“Group votes of any kind tend to cancel out radical options on either side in favor of the middle,” says Spoutblog‘s Karina Longworth in a 12.16 Vanity Fair.com piece.

“If you are not surprised that neither Ron Paul nor Ralph Nader has ever been elected president, you should be equally unimpressed by the fact that The Hurt Locker and Up in the Air have taken the bulk of this year’s pre-Oscar honors. Though the two films have their own unique virtues (and failings), neither is daring enough to truly piss anybody off. More often than not, consensus victories go not to the best or most innovative films, but to the films that pretty much everyone is pretty much okay with.”

The article is titled “Why Do All the Awards Honor the Same Movies?” I understand after reading Longworth’s piece why radical options will never be supported by majorities, but the question about why there’s such uniformity among critics groups has been explored and answered, I feel, by myself, while Longworth barely addresses it.