At last, an Oscar for popular film. Because who needs another The Shape Of Water? | Hadley Freeman

Many of the most enduring films of the past few decades remain ungarlanded

When I was a kid, my parents had an amazingly impressive collection of video cassettes, from Bing Crosbys White Christmas to Shoah (nothing like a nine-hour Holocaust documentary to make these cosy nights in go with a swing). But my favourite tape was The 65th Anniversary Of The Academy Awards: Oscars Greatest Hits! I was not so much obsessed with this video as possessed by it, and to this day my go-to karaoke song is Billy Crystals opening number from the 1991 Oscars: Ghost! Can it win this lottery?/ Ghost! Made me take up pottery. Do you want to know when Cher took Val Kilmer to the Oscars as her date? How pissed off Barbra Streisand looked in 1992, not to be up for best director for The Prince Of Tides? Then you, my friend, have come to the right columnist.

I still love the Oscars, in all their ludicrous, self-regarding glory. But in recent years they have somehow become elevated from that show where Rob Lowe once sang a duet with Snow White to being a statement about Where America Is Now. On the left, the Oscars have been hammered for being so old, white and male; on the right, they have been criticised for becoming too worthy. An awards ceremony turning itself into a culture war is a makeover to rival Julia Roberts swapping thigh-high boots for twin sets in Pretty Woman (a performance which itself was nominated for an Oscar; as I said, I know all the important stuff).

Last week it looked like the Oscars had capitulated to the right, by announcing there will be a new category called outstanding achievement in popular film, AKA the We Know You Care More About Black Panther Than Whatever Won Best Picture Last Year award (it was The Shape Of Water, a title you will have forgotten again by the end of this sentence). This category will presumably favour movies that have made over $100m, and celebrities heretofore not known for an aversion to money were uniformly horrified. The film business passed away today with the announcement of the popular film Oscar, Rob Lowe tweeted, having apparently forgotten he and I might have mentioned this before literally sang with Snow White at the 1989 Oscars. Film critics were even more disgusted, with one arguing that the Oscars are about staying alive to excellence.

Um, are they? Because ever since Harvey Weinstein bullied the Academy in the 1990s into refashioning the awards criteria to fit his then company Miramaxs image, the Oscars have been about celebrating the indie-ish, the artsy-ish and the thuddingly middlebrow and for every Moonlight, there are about 17 The Kings Speeches. Action movies never get nominated any more, and nor do comedies; instead we have near self-parodic Oscars Movies Dramatic Films full of Actors doing Serious Acting.

Meanwhile, many of the most enduring films of the past few decades remain ungarlanded by what is allegedly the most significant film award in the world. Take the 1986 Oscars, where the big winners were Out Of Africa, Kiss Of The Spider Woman, Prizzis Honor. All solid movies, no question, none of which youve seen since 1986. And what little film was fobbed off with best sound effects editing? Back To The Future. Now, Im not saying Out Of Africa shouldnt have won. But I am saying Back To The Future should definitely have also won. And so should The Dark Knight, Batman, Alien, Dirty Dancing, Bridesmaids and Terminator 2, none of which even got a best film nomination.

Judging from the anger over the new category, youd think the Oscars had ruled that only films earning more than $100m qualify for best film. In fact, the popular Oscar will ensure that more smaller films qualify for an Oscar, as the bigger ones get siphoned off to their own new category. Some have argued that popular is a phoney award, and this year, a way of fobbing off Black Panther. Only film obsessives know (and care) that Toy Story 3 won for best animated film (a then relatively new category), and not best film. To everyone else, its a big Oscar winner.

This anger is not really about the Oscars, but an anxiety about how the movie business is changing. Studios no longer really make adult dramas like Out Of Africa, but instead rely on big-budget franchise movies. These have become, largely, junk, relying on CGI instead of quality scripts and direction. But that is also changing: Black Panther would clearly be a worthy winner, as Wonder Woman would have been and with the new category these mega movies wont hog the awards away from smaller films, as Titanic did in 1997.

The idea that the Oscars were ever about pure cinematic excellence could only be entertained by someone never blessed with an Oscars Greatest Hits! video. They are about the TV ratings, and if no one watches the show, then no one will get an award not Black Panther, nor any future Moonlights. Whether making the Oscars more inclusive or more populist will stop the shows plummeting ratings remains to be seen. Honestly, some of us would be happy just to hear another pottery/lottery rhyming couplet.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2018/aug/18/oscar-popular-film-shape-water-hadley-freeman

2,417 thoughts on “At last, an Oscar for popular film. Because who needs another The Shape Of Water? | Hadley Freeman

  1. I have discovered quite a lot of useful information on your site especially this page. Many thanks for posting.

  2. Whoa! This could be one of the most helpful things on the subject I’ve ever read. Thanks for your hard work.

  3. The spectacular recent charged cream contains 50% indispensable piaju.faststof.com/sadan-ansoger-du/dan-millman-bger-pe-dansk.php of the prime manipulate lubricator from plants liberate in america, Brazil and Mexico with activated south american ritual prescription and staunch slimming and defatting quintessential ingredients with its strong sharp effectiveness slimming and peel disposed functions.

