Thursday, March 16, 2006

Annie Proulx's hissy fit

Reading to the end of an interesting post on the status of gays in Iran relating to Western refugee applications on Maman Poulet, my eye was drawn to the next post down which referred to Annie Proulx's column in the Guardian relating to the Academy Awards. Sadly Suzy did not treat us to her opinion of Ms. Proulx's view of the experience.

First - I haven't seen either movie yet so I hope I can be objective in respect of the column. I found the Guardian article ridiculous. The Oscars are a cliquish contest, just like they say about the Golden Globes and every other award show. Funnily enough the one that claims to be most democratic (People's Choice) no-one much cares about, while Annie wants us to choose the Independent Spirit Awards which no-one's much heard about - and they gave Lost in Translation best picture, a movie which everyone I know who saw it and myself considers a pile of manure.

The column would have been more plausible if submitted before the opening of the Best Picture envelope, and it is all to easy to believe the spin such a petty personality would have put on the "right" result.

Crash did have the advantage of being a local movie - that's what happens when you shoot the competition 2,000km away in Alberta. Crash had a decent cast and a writer with pedigree (as Million Dollar Baby showed). But he's a Scientologist so the fix was in. If I believed Scientology was a religion (it's a business) I'd consider that assertion a far worse slam on religious belief than "Trapped in the closet" which prompted Isaac Hayes' own hissy fit. She also sarcastically compared BM's three Oscars to King Kong's three technical ones, though I doubt Peter Jackson was worried with his personal three from Return of the King and the film total of 17 from the three Rings movies.

It is not compulsory to enter the Academy Awards but Brokeback Mountain did and in doing so you accept the rules of the game. Fahrenheit 9/11 showed how risky it can be to demand the Academy to play a political game for you. If BM's distributor wasn't willing to work as hard as Lions Gate in the ridiculous games that are played to get the notice of voters, that is hardly Lions Gates fault but BM's backers for not going the extra mile.

It was also a bit much to take when the two leading men had been quick to distance themselves from their roles - for such a great movie and a great cause you'd think they'd have been all too comfortable with their choices?

The most stupid thing about Proulx's ranting is that it doesn't matter that Brokeback didn't win. Brokeback is all over the internet in spoofs, in the Awards prologue... Crash had weird dance while Andi Wyatt from the West Wing crooned. It only matters what the public remembers, and that you respect other choices - oh wait, what was Brokeback Mountain about again?
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