And the Academy left Paul Sorvino out of the Death Reel for what reason again? There were at least four or five departed faces that I didn’t recognize last night. Everyone knows Sorvino’s “Paulie” in Goodfellas…c’mon. Sorvino was 40 or 41 during filming; 34 or 35 during filming of The Gambler.
The attitude any nominee should bring to the Oscar ceremony is (a) “I’m not expecting to win”, (b) “just being nominated was great” and (c) “if I lose, I’m going to be gracious.” Angela Bassett definitely didn’t do (c). She had to know in her heart of hearts that she her Wakanda queen performance was too one-note, too “my son is dead!”, too strident.
According to the TV ratings Guide, the Oscar telecast drew around 15.6 million viewers last night, give or take.
N.Y. Times reporter Brooks Barnes, 3.13.23: “The 2022 show drew 16.6 million viewers, the second-worst turnout on record after the pandemic-affected 2021 telecast. If the Nielsen ratings do not improve, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences faces a financial precipice: Most of its revenue comes from the sale of broadcasting rights to the show. Hundreds of millions of dollars are at stake. The most-viewed Oscars telecast was in 1998, when 57.2 million people watched Titanic win the trophy for best picture.”
You can tell right away that Rob Marshall‘s The Little Mermaid (Disney, 5.26) is over-acted and physically exaggerated. Plus King Triton (Javier Bardem) speaks with a Spanish accent and his daughter Ariel (Halle Bailey) sounds like a girl from suburban Georgia. I thought it odd last night when the Oscars suddenly devolved into a Little Mermaid infomercial.
The ET Canada guy who wrote the caption for this YouTube clip, captured during the 2017 New York Fashion Week, called Carrey's remarks "bizarre." This is what's wrong with people in general. Step outside the usual conversation boundaries or reach inward a little bit, and they think you're weird. Login with Patreon to view this post
Jett, Dylan and I will be throwing axes this Saturday at the Bloomfield location of Bury The Hatchet.
It’s not my idea and I really don’t want to do this. I’ve never thrown axes before and I don’t want to learn. The idea is to share in some guy activity but axes are too macho, too Mel Gibson. I’d rather go bowling. That’s kind of a Bill Murray or a Jack Nicholson thing, no? Plus I like wearing those bacteria-spray bowling shoes. I wouldn’t mind going to a rifle range and shooting AK-47s. Or playing miniature golf.
Look at the people in this photo — they’re all drinking beer, all the guys have facial hair, none of the women are unusually attractive and they’re all laughing too loudly. This is obviously a Millennial and Zoomer thing. Three of the guys are wearing plaid shirts — I wouldn’t wear a short-sleeved flannel shirt with a knife at my back.
I’m more of a semi-cultivated, Italian T-shirt, X-factor type. I don’t want to fantasize about being Kirk Douglas in The Vikings or Alexander Skarsgard in The Northman.
HE to burythehatchet management — I’m probably the only guy who’s ever visited your establishment who’s actually met and hung with Douglas (three times). After interviewing him on the El Paso set of Eddie Macon’s Run in ’82, he gave me a lift to Houston on his private jet.
Randy Newman: “I ain’t sayin’ I’m better than you are, but maybe I am.”
…and in its place a new religion, a Maoist DEI sociology cult that isn’t especially interested in the art and transcendence of movies as much as the social function of them…a serious lack of interest in movies that try to effectively tell human stories that connect on some primal level…movies that reach out to average viewers and establish bonds of recognition by making basic sense and cohering and elevating and translating into experiences that matter on some fundamental level.
Last night’s Oscar telecast was celebrative and joyous in many ways, but it felt more like a political rally than a church service… the big movies were all about celebrating off-center identities and allegiances…movies about diversity, equity and inclusion…an Asian-American family that feels just as trapped as the rest of us, and a human walrus whose struggle to understand and bleed over into his estranged daughter’s life, and finally to forgive himself…the films that tried to connect on the strength of their stories and characters weren’t really happening. Brendan Gleeson fiddle player in The Banshees of Inisherin was not, by my yardstick, rationally motivated.
What last night’s Oscars were telling me over and over was that Movie Catholicism as many of us have understood that term…that Classic Movie Catholicism is over. It’s no longer about how good a film might be or how deeply it might reach out and touch a single viewer…what matters to the New Academy Kidz (a term that I began to use sometime in ’17) is representation, representation and representation.