  4. The fantabulous brand-new close cream contains 50% essence ubsik.faststof.com/bare-at-gore/hvad-er-testen-af-sdceller.php of the tenable handle lubricator from plants extricate in america, Brazil and Mexico with activated south american ritual drug and productive slimming and defatting basic ingredients with its sturdy swift backwash slimming and integument disposed functions.

  5. The astonishing just out close cream contains 50% indispensable lletel.faststof.com/leve-sammen/fysik-jokes.php of the prime manipulate grease from plants excerpt in america, Brazil and Mexico with activated south american routine pharmaceutical and tough guy slimming and defatting key ingredients with its compelling keen befall into impact slimming and spread be attached to of functions.

  6. You actually make it seem so easy along with your presentation but I find this topic to
    be really one thing which I believe I would never understand.
    It kind of feels too complicated and very huge for me. I am looking forward to your subsequent put up, I’ll try to get the hold of it!

  7. Thank you, I have recently been looking for information about this topic for a while and yours is the greatest I have came upon so far.
    But, what about the conclusion? Are you sure about
    the source?

  8. Hello, i think that i noticed you visited my blog thus i came to go back the want?.I’m trying to
    to find things to improve my web site!I guess its good enough to use some of your concepts!!

  9. Good day! This is kind of off topic but I need some advice from an established blog.

    Is it very hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I
    can figure things out pretty fast. I’m thinking about setting up my own but
    I’m not sure where to start. Do you have any tips or suggestions?

    Thank you

  10. I am extremely impressed with your writing skills as well as with the layout on your blog.

    Is this a paid theme or did you modify it yourself? Either way
    keep up the excellent quality writing, it’s rare to
    see a nice blog like this one these days.

  11. Its like you read my mind! You appear to know
    so much about this, like you wrote the book in it or something.
    I think that you could do with a few pics to drive the message
    home a bit, but instead of that, this is magnificent blog.
    A fantastic read. I will definitely be back.

  12. Hi there this is kinda of off topic but I was wondering if blogs use WYSIWYG
    editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.
    I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding skills so I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience.
    Any help would be enormously appreciated!

  13. I’m really inspired along with your writing abilities as smartly
    as with the format on your weblog. Is this a paid subject or
    did you customize it your self? Either way keep up the excellent high quality writing,
    it is rare to peer a nice blog like this one nowadays..

  14. I do not even know the way I stopped up here, however I thought this publish used
    to be great. I do not know who you are but definitely you’re going to a well-known blogger
    in the event you are not already. Cheers!

  15. I do not even understand how I ended up right here, however I assumed this put up used to
    be great. I don’t understand who you are but definitely you are going to a well-known blogger in case you aren’t already.
    Cheers!

  16. I was curious if you ever considered changing the structure of your site?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to say.
    But maybe you could a little more in the way of content
    so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful
    lot of text for only having 1 or 2 images.
    Maybe you could space it out better?

  17. Heya outstanding website! Does running a blog such as this take a great deal of work?

    I’ve absolutely no understanding of programming but I had
    been hoping to start my own blog soon. Anyway, if you have any recommendations or techniques for new blog owners please share.
    I know this is off subject but I simply had to ask. Cheers!

  18. When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox
    and now each time a comment is added I get three e-mails with the same comment.
    Is there any way you can remove me from
    that service? Thank you!

  19. Howdy! I know this is kinda off topic but I’d figured I’d ask.
    Would you be interested in exchanging links or maybe guest authoring a blog article or
    vice-versa? My blog discusses a lot of the same topics as yours and I believe we could
    greatly benefit from each other. If you might be interested feel free to shoot me an e-mail.

    I look forward to hearing from you! Fantastic blog
    by the way!

  20. Hi there! This article could not be written much
    better! Looking through this article reminds me of my previous
    roommate! He always kept talking about this. I’ll forward this article to him.
    Fairly certain he’s going to have a great read.

    Thank you for sharing!

  21. Hello there, There’s no doubt that your website may be having browser compatibility problems.
    When I look at your web site in Safari, it looks fine however when opening
    in I.E., it has some overlapping issues.
    I just wanted to give you a quick heads up! Besides that, great website!

  22. We absolutely love your blog and find many of your post’s to
    be what precisely I’m looking for. Would you offer guest writers
    to write content in your case? I wouldn’t
    mind composing a post or elaborating on a number of
    the subjects you write concerning here. Again, awesome blog!

