Seasoned Filmmaker to HE: “I’ve come to strongly believe that Promising Young Woman is hitting the 60-plus White Male Academy voters (which still constitute the majority) in a sweet spot, and that for this reason Emerald Fennell‘s film is bound to be the upset Best Picture winner that Parasite was last year. Trust me — Promising Young Woman is the film that ALL my voter colleagues in LA and overseas are raving about.”‘
HE to Seasoned Filmmaker: “Really? Huh. And what do your friends think of Nomadland?”
Seasoned Filmmaker to HE: “Non-urgent admiration for Nomadland.”
HE to Seasoned Filmmaker: “I feel the same way about Nomadland but at least it doesn’t have a glaring error like Promising Young Woman — it has more overall integrity and a unity of purpose.
“But can you tell me why older white guys are so taken with Promising Young Woman?
“It’s a dry, arch & acrid indictment film of not most but ALL young males on the prowl. It doesn’t say most of them are indecent predators (a harsh but arguably valid point of view) but ALL of them are, as even Bo Burnham’s nice guy pediatrician boyfriend is revealed at the end to be a friend and apologist of a rapist.
“On a certain level I admire Fennell’s boldness of vision (however extreme) because this is how strong social-vision directors have tended to operate from Salvador Dali and Luis Bunuel onward. But pulling the rug out on audiences during the last 15 minutes by suddenly identifying Burnham as just another bad guy is a mark of mediocre writing — a capitulation to an industry-wide rule that a last-minute twist is required of all scripts.”
Seasoned Filmmaker to HE: “So many Older White Male Academy members have a skeleton in their closet. Younger Academy men do as well. Moonlight and Parasite allowed the Academy to atone for #OscarsSoWhite. Right now Academy members want more than anything to not be caught on the wrong side of Cancel Culture. Promising Young Woman is this year’s Parasite.”
HE to Seasoned Filmmaker: “Okay, got it — Promising Young Woman has a possible edge on the Best Picture Oscar because of the Woke Terror factor. It’s the culturally safe choice — a kind of ‘get out of jail’ card to be used in case of an emergency.”
Seasoned Filmmaker to HE: “It’s all in the mind…but yes.”