So last night I watched pretty much all of the Academy Awards show.
This is the first time I have dared to do such a thing since about 1990. I can’t even really tell you much about what I was up to in 1990. I lived in a brand new house with my parents, had recently started high school (Grade 8 here), and owned a lot of wrestling action figures. Really, I wasn’t much different from now, I guess. I can’t tell you what and who the big winners were in 1990, but I think that might have been the year Terminator 2 came out.
I remember going to the 7-11 on the corner (which is a story unto itself – it had no air conditioning, so the chocolate bars would always melt) and stocking up on junk for the big show.
I guess it left such a big impression on me that I never bothered to watch again. None of the movies I liked ever won, and people dressed awfully, but the commentators would go on about how great they looked. I always thought about what I would do if i was nominated and what I would wear (seriously). I figured I’d wear a kilt or something. Then, if people mocked me I could yell at them “this kilt represent my ancestors who probably died in order to give you the freedom to be such an idiot!” Yeah, that would have ruled!
So, I watched the show last night, mostly because I wanted to see if there was the slightest chance that The Wrestler would win any awards. Marissa Tomei and Mickey Rourke were up for best supporting actress actress and best lead actor respectively. Both have won similar awards of the trophy circuit so far. Of course, both were shut out, which is disappointing, but not a surprise.
The Academy people (whoever they are), have always been stodgy and taken the easy way out, or on rare cases tried to make a feeble attempt at making a statement. With all the kerfuffle in California about Prop 8 and same-sex marriage and gay rights, I’m not really shocked that Sean Penn won for his role in Milk.
I actually think that the best actor competition was pretty packed, and at the risk of sounding cheesy, “there were no losers.” In a weaker year, I think there’s a good chance Rourke could have gotten the nod. As far as best film goes, I felt all but one nominee was a gimmie, that being The Reader. It’s almost like they have five slots and seven choices, and flipped a coin or drew straws or something to see who got in.
I won’t even get started on Bruce Springsteen not even getting nominated for best song for The Wrestler.
So that’s it for me and the Oscars for the foreseeable future. I didn’t even watch them when I took film in school a few years back. To me, films are either to entertain, inform or make you think. As long as they do one of the three for me, I’m happy. If you’re lucky, and special film will come along that achieves all three. More times than not, you WON’T find these films represented at the Oscars.
In closing, regarding The Wrestler…
My mother, among other duties for a newspaper in new Zealand, covers a lot of movies. She’s actually where I get a lot of my appreciation for film, as when i was living at home, I’d always waltz into the living room and find her watched the most eclectic range of stuff. From big-name Hollywood releases to weird French films with lots of naked people in them and bad lighting. I told her to keep an eye out for The Wrestler and try to snag the job of reviewing it.
As far as I know, the film has yet to be, or has just been released there. I’m actually looking forward to reading he review, as having a wrestler for a son must give you some sort of unique perspective, although I hope she doesn’t start asking me if I ever dropped lots of money on lapdances from MILFs.