A quick Oscars rant

I’ve bought all the rags for the reportage this week, but to be honest I’ve gone off The Oscars. I’ve always been a fan and I still love the dresses, although everyone looked rather silvery and wedding-ish this year.  Oh, hang on, apart from the most beautiful girl in the world Charlize Theron.  What was she thinking?  She looked like an under-developed bridesmaid in that squished boob purple number.
So the reason for my disdain this year?
The realization that it’s all such a big stitch up.  It always has been, but I’m even more annoyed this year, because the critically revered films being lauded, Avatar, Inglorious Basterds and The Hurt Locker are three of the worst films I’ve seen.  Controversial, I know, but this is my blog and I’ll rant if I want to.  Hear me out.

Avatar first.  Boring.  I fell asleep for forty minutes during it and woke up in the cinema still bored.  Sure, the effects were good, but you get used to them after the first five minutes and then you’re left with a tired story-line lifted from Pocahontas and World of Warcraft.  The planet never seemed real and the scale was all wrong.  The American invaders so over the top and unpleasant, they were a parody.  I just felt ripped off.  Like I did when I saw Titanic and realized I’d fallen for the hype.

Inglorious Basterds…!  Don’t get me started.  I’m not a fan of gratuitous violence and I hated Kill Bill, but yet again I fell for the hype, only to realize straight away that Tarantino is getting away with murder.  Of modern history mostly.  The whole thing was just such a pile of pants.  I know there’s the argument that film-making is supposed to provoke a reaction in the audience, but outrage wasn’t the emotion I was looking for. I was seriously tempted to write and ask for my money back.

The Hurt Locker – well, I guess it’s America’s way of feeling good about the war in Iraq, but I just didn’t care.  It posed in parts as docudrama but the characters never felt like anything other than actors.  Guy Pearce was the only good thing about it and he lasted less than ten minutes.  Ralph Fiennes, a supposed special forces operative, stranded in full view of the enemy because – wait for it – his mate had thrown a wrench at someone! – hammed it up so much, it was like he’d been in the desert since The English Patient.

Maybe I’m just being pernickety because I’m a writer and during my viewing journey plot holes jump out at me as clearly as pot holes, but it annoys me that these hugely hyped, expensive films aren’t better, when Americans are SO good when it comes to the TV series.

Oh, how I love American TV series.  You see, I am a total addict of the DVD box set.

It started with 24 one cold winter.  I still hear the plink plink of the introduction music and I’m transported back under a duvet, bleary-eyed and desperate for sleep, but fizzing with excitement and committed to watching just one more episode.

Then there was all of Curb Your Enthusiasm, which is genius.  The Shield saw me through writing Platinum because the plot pace was so fab. There was a lot to learn too from  The Wire with its totally believable characters and Mad Men with such awesome character development.  Cameron, Tarantino and Bigelow take note please.

Californication seasons one and two brought sunshine into my January.  And let’s face it, if I ever did get to chat with Kirsty on Desert Island Discs, my one luxury would be a DVD player loaded with the whole of The Sopranos.  I still miss Tony like a fun, but naughty dead uncle.

My latest addiction is Harper’s Island.  We’re saving the last two episodes for tonight.  Oh it’s good.  So good. There’ll only be one series sadly, as most of the characters get killed off, but it’s impossible to predict who’s for the chop.  The episodes are fabulously named after the sound of each death ‘Ka-Blam’, ‘Sploosh’, ‘Gurgle’.  You an imagine.  No, actually you can’t.  It’s much better.  Go see.

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1 Comment

Filed under Jo Rees

One response to “A quick Oscars rant

  1. So True!! Avatar was rubbish and new American TV shows that are freaking fabulous are arriving on our screens all the time…take Glee..cheesy but really FUN! And get a load of Caprica. Really ahead of its time and so CLEVER! Oh how I love watching great TV. TV addict YES!! But only the good stuff. Harper’s Island? Great! Excited already! Thanks for the tip-top advice!

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