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Dear Academy

My, how time flies. Although, not so much when you’re watching the Oscars. Every year, I tell myself that it’s really not necessary for me to actually watch the Academy Awards, that the show is boring, too long, not really that important, and half the time they get it wrong anyway. And every year, I find myself staggering bleary-eyed into work on Monday morning after a very late Sunday night spent groaning at the TV. This year, same thing. I am still tired and my eyes are like sandpaper, thanks to the endless, endless show. And my apparent compulsion to watch it, even when I totally disagree with the results and am bored by all those montages and songs. Those songs. Dear John.

Or, more precisely: Dear Academy members, while I’m very happy that Marty Scorsese finally got his Oscars for Raging Bull and Goodfellas, er, The Departed, and I truly appreciate the recognition accorded to a German movie that for once does not have Nazis in it (yay for The Lives of Others, go see it now), what is up with your total shafting of Children of Men? This is a movie with spectacular cinematography, unbelievably inventive car chases and realistic street combat, and direction so tight that even I realize how spectacularly the director did his job here. And you, the Academy, did not feel the need to show any hint you were even aware this effort had been made? Where is Alfonso Cuarón‘s nomination for best director? Where is the acknowledgement that this movie should have been up among the best? And what happened in the categories you did nominate Children of Men for? How did this movie not get Cinematography? That man, Emmanuel Lubezki, is a genius. And what about the Editing (Alex Rodríguez and Alfonso Cuarón)? That was genius as well – an uncut action sequence of 9 minutes that puts you right in the middle of the story? Who does that? Children of Men did that. It’s a movie that had me nearly hiding under my chair in tense anticipation. Good times.

Don’t get me wrong, I really liked Pan’s Labyrinth and thought it deserved its Oscars for Art Direction and Make-Up, and I maintain it should have gotten Best Score as well – I haven’t been haunted by a melody like that in a long time. Maybe even best Foreign Film (although again, yay for the German film, it truly is fantastic). Anyway, my problem is not with Pan’s Labyrinth but the fact that Children of Men was ignored in every category it was nominated for as well as big important categories it should have been nominated for. Like Best Director and Best Picture. Academy members, what happened?

My theory is that none of you actually saw this movie. There is really no other way to explain it being snubbed like this otherwise. If you know your craft, you should have recognized this movie with at least one nod, one Oscar. Well, if you had actually seen it and not just heard vague reports of a depressing, serious movie with very little promotion behind it (I’m guessing the few nominations it got were due to the odd rumor of critical praise you’d heard about this movie), you would have at least nominated it for Best Picture. Seriously, you should be ashamed.

I will disavow your movie-related knowledge and taste until next year, when I will once again get my hopes up, only to be forced to watch you make even bigger blunders. Cause we all know that the Oscars, and other awards shows like it, are just there to let me feel good about my own taste in entertainment.


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