Hey Hollywood, way to play the red carpet safe at last night’s Academy Awards. Did the writer’s strike kill your spirit and your fashion sense?
OK, that’s a bit harsh. Most of the stars didn’t look as boring as, say, listening to Kimora Lee Simons bland fashion musings on the E! channel’s pre-ceremony red-carpet show.
But the colors were primarily dark, the craziness was kept to a minimum (although, we’ll get to Diablo Cody later), and there was nothing as dramatic as, say, Bjork’s swan-dress mess of 2001 or Charlize Theron’s crazy two-headed monster look of 2006.
Some even looked downright dowdy. (Hey, Ellen Page, you’re 21! Live it up. You look like a Golden Girl in that dress even though your face smacks of you digging into your mom’s makeup.)
And between the blackness of Laura Linney, Hilary Swank and Tilda Swinton’s gowns, I started to wonder if red-carpet fashion had just died.
There were a few bright spots on the red carpet, and I’m not just talking about the color red — although that didn’t hurt.
Here’s a round up of the most memorable Oscar looks from last night, starting with my faves and working my way to the fugs:
Anne Hathaway: She redeemed herself after last year’s lace-and-bow nightmare and gets my vote for best dressed in her bright red Marchesa one-shoulder, goddess-style gown. The rosette sash that covered the shoulder and the bodice hinted at old-school Hollywood glamour, and the color looked amazing against her porcelain skin and brunette hair.
Jessica Alba: She played the baby-bump hand that she was dealt like a winner. The empire-waist plum-colored Marchesa gown flattered her skin and body, and she could even be forgiven for the “Heidi”-ish braids.
Amy Ryan: Although it wasn't blow-your-mind amazing, Ryan’s midnight-blue Calvin Klein gown was super sophisticated, with simple, clean lines.
Kelly Preston: She actually spiced it up with a “streetlight yellow” (as E! host Ryan Seacrest dubbed it) Roberto Cavalli gown, so props to her.
Katherine Heigl: She looked nice in a bright-red, one-shoulder Escada gown. But, frankly, it looked too much like a low-budget Isaac Mizrahi for Target version of Hathaway’s frock.
Cameron Diaz: Poor, Cami. She just can’t seem to get it right. Her pale pink Dior by John Galliano dress was way too similar to her gown last year (which, if I recall, reminded me of a take-out box from a Chinese restaurant or a paper airplane), and it just didn’t fit.
Cate Blanchett: I know she’s pregnant, and I know she looked amazing at last year’s Oscars, but that doesn’t mean she got a pass this year. She should have taken a cue from Alba or Nicole Kidman, the other high-profile moms-to-be waddling down the carpet, and found a more flattering dress. Or at least picked a color that better complemented her skin tone.
Renee Zellweger: The slightly crazy bobble-head doll-like appearance may have more to do with the short, disheveled hair than the Carolina Herrera gown. But all the sparkle and the thigh-high split didn’t help.
Marion Cotillard: Did she get invited to an “Under the Sea” themed after-party? ’Cause I can’t figure out why she’s dressed like an extra from “The Little Mermaid.”
Diablo Cody: When did the Oscar’s become a costume party with a Flintstones theme?
What did you think about the Oscar's red-carpet fashion?