On One Hand

February 24, 2008

Academy Awards

Filed under: Uncategorized — ononehand @ 9:23 pm

Is it just me, or was the first soldier on video conference from Iraq who read the first Oscar-nominated short documentary just a liiiiiitle bit flamboyant?

For a military guy, no less. It’s “don’t ask, don’t tell,” but those who are familiar with the policy know the military has sneaky ways of getting people to out themselves so they can be discharged. That being so, we can be sure they’re pretty desperate to keep people enlisted right now if they let that guy get through without something coming up. I am told that the big part of the reason why the military insists on excluding gays is for it’s image; they don’t want to turn away conservative men who are most likely to join, and they want to hold up their long-held reputation of being a man’s man’s institution. But how does it effect the military’s buff-and-burly image when they advertise someone so overtly flamboyant in the most public way possible?

This irony is compounded by the fact that the film that the young soldier announced, which ultimately won, was about a lesbian police lieutenant who was dying of cancer and wanted to leave her pension to her partner, but was not allowed to because the two were not legally married.

I don’t follow Hollywood, but Jon Stewart is hilarious and I heard he would be hosting the event, so I had to see how he does this thing. But two hours into it, I can say that Hollywood has gone downhill.

But Jon Stewart looks so much like my dad that it’s creepy. Their voices are somewhat similar as well.

I’m wondering if there is always a montage highlighting several dozen past winners of any given award before announcing who won this year. I’m hoping the presence of the montages in this year’s presentation is just a product of this year’s writer’s strike, and not an indication that Hollywood – which represents America to half the world – has really gotten this cheezy.

The intro to the whole show was like a ride at Universal Studios. That is what a friend told me about his take on the 3-minute computer-generated animation, and his definition was better than mine. What I had said previously was that it was exactly what I would have produced if someone had asked me to produce an intro for the Academy Awards when I was 8 years old.

Does anybody know what the little gold statuette of a naked man holding a sword has to do with movies?

Micael Moore did not win this year; he hasn’t won anything since his controversial speech in 2003 after receiving an award for Bowling for Columbine, and probably won’t win again after that controversy. The winning full-length documentary was about a 22-year-old Afghani man beaten to death by American soldiers while being held without charge. Discovery Channel and HBO bought the rights to show the film but neither plans to show it until 2009, after George W. Bush, whose policies on torture are criticized in the film, has left office.



  1. The doc that won, “Taxi to the Dark Side,” is on DVD and also had a theatrical release prior to that (it played here in Chicago). So it’s out there at least.

    Comment by randomcha — February 25, 2008 @ 6:27 pm | Reply

    • I take that back! You’re right, it’s not DVD. But it did play here.

      Comment by randomcha — February 25, 2008 @ 6:31 pm | Reply

      • I sent you email and your spam filter kicked it back to me.

        Comment by ononehand — February 26, 2008 @ 10:40 pm

      • Try randomcha(at)gmail(dot)com

        Comment by randomcha — February 26, 2008 @ 10:46 pm

  2. It’s not just you

    I thought the same thing about that soldier. I laughed out loud. He probably saw some flyer in Iraq that said “Oscars!” and jumped all over it. But no, it’s not just you. I was actually hoping that No End In Sight would win documentary feature, that and Sicko were the only ones I had actually seen.

    – Justin

    Comment by drchc15 — February 27, 2008 @ 5:41 pm | Reply

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