Television and film award shows are boring

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Catchfire Catchfire's picture
Television and film award shows are boring

I can say this: if I'm at the Golden Globes and someone hands me Meryl Streep's reading glasses, they are going in my pocket. End of.

Issues Pages: 
Mr.Tea

I was expecting better from Ricky Gervais. He toned it down.

I was glad to see Scorcese win Best Director for "Hugo", which I really liked. And Morgan Freeman (one of my favourites) getting the lifetime achievement award was great and he gave a lovely speech.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

I didn't watch much of the awards--I was watching when Streep won for a depoliticized depiction of Thatcher. Which is rather like a zombie movie with no zombies. Her speech was the usual affectatious stuff I've grown to expect from these things, since seeing Halle Berry's awful "emotional" Oscar acceptance speech from a few years back.

Award shows do serve as occasions to talk about the films and tv shows, though. Although I haven't seen many of those either. As a big fan of silent film, though, I really want to see The Artist, which looks really interesting.

I saw Rise of the Planet of the Apes on Saturday night, and it looks much better than any of the stuff up for awards last night. At least it's not pretending...

CMOT Dibbler

Rise of the Planet of the Apes is better than The Artist?

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Heh. I haven't seen The Artist yet, although I want to. I imagine it's probably better than Apes, but I'd take Apes over most of the other options! I thought it was a really, really good sci-fi B-movie. Have you seen it, CMOT? 

CMOT Dibbler

Yup, I have. Probably the 2nd best apes movie, after the original, and ten times better then that sack of steaming bullshit that Tim Burton produced back in 2001.

milo204

these shows, like the music industry awards are nothing but a glorified employee of the year ceremony for hollywood insiders.  

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

 

Why the Oscars should cast out The Help and welcome in Pariah

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In an industry where 2005's best picture winner Crash passes for progressive racial politics, it's no wonder why the keepers of the key have an issue recognising the twisted portrayals of people of colour and their stories. It passes on nearly every opportunity it has to award authentic, complicated, three-dimensional black characters and films.

Over the years, the Academy could have easily honoured Charles Burnett's Killer of Sheep, Julie Dash's Daughters of the Dust, Tanya Hamilton's Night Catches Us, or even Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing and Malcolm X. The Color Purple received 11 nominations, and struck out in every category. Just one win for any of these films would have dulled the sting that comes along with witnessing the Oscars celebrate black dysfunction in the form of Precious. But they've consistently failed.

It's worse when you start factoring in gender. The margin is slim, but black men have fared better with the Academy than black women. Black women have captured attention and wide critical acclaim by fulfilling only the basest of stereotypes. Viola Davis is one of the finest actresses working today. Her performance in The Help is truly remarkable. But what does it mean that in 2012 the best role available to her, according the standards set by the industry, is no different than what would have been available in 1939? What does it mean that Halle Berry became the first black woman to win best actress by embodying the lascivious jezebel? What does it mean when Mo'Nique's big win comes for portraying what amounts to an angry black welfare queen? These aren't the outliers. Black women don't have the luxury of a large number of nominations or wins for there to be any outliers. They aren't exceptions, rather they are the rule. There has been no progression.

 

Ripple

I thought this was an [url=entertaining">http://watch.thecomedynetwork.ca/the-daily-show-with-jon-stewart/full-ep... interview with Melissa Harris-Perry[/url] on the Colbert Report on stereotyping black women in America. Harris-Perry has written a new book called [url=http://yalepress.yale.edu/book.asp?isbn=9780300165418]Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America.[/url]

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

That's a great interview! Thanks, Ripple.

This found my inbox this morning:

Heh. It's about right. Some of the other ones are good too.

Michelle

There's a whole site dedicated to criticizing The Help, both book and film.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Great site. "Mammyhood prevails" indeed.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

 

I’M NOT OKAY WITH CHRIS BROWN PERFORMING AT THE GRAMMYS AND I’M NOT SURE WHY YOU ARE

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I’m sick and tired of people acting like it’s no big deal that Chris Brown will be performing at the Grammys.

I’m frustrated that the mainstream media is covering this story like it’s any comeback story, like an exiled prince’s return to a former glory, like this is another political timeline — as though some rich and powerful old white men in the music business have not just issued an enormous ‘f**k you’ to every woman who has been, is or will be on the receiving end of domestic violence.

We should be furious.

Why aren’t we?

Check out this cracker from the Grammy Executive Producer:

Quote:
“We’re glad to have him back,” said executive producer Ken Ehrlich. “I think people deserve a second chance, you know. If you’ll note, he has not been on the Grammys for the past few years and it may have taken us a while to kind of get over the fact that we were the victim of what happened.

