Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Twist in the OSCAR Tale

The Oscar fever is over but not without a twist in the tale. For the Best Director and the Best Picture it was between James Cameron for “Avatar” Kathryn Bigelow for “The Hurt Locker” and again it was the “Avatar” vs “The Hurt Locker” race respectively. Unfortunately, however, for “Avatar”- although backed by a major studio, propelled by the millions of dollars made by the film and helmed by an Academy-favorite director- it met the same fate as Titanic at the end of its glorious journey.

With the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences adopting new tricks regarding the voting system “Avatar” could fare well probably because the Nihilism of “The Hurt Locker” surely had made a greater impact on the Jury. In its depiction of life in the Iraqi war zone, it is hard to see anything meaningful. As Eldrich Owen, one of the principal characters says to his psychiatrist: “You say ‘Be all you can be’. But what if all I can be is dead on the side of an Iraqi road?”This at once reminds us of the “chocolate-cream soldier” – Bluntschli from “Arms and the Man” who had then tried to reveal the ugly truth of Imperialism behind the wars. The Academy also evaluates the economic logic i.e., the voters assign a certain ‘utility’ to every movie and rate them accordingly. Finally we find that the human plight in these imperialistic wars where humanity is against humanity ( as in The Hurt Locker) rather than the human race against the aliens emerges out to the least offensive, the least esoteric and hence the WINNER.

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