Friday, March 03, 2006

Oscar winners and losers

National Review reviews them. Mark Steyn says:

Best movie: Good Night And Good Luck ...because not only is the heartland not as hot for Brokeback as Frank Rich says but neither is Hollywood. I don't believe they're in the mood for a gay Best Picture (Philadelphia won as a disease-of-the-week movie — My Left Foot with stick-on lesions). So, in a weak field, the film that best exemplifies both the industry's sense of its own importance and what faint glamour can be found this season is Good Night And Good Luck.

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I don't find George Clooney annoying, so much as hilarious. I love it when Hollywood stars do the Serious Thinker routine: George has borrowed Barbra Streisand's reading specs and dunked his head in that vat of Anti-Grecian instant-graying formula Richard Gere bought after American Gigolo, when he decided he was the Dalai Lama-in-waiting. In their glory days in the Seventies, Oscar night politics at least had two sides: John Wayne and Bob Hope vs. Jane Fonda and Shirley MacLaine. These days the more stultifyingly homogeneous Hollywood's world view the more they're convinced they're part of a dangerous counter-culture, and that the definition of "courage" is restating the received wisdom of every single person you've ever had dinner with. In White Christmas, George's Aunt Rosie sings that lovely ballad "Count Your Blessings (instead of sheep)". On Oscar night, watching George and co on stage, we can count all the sheep we want, and doze off somewhere round the Best Sound Editing award."

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