Chris Rock put in the performance of his life as host of the 88th Academy Awards – and transformed what had threatened to be the most controversial of ceremonies into one of the very best, according to a BBC report.
The BBC opines that Chris Rock pulled it off superbly like no other host could have done.
The tone was set by an astonishing 15-minute opening monologue that was simply thrilling to watch, not only in terms of its stagecraft and confidence, but also the sheer quality of the material.
Rock started by saying, “white People’s Choice awards” before saying that “if they nominated hosts, I wouldn’t even get this job… you would be watching [2015 host] Neil Patrick Harris right now.”
“this whole non-black nominees thing happened at least 71 times” but that black people did not protest before because they were “too busy being raped and lynched to care about who won best cinematographer”.
“When your grandmother’s swinging from a tree it’s really hard to care about best documentary foreign short,” he added.
“Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna’s panties. I wasn’t invited”
Chris Rock reserved one for Jada’s husband, Will Smith as well, “It’s not fair… I get it. It’s also not fair that Will was paid $20m for Wild Wild West.”
Finally, he addressed head-on the question of whether Hollywood itself is racist, branding it “sorority racist.”
Its people, including those in the audience, were “the nicest people on Earth”, he said – but they were still not hiring black people. Their attitude, he said, was “We like you Ronda. But you’re not Kappa.”
Rock also went to Compton to ask black movie fans there what they thought about films like Trumbo, Brookyln, Bridge Of Spies or The Big Short – to be met with baffled looks.
“Are these movies from London?” asked one. It highlighted the gulf between what the Oscars reward and what certain audiences are actually enjoying.