Okay, I guess I should elaborate more than that.
I guess you could say my problem with this year’s Oscar nominees is basically the same as my problem with the Oscar nominees every year. It’s once again not an award ceremony celebrating the best films of the year, but an love-fest dedicated to the best of certain types of films (save for Mad Max, which has miraculously snagged 10 nominations despite the fact that it’s actually entertaining).
It baffles me that every year you read how the Oscar viewership keeps slipping, and that they receive backlash from fans, yet they willingly continue to do the same things they always do, believing that simply changing the host will restore people’s faith in them.
If the Academy Awards really wanted to win over people and viewership, they should nominate movies people actually care about! Shocking, I know. But it’s crazy enough that it just might work.
Now, I’m not saying that they can’t also nominate the “smaller” artsy movies they love so much, or that they should just nominate any movie that a lot of people saw (that would equally as disastrous). But surely they can find some kind of middle ground?
The obvious omission this year is that Inside Out isn’t nominated for Best Picture, despite being the most acclaimed film of the year, one of the biggest box office champs of 2015, and probably one of the most warmly-embraced movies of recent memory. Sure, it got the token Best Animated Feature nomination, and a Best Original Screenplay mention, but there really is no reason why it shouldn’t be in the running for Best Picture, other than the Academy’s blatant bias against animated films. For people who often gloat about their embracing of the little guy and diversity, and trying to make changes to the world, they certainly are closed-minded when it comes to the movies they nominate.
Given that Star Wars: The Force Awakens is also critically acclaimed, and one of the biggest movies of all time, I think it’s earned a Best Picture mention as well. I mean, if James Cameron’s garishly CG’d retelling of Pocahontas, and Neil Blomkamp’s abysmal and pretentious District 9 can get a mention, there’s no reason why a return to form like The Force Awakens shouldn’t get its name in the Best Picture running.
Then there’s the other categories. Where is Inside Out’s Best Original Score nomination it so rightfully deserves? Or The Peanuts Movie in Best Animated Feature? Why the Hell has there never been a director of an animated film nominated for Best Director?
I’m also guessing that, just like last year’s award show, we’ll be seeing countless slams towards super hero films by the presenters, as they pretend that the artsy movies they nominate don’t have their own long list of cliches and predictability. God forbid some people make movies that actually gain an audience.
I’m probably getting too worked up over this. A wise man once said “you can’t win against fools.” And if the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences can’t be more open-minded towards different mediums and genres of films, particularly ones that prove acclaimed and timeless, then they most certainly are foolish. They probably aren’t worth me writing all of this. I mean, if you can’t nominate the most acclaimed film of the year (Inside Out) or the biggest cultural phenomenon (Star Wars) for Best Picture, then they’re clearly in the wrong line of work.
If doing the same thing and expecting different results is the definition of insanity, then the Academy must be comprised of an insane asylum.