This is probably way late to the game, but I just couldn’t stay up and write it after the Oscars last night and then couldn’t get to it till now today. Hopefull, you will still find some of this relevant…
So, awards season is over, thankfully. The noise level had gotten pretty high over the last few weeks.
For my part, I only missed 3 picks last night (foriegn, short animated/live action) but that doesn’t mean I was happy with all the selections. I think that Geoffrey Rush and Chris Nolan got overlooked for Best Supporting and Original Script respectively, but I expected, though dreaded, that. I also expected King’s Speech to win, though Social Network is a better film, and Hooper to win, though Fincher’s job was way more complex and artful. The reason I count that as only 2 disappointments is that I gave up on the last two long ago, despite my own feelings to the contrary and I can actually see the two-horse race in the directing case.
Speech-wise, Kirk Douglas’ presentation to Melissa Leo and her speech was, by far, the best moment of the evening for me. The other two worth seeing were David Seidler for The King’s Speech script (very amusing) and the young Luke Matheny, who was likewise entertaining and fresh. There were many other touching speeches and good ones, but these three stood out as genuine and fun. And, for the most part, Franco and Hathaway were pretty much non-entities, so the whole presentation aspect had a negligible impact.
Awards are highly political animals and their value as judge is ephemeral, even if their value as marketing is not. It is true in every field. But we still love to watch and wonder and try to pick the winners. It is a hardwire problem our species has–we love to compete and rate and order things. It is how we survive. Absent physical danger, we apply the same instincts to everything around us, including art, that may or may not be best served by the effort. I may rail against it, but I participate just the same and I’m betting anyone reading this does to some extent as well.