And The Nominees Aren’t…

I will do what most major news outlets won’t do and say upfront that there are an enormous amount of more important things going on in the world (or, conversely, not going on) than this…

That said, I’m a film hound and thus can justify this mirage of mostly-useless information

The 834th Academy Award (ie. The Oscars) nominations were announced this morning. I don’t think there has ever been an Oscars year where I’ve been satisfied that the right films were (or weren’t) nominated for the right category (or at all). And yet…

  • WALL-E didn’t get nominated for Best Picture, but was instead victimized by the mostly-useless ghetto category of “Best Animated Film of the Year”, where it shares it’s chances with such a memorable classic as Bolt. I will admit, I loved WALL-E; it was one of the most subversively humane films made in years. The sooner the “Academy” can eliminate the Animated Film category the better.
  • The Reader…I haven’t seen it. I don’t know anyone who’s seen it. Yet while it seemed to get slightly trashed when it came out (one of the Nazi-themed Christmas 2008 releases) – and by “trashed”, I mean it was called a weak, manipulative Oscar-baiting film – it was nominated for “Best Motion Picture of the Year”. Again, I don’t want to criticize things I haven’t seen…but…
  • I haven’t seen any of the films nominated for “Best Motion Picture of the Year”. I do want to see Slumdog Millionaire (terribly), whereas Frost/Nixon and Milk – though I do not doubt their quality – will probably come into my life via DVD rentals. As for The Curious Case of Ben(*yawn*), I have no interest.
  • Editing, that category no one seems to understand seems a mirror image of the Best Picture nominees, with The Reader swapped for The Dark Knight. I’m okay with that, yet – while I liked Dark Knight, I would not necessarily nominate it for best editing; the big chase scene in the Chicago (sorry, Gotham) tunnel was terribly disorienting (as in, this is all cutty and fast and good and stuff, but why does it make no sense to me?). I don’t have a problem, on the surface, with a cutty style of editing (it was well-served in the Oscar-winning Bourne Ultimatum, perhaps one of the best action films of the decade), but it needs to make sense, which I felt was missing in parts of DK.
  • Happy that Waltz with Bashir and The Class were nominated for Best Foreign Language Film – I want to see both of them very much. Would have been nice if the Swedish film, Let The Right One In, had been nominated, but that’s me dreaming.

And now, on to more interesting things…


4 Replies to “And The Nominees Aren’t…”

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  2. Interesting insight from someone in the biz.
    I used to work in Hollywood (making tear sheets).

    I’ve found The Academy to mostly get things wrong: Marty, Knocking on Heaven’s door.

    I still don’t get why Wall-e is so beloved. I thought the message was heavy handed and the love story a bit too precious.

  3. Mnemonix: Yes, it’s not like the Oscars have ever been a paragon of logic (Best Costume: Gandhi??) or good taste (Best Screenplay: Little Miss Sunshine).

    Re: WALL-E, fair enough. I had middling expectations, but ended up loving it. That said, it’s no Incredibles (or Iron Giant). What I object to is the Best Animated Feature category, which might as well be called “Best Disney and/or Pixar Film”. In my mind, if it’s a good film it should compete with other good films otherwise it starts turning into the Golden Globe Awards (Best Comedy, Best Non-Factual Musical With Less Than Three Dogs, etc..).

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