Posted on 2.26.18: Vulture‘s Kyle Buchanan, Stacey Wilson Hunt and Chris Lee have posted a piece about the views and attitudes of the Academy’s new voters, all of whom were invited to join the Academy over the last two years and who constitute roughly 17% or 18% of the present membership. Of the 14 members interviewed, more than half were women and more than a third were people of color.
By all means read the piece, but I for one found it surprising if not shocking that the biggest concerns of the New Academy Kidz appear to be representation, representation and….uhhm, oh, yes…representation.
In other words, after reading the article I wasn’t persuaded that these guys are greatly concerned with the idea of honoring great cinema according to standards that have been accepted for many decades. Tastes have changed but regard for cinema art never faltered. Until now, that is.
If these 14 Academy members were to sit down for a round-table discussion with the ghosts of James Agee, Ernst Lubitsch, Katharine Hepburn, Pauline Kael, Samuel Fuller, Ida Lupino, Irving Thalberg, Luis Bunuel, Sergei Eisenstein, Marlon Brando, F. W. Murnau, Andrew Sarris and Marlene Dietrich, I don’t think there’d be any kind of meeting of the minds. Or not much of one.
I mainly got the idea that the New Academy Kidz are heavily invested in (a) inter-industry politics, and (b) a mission of bringing about long-overdue change and the necessity of advancing diverse representation as well as the concerns of women in all branches of the film industry. They’re also hoping to weaken or otherwise diminish the power of the old white fuddy-dud boomers.
Consider again a quote from HE reader “filmklassik” in a 1.24.18 piece called “New Oscar Bait Hinges on Tribal Identity“:
“It’s a bit cheeky to say ‘never ever again’ (because who the hell knows), but yeah, in this particular cultural moment it is all about Tribal Identity. And what’s disturbing is, we have a whole generation now for whom Tribal representation is, to use one critic’s word, numinous. The under-40 crowd has invested Race, Gender and Sexuality with a kind of cosmic significance. It doesn’t mean a lot to them — it means everything to them. Indeed, much of their conversation and writing seems to always come back to it.”
The Robert Blake omission in last night’s “In Memoriam” segment raises a basic question about standards and reputations and sliding scale wokeness calls. Blake was an excellent, highly significant actor who most likely arranged to have his wife shot…probably. But he was not only ignored last night but made into a figure of macabre amusement.
And what about Paul Sorvino by the way? And poor Anne Heche? And Tom Sizemore?
Cutting to the chase, how will the Oscar producers respond when Woody Allen dies? They CAN’T ignore him like they did Blake, but any fair and comprehensive assessment of Allen’s career demands some kind of a special farewell tribute…he was huge and important…a major wise man, funny man and social commentator…an artist whose work brilliantly channelled and reflected the moral and sexual mores of the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s, for sure.
But how will the Oscar producers actually handle his passing? I suspect they’ll sidestep the meaning of it all…I think they’ll blow off the special tribute and just slip him in with the others. Because anyone who’s been accused or convicted of anything…the unseemly label always sticks.
What do you think will actually happen?
How will Oscar prducersy handle Roman Polanski‘s passing? A special tribute, which in my mind would be a fairly necessary call, or some some kind of generic mention within a usual-usual “In Memoriam”reel?
How will they handle the passing of Harvey Weinstein? Will they ignore his death outright? How could they do that? He was too big of a force, too much of a collossus. But they might.
Allen, Weinstein, Polanski…what will they do?
...of the woman who wore that sizable, cloud-sized white headdress...the woman who decided not to remove it after sitting down and thereby blocked the view of at least two or three people sitting behind her, if not a couple of more. Who would do that? Who would decide that "my somewhat flamboyant fashion statement, worn proudly inside the the Dolby / Kodak, has to take precedence over basic politeness...nothing else matters"? Login with Patreon to view this post
Yesterday morning (Sunday, 3.12) I expressed hope that someone on the Oscar champagne carpet might equal or at least challenge Jim Carrey's 2017 classic. Hugh Grant answered my prayers. Thank you, man...newfound respect and allegiance. Login with Patreon to view this post
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