Welcome to my new weekly feature, Boo You! Monday.
Just so you don’t think I’m a wicked awful intellectual property thief, I got “Boo You!” from one of my favorite Disney Channel characters, London Tipton, who had an online segment Boo You! So in honor of London, here’s my inaugural Boo You! to the Oscars.
When I was a kid, I loved the Oscars. I loved movies in general, and for me the Oscars was one of the high points of the year. That was until I figured out what a farce the Oscars were. I think the first hint for me was what is still one of the biggest robberies of all time– when Dances with Wolves beat Goodfellas for best picture for 1990.
For anyone who hasn’t seen Goodfellas, it is simply the best mob movie ever made. It’s also Martin Scorsese’s finest film. It’s a ball of frenetic energy that makes the mob look seductive and utterly repellent all at the same time. I still think the montage scene where the feds find a series of dead mobsters killed in a mob war — set to the strains of the piano bridge of Layla by Derek and the Dominoes — is one of the best movie montages ever.
The Academy, however, saw fit to reward Dances with Wolves as best picture, and Kevin Costner as best director. Put simply, Dances with Wolves is a bloated, pretentious piece of crap, and is an example of one of Oscar’s favorite genre– noble white people who save pitiful minorities/native people, because of course they can’t do anything for themselves. Even worse– the female romantic lead, an American Indian character, is played by a white person. This was 1990, folks– not 1950. This kind of thing shouldn’t have been happening by 1990. And I still can’t believe that Kevin Costner beat Martin Scorsese for best picture. White liberal guilt at its best! (And I can say that because I too suffer from the strange affliction known as WLG.)
There are all kinds of examples of crappy Oscar awards. Crash (yes, Hollywood, we rubes in middle America know racism is bad– thanks for the didactic memo) beating Brokeback Mountain for best picture 2005 is probably the worst. Crash was the beneficiary of either the Weinstein publicity machine or homophobia or both. Still stinky.
I haven’t seen many of the best picture nominees this year, but I am counting on The King’s Speech winning. It’s classic Oscar bait– English accents, a lead character with some sort of “affliction,” and a period setting. Plus it looks just painfully boring (though I do like Colin Firth and wouldn’t mind seeing him win). I expect it win big.
Oscar, like so many things in life, is tainted by lobbying, guilt, bigotry, and favoritism. This was a hard lesson for a young movie lover to learn. So, in honor of the upcoming Oscan telecast: Boo You! Oscar.
An intrepid reader (thanks for reading, Purple Monkey from RQ!) gently pointed out that the white actress in Dances with Wolves was indeed playing a white woman (who was raised by the Lakota tribe depicted in the movie). I was wrong! Thanks for the correction, Purple Monkey! But I still hate that movie! Still not as good as Goodfellas!