Thursday, January 25, 2007

An Oscar Wild Play: Part One

The dawning of the Oscars is a special day around Betty and Bimbo’s place. We look forward to the Oscars all year round, and today they're just exactly one month away. When their little dog barked at a bearded stranger the other day, he kindly smiled back and said she meant know harm and was “just sharing her many opinions”. Betty and Bimbo will now begin to bark in your direction.

Bimbo: I think this is the most embarrassing slate of Oscar nominations ever. Still, I would like to pose a question by way of pointing out that NO ONE’S OPINIONS ON THE OSCARS – NOT EVEN YOURS, NOT EVEN MINE -- ARE ORIGINAL. You might say “Oh my God, the Oscars are so awful and ridiculous this year!,” but chances are your favorites films of the year are all on some New York Times critic’s list. Are there small secret movies we don’t know about that aren’t merely quirky, that are... good?

I think that 2006's best film of the year is also the Best Film of All-Time, Army of Shadows (Yes, the New York Times already said that - and I heartily concur!)

Betty’s: Dreamgirls is the perfect Oscar movie. What’s with the haters?

Betty and Bimbo regard the list of Best Picture Nominees:

1. Babel

Bimbo: Thematically and structurally, Babel seems to be filling the Crash slot this year. Plus, it has Brad Pitt, which means that if you're a member of the academy you get to have your cake and eat it, too. In other words, you don’t have to nominate Brad for anything, but you can still nominate the movie and thereby support the prestigization of Hollywood celebrities.

Betty: I don’t like serious sad movies where people get shot. I had a breakdown at Pan’s Labyrinth, ok?

Bimbo: By the way, did you know that in Hollywood they've taken to calling the directors of Babel (Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu), Pan’s Labyrinth (Guillermo del Toro) and Children of Men (Alfonso Cuaron) "The Three Amigos"?

Betty: Get out.

Bimbo: For real.

2. The Departed

Bimbo: This was excellent entertainment. I could watch it again and again. Still, it will be sad if Martin Scorsese wins for this, because you can barely tell that he did it. It seems to have been made by a very competent studio director.

Betty: Exactly. The style of this movie was lilke Scorsese making a tribute film to himself. Did you think he really meant to play "Gimme Shelter" twice on the soundtrack?

3. Letters from Iwo Jima

Bimbo: This I’m not outraged about. But I haven’t seen it. I do hope Clint Eastwood beats Scorsese for best director. I love The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

Betty: I have no opinion about this movie.

4. Little Miss Sunshine

Bimbo: Didn’t see it. My guess is that it’s a little quirky faux independent film that people want to see as a sign that Hollywood is vibrant and diverse.

Betty: Hasn’t this movie been out for like ten years? Didn’t see it.

5. The Queen

Bimbo: I love Helen Mirren and I loved this movie's sympathy for Elizabeth, who reminded me of my grandmother, so I formed an emotional attachment to it. But this should only win in a "made for TV but came out on the big screen" category. I mean, Stephen Frears is the guy who did The Grifters so he can do better. Though he has done worse.

Betty: This is my pick for Best Picture, and it would be even if it weren't nominated. Hollywood should make more movies like this. They should put Helen Mirren in all their movies, first of all, and also they should not be afraid to interpret and imagine recent events that aren’t 9/11. The strongest script and the strongest directing, and the best, most compelling movie since Brokeback Mountain. I also liked the animals.

1 comment:

taylorasen said...

I liked Bimbo's point about the unoriginality of peoples' points on the oscars. As a matter of fact, banal comments--such as, the oscars are bullshit and mean nothing--are central to the show's prestige. For more on this topic, see James English's awesome book, "The Economy of Prestige."