Forget that Everything Everywhere All At Once won everything – including a script that used an everything bagel as a metaphor of nothingness. Forget that Maverick was nominated for Best Picture. And forget that Jafar Panahi’s No Bears – the best film of the year everywhere all at once – wasn’t even nominated for Best Foreign Picture.
To understand what a mess the Oscars are – like this world – you only have to look at the winners in Best Shorts, Live Action and Animated. Sara Gunnarsdottir’s My Year of Dicks is a remarkably compelling feat in storytelling and animation and would qualify for the best animated short of the last fifty years.
Charles Mackesy’s The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and The Horse is fine for a six-year-old (and perhaps anyone suffering PTSD) but is predictable and bland.
The difference is that Hollywood power brokers JJ Abrams and Woody Harrelson led the Mole crew, while a group of lesser-knowns – women too – helmed Dicks.
Meanwhile Berkeley and White’s The Irish Goodbye won Best Live Action Short over the far superior films The Red Suitcase and the Greenlandic entry, Ivalu.
Like The Boy and the Mole, The Irish Goodbye is predictable and bland. As remarkable as it is to have a lead actor with Downs Syndrome, that is no reason to award this prize.
Hollywood is exceptional at playing teary-eyed soundtracks of those we have lost. But when it comes to recognizing artistic talent and vision, and actually moving this damn society forward, the dream factory remains clueless. Like social fashionable movements such as Me Too and Black Lives Matter, it’s the show. And nothing else.