EXCESS HOLLYWOOD: FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION

EXCESS HOLLYWOOD: FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION

I can express some sorrow that the 79th annual Academy Awards are now a moment for the dustbin of history. I watched the event, as I often do, and used the time to examine what it all means to me.

My first thought was that the awards show was a conservative’s nightmare that confirmed every bad thought about Hollywood. You had a lesbian host, a former drug addict presenter and Al Gore. George Clooney even popped up, too. I’m sure Bill O’Reilly was wondering when they would start having sex on stage (maybe he was actually hoping they would — if you’ll recall, he’s got a kinky side that was exposed a few years ago).

It was nice to see Martin Scorsese finally win. It was a long time coming, though I wish it could’ve been for something original, but this is Hollywood. Originality is a rash that should not be scratched at for fear of making it spread. Scorsese deserved it (though probably not for that film), but like most Oscars, it won’t change a damn thing.

Scorsese’s win was the only thing I really enjoyed. The rest of the proceedings just made me wonder when the whole process would become more honest and inclusive, though I was happy that no actors were nominated for playing a mentally challenged character (at least not that I noticed). Speaking of which, I didn’t see Sean Penn on stage, either, which is always a good thing. So I guess there were two things I enjoyed.

Jack Black and Will Ferrell, two people I don’t care too much about, did make an interesting point. The Academy doesn’t seem to like comedies. In an effort to make the world take it seriously, the Academy awards serious, heavy pieces. It turns out to be patting its own back, however, and that comes off as pretentious. “”Babel” and “”The Queen” may be excellent films that explore important issues and events, but shouldn’t films that aren’t as heady be spotlighted as well, and not just for the Best Short Film, Animated award? I know that sounds strange coming from me, but a good film is a good film — it’s genre less important than its execution, though I don’t think the Academy would ever see it that way.

Watching CNN Headline News the next morning brought me face to face with what this all came down to. Adrianna Costa, one of those entertainment “”journalists” who comes off about as sincere air kisses, was doing a wrap-up of the previous night’s activities. She was “”excited about everything.” Those were her words. “”Excited about everything.”

Before I continue, let’s examine that.

Being “”excited about everything” means one of two things. You either aren’t telling the truth, or you’re a vapid mess who should not be given any credibility, let alone time on a major news network. Nobody is “”excited about everything” unless they are missing quite a few brain cells. If that’s the case, then bright colors and flashing lights will get you jumping for joy. I’d like to say Costa was being insincere, but I’m starting to think she’s kind of retarded.

Anyway, Costa went on to explain herself, talking about some surprises she’d be covering (like maybe the fact that another black woman won — I’m surprised when that happens), and (most importantly) the hits and misses when it came to fashion. According to Costa, “”we” all love the awards and “”everyone” loves the red carpet. That, of course, is not true. I could care less about what people are wearing, but somehow that has become more important than the actual awards, and that’s because those statues have lost their power. They no longer mean anything. The films they represent no longer mean anything, and the people who receive them no longer mean anything. Fashion has become the art, and people like Costa, in all her drooling glory, are running the show.

All of this is depressing. It’s depressing because the question of who you are wearing is now mandatory for the red carpet. It’s depressing because the Academy has retained its snob-without-sense stature for yet another year. It’s depressing because people like Costa come across as geniuses throughout this mess.

I’d like to thank the Academy. I’d like to thank it for giving credence to the notion that Hollywood is full of idiots who consider themselves elitists. I’d like to thank it for making Best Motion Picture less important than Vera Wang. I’d like to thank it for taking itself so seriously it can’t see what a joke it has become. And most of all, I’d like to thank it for making me realize that when I see advertisements declaring a film as an “”Oscar winner” and “”Oscar nominated” I’ll know it means nothing at all. It makes my viewing choices a whole hell of a lot easier, too. I know what to stay away from and what to see.

Thanks, Oscar. You’re worth your weight in gold.




Posted on March 14, 2007 in Blogs by
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