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Cars & Movies

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

Let's start with my theory about the Academy Awards. I am not anti-Oscar. Neither am I anti-NBA playoffs. I want to know who won, but I don't want to sit through the agony of watching the process.


With that in mind, I am free to type this beginning at 7:30. I have closed Twitter for the evening while still wondering how Danica Patrick went from 3rd to 8th in about 50 yards on the last lap of the Daytona 500 yesterday afternoon.

Dear Mr. Mullings

Just to be clear, you are making a big deal about not watching the Academy Awards, yet you watched three hours of cars running in a circle? Please explain.

The Piers Morgan Appreciation Society (U.S. Division)

Easy. Once I realized that the new Gen-6 cars (at least when running with restrictor plates installed) are too closely matched to do any real racing, I (and my cat) slept through the middle two hours. We awoke in time to see the replays of the wrecks, the final pit stop, and the race to the flag at the end.

See? I know that Jimmy Johnson won (not, I was saddened to find out, the former coach of the Cowboys and Dolphins) and that it was his second time in the winner's circle.

Tomorrow morning I will find out who won which award for which category and, if it was someone who acted in a movie I've seen, I will nod approvingly. If not, I will cluck, roll my eyes, and complain bitterly about the Left-Wing-Creeps in Hollywood who vote on these things.

Because I am on a mission to be nicer to the Mullings Director of Standards & Practices - if only so she lets me know when my Social Security checks have been auto-deposited in our joint checking account - I actually saw a good number of nominated films including, on Saturday night, "Silver Linings Playbook" which was a lot better than I had expected it to be.


Nevertheless, as we were leaving the theater I overheard one woman say to another, "There were just too many crazy people in that for my taste." Before I could join in their conversation, a trait which makes me popular the world over, the MD of S&P took my arm and steered me out to the parking lot.

"Silver Linings Playbook" contained Best Actor in a Leading Role (Bradley Cooper), Best Actress in a Leading role (Jennifer Lawrence), and Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Bobby De Niro).

Why isn't the distinction between "Actor" and "Actress" an actionable violation of sex discrimination laws? Right-Wing-Creeps in Hollywood.

Linda Hunt won an academy award for Best Actress in "The Year of Living Dangerously" for playing a man. Dustin Hoffman was nominated for Best Actor for playing a woman in "Tootsie." Go figure.

Of the nominees for Best Picture, I saw "Argo" twice. Once in the theater and last week on a flight back from Paris. I also saw the "Life of Pi" on an airplane. We saw "Lincoln" when it was first released, but not "Zero Dark Thirty" because…well, just because.

We didn't see "Les Mis" because I had broken into open sobbing and wailing during the previews a few months before its release drawing concerned glances from movie patrons sitting around us and that was just a five minute snippet. I would have had to join the group therapy session from "Silver Linings Playbook" if I'd have tried to sit through the whole thing.


I thought the latest Bond flick, "Skyfall" was so good of an action/thriller it should have been nominated for Best Picture, but maybe dispatching M to the great intelligence bureau in the sky put the members of the Academy off. We know how they love to protect paramilitary characters in films.

During the run-up to last night's awards I heard, saw, and read time and again entertainment reporters telling me they would be "live blogging" or "live Tweeting" the event. If you were in a place where you could read a "live" blog or "Tweet" (which would not, one hopes, include driving a car on the New Jersey Turnpike or similar) you would likely be in a place where you could watch the actual broadcast.

Ok. Here's what I really wanted to write about:

Oh, drat. I'm out of space. Maybe I'll peek in on the Academy Awards for just the briefest moment.

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