February 24, 2010

What I Talk About When I Talk About The Academy Awards

The Academy Awards' media frenzy has been growing and I think that actually does more harm than good. All this talk of Oscar "front runners" always leads to disaster. Think Titanic and Crash...then think of a joke involving an iceberg. Anyway I didn't want to go and add my snarky two cents on predictions and snubs because...well I didn't have a good reason, let's just say laziness. I sometimes find the Oscars predictable and uninspired. Why would I want to add anything to the media firestorm? But a few things a have been brought to my attention that I just had to address and perhaps, just perhaps, I can influence some of you out there.

1) There will be NO best song Performances this year.
Dear Academy,
What? You have nominated two Disney songs from The Princess and the Frog, one Broadway hit song from Nine and the Golden Globe winning theme to Crazy Heart and you aren't going to to give them a chance to perform? Are you scared the show might get entertaining if you allow them to perform the songs live? Your friend, TAC

The songs will reportedly be played with movie clips instead. And that's just brilliant because everybody knows that the clips and montages that play at the Oscars are so good. Oh, wait, that's right, they are usually awkward and confusing. For some reason they pick the most random clips and scenes from the nominated films that make no sense to anybody, even if you have seen the movie. But lets just hit play on your bejeweled ipod and let the songs play over some lame clip show because that's worth sitting through 4+ hours for. No. No. No. This will be the first and last year the Oscars are doing this. Remember this blogger, Academy, because I totally told you so.

2) Avatar will not win best picture or best director.
It won't. It might have helped evolve cinema to new visual heights but it took a nosedive in the writing, acting and editing department. The Hurt Locker might win, maybe... the Brits liked it at the BAFTA awards. Inglorious Basterds, perhaps... it's been getting a lot of lip service lately. I am rooting for Up In The Air but I haven't heard anybody say peep about that movie being a contender.

Side rant: These writers, bloggers and critics have to remember how susceptible these Hollywood types are. If you write about how "hot" Old Dogs is for best picture it would some how win best picture even though it's not nominated or any good for that matter.

So, just stop with the Avatar talk, please....those braided squid ponytails creep me the eff out. No more hype about what film is ahead in the Oscar "race" either. You actually influence the outcome writing all this Oscar "hype" and then we all end up being disappointed at the winners. Here's my message to Academy voters, don't listen to us critics. Use your brains and vote for what you really think deserves to win. And if you MUST listen to someone it might as well be me. Here's my one piece of advice: Don't vote for Avatar or The Blind Side, any other movie is fine, just not those two. Thanks (Smiley Face!)

3) (500) Days Of Summer wasn't snubbed.
There is a lot of "talk" out there that Summer was snubbed. It's not as good as you think it is. It's was like a film school nerd wrote a script that tried to cram in everything that he has been doodling in his composition notebook since he was 14. I do appreciate that it's trying to be different from other romantic comedies. I like how much it featured downtown L.A. And I like the karaoke singing of "Hear Comes Your Man." But just being different and having an adorable leading couple doesn't mean it's Oscar worthy. Seriously, watch it again. Not as good as you remember, is it?

4) Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was snubbed.
It was a great year for Animated movies. And Cloudy should be up there with the other best Animated Feature nominees. We need to acknowledge films like Cloudy so DreamWorks can see what a good animated movie with thoughtful characters, compelling storytelling and actual jokes looks like. I cannot bash DreamWorks Animation enough.
4.1) Also, I think Wall-e is a better movie than UP. That's right, I said it. That little robot made me cry.

Bonus Material! Here's a cool look at the numerical values "behind" the Oscars, all in an easy to use visual, with graphs and pictures and stuff. If you are invited to an Oscar party hosted by mathematicians, you are going to want to print this out and bring it with you. It's sure to impress.

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