 

 

Mr.Tea

I'm not sure how I feel about Brown returning. I mean, it goes without saying that what he did was despicable and disgusting but is nobody ever allowed a second chance?

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I haven't watched the Grammys in over a decade - I think it's the most artificial piece of crap in existence. And with all the maudlin crap about how tearful it's going to be with the Whitney Houston tributes tonight, wild horses couldn't drag me to the television tonight. I'll just go to bed early.

 

pookie

Say what you will - Alicia Keys singing Etta James with the incomparable Bonnie Raitt is pretty cool (though currently on mute through the woman beater).

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Quote:
but is nobody ever allowed a second chance?

This refrain seems to be the most popular justification for Brown's presence. He's 22. Would that all "second chances" come so young on a stage so large. You'll also have to point me to the honest, introspective acknowledgement of his violent act that doesn't reek of a PR move. And of course, there's the fact that Rihanna is als at the Grammies, and apparently has no say as to whether or not she wishes to be faced with her abuser (although I hear they're back together). It's further disgusting because of the maudlin tributes to Whitney Houston, whose abusive partner shares no small role in her candle being snuffed so early.

And yes: <3 to Etta and Alicia.

Mr.Tea

I hear what you're saying. I think he got off easy but he served his punishment and is still on probation. How long is long enough? In 10 years, can he be celebrated for his music? Should someone be snubbed the rest of their life because of a mistake? I mean, Michael Vick went to prison for torturing and killing animals and he's back playing pro football. I still have trouble cheering for him but he's done his time, he can hopefully move on in his life and be more positive.

milo204

I'm sure there ARE plenty of people who have abandoned him, but the industry will not do that until he stops making money for them.  Why do people have any other expectation coming from a massive corporation?  Do we forget they are motivated by profits, and that's it?    

As far as they're concerned, "there's no such thing as bad publicity"...

Mr.Tea

In other Grammy news, Adele just absolutely nailed it. Best voice in music today.

Freedom 55

Mr.Tea wrote:

I'm not sure how I feel about Brown returning. I mean, it goes without saying that what he did was despicable and disgusting but is nobody ever allowed a second chance?

 

His second chance is the fact that people are apparently still buying his music and paying to see him perform.

 

In deciding which 30 or so artists to highlight during the ceremony, the producers were choosing from a pool of literally hundreds of mainstream performers that are at least on par with Chris Brown in terms of talent and stature. There was no need for them to give him tacit absolution by providing him a platform in front of an audience of tens of millions, especially since as recently as last March [url=http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/chris-brown-has-violent-outburst-... still seemed confused about who was the wronged party[/url] in this whole situation.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Mr Tea wrote:
 Should someone be snubbed the rest of their life because of a mistake?  

Which part was the mistake? Beating up Rihanna? Or getting caught?

And this is beyond disturbing: 25 Extremely Upsetting Reactions to Chris Brown at the Grammys. What The Fuck?

Mr.Tea

He won an award last night. I would have liked to see him, in accepting the award, say that while he's grateful for the award, he's even more grateful for the second chance that he's been given and that what he did was inexcusable and that he wants to be a better role model in the future. He didn't even acknowledge it. Disappointing.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture
Catchfire Catchfire's picture

The Nominees for the Best Performance of Gender Are...

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You see, how we perform our gender matters....Each choice of gesture and facial expression, each piece of clothing we select or avoid, signifies a step towards or away from the traditional expectations of what a man or a woman should do. From how we sit on the subway to what we eat for dinner, all of our daily actions are coded with gendered meaning.

Because the movies magnify all those choices, they offer a wonderful laboratory for observing gender performance at work. And this year's Best Actress nominees all played parts that illuminate the continuum of gender in compelling and moving ways.

As [Glenn] Close plays him, Albert Nobbs is a quiet, retiring, soft-featured man. His occupation as a waiter in a hotel in the late 1800s requires that he hold his body erect and that his movements be economical and efficient, so that he can pass persuasively as a man and guard the secret of his sex.

Close's performance of Albert's masculinity in Nobbs is different from Janet McTeer's as Hubert Page, the housepainter whom Albert learns is also a woman living as a man. Page's masculinity is terse, marked by his solitary work. Page takes up space differently than Albert, moving through his world with larger gestures and freer movements. Part of the film's genius, in fact, is how it showcases these two very different women's performances of masculinity.

