A Film Buff Who Doesn't Care About The Oscars

Many people wonder why I, as an avid film buff, couldn't care less about The Oscars. I have not watched the ceremony in years, which is especially telling considering cinema is probably my biggest hobby and interest. Simply put, The Oscars are not about film so much as about the people involved in the commercial aspect of it.

Every year, the focus is on the celebrities (especially the expensive loaner gowns and jewels they're wearing), spectacle, and host. Certainly there are genuine awards given away, and I'm not trying to say that The Oscars are worthless. Rather, it is the extravagant awards ceremony itself which is a boring, tedious, insider-masturbation-fest. The Oscars have nothing to do with film in general, but rather the systematic rewarding of Hollywood insiders. It's all about the establishment. What else could explain the persistent insolence of the selection process throughout the years?

If The Oscars were all about rewarding the best-of-the-best, then what might explain such oddities as Kramer vs. Kramer winning Best Picture over Apocalypse Now in 1980, or Martin Scorsese still being without a Best Director trophy after losing year after year to less notable, less skilled, and less influential directors (we shall see how this stands after this evening). Stanley Kubrick would have won his own Best Director statue for at least one of his masterpieces. He was never an insider, however, preventing him from winning. The list of oddities in the winner's circle is endless and puzzling.

In the end, the argument comes down to me not wanting to waste 3-4 hours of my time on a long, boring ceremony when I can get the text summary of winners later in the evening, which only takes 2 minutes of my time and I arrive at the same result. Either way, I will agree with many awards and disagree with just as many, as is the case with any arbitrary awards ceremony or list. Ultimately, though, whether a film wins an Academy Award or not is completely pointless. It does not affect art, it does not change the film itself, and it does not change my opinion of it. If such were the case, I would not hold in such high regard so many films that were unjustly snubbed at the Academy Awards, and current day critical consensus would not look back on past awards with awe and astonishment.


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