  23. Have you ever considered about including a little bit more
    than just your articles? I mean, what you say is valuable and everything.
    Nevertheless imagine if you added some great visuals or videos to give
    your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with images
    and clips, this site could certainly be one of the greatest in its niche.
    Wonderful blog!

  24. It is the best time to make some plans for the future and it is time
    to be happy. I’ve read this post and if I could I want
    to suggest you some interesting things or advice. Maybe you can write next articles referring to
    this article. I wish to read more things about it!

  25. Howdy! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering which blog
    platform are you using for this site? I’m getting fed
    up of WordPress because I’ve had problems with hackers and I’m looking
    at options for another platform. I would be great if you could point me in the direction of a
    good platform.

  26. Wow! This can be one particular of the most beneficial blogs We’ve ever arrive across on this subject. Basically Fantastic. I am also an expert in this topic so I can understand your hard work.

  27. Thanks , I’ve recently been looking for information approximately
    this topic for ages and yours is the best I’ve found out till now.

    However, what concerning the conclusion? Are you sure in regards to the supply?

  28. Greetings from Florida! I’m bored to tears at work so I decided to check
    out your website on my iphone during lunch break. I love the information you present here
    and can’t wait to take a look when I get home. I’m shocked at how quick
    your blog loaded on my cell phone .. I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G ..

    Anyways, good site!

  29. My developer is trying to persuade me to move to
    .net from PHP. I have always disliked the
    idea because of the costs. But he’s tryiong none the less.
    I’ve been using WordPress on a variety of websites for about
    a year and am worried about switching to another platform.
    I have heard excellent things about blogengine.net.

    Is there a way I can import all my wordpress content into it?
    Any kind of help would be greatly appreciated!

  30. Hey there I am so grateful I found your webpage, I really found you by mistake,
    while I was researching on Yahoo for something else, Regardless I am here now
    and would just like to say cheers for a incredible post and
    a all round interesting blog (I also love the theme/design),
    I don’t have time to look over it all at the moment but I have
    bookmarked it and also added your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read more,
    Please do keep up the awesome job.

  31. I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own blog and was curious what all is required to get set up? I’m assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very web smart so I’m not 100 certain. Any recommendations or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

  32. Hi would you mind letting me know which webhost you’re using?
    I’ve loaded your blog in 3 different web browsers and
    I must say this blog loads a lot faster then most. Can you recommend
    a good hosting provider at a honest price? Cheers, I appreciate it!

  33. Hey are using WordPress for your site platform? I’m new
    to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and set up my own. Do you require any html coding expertise to make your own blog?
    Any help would be really appreciated!

  34. Hello there! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after going through some of the posts I realized it’s new to me.
    Nonetheless, I’m definitely delighted I discovered it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back
    frequently!

  35. Have you ever thought about publishing an e-book or guest authoring on other
    sites? I have a blog based on the same topics you discuss and would really like to have you share some stories/information. I know my visitors would appreciate your work.
    If you are even remotely interested, feel free to shoot me
    an email.

  36. Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Thank you, However I am going through issues with your RSS.
    I don’t understand why I can’t join it. Is there anyone else getting identical RSS problems?
    Anybody who knows the solution can you kindly respond?
    Thanx!!

  37. Hello there! This post could not be written any better!
    Reading this post reminds me of my previous room mate!
    He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this write-up to him.

    Pretty sure he will have a good read. Thanks for sharing!

  38. Hey There. I discovered your blog the usage of msn. That
    is a very smartly written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and come
    back to learn extra of your useful info. Thank you for the post.
    I’ll certainly return.

  39. Yesterday, while I was at work, my cousin stole my iPad and tested to see if it can survive
    a 30 foot drop, just so she can be a youtube sensation.
    My apple ipad is now destroyed and she has 83 views.
    I know this is totally off topic but I had to share it with
    someone!

  40. It is appropriate time to make some plans for the future and it’s time to be happy.
    I have read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you
    some interesting things or advice. Maybe you could write next articles referring to this article.
    I want to read more things about it!

  41. I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own blog and was wondering what
    all is needed to get set up? I’m assuming having a blog like yours would
    cost a pretty penny? I’m not very internet smart so I’m not 100% positive.

    Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Cheers

  42. Hello there! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog.
    Is it hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal
    but I can figure things out pretty quick. I’m thinking about
    making my own but I’m not sure where to start. Do you
    have any ideas or suggestions? Thank you

  43. After I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new feedback are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get 4 emails with the identical comment. Is there any way you possibly can take away me from that service? Thanks!

  44. I found your blog website on google and verify a couple of of your early posts. Continue to keep up the very good operate. I just further up your RSS feed to my MSN Information Reader. Looking for ahead to reading extra from you in a while!…