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An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

Latest update : 2010-03-09

L.A. Times asks: “The Oscars telecast: Worse than ever?”

Patrick Goldstein writing for the L.A. Times was not too impressed with this year’s Oscars ceremony as we see in today’s international press review. Also covered – the massacre in Nigeria, the ongoing Mohammed cartoon controversy and space-age squirrels! TUESDAY, 9th MARCH, 2010

Directors and producers are always under scrutiny at the Oscars but Patrick Goldstein of the Los Angeles Times places the directors of the Oscars ceremony itself under the microscope.
 
“Right from the start, the producers seemed unable to re-imagine the show as something other than a glitzy, painfully earnest version of the same cobwebby variety show we've been watching for years,” he says.
 
Despite the talent of the hosting duo Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin, Goldstein remained unimpressed. “I love Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin but watching them trying to coax laughs out of the wheezy one-liners they were given was painful…Oscar hosts don’t do improv and the script… let them down.”
 
More criticism was dished out for the camera work: “When Mo'Nique finished her full-throated supporting actress acceptance speech, the Oscars director – Steve Hamilton cuts away to -- ouch! -- Samuel L. Jackson, who had nothing to do with the movie and presumably was picked for a cutaway after someone in the booth yelled, "Find me a black person for a reaction shot!"
 
“As soon as Jackson was on camera, he started derisively rolling his eyes, as if to say that he thought Mo'Nique's speech was totally over the top, forcing another awkward cutaway.”
 
Other articles in today’s international papers:
 
International Herald Tribune: Front page photo of a mass grave near Jos, Nigeria
 
Punch (Nigeria): “Jos: 416 victims get mass burial”
 
The Slate: “Yamani or your life”
 
The Daily Telegraph: “'Astro-squirrels' use coconut shells as helmets”

By James CREEDON

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