Sunday, March 05, 2006

No Oscars for Me Tonight

I used to love Oscar night. Every year, I'd watch TV while the "stars came out" and took their turns at the podium. It was a highpoint of the year for me. I teared up when Anna Paquin won the Oscar for The Piano. I cheered when Lord of the Rings: Return of the King swept the Awards two years ago. I groused when favorite movies or actors weren't even nominated.

I love movies. I love weepers, oaters, thrillers, and war movies and almost all the other categories you can think of (though I'm not fond of teen scream movies). I watch as many as I can at home and during an occasional trip to the theaters (especially a drive-in near our home).

I recognize recent problems in the industry. Also, movies have gotten expensive, which is one reason I watch movies mainly on pay-per-view, HBO, or DVD. Producers are running out of ideas while too many of them want to impress their own Hollywood and leftist clique and damn the public.

I'm not watching the Academy Awards this year. King Kong, Chronicles of Narnia, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and not so surprisingly 40-Year Old Virgin (although it had me laughing our loud) were no where to be found in the major categories. I couldn't find one movie that Bill and I had seen until Best Sound or some such minor award.

I like art house movies when I'm in the mood along with "blockbusters." I enjoy small movies, but this year the major nominations were all really small movies (except Munich) and with limited popular appeal.

I'm not interested in watching two gay men having a conflicted relationship (Brokeback Mountain). A bio-pic on Truman Capote could be interesting, but not my cup of tea this year. It's silly to discuss Joe McCarthy without a reference to recent scholarship showing that some of McCarthy's accusations were right although perhaps his methods were wrong (Good Night and Good Luck). Even a movie as topical as killing Islamist terrorists has to be given a twist that maybe it's not good to fight terrorists (Munich). I don't even know what Crash is about and I don't care.

So, I won't be watching the stars tonight. Maybe next year the members of the Academy will notice drooping box office receipts and (probably) the lowest rated Oscars since they've put them on TV. Maybe they'll try to create a movie we can all enjoy. And maybe the sun will shine out of George Clooney's butt as he seems to think it does.

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