Oscar's Greatest Moments - 1971 to 1991 [VHS]

 
9786302288971: Oscar's Greatest Moments - 1971 to 1991 [VHS]
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Review:

To answer the first and most important question: no, this compilation of Oscar broadcasts from the 1970s through the '90s does not feature the infamous duet of "Proud Mary" between Rob Lowe and Snow White. This being an officially sanctioned documentary look from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, anything extremely embarrassing has been conveniently excised. Minor and cute gaffes, sure; political statements, no problem (thanks, Vanessa Redgrave); famous no-shows, upfront and center (George C. Scott and Marlon Brando); fashion statements, let's take a long look (Cher, step right up!). But, if you're a fan of the Oscar show, you might wonder: where's the camp? The cheesiness? The fun? Granted, a look at production numbers goes from the sublime (Isaac Hayes doing the "Theme from Shaft," Aretha Franklin belting "Nobody Does It Better") to the ridiculous (Debby Boone and a host of deaf children performing "You Light Up My Life," Sheena Easton in an excruciating production of "For Your Eyes Only"), but this is a pretty serious look at Hollywood's most famous awards ceremony. Highlights include Bette Midler's trashing of the Best Song nominees of 1980, Billy Crystal's early (and funny) opening monologues, a fashion montage featuring Oscar poster girls Anjelica Huston and Jane Fonda (check out Fonda's innumerable hair transformations), and Louise Fletcher's touching acceptance speech for Best Actress in 1975. However, like the awards show itself, this documentary runs a little long on self-congratulation and a little short on humor. Someday someone will put together Oscar's Campiest Moments, but for now you'll have to make do with this official, straight-faced look at the awards. --Mark Englehart

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