didn’t agree with Mahershala Ali winning Best Supporting Actor for his role in Moonlight. Not because it was a bad performance, but because I went to the toilet for a particularly long piss and by the time I got back his part was over. He doesn’t do anything earth-shattering in that time, either. He just sits at the dinner table wearing a smug expression, probably because he’s realised he’s won an Oscar for doing next to fuck all.
Moonlight is beautifully shot and delicately chronicles three stages of a black man’s life, in which he discovers he likes being tossed off by other men on the beach. But as important and diverse a piece of cinema it is, I couldn’t help but feel profoundly empty by the end of it, mainly because there’s no real substance and the awkward silences stop being endearing when you realise no one has said anything for the last two hours.
Presumably that’s how the Academy saw it, too, because it was also snubbed for Best Director. That went to Damien Chazelle. At this point, the audience of hexapod beings were incandescent with rage, screeching and hurling their newborn babies at the La La Land director. The egg sacks splattered in a disgusting mess on the stage, fumes escaping from the flabby tissue. Tom Holland emerged from one them, holding his hands aloft and demanding that he be taken seriously because he’s playing the new Spider-Man.
Anyone caught applauding the winner was immediately devoured and regurgitated into a paste that the Hollywood stars would use to build a new hive. It’s where they’ll gather and start regrowing their human shells in time for next year’s ceremony, where they’ll pretend to get angry about the same things as you all over again.
I can only imagine the chaos that would have ensued had Casey Affleck won Best Actor instead of Denzel Washington.