OFFSTAGE: Gwyneth Paltrow Had My Vote

Sometimes, the best things to come out of the Oscars aren't even the Oscars. Or even the red carpet dress bashing, the long-winded speeches or the what-the-hell moments. Sometimes, it's just the songs. And that's how I felt Sunday night (Feb. 27) while I was watching the Academy Awards. The songs were the perfect way to break up the monotony. Especially when Gwyneth Paltrow took the stage. She was there to sing "Coming Home," from the last performance scene in the movie Country Strong, and she did a lovely job on what is a very lovely ballad. It had been nominated for best original song but didn't win. I realize I'm completely biased, but come on. It was beat by a song from an animated movie? Toy Story 3's "We Belong Together" won. With lyrics like, "Don't you tell me, I'm not the one/Don't you tell me, I ain't no fun." As opposed to the poetic way "Coming Home" captures all the things that home can mean: "It's an alter, it's a shelter/One place you're always welcome/A pink flamingo, double wide/One bedroom in a high rise/A mansion on a hill." I realize Randy Newman is a great songwriter and has received a lot of award nominations, but "Coming Home" had my vote. And Paltrow admited she'd had a beer before she went on to calm her nerves. So her honesty is always award-winning, too. See photos from the 83rd annual Academy Awards.

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