By William Thomas
On Sunday evening approximately 40 million people will tune in to the 85th edition of the Academy Awards to watch excited television commentators stalk the red carpet in search of Hollywood stars in order to ask the question the world needs to know: “Who are you wearing?”
“Who?” As if last year’s losers who took their lives in defeat are now draped over the bodies of this year’s hopefuls?!? What a dumb thing to say when everybody knows the real question should be: “Whom are you wearing?”
Millions will watch the Oscars to see how many times Samuel L. Jackson will use the f-word. At least five million people will be glued to their sets to see if Joaquin Phoenix can possibly get any weirder. And I will be watching for a bare-legged Peewee Herman sitting in the front row wearing sun glasses and a raincoat and hoping for a Halle Berry wardrobe malfunction. All together now: “I’ve got mirrors on the toes of my shoes.”
Here then are this year’s Oscar nominees adjusted slightly for the sake of reality.
Lincoln. Vowing enough is enough, Abraham Lincoln, the sixteenth president of the United States can no longer tolerate the superiority of white men, the inequity of class structure, the rampant corruption and the bald-faced arrogance of those appointed to power so he mounts “Old Bob” and rides north to Ottawa where he abolishes the Canadian Senate. Former CTV journalist and senator from PEI Mike Duffy is played by French actor Gerard Depardieu.
Zero Dark Thirty. A gripping and hair-trigger real-life account of the search and assassination of the world’s number one terrorist Osama bin Laden by a crack team of Navy Seals. Cooped up with three wives in a concrete bunker for five years, unable to leave the premises, it is now widely believed that it was Osama bin Laden himself who called in the Navy Seals.
Amour. An intimate and touching portrayal of the agelessness of love sees an 85-year-old woman fall in love all over again with the man who can still activate his clapper, if you know what I mean. The Parisian apartment building in which they live is played by Gerard Depardieu.
Django Unchained. In a jolly good romp through the wild west of slavery, director Quentin Tarantino uses exploding body parts, bits of flying brain and gushers of blood to prove yet again he and he alone in Hollywood is uniquely qualified to spend $100 million to make audiences everywhere puke. The last hour of Django Unchained makes Pulp Fiction look like a public service announcement for gun control.
Flight. In a thriller at 36,000 feet “Whip” Whitaker played by Denzel Washington is a talented but out of control airline pilot who snorts cocaine and tosses back vodka just before he rolls a passenger plane upside down and crash lands it, saving the lives of 102 passengers. Think Sully Sullivan without The Birds. “Whip” pays for his evil ways later in the staff lounge when he is decked by a surly and heavily-unionized Air Canada stewardess named Candice. The A320 airline is played by an inverted Gerard Depardieu.
Les Miserables. Angry at watching years of human misery and tears of contrition in interviews with Lance Armstrong, David Letterman, Ellen Degeneres and Tom Cruise – Pope Benedict XVI resigns acknowledging that Oprah Winfrey has cornered the world market on confessions. Mourns the Pope in anguish: “I can’t even get Berlusconi to go to mass!” Oprah not only turns down the Vatican’s offer to be the next Pope, she schedules her interview with O.J. Simpson on April 15th in order to ruin Pope Benedict’s farewell address.
The Real Blade Runner. Ridley’s Scott long-awaited sequel passes on Harrison Ford as his lead and instead follows the career of a robotic Olympic sprinter. Set in a dystopian world of evil robots and tyrannical drones, Oscar Pistorius is astonishingly enough charged with the murder of his model girlfriend. Out on bail. Pistorius makes a run for it and is last seen clearing the High Atlas Mountains of Morocco at 65 miles per hour. The movie ends in court where Pistorius is being sued by Forest Gump for theft of intellectual property.
Best Exotic Carnival cruise. After a fire paralyzes a 14-story cruise liner, 4200 passengers are put through a five-day rigorous survival course in which they learn how to poop in plastic bags and tinkle in sinks. When the midnight buffet is cancelled, they believe their harrowing situation could not possibly get worse. When a sister ship, the Costa Concordia comes to the rescue with Captain Francisco Schettino at the wheel, the passengers throw a Bon Voyage party serving themselves Kool-Aid laced with cyanide.
Argo. In a fast-paced hostage thriller, truth is tossed out the window of an embassy in Tehran as director Ben Affleck impugns the legacy of Ken Taylor, the Canadian ambassador to Iran and the hero who saved the lives of six American hostages. Ignoring Canada’s heroic role in securing the Americans survival and safe passage out of the middle of an Islamic revolution, Affleck chooses instead to shoot the false story of a low-level CIA braggart, turning an actual historic event into a two-hour clown class. Actually, that’s pretty much what happened here.
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