Sunday, February 3, 2013

The Awards Season brings out the asshole in everyone

I've talked about this before but it warrants repeating. The Awards season doesn't matter. None of it matters. It's fun to talk about, fun to speculate, just like Fantasy Football is fun for football fans. None of it is real, none of it actually matters, but it's still fun to talk about.

So why is everyone acting like such an asshole?

Again, 2012 was a GREAT year for film and in any other "great" year, we would be touting how great of a year it is. But, in the age of super cynicism and asinine comments on twitter, we all must take sides. We treat films like highlander. There can only be one. We can only side with one film, fuck the rest. Go out of our way to trash a film just because we didn't like it enough. Regular people don't do this. Regular people don't care about the Oscars, but the people who make the Oscars their livelihood? Man, I've never seen a sadder state of people bitching about something that is so trivial.

You don't like Silver Linings Playbook? Fine. That doesn't mean you have to trash it completely. See, there are people, when they talk about the Oscars, they pretend that they're the only ones who are being fair. "I love Film X, but nobody in Hollywood does, that's fine, but it doesn't mean you have to trash it." Meanwhile, that person will trash every other film the Academy, or the guilds will award instead. Here's the reality...

Argo is an amazing film. It's brilliant. Just because it's a crowd pleaser, that doesn't take away from how powerful it is. It does everything right and it has a high re-watchability factor. Ben Affleck isn't just a sexy director, he's a great one. He's one of the better actor/directors I've ever seen. He has a real style, it's not just boring generic Hollywood style of filmmaking. He actually has a recognizable style and swagger in his films.

Silver Linings Playbook. I've seen it twice. The second time was a better viewing experience. It's an enjoyable film. It can be a bit wacky, but when I watched it the second time, I saw it as a modern day screwball comedy and it made so much more sense to me. It's a great film. Nobody involved in the film should be trashed. If Jennifer Lawrence wins Best Actress, it doesn't make her a bad person. She's not just the flavor of the week, she's a great actress. Winter's Bone should have proven that.

Lincoln is a great film too. Some people might think it's boring, I didn't think so. I was hooked from the beginning, but it does have some Spielbergian touches, it is a little light. It's unlike any other Spielberg film, but I don't think anyone could have made it the way he made it. With that, it has the credentials. It deserves respect like any other great 2012 film. I thought it would win Best Picture, but Argo's omnipotence in the awards race makes its ultimate victory hard to avoid. Argo looks poised to win best picture. At best, Spielberg will win Best Director. That seems fine to me. I thought Lincoln would run away with this, but Hollywood likes Argo more. It's as simple as that.

You know what? I like Argo more. I also like Zero Dark Thirty more than Argo, but I still think Argo is a top 5 film of the year. Whenever the Academy poaches into my top 10 or top 5, I don't give them shit for it. So Argo isn't my number 1 of the year, who gives a shit about my opinion? Who cares about some Oscar blogger's opinion? The only opinions that matter in awards season are the ones that actually get to vote.

Though I also get to vote during awards season. I vote for the Independent Spirit Awards. I'm kinda, sorta one of them! Hahahahaha!

But seriously though, I'm glad this has all happened. There are some great writers among the Oscar bloggers. As someone who has loved film for so long, loves writing about it, it's natural that I'd follow a few Oscar bloggers. A lot of them have unique perspective and they make the awards race even more fun than it is. But, this year, the pettiness has shone through. The lowness. I mean, it's gotten pathetic. The problem is that a lot of films came out this year that people are purely passionate about. They have made the mistake to trash the films they aren't as passionate about, in return. It doesn't have to work like that, it really doesn't. That's what pisses me off about this year's awards race. People who follow it closely are taking it too personally. Thanks to twitter, you can see these guys bicker back and forth at each other. It really makes you wonder where their heart really is. Do they care about film at all? Or do they just care about being right?

I don't give a shit about being right. I predicted Lincoln to win it all simply because I thought the Academy would go for it. It might not, Argo might win BP instead. No statistics can possibly predict this outcome. I think only Driving Miss Daisy won BP without getting nominated for Best Director. That was the 1989-90 Oscar season, that's a long time ago. This year's different because the nomination ballots came in before the guilds nomination. So, naturally, everything is going to be different. Argo will probably win Best Picture. Spielberg, Ang Lee, Michael Haneke... could all easily win Best Director. You know what though? I have no idea, legitimately. And that's awesome! An unpredictable Oscars should be what we all want. Do we really just want it so that the Oscars align perfectly with your predictions? I don't. But I'm sure there are many who do. After this year, I will never again take their opinions seriously.

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