These film people have put a lot into their art and this is their big night - fair enough. But the gushing cling-ons are hard to take as they bounce and squeal excitedly over each pleat and ruffle. One asked a bloke 'Who's tux are you wearing?' which I thought was rather rude. Were they suggesting that he couldn't afford to buy his own and had to borrow someone elses? Apparently not. That's fashion-speak for 'Who designed your outfit?' (And in the case of Sarah Jessica Parker, 'Was it for a bet?')
The 'stars' smile and politely pirouette for the masses. They all want the acknowledgment - that's why actors act, right? - they will get from their peers inside the building. But to get there, they are prepared to face this gauntlet first where they know the people simpering at them now will be ripping them to shreds in the magazines and websites later.
No, I'm not above it. And just to prove it, I took notes on whose gowns I'd like to own, and which were total frock horrors.
Cameron Diaz's look was described as 'old school glamour'. We dressed in navy blue polyester at my old school. I like this gold strapless gown, but it would have been somewhat impractical on the lacrosse pitch.
This is sort of similar, but what it makes up for in the practicality stakes with shoulders, it looses out with a fish tail. Sandra Bullock is beautiful and she has clearly chosen to match her outfit to the cute accessory she will take away later, but it might help if she could move. She can't even break into her trademark smile for fear of breathing.
Demi Moore's Versace frock is described as 'blush' which is slightly amusing as she is now so plastic, I doubt she is capable of doing that herself. However, she looks good for a doll and is able to wear all those ruffles without looking like a toilet roll cover.
Speaking of ruffles - why does this work? Diane Kruger risks looking like a Christmas tree, but this dress is so frou-frou and chic it can only be Chanel. There is a gorgeous ribbon effect that hangs down the middle of her back, and adds extra interest, like a gift you can't wait to unwrap...
...whereas Jennifer Lopez (why is she at the Oscars at all?) in bubble-wrap looks like something you desperately want to cram back into the box.
Speaking of boxes, Vera Farmiga appears to have crashed through the first layer of chocolate and ended up in that annoyingly noisy crinkly stuff like an anaemic strawberry cream.
Helen Mirren retains her Queen of the Catwalk crown with this sparkly metallic number with the subtle sleeve detail that 'ladies of a certain age' wear so well. She is simply stunning.
My beloved Kate, however, looks like she is auditioning for the Tin Man in this suit of armour. Metallics don't always work the way you intended.
Carey Mulligan looks great in this Prada outfit sewn with tiny scissors which earned the word 'quirky' on the night by everyone who mentioned it. Who says black has to be boring? And she gets extra points for proving that yes, film stars really do have feet (I was beginning to think they were all on wheels).
At last, some colour! If you're not size six, you're going to stand out at the Oscars anyway. Mo'Nique does it for all the right reasons (as well as winning the best supporting actress award, obviously) in electric blue.
This is one outfit that certainly doesn't need jewellery, and Zoe Saldana rocks it. Colour; check, sparkles; check, metallics; check, ruffles; check, fish tail; check. Perhaps she stole some of Maggie's materials?
I actually like this dress on Penelope Cruz, although I did hear it described as 'provincial bridesmaid'. Let's just say that if you were the bride at this wedding, you would be well and truely outshone. So, colour; there is the good...