Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Overlooked. 2012 Academy Awards

Playing chess with Death. Max von Sydow in Ingmar Bergman's "Seventh Seal" (1957)
Playing chess with Death.
Max von Sydow in Ingmar Bergman's "Seventh Seal" (1957)

Have you ever wondered how the Hollywood universe really worked? Or why your favorite movie wasn't even nominated for an Oscar? Or why a rather mediocre performance was rewarded with one? Or why Hollywood overlooked fabulous actors and rewarded them with Oscars for a lifetime achievement at the end of their career, if at all?

Not even nominated!
In this respect, this year Academy Awards ceremony was not much different form the previous ones. Many cinema lovers must have been left asking the same questions: Was the Oscar for the Best Foreign Language Film politically motivated? Was the French silent movie really the best film of the 2011? Why Martin Scorsese's "Hugo" did not win? Should Glen Close have received the Best Actress Award? Why was Max von Sydow or Gary Oldman overlooked again?
Glenn Close in Rodrigo Garcia's "Albert Nobbs" (2011)
Glenn Close in Rodrigo Garcia's "Albert Nobbs" (2011)

You might never find answers to your questions because there seem to be no clear criteria for the Awards. There are more than 6,000 Members of the Academy of Motion Picture Art and Sciences. They watch the movies and cast a vote thus "collectively" deciding who gets the Oscar and who doesn't. 

But just like the appreciation of any art form, enjoyment of the Seventh Art is a very individual matter. So maybe it isn't really important whether a movie was awarded or not as long as you enjoyed watching it. The best movies are these that let you experience the magic of a silver screen and completely forget the world around you no matter how intellectually profound or politically engaged they might be.

By Dominique Allmon ©2012