Another year, another award. Oscar stood tall and proud in his shiny gold armor, but what about those actresses who so covet his cache? I feel like it was another better-safe-than-sorry year for this most glamorous of Hollywood nights on the red carpet, but I could be wrong. Your opinion? Please share.
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Ah, youth! Nowhere is it more celebrated than in Hailee Steinfeld--from her beaded-pearl headband to her peep-toe pumps. Despite her brief 14 years, the teen shows true grit in her fashion choice of a lovely pink Marchesa ballet-skirt gown with lace overlay. Fred Leighton jewels and a Ferragamo clutch--what else does a teen need?
Ah, Anne. This strapless vintage Valentino clings nicely to the willowy star, with outsized rosettes anchoring generous gathers of red silk as they cascade to her feet. Anne Hathaway's best accessory of all, of course, is the designer himself. Viva Valentino!
My, Mandy. It's not hard to see the light in Mandy Moore's Monique Lhuillier gown. Silver spangles sparkle over nude tulle, accented only by the actress's red lipstick and Chopard button earrings. What's so Tangled about that?
Mmm, Marisa. Her midnight-blue Charles James '50s frock was proclaimed "staggering" by style arbiter Tim Gunn, and I tend to agree. The bustier top paired with the flared tulle bottom was a perfect match for the singer-actress's lean figure and vintage Veronica Lake tresses.
Go, Gwynnie. Although not usually a fan of the actress-cum-country-singer star, I begrudgingly give her credit for her stunning gold Calvin Klein column gown. Simple and elegant, it flatters her slim figure with its simple lines and plunging neck. She could do better than the paisley earrings, however.
Pro Portman. Though I got dinged for Natalie's red flower-nails-lips-shoes matchy-matchiness Viktor & Rolf ensemble at the Grammys, I stand firm in tonight's Rodarte violet chiffon emsemble. The Grecian pleats flatter this Swan's figure while complementing her olive complexion. The dangling purple earrings make this ensemble the "bee's knees," in the Best Actress's own words.
As much as I tried to like Best Actress competitor Mila Kunis's Elie Saab gown, I found the lilac shade a bit old ladyish and staid. The lace peeplets poking out from her top reminded me of delicate hankies tucked into one's sleeve--"just in case"--something my mother would do. An odd choice for this up-and-coming starlet.
Did I call off the housekeepers this week? No matter, Hilary Swank's couture Gucci gown could do a worthy swipe across my floors and furniture. The flighty confection is more feather duster than Oscar frock, so I'm not sure what the toothy star was thinking,
Amy Adams might be Fight-ing too hard in this L'wren Scott royal-blue sequined column dress. The high neck and cap sleeves are a bit conservative for evening wear, and the Cartier diamond-and-emerald necklace just seems to plop lifelessy over the neckline as an afterthought.
Even more of a loser in the fashion Fight is Melissa Leo. Her white Marc Bouwer gown with its stand-up Mandarin collar looks like a craft-project faceoff between cut-out paper snowflakes and a crazed grandmother doily-maker. Who won? No one.
Oh, Cate. You were always so reliable, so elegant, so refined. Until now. This Givenchy gown with its harsh geometric sleeves and egg-yolk tentacle-like suckers represents a rare fashion misstep. What have we done to deserve this?
Scarlett Johansson languished like an overripe plum in this lace-overlay Dolce & Gabbana gown. The floral pattern and high neckline are more than a bit croney, and ScarJo's fried hair isn't helping matters any. Try again next year?
In my doled-out dozen I always allow room for a last-minute People's Choice Award (with the people being me, of course). I don't know how I missed her on the red-carpet coverage, but I would be remiss if I didn't call out Dame Helen Mirren. Enchanting in charcoal duchess silk-satin, the star charmed in this Vivienne Westwood design that featured princess-puff three-quarter sleeves and a square neckline, the perfect showcase for her Cartier jewels and lovely face. Monochromatic Mirren matched right down to her Ferragamo clutch and gray-lacquered fingernails. Once again, well done, Helen, well done!
Sigh, another rumpled bow tie, another smudged glass of flat Champagne. Comment? Please do.