Much like movie critics, the Academy Awards continually pander towards the artsy (low budget) films, rather than the well financed, awesome films. For instance, in 1996, The English Patient, which approximately 2.7 women went to see, won best picture, beating out one of the best movies ever made, Fargo.
In 1997, Titanic won best picture. Keep in mind that the movie Titanic was purely a vehicle to show Kate Winslet’s boobs, (which was the only part of the movie I enjoyed) and that the storyline was so cliche’ and mundane that I cheered when the boat sank. 1997 was also the year that another movie, called Starship Troopers came out. Starship Troopers was innovative, unique, groundbreaking, and… awesome. Not only that, it featured Dina Meyer, who is bar none the hottest woman on Earth.
Let us fast forward to 1998, when the movie Shakespeare in Love won best picture. I can’t even talk about the movie, it was so lame. 1998 was the year that another movie came out, titled Saving Private Ryan. These two movies were not even in the same time-space continuum, let alone worthy of the same accolade.
1999 didn’t offer any good movies, except possibly for The Sixth Sense, which didn’t win best picture. No, that honor was given to American Beauty. I don’t understand the choice, but I’m not going to begrudge Kevin Spacey of any award.
In 2000, the Academy lost their fricking minds and gave best picture to a pretty good movie, Gladiator. This was especially amazing considering the highly artistic (crap) movie that also came out in 2000, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, which everyone, including myself, thought would win. Of course, it was my cynicism that caused me to think that way, because Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon was hailed by critics, and was one of the three worst movies I’ve ever seen.
In 2001, it became apparent that the decision in 2000 to give the Oscar to Gladiator, was not because they liked the movie, but because they liked Russell Crowe. Needless to say, they once again departed from their usual system of awarding best picture to total crap, and gave it to A Beautiful Mind, starring… you guessed it, Russell Crowe.
In 2002, the Academy realized their mistake, and quickly gave best picture to Chicago to make up for the previous two years. They would have given the Oscar to Signs, but then someone informed them that it wasn’t Russell Crowe, it was Mel Gibson.
In 2003, the Academy made a huge departure from the norm by giving best picture to a movie that apparently the “huddled masses” liked, The Return of the King. It wasn’t a true departure, since the movie was actually a steaming pile of crap, smeared with Tolkien juice. Ok, it was cool how they made the hobbit actors look short, but come on, the movie sucked. And, per usual, a much better movie, Pirates of the Carribean, was overlooked.
And, true to form, the Academy has nominated 5 steaming piles for 2004, maintaining their philosophy that if no one went to see it, it must be a great movie.
So here’s to the Academy, and here’s to the the movie critics. Thanks to them, I never have to watch bad movies. I just listen for their favorites, and then avoid them like weasel spit.