Wow! From 4pm last night until 9pm, Wine Styles was humming with every kind of whoop and holler, as the members of TFC has their “own” Academy Awards party. The Academy gave us all some surprises, thank goodness, and the fellowship was deep and meaningful. Managers Tim & Mary provided special treats for us, and Tim ran off Oscar ballots for each table. Roger ran a raffle during five commercial breaks, and his prizes were both creative and fun. We filled the joint up with family and friends and perhaps have started a TFC tradition that will rival our incredible Summer Picnic, or the Fourth of July at the Boothes. What the film club is morphing into is a group who likes and respects each other, drawn from all walks of life, and who knows how to have fun. Wasn’t it great that AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH did so well, and Al Gore was such a kick in the pants? To have Melissa Etheridge’s song win over the three blockbusters from DREAM GIRLS was another zinger. To have the wonderful Alan Arkin snatch Best Supporting Actor from Eddie Murphy another jaw dropper. To give Martin Scorsese his long awaited kudos, and to even let THE DEPARTED spirit Best Picture away from front runner BABEL really livened things up. Helen Mirren, Jennifer Hudson, and Forest Whitaker were all kind of shoo-ins. Some of us old time sentimentalists would have liked to see 8 time nominee Peter O’Toole win Best Actor, but in truth VENUS was lightweight fare relative to THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND. In my heart I hoped that Penelope Cruz might sneak in there too, but Jennifer was a show stopper; no doubt. Ellen Degeneres was a totally delight as host(ess). She made the whole affair even more fun. Her banter with Scorsese and Clint Eastwood was to die for. And how great was it to have Steven Spielberg, Francis Ford Coppola, and George Lucas on stage to hand Marty Scorsese his first golden boy? The naked tumbling shadow dancers who made human shadow icons were great. The choir of special effects noises was very cute. The montage to all the 50 Best Foreign Films was breath-taking as so very many of the films the TFC has viewed and discussed flashed in front of us, with Ron’s BICYCLE THIEVES right up there in front. Michael Mann’s montage to American Film was different. Jack Nicholson with shaved pate was a bizarre sight. I wonder what role he is in the middle of? Jodie Foster, not seen enough these days, looked wonderful. Ditto for Gwyneth Paltrow. Jennifer Lopez, for a change, looked frumpy. Penelope Cruz looked regal, and speaking of regal, didn’t Helen Mirren look fantastic, a real testament to middle-aged women everywhere!!?
2007 has opened with the roar of the MGM lion, and the TFC is keeping pace. Who knows what fun lurks in the hearts of men? Hooray for Hollywood, and three cheers for all of us who showed up to raise our glasses, and open our hearts to the industry that gives us so much joy.