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Another year, another Oscar award show.  It marks the end of a movie year. When it’s over, we clean the slate and start fresh again.  But what is interesting to me is perhaps summed up by Ellen DeGeneres, “I hosted the show 7 years ago and many things hasn’t changed: DiCaprio was nominated, Meryl was nominated, and Scorsese was nominated.”  She is right.  Every year is about the same.  Are the Oscar voters looking at just those filmmakers?  Why are movies and people getting left out all the time? 

American Hustle was a great movie, better than most nominated ones, and yet lost in every category.  Cate Blanchett is a good actress, but every actor in every Woody Allen movie acts just like Woody Allen.  To me, Sandra Bullock did an amazing job in Gravity given all the limitations she had.  It was a much better performance than that football movie she did, the one in which she actually won the Oscar.  And how can a movie win best director, but not best picture?  Shouldn’t the best director directs the best picture?  12 Years a Slave is a good movie, but it won not because it was great or better than the others, it was about political correctness.

And there are many movies and actors this year that didn’t get the recognition they deserved.  Prisoners was an outstanding movie that only got a nomination in cinematography.  Emma Thompson was great in Saving Mr. Banks.  And Hong Kong’s Grandmaster should have been nominated as Best Foreign film.   

But with all the things wrong about the Oscars, they do get a few things right.  Ellen is a pretty cool host just by being Ellen.  She can sidestep political correctness with her brand of humor.  And when all else fail, she can use herself as a joke like when she picked on Jonah Hill, “You showed me something in the Wolf of Wall Street that I have not seen in a long time!”  Well, that’s the kind of joke I haven’t heard in a long time.  So for better or for worse, we’ll have to wait another year to complain about the Academy Award.

Gilbert Po – MENTOR



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