I just checked back through the archives, and apparently this recap will be the fifth year I’ve talked about the MTV Movie Awards.  Which means…something.  I think.  I keep coming back to them for two reasons: the solid slate of nominees and the show usually knows how to have some fun.  We’d already seen them deliver on the first part (just as an example, the best fight category featured the excellent parking garage fight from Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol and the final fight from Warrior).  The show, however, fell a little flat.

Things got off to a decent start with fun. singing their hit “We Are Young”, which has a chorus meant for an arena.  Janelle Monae even came out to contribute her completely unnecessary bit to the song.  And you probably couldn’t have asked for a more perfect reaction shot, which featured a glowering Kristen Stewart in the vicinity of a pleased as punch Emma Watson.

The problems started as soon as Russell Brand took the stage, as he proved incapable of landing a joke.  I felt badly for the camera guy, who must have been desperately searching the crowd for someone halfway famous who wouldn’t be meeting one of Brand’s punchlines with silence.  I get that he had to run through the latest celebrity tabloid stuff, but celebrities be crazy just isn’t funny by itself.  It was kind of sad how he kept shouting out “Twilight!  Hunger Games!” just to elicit a response from the crowd.

The awards themselves weren’t terribly exciting as, yes, Twilight and Hunger games took down most everything, but the banter was downright atrocious.  The first award presentation had Mila Kunis calling Mother Teresa a dirtbag, and things just went downhill from there.  The show badly needed a dash of Bruce Vilanch.  There were a few notable presenters.  Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield came out in a cool Spiderman entrance (which ended up being repeated, with slight alteration a few more times over the course of the night for big budget movies), and then Stone quickly commanded the stage, talking, essentially, about how gangsta the breakthrough performers were.  She really is the queen of awards show banter.  Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth were also notable in that Hemsworth made Stewart smile.  Check that, he made her positively beam.  He was a revelation in Thor, but I’m beginning to wonder if it wasn’t really acting, if he is, in fact, some sort of Greek god.

They broke up the awards with a few different things.  The only bit was a video with Joel McHale as an archery instructor and featured Jennifer Lawrence and J.J. Abrams talking about him.  It wasn’t particularly funny save for one line near the end.  Charlie Sheen was forced to call Project X an instant cult classic, and from there introduced a party movie cult classic montage, which was a little weak but probably still would have made Brian happy.  And then Wiz Khalifa played, continuing the MTV Movie Awards’s token black person tradition.  Johnny Depp was presented the Generations award by Joe Perry and Steven Tyler, and then he jammed with the Black Keys for a song.  No, I don’t know why.  And, of course, Emma Stone was given the trailblazer award, an award they made up entirely for her.  Which I’m OK with.  There first was a video montage of some of her former co-stars pretending to say nice things about her.  The shtick had been done plenty of times before, and better.  Also needed Woody Harrelson.  Ms. Stone was awesome, integrating a Chris Farley living in a van down by the river joke into the speech.

I didn’t keep an official tally of reaction shots, but I noticed they went to Ellie Kemper a ton, along with Emma Watson, Paris Hilton, Josh Hutcherson, and Channing Tatum.

A few other notes: Martin Solveig DJed, and it was exactly how you’d expect it to be.  They got Jodie Foster to announce best movie, which was cool, but she seemed out of her element.  Russell Brand kept promoting Teen Mom after the show, except it was Teen Wolf that was airing.  It was hard to tell if that was a joke or if he was just confused.  Which may be a pretty apt description of Brand’s hosting job.  And finally, I”ll rep Brian here.  Watch Emma Watson bounding up to the stage and beaming as she accepted the best cast award was like walking into a room full of puppies.

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