Like my Grandpappy always used to say when I was little boy growing up, “if’n you don’t got nothing to blog about, blog about what done happened yesterday.” I always used to ask “what the hell is blogging?” considering he used to give me this advice well before the invention of the Interwebs. I guess he was clairvoyant. Or else ‘blog’ meant something completely different to him.
Whatever. Here I am, I don’t have anything to blog about, so what happened yesterday?
Ah yes: the Oscars.
Usually I look at the Best Picture list from the Academy Awards and have seen one or two movies. This year, despite there being a ridiculous amount of nominations, I’ve actually seen all but two of the nominees. Ultimately the Academy went with the “surprise pick” by not picking the multi-billion dollar behemoth and going with the “sleeper” film that has already won a shit-ton of awards. Count me as shocked.
Anyway, not that it matters, here are my thoughts and picks for this year. Feel free to deride them in the comment section.
Avatar: on the surface would seem like the favorite. It’s got 3D! They got sexy blue-painted ladies! Explosions! Fun! Unfortunately for James Cameron, being a sci-fi movie is as close to a death sentence in Oscar land as you can get. Fortunately for James Cameron: two billion dollars.
The Blind Side: Did not see it. It’s about football, though. Football usually means no Oscar.
District 9: great movie, fun to watch, explosions. However, once again, sci-fi, and probably only included because they needed ten movies this year for some reason.
An Education: I saw this on Saturday. It was actually pretty good, once you get over the creepy factor (the inherent creepiness of Peter Sarsgaard combined with the whole older man/teenager dynamic). Some very good performances, a very clear plot and message, and an apt title. I imagine it got a good look from the academy.
The Hurt Locker (WINNER): Explosions! An apolitical look at a divisive war! Plot? Meh. But: explosions! It was a good movie, but best picture? I don’t know, guys. I guess it did have Ralph Fiennes in it, which I believe is +5 Oscar points.
Inglourious Basterds: Upon review, I think this is actually my favorite movie of the ten. Bloody but smart, well written but with deliberately and blatantly historic inaccuracies. It’s the kind of movie it takes balls to make – they misspelled the title, for godsake - and Christoph Waltz was lights out.
Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire: Did not see it. Not my kind of movie. I don’t mean that in a racist way. No. I mean it in a sexist way.
A Serious Man: requisite Coen Brothers nomination. I think it’s in the Academy bylaws that one Coen brothers movie must be nominated in order to hold an award ceremony. How was the movie itself? “Interesting” I say, which means “ I wasn’t pulling my teeth out watching it, but at the end wondered ‘what was the point?’” If it had won, I probably would have said something to the effect of “erg.”
Up: it’s a cartoon and it makes grown men cry. I’m crying right now. Also, talking dogs are hilarious. It’s a cartoon, though. Last cartoon to win Best Picture? Exactly.
Up in the Air: I liked this movie. It was smart, funny, bittersweet, and I actually enjoyed watching it the whole way through. Alas, this also normally means ‘no Oscar.’
MY ORIGINAL ‘IN A PERFECT WORLD’ PICK: Up in the Air.
MY AFTER THE FACT ‘ACTUALLY NOW THAT I LOOK AT IT’ PICK: Inglourious Basterds
THE ‘THIS MOVIE MADE OUR INDUSTRY BILLIONS OF DOLARS’ PICK: Avatar
THE ‘SAFE MONEY / LACK OF BALLS / EVERY OTHER AWARD SHOW PICKED THEM SO WHY NOT US’ PICK: The Hurt Locker
I imagine James Cameron sitting at home licking his wounds. And by ‘licking his wounds’ I mean buying two billion dollars worth of solid gold, melting it down, and then making his own gigantic twelve foot tall Oscar statue for his lawn.