‘Gladiator’ walks away with four Oscars, with ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’ in a close second


It was a calamitous battle from start to finish, but the unrelenting aggressor was “Gladiator”, winning five Oscars at the 73rd Annual Academy Awards.
In one of the closest Oscar races in recent memory, Ridley Scott’s Roman revival, “Gladiator” took home five Oscars, sweeping the 2001 Academy Awards. The movie won Best Picture, Achievement in Sound, Visual Effects, Costume Design and Best Actor, Russel Crowe.
“Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” was a close adversary, winning four awards. The martial arts romance directed by Ang Lee received the Oscar for Best Foreign Film . The movie also won Best Cinematography, Art direction and Score.
China born composer Tan Dun was awarded best score, and rightfully so for the lovely orchestrated song. “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” has earned over $100 million in North America, which is a first for a subtitled film.
The next big winner at the awards was undoubtedly “Traffic,” with four awards. Film Editing and Best Screenplay based in material previously produced or published were two of the four awards.
Benicio Del Toro took the Best Supporting Actor award for his depiction of a conflicted Mexican cop. Del Toro was in good company but stiff competition with nominee, Albert Finney. Finney played Julia Roberts’ boss in “Erin Brockovich.” Finney was my pick, but Del Toro was deserving as well.
The best saved to last, “Traffic” received Best Direction by Steven Souderburgh. The category itself was a “lock” for Souderburgh, who also directed “Erin Brockovich.” Any person that directs two movies nominated for Academy Awards has to feel good.
“I love the world.” These were words taken from Julia Roberts’ acceptance speech for Best Actress in “Erin Brockovich.” There was some controversy of whether Roberts was predestined for the award because she is such a popular actress.
Anyone that agrees with that statement needs to give her some credit. She did a fabulous job in that movie. Julia was sincerely ecstatic, and understandably so. This is the Academy Awards.
Best Supporting Actress went to Marcia Gay Harden for her role in “Pollack.” I was able to speak to a Quinnipiac student that interned on the film, sophomore Nicole Pare. When asked how she felt about “her” movie winning Parereplied, “they all worked really hard on that movie, and I am glad to hear that she won.”
Pare also included how she felt that the “entire cast of the movie was really nice.” Her only disappointment was that Ed Harris did not win.
An uproarious sound of triumph rung high in Perlroth when Bob Dylan won for most original song from the Wonder Boys. Dylan performed the song, “Things have changed from” via satellite.
Never would Dr. Seuss’ “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” have any of my votes for best acting, however the makeup in the movie was amazing. Rich Baker and Gail Ryan took home the Oscar for Makeup.
Best Animated Short Film went to “Fathers and Daughters” and Best Live Action Short went to “Quiero Ser.” “Big Mama,” was awarded Best Short Subject Documentary. “Into the Arms of Strangers: Stories of the Kindertransport” garnered the Oscar for the Best Documentary Feature.
Best Sound Editing was awarded to Jon Johnson for “U-571.” Finally, Best Screenplay written directly for the screen was given to Cameron Crowe for his screenplay, “Almost Famous.”
All in all, the 2001 Academy Awards were a success and no one movie really hogged all of the credit, like past years. Despite popular views that many of the awards were “predictable,” I disagree. I never would have guessed that “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” would have done so well considering the subtitles.
One of the most outrageous and unforgettable events was when Bjork showed up to perform “I’ve Seen It All.” She performed with a stuffed swan that wrapped around her neck. After that performance I had seen enough!
Not to be forgotten should be host/comedian Steve Martin. Although I missed Billy Crystal, I definitely enjoyed Steve Martin. He had some hysterical material and tied the show together very well.
Sophomore Niki Lacey, commented on how “Russel Crowe acted immature” because he did not take any of the jokes directed at him well.
The Academy Awards are, in my view, the classiest of all award shows. This year they lived up to expectations as usual.