Monday, February 25, 2013

The Academy Awards Go Poof!

The members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences are insiders prone to voting for friends and trends and are rarely in touch with any true sense of art! They keep a sharp eye out for popular trends rather than artistic achievement.
by Charlie Leck

What exactly happened last night? The Academy cast its votes and they were announced. Something went wrong and it all became more and more clear to us (the people who go to the movies). Argo was a fine film. If it was the best picture of the year then I’m a lowly simpleton (and there are many ready to cast a vote for that). And, Zero Dark Thirty was also a fine, fine film. But, Lincoln? Lincoln was a triumph – a masterpiece – a brilliant work of cinematic art! There are simply not comparisons.

The members of the Academy vote for their choices based on a number of political connections and personal likes and dislikes that we, on the outside, will never understand. The perception of the Academy as the standard for determining the best of anything has been diminishing year after year for nearly two decades now. Last night it hit rock bottom and it became clear that the whole shebang has more to do with personality than art.

Lincoln simply should have been the best picture and Steven Spielberg should have been the best director. There ain’t no two ways about it!

It was a year of remarkable films and movie-goers were the real winners this year. However, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is nothing but a vague shadow of its former self! There are so many other awarding organizations that have a better grip on the realities of cinema and they are the honors to which we should be paying attention. Real theater people have begun to disregard the opinions of a bunch of people who are trying to either curry favors or repay them with their votes (the Academy).

Last night’s big show was as weak and distasteful and as even the Academy itself. My feeling after watching it was simply: “Who cares?” I’ve read the reviews in the major newspapers across the country and they are all essentially negative. Viewership is down for the show and, after last night, I can see why! Bad jokes and bad decisions!

Glen Whipp, writing long after midnight last night for the Los Angeles Times, said it best and I recommend his column to you if you are even interested in this subject. He tells us what the Academy really is and why we should disregard it.

But, as a movie-goer (who dips into the popular movie offerings at main-line theaters) how do you beat a year like this (in alpha order)?….

The Hobbit
Hyde Park on the Hudson
Les Miserables
Life of Pi
Silver Linings Playbook

It was a triumphant year for Hollywood, but not for the Academy!

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1 comment:

  1. The problem was tht Lincoln has a habit of getting off'd in theaters. Didn't watch the Oscars. Based on your blog. I'm glad I didn't.