It was the tale of two schools of fashion on the Oscar red carpet last night, when Anna Kendrick and Mo'Nique nearly collided. Kendrick whispered in a blush Elie Saab chiffon off-the-shoulder number, while Mo'Nique roared in a brazen electric-blue silk jersey by Tadashi Shoji that hugged every curve. "It's not a boring Oscar, that's for sure," said Suze Yalof Schwartz, Glamour's executive fashion editor at large. "I feel the actresses are finally having fun again on the red carpet. It was all about the 'wow' factor."
Tops on the wow list: Sandra Bullock (who seemed all nerves) looked smashing in Marchesa's silvery column with lace illusion top. She wasn't the only one strutting the heavy metal: Sarah Jessica Parker wore a Chanel couture goddess job with silvery roses at the top and inset in the back. Miley Cyrus donned a gold corset and textured skirt by Jenny Packham while Kate Winslet went for coppery Yves Saint Laurent. Cameron Diaz celebrated in a champagne Oscar de la Renta dappled with gold.
WINNERS: List of Academy Award winners
But back to fun. Newcomer Gabourey Sidibe, who worked a bright-blue number, announced, "If fashion were porn, this dress was the money shot." Mariah Carey did blue, too, a Valentino featuring a thigh-high slit, a gigantic brooch and lots of cleavage. When her diamond bracelet caught on the fabric of the top, she joked, "diamonds are a girl's best friend," pointing at, um, the girls.
And, speaking of those, were those bull's-eyes on Charlize Theron's? Penélope Cruz did bold right in Donna Karan's bordeaux pleated and draped gown. Not so Zoë Saldana in a gold bodice and, yikes, a cancan skirt in shades of purple. We're up in the air about Vera Farmiga's fuchsia Marchesa fan dress - a bit too much?
Some opted for neutral territory, including Meryl Streep in white Chris March (a "Project Runway" alum) with long sleeves and draped, plunging neckline. Diane Kruger's creamy Chanel could have been a winner but had way too much going on.
On the men's side, word was that Danny Glover mounted a letter campaign to nominees and presenters against Hugo Boss because of a factory closing in Detroit, which would leave 400 workers jobless. Didn't see much of the brand. James Cameron gets high marks for cuteness - his pocket square matched his wife's dress. Jeff Bridges wore Gucci and his movie beard. Likewise, Antonio Banderas wore facial hair, his sort of two-toned. And guess what Tom Ford was wearing? Ah, yeah, that would be Tom Ford.