Consider the more extreme feminine end of the gender continuum, on which I would place Michelle Williams' portrait of the iconic 1950s movie star in My Week with Marilyn. Williams has described how she painstakingly learned and rehearsed Monroe's signature walk. Her movements were dictated by her tight dresses and provoked by an hourglass figure that seems unnatural to most women in the 21st century (except, perhaps, Christina Hendricks, whose signature shape lets her play another 1950s woman in the television series, Mad Men). Williams couldn't perform as Monroe just because they share female biology; she had to learn how to perform the star's distinct femininity.

Rooney Mara's Lisbeth Salander, the fierce computer hacker in director David Fincher's adaptation of the popular Stieg Larsson book, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, falls at the middle of the gender continuum, where masculinity and femininity blur. Mara's makeup and costume hides Lisbeth's body under facial piercings, ripped t-shirts and baggy cargo pants. And in shots of her riding her motorcycle, Lisbeth wears a helmet with a shield that completely obscures her face -- she could be a man or woman, of any age or race, for that matter.

Great piece by Jill Dolan

6079_Smith_W

Michelle wrote:

There's a whole site dedicated to criticizing The Help, both book and film.

Wow. I have heard about this one, but is it Forrest Gump bad?

 

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Hugo just won the Oscar for best Sound Editing. Sorry for my thread title. I don't know what I was thinking. The Academy Awards are amazing.

ETA. And sound mixing. I can barely contain myself.

MegB

From the always classy Nat'l Pest, nothing is more noteworthy than the possibility that Jennifer Lopez's dress may have been too revealing. 

*much eye-rolling*

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Quote:
I usually like watching Meryl Streep, but I seriously hope that she doesn’t win an Oscar on Sunday for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher. I couldn’t stand the thought of more people going to see such a dreadful piece of right-wing propaganda.  I actually paid money to see The Iron Lady, a new film that is ostensibly about the life of Thatcher (nicknamed “the milk snatcher” for ending free school milk). All I could think about during the torturous 100 minutes, was what great timing this film is for the Republicans. Just as they try to sell neoliberal ideology to an increasingly impoverished working class, here comes a movie that celebrates one of their most ardent proponents. From the reviews, I expected a sanitized version of Thatcher’s hideously destructive policies, but this was so sanitized that you would have thought that this poor, misunderstood woman was in fact the best thing that ever happened to Britain since Marmite.

- [url=http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/02/24/the-feminism-of-maggie-thatcher/]... Dines[/url]

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

 

Iron Lady lost in Russian translation

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Speaking to a crowd of supporters, Margaret Thatcher, as played by Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady, explains what she would do as prime minister: "Crush the working class, crush the scum, the yobs."

At least that is a scene from a pirated version of the film in Russia, which has been inadvertently reviewed by one of the country's top film critics without realising that some rather pointed changes to the script had been made.

The pirated Russian translation of the film, voiced over in a monotone by one man, depicts Thatcher as a bloodthirsty, Hitler-admiring leader, whose fondest desire is to destroy the working class. While some of her critics might say this is an accurate representation of her plans, even her fiercest enemy would concede the Russian version takes it too far.

The translation, no matter how over the top, has fooled at least one film critic on the Russian newspaper Kommersant, who quoted parts of the pirated version in a generally positive review.

 

Catchfire Catchfire's picture
Catchfire Catchfire's picture

9 Sexist Things that Happened at the Oscars [Buzzfeed warning]

I don't know that I can recall a worse offence at an event meant to promote the film industry. I don't recommend clicking on any of the links in the Buzzfeed piece.

Seth MacFarlane and the Oscars’ Hostile, Ugly, Sexist Night

Watching the Oscars last night meant sitting through a series of crudely sexist antics led by a scrubby, self-satisfied Seth MacFarlane. That would be tedious enough. But the evening’s misogyny involved a specific hostility to women in the workplace, which raises broader questions than whether the Academy can possibly get Tina Fey and Amy Poehler to host next year. It was unattractive and sour, and started with a number called “We Saw Your Boobs.”

“We Saw Your Boobs” was as a song-and-dance routine in which MacFarlane and some grinning guys named actresses in the audience and the movies in which their breasts were visible. That’s about it. What made it worse was that most of the movies mentioned, if not all (“Gia”), were pretty great—“Silkwood,” “Brokeback Mountain,” “Monster’s Ball,” “Monster,” “The Accused,” “Iris”—and not exactly teen-exploitation pictures. The women were not showing their bodies to amuse Seth MacFarlane but, rather, to do their job. Or did they just think they were doing serious work? You girls think you’re making art, the Academy, through MacFarlane, seemed to say, but all we—and the “we” was resolutely male—really see is that we got you to undress. The joke’s on you. At a moment when Sheryl Sandberg, the Facebook chief operating officer, talks about how women have to “lean in” in the workplace, Seth MacFarlane pops up from behind to say, “So we can see your boobs.”

