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January 30, 2008

Comments

...Haven't seen the movie yet, but from the little snippets and stuff, it looks absolutely beautiful. There's something about the animation that really lends to her style, kinda takes the illustrations in the book--which I read as rough--and puts an amazing amount of elegance into it. It's wonderful how different yet within keeping the visual adaptation is...
...As for why it's not nominated as Best Picture or Foreign Language film, there are a lot of odd things about these categories. In Best Foreign picture, there can be only one film nominated per language. So another film took that spot...
...As for Best Picture, I think it's simply got too many things going against it. It's in a foreign language. This is huge. I don't know if there have been any foreign language films nominated for best picture. Keep in mind, this is the Oscars. It's not Sundance, it's not very international, it's not very artsy. Winners of this category are Titanic, and very rarely but once in a while, Lord of the Rings. It is not about paving the way for what should be recognized, it's what the American audience generally likes a lot. A very small percentage of the American audience has seen Persepolis. Also, it's animated, and though animated films have broken their way into the Best Picture nomination, it's hard, and I think most of the American audience has to have seen it...
...I have the same frustration with The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. Have you seen it yet? It can't be nominated for Best Foreign Film because it's got too many American investors and an American director. But it's all in French so it can't be considered an American film...
...I was frustrated with this for a bit but then I remembered that this was simply the Oscars. I mean, can you really blame them? And they have come a long way...
...Before Errol Morris became the head of the Documentary nominations, screeners would only watch the first 20-minutes of a documentary and base their selection on that...
...Remember that wonderful documentary Hoop Dreams? It was the runaway smash hit documentary that year, and rarely were there widely screened documentaries like that before Hoop Dreams came about. The lady who directed it was nominated for another documentary already, so Hoop Dreams never made the nomination, because, despite how good it was in comparison with all the other documentaries, they couldn't do two of the same directors in the same category...
...These kinds of things always go on. The important thing is that there is exposure to non-Hollywood movies, even if it takes rival events. Sundance brought a lot of awareness to some wonderful flicks, and I think a lot of people pay attention to Sundance...
...I dunno, I'm just mad that Live Free or Die Hard wasn't nominated for Best Picture...
...Love ya!...

What a wonderful response! Thank you!

That's wild about Errol Morris and nomination weirdness for foreign and documentary films....you know, I believe Life is Beautiful was nominated for Best Picture and Best Director (and WON best director), although it was in Italian. I remember seeing that and cheering that on, because it was a damn good movie, but that's when I first started turning it all in my head: if L is B could be nominated for the big awards, why weren't other films in foreign languages? It's one thing if they're excluded, but now, apparently, they're not--and it seems that its just a coincidence that every other Best Pic nominee is an English language movie. Please.

You're right though, there's a worthy venue in Sundance, and this IS just the Oscars--where of course popularity and money play a role. Unlike other film awards, its in the business of legend-making, of marking History of Film. They are what they are, they're fun (I'm going to an Oscar party myself this year and I plan to win the prediction contest!)

It's nice to know, though, that great movies told in different kinds of ways are out there. And that I have friends who can tell me about them: I'll look out for The Diving Bell and Butterfly!

...Whoa! You're right! Life is Beautiful did get nominated for Best Picture and Best Foreign Film! I totally forgot! It didn't win Best Picture (I'm pretty sure that was Shakespeare in Love year), but it did win Foreign..
...Remember the ads for the translated version? Not the subtitles, the translations. "I used to say 'Bonjourno Pricesipesse', no I say 'Hello Princess'!" I always imagine the voice of Jerry Lewis when I read the "Hello Princess!" part...
...And yes yes, do see Diving Bell. It's by the same guy who made Basquiat (my favorite movie alongside Point Break) and Before Night Falls (which I think will be one of your favorite movies). Before Night Falls is about the life of Reinaldo Arenas, an openly gay cuban poet who is locked up for, largely, his sexual promiscuity...
...I'm still waiting for Bill & Ted 3. Now that would be oscar-worthy, not even kidding...

Hey! I loved Basquiat and Before Night Falls! You got my taste right on, Fred...I definitely will track this next suggestion down.

Long live Johnny Utah.

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