An April opening doesn’t necessarily mean what it used to mean — i.e., an interesting, fairly good film that doesn’t quite make it by Ivy League standards.

The word has already gotten out that Ari Aster‘s three-hour Beau Is Afraid (A24, 4.14) is a grueling, agonizing sit, and that it will probably take weeks of therapy to clean the residue out of the average person’s head.

Ben Affleck‘s Air, on the other hand, certainly makes it if you’re willing to think modestly or in “dad movie” terms, and if you don’t insist on a grand-slam experience.

Either way there’s nothing problematic about an April opening per se. There is, however, something to possibly be feared if your film opens in the mid to late fall, and it becomes a favored Best Picture contender.

Friendo explains: “As we’ve been learning over the last five years or so, there is much less value in the Oscar race today…contaminated by woke critics and their myopic, anti-populist priorities, the Oscar brand is so bad that smart producers aren’t necessarily aiming for an Oscar association…it used to be that Oscar-buzz movies made money or at least enjoyed a certain elevated status…now it’s almost the opposite.”

Oscar movies have become about eating your woke vegetables and applauding the raising of our shared social consciousness…[and] fewer people are interested in them, because of the woke thing or whatever. Or because Millennials and Zoomers have become totally alienated from the brand. Or because Best Picture property values have gone underwater in the wake of Everything Everywhere All At Once winning all those trophies few weeks ago. The brand has been totally poisoned, or at least miniaturized.