From “All Sizzle, No Steak” comment thread, posted this morning:

Yeah, that’s me — a Japanese soldier living in a jungle cave and refusing to give up the faith.

Within their own realm and their own conversations and celebrations, the promotional Oscar machine gang still delivers or represents a climactic “thing” — it’s just a much smaller and more secular thing, numbers-wise, than ever before in their over-90-year history.

The numbers are much smaller because over the last five or six years because the Oscar-focused community (filmmakers, producers, distributors) has more or less cut itself off from the middle-class mainstream by wokeing itself to death — by largely blowing off the realm of sensible middle-class dramas and comedies and knockout spectacles (which were semi-dependable brands throughout the 20th Century and during the aughts and mid-teens, until ‘16 or thereabouts) by turning films into vehicles intended to reflect progressive values and bring about social change.

Movies that try to touch people’s souls in a gripping, accessible, non-political way (films like Manchester by the Sea) are no longer happening, and films like SpiderMan: No Way Home are considered irrelevant. In their place the industry-reflecting Oscars have become a show about elite progressive values — #MeToo, LGBTQIA, multiculturalism, identity politics & the general worldview of Rosanna Arquette.

“The erratic pursuit of sweeping, penetrating, soul-touching cinema (a rare achievement but one that has occasionally manifested over the decades) has been more or less called off, it seems, because such films or aspirations, in the view of certain #MeToo and POC progressives, don’t serve the current woke-political narrative.” — from “Wolfe Reminds, History Repeats,” posted on 3.22.21.

When the sociopathic Donald Trump was elected and the deplorable Harvey Weinstein was gored by #MeToo, The NY Times and Ronan Farrow, the Oscar-aspiring community committed itself to an “older white guys and the movies they used to make are bad news” theology. They decided to redefine Hollywood product by way of inclusion, equity, more #MeToo, more strong women, a greater variety of ethnicities, more gay, more trans, etc.

And by apologizing for almost everything that Hollywood represented and/or tried to create from 1915 until 2015, pretty much. Pay a visit to the Academy Museum (i.e., “Woke House”) and tell me I’m wrong.

The problem with all that, numerically speaking, is that 60% of the population doesn’t necessarily hold with the idea of de-platforming middle-class, high-craft films produced by older white guys. You could argue, in fact, that a much-larger portion (80% or 85%?) of the movie-loving public is on the normcore side of the cultural divide. You could argue, in fact, that the wokester-progressive community represents a relatively narrow slice of the overall pie.

Last April’s Steven Soderbergh Oscar telecast from Union Station was essentially a declaration of large-scale ritual seppuku. The Soderbergh show basically said “these awards are about us…about our narrow little community of wealthy elites. Joe and Jane Popcorn can watch or not watch…we don’t really care one way or the other.”