I'm a big movie fan and have been since I was a kid. Big influence was my dad who worked at Paramount as the head plumber. He had some interesting anecdotes about movie stars and how movies were made. In fact, he was the one who figured out how to part the Red Sea in Exodus. Much harder back in the days before computers, he did it with glass, piping and hydraulics. He also spoiled a lot of movies by telling us secrets about how they were made: toy trains instead of real ones, painted scenery in the basement instead of really outdoors, a big tank on the back lot for ocean scenes.
We went to the movies every Friday night and always listened to the Oscars on radio and after they were on TV, of course TV. While I was a kid, dad always told us which of the stars were nice and which weren't complete with anecdotes.
The best thing about this year's awards was Hugh Jackman. Who knew the man could sing and dance? The production itself was grand. But, I must admit, I haven't seen hardly any of the movies. Nowadays the movies that seem to win are about horrible people with angst and unhappy endings. I did enjoy Benjamin Buttons because it was a fairy tale. I saw Changeling too, and it was okay. I loved the L.A. scenes. I was once a phone operator, but the scenes in the movie were before my time, though we had to dress up and wear nylons, no one roller skated. I did ride on the streetcar to get to work though.
The movies I liked best didn't win anything. Australia was great--like an old time epic film, like Gone With the Wind but with a happy ending. Mama Mia was great fun, saw it with my two grown daughters who danced and sang in the aisles.
It's time Hollywood made more happy movies to raise our spirits during this difficult economic time.
I have a new interview here: http://tinyurl.com/chudrp