17 March 2006
  post-academy awards malaise
well i am back from a two week blogging hiatus following the oscars, which is kinda confusing considering how much i enjoyed watching the awards. don't get me wrong, of course watching the telecast was as boring as watching capote and i was completely underwhelmed by john stewart's unfunny sarcasm and completely mystified by the countless boring and totally pointless montages, but i actually did enjoy watching the results. . .

okay, to make myself clear, i am not going to argue that crash is a better movie than bareback. i have posted over and over again about why i really enjoyed watching the former and why i didn't enjoy watching the latter. but, like most everyone else, i imagine, i am effing sick and tired of hearing the people who made bareback and the people who championed (i.e. sold) it talk about why crash is the worst piece of trash ever to win an oscar.

so, FIRST OF ALL, was anybody else totally dumbstruck by the incredible weirdness and irritating-ness of larry mcmurtry, diana ossana and the rest of the bareback brood at the awards? larry mcmurtry showed up wearing a tuxedo jacket and blue jeans, looking like a homeless schizophrenic and, to my amusement, in accepting the award for best adapted screenplay, he couldn't have been any less well spoken. here's an excerpt:

Since somehow I unaccountably failed to thank my brilliant partner Diana at the Golden Globes, I'm going to rattle off all the attributes I was going to thank her for at the Golden Globes. Smarts, guts, drive, good judgment, tenacity, loyalty, and generosity.

ummm. you are a famous and well accomplished writer and the best descriptive words you could think of to describe your partner appear to have been lifted from a gatorade bottle?

then you have diana ossana who just appeared to be the hugest bitch at the ball. she couldn't have seemed more non-plussed by her accomplishment. i really hope that she was on an ovedose of vicodin or something because she seemed like she could barely open her eyes. she definitely exuded self satisfaction, but, watching her, i only managed to exude vomit.

# 2. has anyone else read annie proulx's bitter academy awards backlash from the guardian? i posted earlier about how irritated i was to find her short story that launched bareback at borders. the 25 page text has like a 14 point typeface and two inch margins on each tiny page and is being sold for $10! i hope she makes a lot of money so she never feels compelled to publish again. anyways, proulx apparently feels that the subject matter in bareback is more socially relevant to contemporary society than that of crash. (this must be what is motivating her to do her part for social justice by selling 5 page stories for $10 at fine booksellers across the nation).

certainly she has a right to champion whatever social causes are important to her *suppresses giggle* but that does not give her the right to present other social issues as passe. in her rant, she compares the issue of racism in crash to the issue of adultery in the scarlet letter. apparently making a film about racism in the u.s. is soooo yesterday. anyways, i can't believe she is not embarrassed at having published this and when she looks back at it in a few years she is going to realize how silly and immature the whole thing is.

which brings me to POINT THREE. really getting sick over here of the gay community calling academy members out of touch and homophobic just because they prefer crash over bareback people! i am certainly not the only gay man who feels this way and i am not the first to say so. read this great editorial from the advocate by karel. he really captures my sentiments pretty much exactly. still, one thing that i haven't heard anyone point out yet is all of the other films with gay characters and themes that have been really successful at the awards, including bareback: capote, transamerica, monster, far from heaven, gods and monsters, before night falls, all about my mother, boys don't cry and philadelphia, just to name a few. i just don't see academy members refusing to vote for bareback because they were uncomfortable with the gay sex. if they weren't turned off by charlize theron's scary turn as aileen wuornos, i am pretty sure they have sturdy stomachs.

my FINAL argument is that, by vilifying crash and its writers, the people who made bareback are doing nothing to champion their own art. they are just making themselves look mean. i will probably never watch another ang lee film, because i think he is dangerous for the art of film in general. he will stop at nothing to make his own voice heard, even if that means crushing others who are trying to do the same *ahemspielbergahem* everyone should read roger ebert's reactions to the anti-crash backlash because i really think he hit the nail on the head. read it here.

okay that's it.

i will not talk about bareback and the crazy kids at its helm in this blog ever again. i am going to let the issue be. i will try not to talk about crash again either, at least for a while. i would rather start writing about other films again, because i have gotten pretty lapse and have a lot of things to write about. so you can look forward to upcoming posts on mrs. henderson presents, grizzly man, freedomland, a prairie home companion, for your consideration, pi, the prize winner of defiance ohio and MANDERLAY!!!! (*yea* it is finally showing in tucson).
get out of your freakin mayonaise boys because i liked reading this a few times a week and i like talking about movies and im sad. my chihuahuas are sad quik climbed on my computer and he says i am sad too....and then he ejected the sims.
Your rant here seems as childish as Annie Proulx's. I saw an interview afterwards with McMurtry and Ossana--McMurtry said that Ossana's son had died not long before the Awards, and she only came to the ceremony to support the film and cast and crew, and was doing her best to appear calm and composed under the tremendous weight of grief. Her son was a paraplegic who died of a skin infection. Ossana said the Awards were "...somewhat bittersweet, but how could I not feel thankful for the abundance of recognition the film has received." No sour grapes there!
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