Why Seth MacFarlane’s Misogyny Matters

Jeez, the song was a joke! Can't you take a joke? Yes, I can take a joke. I can take a bunch! A thousand, 10,000, maybe even more! But after 30 or so years, this stuff doesn't feel like joking. It's dehumanizing and humiliating, and as if every single one of those jokes is an ostensibly gentler way of saying, "I don't think you belong here." All those little instances add up, grain of sand by grain of sand until I'm stranded in a desert of every "tits or GTFO" joke I've ever tried to ignore.

Then came the joke about actresses getting the flu to lose weight. "It paid off," MacFarlane said. "Looking good." Well, thank God, because what matters to all women is that we look good for Seth MacFarlane. How many women did he introduce over the course of the night by mentioning how they looked: "Please welcome the lovely ___ ," "the beautiful ______"? How many men?

Uh, those are compliments! Now he can't even give women compliments? Compliment away, friends. Let's compliment the shit out of each other. But let's be really cognizant of what we compliment each other on, and what that says about what we expect from each other, and what we consider valuable and worth mentioning. It doesn't matter what Salma Hayek says, because she's so pretty!

You just don't like Seth MacFarlane's sense of humor. What did you expect? Actually, I do like Seth MacFarlane's sense of humor. (Sometimes. No one likes everything all the time!) I've been a loyal Family Guy viewer for almost fifteen years. I've been to — and adored — Family Guy: Live. If MacFarlane had sung "Shipoopi" all night, I'd be writing a really different story right now. Instead, there were jokes about how Rex Reed would probably call Adele fat — because that's what's important about her — and how someday Quvenzhané Wallis will be old enough to date George Clooney — because that's what's important about her — and how sometimes, gasp, a woman might have body hair — because that's what's important about them. Women are nags, and Jews run Hollywood! Thank you, Seth MacFarlane, for this cutting-edge humor. Like Mark Wahlberg said, the party's at Jack Nicholson's house. You remember, that place where Roman Polanski drugged and raped a 13-year-old girl. Ha-ha, ha-ha, ha.

Caissa

I watched curling instead.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I didn't have any beer, so curling was out.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I was all set to enjoy a nice evening at the Oscars and Seth McFarlane sings about boobs. Fuck that. I changed the channel halfway through and watched the news instead.

You'd never get that bullshit from past hosts Billy Crystal, Whoopi Goldberg, or Ellen DeGeneres, nor anyone else, in fact.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Caissa wrote:

I watched curling instead.

Me too and I even cheered for Ontario.

Surprised

The jokes sound about right. After all the main films up for the awards were propaganda pieces about things like the inherent good in torturing.

I have never watched more than a few minutes because I find those kinds of shows best vacuous and often far worse.  Some years they are merely sexist and don't go quite get to misogynist but they never seem to be better than sexist.

Bacchus

Im so glad I missed it and did laundry at the laundromat and then took the bacchanae to a diner for daddy/daughter time instead

Slumberjack

Canadians annoyed at Conservative TV ads during the Oscars.

Brilliant juxtapositioning too, against the backdrop of an awards ceremony for theatre and acting.

MegB

We watched bits of the Oscars, for the first time in years, to see what Seth McFarlane would do. Many, many cringeworthy moments. The "I saw your boobs" number was a moronic bit of excrescence.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I'm told Michelle Obama presented an award with a bunch of marines protecting her - from what?

6079_Smith_W

I guess they were on heightened alert after that opening act.

http://boingboing.net/2013/02/26/iran-censors-cover-michelle-ob.html

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

They were making sure she gave the award to the anti-Iran propaganda flick.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I still don't understand the term "Argo". Is that a CIA code word?

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

It's the name of the fake-sci-fi movie that the Canadians and CIA claimed they were making to smuggle the six hostages out.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Oh - thanks! Didn't know that.

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

I enjoy Seth McFarlane's adult humor on Family Guy, Robot Chicken and his other animations (that's the place for it). I was kind ‘a surprised when I heard Hollywood had picked him to MC the Oscars and they kind of got what they deserved if you ask me. I doubt he will ever host the Oscars again.

I did not waste my time watching the show... I was fighting in a Halo tournament online. I think we got our asses kicked by a bunch of 13 year olds in the end…Frown they sounded like kids over the chat sytem.