Brad Pitt waited 30-plus years to win his first acting Oscar.
And what did he do once he finally reached the Academy Awards podium Sunday? Pitt spat out a snarky attack on President Donald Trump.
The only thing that could sum up the 92nd Oscars ceremony better was a film about income inequality earning the biggest prize of all.
The evening started with an upbeat performance by Janelle Monae. The singer capped her medley with a dollop of virtue signaling, the night’s most conspicuous theme.
“I’m so proud to stand here as a black queer woman celebrating telling stories,” Monae said. “Happy Black History Month!”
The Academy Awards producers, feeling the sting of #OscarsSoWhite 2.0, flooded the theater with women and people of color. The effort was so dramatic, and obvious, that several celebrities admitted most of us didn’t even know who they were.
Chances are they were right.
The evening sailed way past the three-hour mark, again. If the producers are willing to thumb their noses at half the country, they’re equally unwilling to make the night palatable for anyone outside Tinsel Town.
The acceptance speeches ranged from sweet to agonizing. “Parasite” director Bong Joon ho praised his fellow director nominees in a way that felt sweet, organic and true.
He also vowed to drink as soon as the festivities wrapped. Oh, so relatable.
Winners Joaquin Phoenix and Renee Zellweger, in comparison, punished anyone unlucky enough to stick around to the end.
“Parasite” crushed the overall competition, earning Best International Film, Best Original Screenplay, Best Director and Best Picture. The movie features a bizarre battle between an impoverished family and a wealthy clan, a theme that resonated with the Hollywood elites sans irony.
In between, we got the standard hard-left politics, female empowerment platitudes and a dearth of A-list talent.
Where was Denzel … Jack … Meryl … Dustin … Sandra … Idris … Clint … Julia … Samuel … Morgan?
The night belonged to younger, more obscure stars. Many work primarily in TV but dip their toes in big screen fare. Think Ray Romano, Mindy Kaling and Maya Rudolph.
Pitt’s win opened the awards part of the ceremony. He wasted little time getting political, and nasty, tying his victory with the settled impeachment trial.
“They told me I have 45 seconds up here, which is 45 seconds more than the Senate gave John Bolton this week. I’m thinking maybe Quentin Tarantino will make a movie out it. In the end, the adults do the right thing.”
Knowing what we now know about these acceptance speeches, any chance Pitt wrote that zinger himself?
Ironically, the superstar had given a series of sweet, funny and eclectic speeches prior to Sunday’s event.
Later, Olaf the Snowman himself, Josh Gad, attacked those who don’t believe the sky is falling due to global warming.
“Frozen 2, or as climate change deniers call it, Not Frozen 2 has been dubbed in 45 languages… Canadian Elsa is basically the same but with healthcare.” Climate alarmist Greta Thunberg even got her close-up during a salute to truth in documentaries, a montage featuring … Michael Moore.
Even the commercial breaks offered little relief from the progressive messaging. This critic endured not one but two political ads from Sen. Bernie Sanders along with a New York Times piece pushing its serially flawed “1619” series.
The Oscar producers tried to shake up the deadly dull event with only modest success. They added a montage element to the major award presentations, adding even more time to the already bloated gala.
The evening situated several presenters throughout the theater, instead of the stage itself, hoping to add a sense of spontaneity.
It didn’t help.
A few bright spots emerged, almost by default. Laura Dern’s Best Supporting Actress acceptance speech featured a beautiful tribute to her parents, Diane Ladd and Bruce Dern. And Jane Fonda announced the night’s biggest winner, Best Picture, but didn’t rant about climate change (or brag about wearing the same red jacket more than once).
Still, the night proved a slog with little humor to patch over the snooze-worthy elements. Once again the banter proved either insipid, uninspired or just woke-tastic. Take this trio of talented actresses – Brie Larson, Sigourney Weaver and Gal Gadot.
They prattled on, eventually telling us that “all women are superheroes.” Even Nikki Haley?
The team behind “American Factory,” the winner for Best Documentary, highlighted their acceptance speech with a phrase familiar to Bernie Bros. (and millions who starved in the Soviet Union).
Will Ferrell and Julia Louis-Dreyfus scored some laughs from the podium, far better than Rudolph and Kristen Wiig’s strained gags.
The night once again went host-free, but comic superstars Chris Rock and Steven Martin appeared early on for what the New York Times accurately dubbed a Non-Monologue Monologue.
What a missed opportunity! The Oscars scored two comic legends, and viewers had no idea they’d be on hand to shower us with jokes. Were they afraid they’d fail the Cancel Culture vetting?
“I loved the first season of ‘The Irishman,” Rock cracked to nominee Martin Scorsese, one of several in-jokes that landed square on the jaw. They later poked fun at Amazon kingpin Jeff Bezos, the safest target in all of comedy land, and did their own woke virtue signaling.
“Something’s missing this year … vaginas,” Martin said, alluding to the lack of female directors, among other categories.
Et tu, Chris and Steve?
They left the Trump jokes behind and even lobbed a lukewarm gag about the disastrous Iowa Caucus app. The saddest part, though, came when they wondered why the show lacked a host in the first place.
“Twitter … everybody has an embarrassing tweet somewhere, I know I do,” Rock cracked. Instead of standing up to Cancel Culture, they accepted it as the cost of being in show biz today.
That’s just sad.
In between the snores and signaling the stars reminded us what matters in the first place, the sacrifices made along the way and the talented folks who helped them get on stage in the first place.
Toward that end, Pitt saluted the Hollywood stunt men (he plays one in “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”) who make their heroism possible.
Then, at the very end, Pitt paid tribute to his own brood.
“This is for my kids … who color everything I do. I adore you,” the actor said, Oscar finally in hand.
He just made sure to attack the president first before honoring the little tykes.