ANOTHER DAY IN THE COUNTRY:   Going to the Oscars

© Another Day in the Country

This was an exciting weekend with the Oscars and all. Since coming to live in the country, going to movies has become what we call our “cultural fix,” which then makes it much more interesting than it used to be for us to find out who wins at the Oscars award ceremony.

Last year, we had to be out of town but I arranged to have the Oscars recorded so that we could watch them after we got home. It was going to be the perfect solution because by the time we got back from our concert the Oscars would have been going on for an hour, which meant that we could then fast forward through all the “red carpet” and commercials. The only problem was that the program ran longer than scheduled and cut off the recording when the allotted time ran out.

Here we were fast-forwarding through the event and when we got to the most crucial awards — best actor and best film — the recording had stopped! It was late enough at night that news reports were long over, so we had to wait until the next day to see who had won.

We enjoy the Oscars so much that we decided to have The Schubert Family Film Festival one year at our family reunion and give out awards to all the winners — that was pretty much all of us!

The first evening we had golden oldies with everyone bringing slides of their family history. We set up Mom’s old screen, warmed up the projector and reminisced. The next day we began filming what the major family groups had chosen as their theme for the year.

I took videos. Jess helped direct. We pretty much improvised the script as we went along. Afterward, Tim and I edited the footage into selected shorts that had somewhat familiar names like, “Anger Management,” “Driving Miss Georgia,” “Wonder Woman” and “A Man for all Seasons.” We sent a DVD to all the stars. I had to get mine out and play it again to remember the names of the movies.

In preparation for the Oscars this year, my sister and I attempted to see all the films that had been nominated. How else could we tell if the Oscar committee was on track? This year there were several that I didn’t want to see because of the nature of the film.

I waited until the last minute to see “Captain Phillips,” which turned out pretty much as I expected since it was a true story and the spoiler alert had long ago played out on the evening news. What I didn’t expect was to be disgusted with the Navy taking so long to act.

We waited to see “Gravity” until Sunday afternoon. That is really squeaking it in at the last minute. I could imagine the horror of being untethered in space and I didn’t particularly want to see it all spelled out in living color; but for the sake of the Oscars I watched every minute. Didn’t like it! As magnificent the feat of making it look like they were in outer space, I didn’t think that Sandra Bullock’s acting made her believable as a space technician.

“The Wolf of Wall Street,” I didn’t see because of its excess and “Twelve Years A Slave,” I chose not to watch because of the cruelty.

We did try to see all the shorts that were nominated. In fact, we tried twice. Friends told us that the Wichita Library does a free showing at area theaters of all the nominated short films. The first week we went to Wichita, we didn’t get there in time to get tickets to all the films so we only saw the live-action films.

Saturday, we tried again. We’d already seen the animated and live action, again, when the weather took a turn for the worse. We decided, just as the documentaries (which we wanted to see most of all) were about to start, that it would be wise to get out of the city traffic and head for home. As we drove past Newton and already the sleet was clearing, my sister asked, “Should we have stayed?”

Sunday night, at the last minute, I decided that I was going to get all dressed up, make a fashion statement — high heels, plunging necklines, fancy jewels and all — walk the red carpet to see the Oscars. I dug through the storage closet to find something slinky I could fit into, did my hair and make-up myself, sadly because no other artists were available, and struck a pose on the red carpet.

I wore black and was pleased to discover that several well-known names had also chosen to wear black. Black seemed to be “in.” The camera was popping as my sister dutifully recorded the event. She declined doing an interview.

Later, once I’d found my seat, she did offer to bring me a soda because she was a little worried about my navigating the walk from the front room to the kitchen and back in these highest heels that I own, which I seldom wear. It was a lovely evening. I saw many familiar faces, although no one from Ramona, and decided to forego any of the after-parties.

While on the one hand it was just another day in the country, it was definitely a night to remember!

 

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