(1) I realize I’m no producer/director, but it seems to me that if you want a show to end on time, you don’t fill it up with pointless montages. There should only be TWO montages: (1) the recently-dead actors montage; and (2) the Honorary Oscar award winner montage
(2) I found the musical underscoring of the acceptance speeches to be distracting and contrived. And annoying.
(3) Jon Stewart was fine. It wasn’t really his mileu. At some point, it doesn’t make any difference who hosts — you just want the thing to MOVE ALONG, and Jon — while being funny — didn’t showboat and get in the way.
(4) I was a little off with my predictions this year. I got 16 right, and 8 wrong. But I get bonus points for predicting that Richard Pryor would be the last one in the "In Memoriam" montage.
(5) I was a little surprised that Paul Giamatti didn’t win, and like everybody else, VERY surprised about "Crash" taking Best Picture. I thought "Brokeback Mountain" was overrated, but I still wish it had won — if only because I would have enjoyed making fun of all the moral wingnuts going ballistic about the decline of America blah blah blah.
(6) Along those lines (and despite my boredom with montages), it was nice of the Academy to remind the moral wingnuts to show (via montage) that Hollywood has always been at the forefront of social issues and spotlighting injustices.
(7) I watched it with a friend. We came up with a game – "Strip Oscars". It would have made the whole Oscars experience more interesting, but sadly, we didn’t actually play it; we just came up with it. Perhaps next year.