It came up in another post, so let’s make it a new thread:
The Oscars get extremely built up both by those who support them and those who revile them. So which side are you on?
I personally view the Oscars as something akin to reading the stock pages: their outcome will determine where the “market” will go, so no matter how much I may disagree with them, the impact will be felt throughout the film communities of the world. AMPAS, and Hollywood have been moving closer and closer to the fringe, which is the territory we tend to discuss on these forums.
So what say the masses? Outdated silver screen frippery? Celebrated accolade worth aspiring to? Scourge on the minds of future auteurs? Have at it.
I like making predictions based on who I think will win, not who should. I’ve done that since I was a kid. I don’t really take them seriously, though. They got Best Picture right last year, but that was the first time since… 1993 or so? I’m not sure, but it’s been a while. And it is hard to say for certain since the nominees don’t usually represent the best movies of the year, anyway.
The Spirit Awards (nominations came out today, btw) are much more akin to my tastes, but they’re not always spot on, either. I enjoy awards season on the whole, though. It’s fun to watch and make predictions and watch famous people pat each other on the back and tell each other how important they are. It’s mindless and unimportant but so are most things on TV.
I don’t take the awards seriously, but i do enjoy watching them. I pay particularly close attention to the best foreign films and best shorts. It just always seems that they do award those who are deserving, but never for when they deserve it. Example: Scorcese winning his award for The Departed and not for Gangs of New York. Then again, it’s all a matter of personal taste.
You mean Scorsese winning for The Departed and not for The Aviator, Gangs of New York, Goodfellas, Raging Bull… I think The Last Temptation of Christ could be argued pretty well, too. I don’t exactly think Rain Man was superior to it, nor any of the other nominated movies. Rocky over Taxi Driver as well, but I get why Taxi Driver wasn’t best picture (even though I think it’s Scorsese’s best).
I know you know this, I just felt like pointing it out for emphasis, and to mention that Ordinary People over Raging Bull was the nail in the coffin for taking The Oscars seriously. The awards have just seemed silly ever since.
I think some categories the Academy gets right and there are some that are fueled by hype, marketing, etc.
I watch the Oscars. I usually don’t agree with a majority of the films that are nominated (although, to be fair, I don’t spend much time watching Hollywoody films so I shouldn’t judge them before I’ve at least seen them). However, if there is a particular film/performance that deserves recognition (the underdog in most cases), I’ll cheer it/him/her on. For example, I really liked Ryan Gosling in “Half Nelson”, and I was secretly hoping he would win an Oscar for it. And I was bummed when he didn’t get nominated for “Lars and the Real Girl”. I also think it’s good to cheer on talented directors and writers when the academy throws them a bone. And as for foreign films, it sucks that only five will get a shot at it, but I was also happy when “Volver” and “The Lives of Others” won in that category in their respective years. I think they’re both great films.
All in all, there are good and bad things about the Oscars. Personally, I won’t let the academy guide my feelings about cinema, but I’ll be happy when it decides to agree with me.
I hate to admit it, but sometimes the award for best picture can deter me from seeing the film. I almost resent that someone else is telling me what the best film of the year was.
ditto on Lars and The Real Girl. Gosling was top notch.
Lars will probably go down as my number one movie of this decade when all is said and done. The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada being right there with it.
I’m glad to hear that others also have respect for “Lars and the Real Girl”. A great film. And for those keeping score at home, it did get nominated for an oscar: best screenplay, written by nancy oliver (the same writer from “six feet under”).
While I put no real stock into who wins, I have to admit that I do like to follow the season, make predictions and then watch the actual event every year. Like I said though, it doesn’t really matter to me who wins because it’s not going to effect my opinion at all. Last year they left out most of my favorites (although I applaud them for showing No Country and TWBB so much love).
I watch for Original and Adapted Screenplay. The rest is uniformly garbage, has been since the late eighties, early nineties.
As much as I realize that the Oscars probably aren’t as important as they once were, I still love them. I wake up early to see the nominations being announced and I usually make it a point to try to see all of the films nominated for the major categories (picture, acting, directing, writing) before the ceremony.
I love them mainly for the history – my favorite part of each year’s show is usually the montage(s) of clips they show from films throughout history.
I love the Oscars and consider it the seminal Film Awards event.
I don’t always agree but for the most part, they seem to get it right, at least the nominations as a whole.
Let’s face it, there are so many wonderful films released each year, but the reality is that it is an American (domestic) event and in trun caters to Hollywood for the most part.
So yeah, I love them.
I watch the Oscars to see who’s going to flip out like Cuba Gooding Jr. again. Sadly, I get let down every year. :(
Yeah, that Oscar really did wonders for Cuba’s career. It’s probably best not to risk a potential flip-out curse.
I don’t take the Oscars seriously, but love them yes I do. I wouldn’t miss the show for the world. I don’t care how bad it is. It has film clips, pageantry, silliness, and if you watch the top five best picture films you have a little bit of a stake in seeing who wins.
It’s an awards show.
All awards are silly, aren’t they?
better movies being released would make for a more enjoyable awards show.
we need more creativity and less formula.
I like the oscars
Usually my favorite film of the year is not involved, even though last year There Will Be Blood got a ton of nominations
I guess they are pretty often right on the best hollywood movies of the year, at least with nominations
VICTOR said “better movies being released would make for a more enjoyable awards show.
we need more creativity and less formula.”
I don’t find any of these films falling under and real formula or lacking creativty.
