The Best & Worst Moments of the 2014 Oscars
Jared Leto and Lupita Nyong'o (Getty Images)
This year's Oscars ceremony went off without a hitch, for the most part, and even finished right in the nick of time. This was essentially the biggest surprise of the evening, given the prizes doled out were pretty much exactly as our team of experts predicted.
Over the course of a highly entertaining show emceed by second-time host Ellen DeGeneres, there were touching speeches, funny cracks, and even a "record-setting" selfie. Of course, there were a few lows, too.
Join us as we review the best and worst moments of the 2014 Academy Awards.
BEST: Lupita Nyong'o's Teary Speech
She came into tonight owning the season already, so we had no doubt that the "12 Years a Slave" breakout star would deliver gold from the stage. She obliged in a poignant speech that acknowledged the dilemma of celebrating such difficult subject matter ("It doesn't escape me for one moment that so much joy in my life comes from so much pain") and praised director Steve McQueen ("I'm certain that the dead are standing about you and watching and they are grateful and so am I"). She delivered most of this speech through tears, and likely had many viewers at home crying along with her.
BEST: Jared Leto Gives Mom Props
Best Supporting Actor winner Jared Leto ("Dallas Buyers Club") gave the number one lady in his life a super gushy nod from the stage. "In 1971, Bossier City, Louisiana, there was a teenage girl who was pregnant with her second child. She was a high school dropout and a single mom, but somehow she managed to make a better life for herself and her children. She encouraged her kids to be creative, to work hard and to do something special. That girl is my mother and she’s here tonight. And I just want to say, I love you, Mom. Thank you for teaching me to dream." Like his SAG shout-out to the lady who made him, it came off cute instead of trite. (The rest of his speech might have done with a bit of a trim job, though.)
[Related: Complete List of 2014 Oscar Winners]
BEST: Ellen's Opening Monologue
Ellen might usually be one of TV's friendliest, but tonight she uncharacteristically went for the jugular with a few of her opening notes, like that moment she started yelling her jokes at June Squibb (at 84, the night's oldest nominee) or when she ribbed on Jennifer Lawrence for tripping again this year (and came up with the not-so-bad solution of just bringing the Oscar to her if she wins). And perhaps the zingiest moment came when she propped Jonah Hill for showing her something she "had not seen in a very, very long time" (for those who haven't seen "Wolf of Wall Street," that would be male genitalia). Oh, and she also called Matthew McConaughey dirty pretty. 'Cause obviously.