Sunday, March 05, 2006

Did Fox News bribe Oscar voters to pick "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" as Best Song? This is going to give O'Reilly and Hannity material for a week.


Oops -- yeah, and the Clooney speech, which I missed. But shed a tear for the poor bastards -- Brokeback Mountain didn't win Best Picture and Paradise Now didn't win Best Foreign-Language Picture. How dare the Academy deprive right-wingers of these opportunities to whine?


A confession: I hated Crash. I hated it because it tried to say that seeing people of other races as stereotypes is compatible with being good and decent and liberal and broad-minded because, really, who doesn't really see people of other races as stereotypes? It says that the important thing isn't whether you embrace stereotypes, it's whether, in a pinch, you'd rescue someone you think of as a stereotype from a burning car. Sorry, that's setting the bar awfully low.

Brokeback Mountain was better, though I don't think it's even Ang Lee's best "gay movie" (The Wedding Banquet is better.) My Best Picture would have been The Squid and the Whale, with Jeff Daniels as Best Actor.

Among the political films, I still haven't seen Syriana or Munich. I thought Good Night, and Good Luck was well done but thin; The Constant Gardener was much better -- I loved the look of it (I also loved the look of Fernando Meirelles's previous film, City of God), the story is chewy and suspenseful, and Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Weisz are terrific. (And I was happy to see that the sort-of-political A History of Violence went home empty-handed -- sorry, it was a stick-figure movie, and it didn't have any insight into what violent people are really like.)

As I mentioned Friday, I liked Paradise Now, which is not the glorification of terrorism a lot of right-wingers will tell you it is -- though I think my favorite foreign film of the year was the Israeli film Ushpizin. Hey, right-wingers -- you want an entertaining, compelling movie about religious conservatives that doesn't patronize them in the least? This is it, and I know I'm not the only atheist lefty who really enjoyed it, though you would, too.

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