Best Picture The Departed Graham King
Best Foreign Language Film The Lives of Others – Germany Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Best Documentary Feature An Inconvenient Truth Davis Guggenheim
Best Animated Feature Happy Feet George Miller
Best Director Martin Scorsese The Departed
Best Actor in a Leading Role Forest Whitaker The Last King of Scotland
Best Actress in a Leading Role Helen Mirren The Queen
Best Actor in a Supporting Role Alan Arkin Little Miss Sunshine
Best Actress in a Supporting Role Jennifer Hudson Dreamgirls
Best Writing – Original Screenplay Michael Arndt Little Miss Sunshine
Best Writing – Adapted Screenplay William Monahan The Departed
I like watching ‘em. If something I like doesn’t win something, I don’t really mind, because it’s not like I’m suddenly not allowed to like that particular movie. Likewise, if something I don’t like wins, I’m all “well, huh…” and then I go back to whatever I was doing.
I tend to pay much more attention in recent years to Cannes and Sundance as far as interesting noteworthy stuff goes.
When George Stevens won his first directing Oscar in 1952 for A PLACE IN THE SUN, he was to have said, “We’ll know how good this picture is in 25 years.”
For me that sums up ‘The Oscars.’ Rarely are they given for genuine cinematic merit. Most of the time they are popularity contests, and even then those become suspect. Most films have to age to see the full impact of their merit.
Hitchcock never got a directing Oscar. Nor did Kubrick, Hawks, Bergman, Fellini, Malle, Truffaut, Kurosawa, or Godard. But John G. Avildsen has his, as does Kevin Costner, Norman Taurog, and two each for Frank Lloyd and Leo McCarey.
RAGING BULL, CHINATOWN, THE RIGHT STUFF, DR. STRANGELOVE, HIGH NOON, DOUBLE INDEMNITY, A CLOCKWORK ORANGE, PULP FICTION, THE WIZARD OF OZ, APOCALYPSE NOW, BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN, and THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION and CITIZEN KANE … CITIZEN KANE!!!! … didn’t win the ‘Best Picture’ awards in their respective years.
SINGIN IN THE RAIN, LAURA, RED RIVER, MANHATTAN, THE SEARCHERS, THE SEVENTH SEAL, THE 400 BLOWS, LA DOLCE VITA, DO THE RIGHT THING, FANTASIA, and 2001: A SPACE ODDYSEY … all films which are now considered SEMINAL in the history of cinema … were not even nominated.
Keep that in mind whenever discussing ‘Oscars.’
I went to this Oscars “Great To Be Nominated” series that the Academy presented in Beverly Hills. And the producer noted that each film that was nominated was superior, and that they all can’t win. And that they have a tough time picking the winners. That is understandable. My opinion: basically awards shows are there to generate publicity, basically. Dramas aren’t the big moneymakers; action movies and comedies movies are. Therefore it makes sense that mostly dramas are nominated. A lot of people will go see the “winners” and/or nominees, movies they wouldn’t otherwise see.
I don’t care what they saw, ultimately, but I still watch and follow them.
But goodness, at least they’re not as terrible as the Grammies. Holy shit, the Grammies contribute nothing to what is good in music.
True that. I love music, but the Grammy is not anywhere near or even around my radar. Culturally, it is completely insignificant.
Yeah, Oscars are far better than Grammies.
However, the Oscars are nothing but a joke. I watch them in the same way the OP does. The winners of the Acting Awards are actors who I expect to see more of in the future. The Directing winner is who will be getting more funding to make more movies. The Screenplay winners are who will get a lot more attention. They’re interesting to watch in that regard, but they’ve long since ceased to be an indicator of quality, if they ever were in the first place. I find them far too American and far too commercialized to really be any sort of standard by which to judge. No foreign film has ever won Best Picture, which I think is just ridiculous. Was there anything better than Fanny and Alexander in 1982? Syndromes and a Century in 2006? In the Mood for Love in 2000? Or The 400 Blows in 1959? There’s no direct doctrine against foreign films winning, but there may as well be, because it’s never happened and it probably won’t for a while, no matter how good they are. The Foreign Film category exists for the same reason the Animated one does: The Academy doesn’t want any film that isn’t an all-American live-action big name drama to win. I’m not trying to rage against the machine or anything; indeed, this seems to be the prevailing opinion, if anything. But I really don’t like how exclusive they are. American films are rarely the best. When they are, then, by all means, award them. To my knowledge, nothing better than 2001 came out in 1968 (feel free to correct me, though), so I wouldn’t have minded it winning. But Ordinary People? Titanic? Around the World in 80 Days? Crash? The best films of their respective years? Absolutely not. Which is why I don’t use them as a way to judge quality, because doing so would just be moronic.
I like the Oscars. They’re so glamorous. I like watching all those pretty people be pretty. Oh, the films? The films stink. The Academy always picks the wrong films to represent its categories, and within the wrong films in its categories, it picks the most wrong film.
i enjoy the oscars too. although hollywood and mainstream cinema isnt my favourite aspect of film i still get a kick out of that side of things, and theres nothing better than sitting up til 5am and watching the oscars live on tv here in the uk.
I usually become obsessed with Oscars when a film I’m really passionate about is nominated…I realize that they DON’T need to win any awards to solidify their brilliance in my eyes, but I like the film getting recognized because winning an Oscar may provoke others (who normally wouldn’t even dare to watch it) to give the movie a shot.
I especially take note of the screenplay races, since that category tends to acknowledge films that usually wouldn’t win anything, and the lot of nominees is usually strong (although there are some notable exceptions…I wasn’t too keen on the “Little Miss Sunshine” win a few years back, and don’t get me started on “Crash”).
I don’t know if I’m gonna follow this years races…I haven’t really seen as much as I would like and thus am not really pulling for anything (although that could change with the holiday season coming up). We’ll see.
I enjoy the Oscars but I also enjoy reading people on mubi.com get frustrated over them as well. I often think of the person venting has a big vein popping out of their forehead.