Tuesday, February 26, 2008
"I Don't Go to Movies to Think!"
I'd been festering all day to write a rebuttal against the carping criticisms about the Oscars, mainly by news pundits and sportscasters (one of whom is quoted in my post heading and pictured above) and other wanks who know nothing about movies. And I still might, but Nathaniel R. over at The Film Experience has already pretty thoroughly covered the bases (excerpts below, edited grammatically in a few spots -- sorry, can't help myself):
"There will be more articles....about the Oscars' low ratings this year, the lowest ever, and more misleading attacks on how they've lost touch. And sure, Oscar could use some lightening up. But Jesus, the public's taste lacks for variety. The public is even more narrow-minded in their favoritism than Oscar is in theirs....And why does no one stop to consider that Oscar mostly honors movies made for adults and box office mostly honors movies made for kids?"
On media complicity:
"But again... this whole 'I've never heard of that!' complaint is silliness and it's part of the widening problem of a press that wants to constantly butter up and infantilize the masses, feeding them the line that they're always right. Information is so easy to get now. Everything is literally a mouse click away. You haven't heard of that movie? Look it up, you damn lazy fool."
On nominated movies:
"So why do so many articles try to widen the gap and reinforce the perception that people don't see/aren't seeing the Best Picture nominees? Wouldn't the media at large benefit from a public that was more interested in exploring the arts and not just sitting there like lumps being force fed whichever movies had the highest ad budgets? Compounding the problem is that the media is so selective and hypocritical about how they bitch about this public/Oscar disconnect....This year Juno is a smash and No Country For Old Men has done very solid business....If you ask me There Will Be Blood has done terrific business for what it is. It's a truly challenging, almost alien movie."
On the Oscars themselves:
"Somewhere and probably thousands of somewheres in the world, young kids and even some sheltered adults are hearing about great movies that they might never have heard about otherwise if it weren't for this popularity contest that looks beyond superheroes and anthropomorphic animals."
Read the whole thing; it's worth your while. Meantime, I'll be fretting like Claude Rains in Casablanca over this year's acting winners: "I am shocked -- shocked! -- to find that foreigners have taken home gold statues...."