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Worst: Playing off winners with the ‘Jaws’ theme
Playing off winners at the Academy Awards is nothing new. It’s a long show as it is, so you can’t blame the Academy for encouraging winners to wrap it up with some gentle prompting from the orchestra – particularly if, cruel as it sounds, they’re on the less sexy end of the spectrum. But there’s encouraging, and then there’s using plain brute force – and the decision this year to use the menacing strains of John Williams’s Oscar-winning “Jaws” theme to drown out overlong speeches crossed the line. In theory, the idea probably sounded playful, quirky, a little cheeky – and a neat tie-in to the evening’s overriding theme of music in the movies. In practice, however, it came across as disrespectful and more than a little aggressive: for most of the artists up there accepting their awards, this is the biggest night of their professional lives, and hurrying them along with a schticky joke leaves a sour taste.
- Guy Lodge