Monday, February 27, 2012

The Oscars

I didn't watch the Oscars because I have long ago got tired of the rambling, boring shows, and I've never really liked Billy Crystal's schtick in the first place. (I've only enjoyed him in movies like Princess Bride and City Slickers.) Even the appearance by Kermit and Miss Piggy wasn't enough to lure me. But reading over the Oscar results today leaves me pretty disappointed.

I'm most sad that Viola Davis didn't win for her role in the The Help. I'm happy that Octavia Spencer won, but still wish that she had been nominated as a lead actress. (Though I suppose that might have split the vote between her and Viola in the nominations, let alone the award.) Still, I thought both Viola and Octavia were leads in the movie, not supporting cast; their stories were far more interesting to me than that of Emma Stone's character, especially once she started that pointless plot with her love interest.

Overall, I wish that The Help did better, because I loved it. I know lots of people are criticizing the movie for its "white perspective", but to me, that perspective was balanced by the two African-American leads, and the stories of their community. It was also very eye-opening to me about the degradations that black maids suffered in white households; I had never seen such things before in any documentary about the civil rights movement. The Help may be fiction by a white author, but it taught me things I didn't know, and it touched me emotionally; that alone makes it valuable to me. Besides the racial aspect, I found the movie refreshing for its large female cast, where the men were practically inconsequential. In fact, I would have preferred less men; if Skeeter's love interest was dropped and her stories with her mother and her lost maid had been developed more instead, I would have cared more about her.

Another movie I wish had done better was Rise of the Planet of the Apes. I felt that Andy Serkis as Caesar was incredible, and to not see him nominated as a lead, or supporting actor, was so disappointing. At least the movie could have won for visual effects, but it lost to Hugo. That movie was fine, but I never loved it like I did Rise. Anyway, I am happy for Christopher Plummer to finally get an Oscar, and I did enjoy his role in The Beginners, but I disliked the rest of the movie because Ewan McGregor's character was so morose all the time. Well, that's all I can comment on since I didn't watch the Oscars.

I hope Viola and Octavia will get more good roles soon, and don't fade away like Halle Berry has. I know Andy Serkis will continue to get more great parts, but I don't know how long it will take for his performance-capture genius to get the recognition he so deserves.

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