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2020 Academy Award Winners

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  • 2020 Academy Award Winners

    Another year in the can...

    Here are the movies that won Academy Awards this year:
    American Factory American Factory
    Documentary Feature
    Bombshell Bombshell
    Makeup and Hairstyling
    Ford v Ferrari Ford v Ferrari
    Sound Editing, Film Editing
    Jojo Rabbit Jojo Rabbit
    Adapted Screenplay
    Joker Joker
    Original Score, Actor (Joaquin Phoenix)
    Judy Judy
    Actress (Renée Zellweger)
    Little Women Little Women
    Costume Design
    Marriage Story Marriage Story
    Supporting Actress (Laura Dern)
    1917 1917
    Sound Mixing, Cinematography, Visual Effects
    Once Upon a Time In... Hollywood Once Upon a Time In... Hollywood
    Supporting Actor (Brad Pitt), Production Design
    Parasite Parasite
    Original Screenplay, International Feature Film, Directing, Motion Picture of the Year
    Rocketman Rocketman
    Original Song "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again"
    Toy Story 4 Toy Story 4
    Animated Feature

  • #2
    I haven't seen Parasite yet, but I have wanted to watch that movie well before the awards results. It must be a really great movie. IIRC, Parasite is the first movie in a foreign language to win the Best Picture Oscar. Out of the nine nominees, Parasite had the highest Rotten Tomatoes "tomato meter" score: 99%.

    I was rooting for 1917 to win Best Picture (and Production Design). But it's not so bad that the movie had to settle for the Cinematography, Sound Mixing and Visual Effects awards. There was some pretty damned innovative camera work in that movie. Several shots had me exasperated, wondering how they pulled off that camera move or angle. I'm sure the Visual Effects played into that whole single continuous shot motif. And that was a pretty aggressive sound mix. One scene where I knew an explosion was fixing to happen still startled me when the big bang happened.

    I guess I'll get around to watching Joker some time. But, I don't know, the movie just gives me such a downer, depressing vibe. I watched some of the Oscars telecast and happened to catch Joaquin Phoenix' speech. It was about as politically self-righteous as expected. So much for thanking the fellow cast members, crew and shit like that. Let's just waste that precious speech time accusing everyone watching the telecast to be unwittingly complicit in some kind of crime.


    • #3
      I guess I have a weird taste in movies, but of the movies that I played here last year the two that I think were the best were Alita Battle Angel (which almost nobody came here to see) and Joker (which did get a reasonable audience turn-out).

      Alita Battle Angel had a wonderful look and style, a pretty decent story and was just a fun movie overall. Joker caught me by surprise since I was expecting yet-another-comic-book-movie and got this descent into insanity instead. Nobody "super", just a crazy man who starts off half nuts and goes the rest of the way as the movie progressed. And the music in Joker is fantastic. "That's life!"


      • #4
        I've never heard of any of these movies before, except for the ones I have.

        Joker was OK. Jaqueline Phoenix did a good job in the acting part, but the main issue is that the Joker is supposed to be smart or at least clever. The Joker in this movie is neither and probably couldn't think his way out of a paper bag. It's not depressing, it's just not enthralling. And they force the Waynes in there. And they absolutely should not be in there. Especially Bruce. But Jaqueline Phoenix at least saved the world with his Oscar speech. I haven't seen one frame/field from the broadcast, but I'm sure it altered our future as a whole.

        I am so very glad that Once Upon a Time in Hollywood didn't win. Because that movie was fucking stupid. It made me intensely angry that people eat that shit up. Nothing happens in the movie. Well there's some stuff at the end, but that's it. I guess people think that they're supposed to like it since it's Tarantino. And they're blinded by the realistic look of the time period so that somehow makes the entire movie good. For once the Academy didn't buy into the bullshit.


        • #5
          Far too often QT has diarrhea of the typewriter. Just pages and pages and more pages of dialog of people yakking about shit that doesn't do anything to move along the story. If I want to go to a public place and hear people talking for hours about nothing I'll go to a bar.

          QT can write good lines of dialog. He just can't seem to edit down things very much. I'm under the impression he thinks every word he types is a precious jewel.


          • #6
            Kind of surprising that "The Irishman" got nothing, considering how ga-ga everybody was over that movie. Netflix overall didn't do as well as they did last year.

            I was pulling for "1917" to win for Best Picture but am not surprised that it didn't -- I was surprised that "Parasite" won though. I was expecting it to be "Once Upon a Time." I'd never heard of "Parasite" until this morning when I looked at the results. But that's not surprising, considering the movie never has and never will play near here, probably, unless one of the arthouses brings it in since it's now a Best Picture.

            I did get a chance to see "Hair Love" which was included in the Trail Mix a couple weeks ago. I thought it was a pile of crap, but maybe I was in the wrong mood for it. It seemed like a cheap knockoff of a Pixar short film.
            Last edited by Mike Blakesley; 02-10-2020, 11:13 AM.


            • #7
              Originally posted by Mike Blakesley View Post
              Kind of surprising that "The Irishman" got nothing, considering how ga-ga everybody was over that movie. Netflix overall didn't do as well as they did last year.
              They lost a lot of popular content in the U.S. to other services and creating own content is a pretty expensive business. With no real cinematic release platform, they have to make that up with new subscriptions, but the market for such services is also finite.

              It remains to be seen how well this "flat fee" model keeps on working, before either the model itself implodes or all new content is of such detrimental quality that, eventually nobody cares anymore.


              • #8
                They're also dealing with market fragmentation..... it'd be way better if there was just one service that had all the content, and everybody would get paid based on when their content was viewed. That would probably never work though because Netflix (and the others) need you to pay every month even when you're not watching any of their stuff.... if they only got paid when you watched their content, their model might not work.


                • #9
                  Netflix and Amazon both are spending many billions of dollars creating or licensing content. I think Amazon has kind of an unfair advantage in that the company can use its movie business as a sort of loss leader for its far larger retail business. It's going to be interesting to see what happens over the next few years as all these different streaming platforms compete against each other.

                  I think the biggest loser in the short term is going to be traditional pay TV services from cable/satellite providers. People in my own viewing market (Lawton-Wichita Falls) are dumping Dish Network in droves. Dish hasn't carried HBO in like a couple years now due to what seems like a permanent dispute. Some other "basic cable" channels are missing. Others disappear for awhile and then return (like Viacom's networks). Dish recently dropped our local Fox TV network channel, just in time for NFL playoffs and the Super Bowl. So many are jumping to Hulu Live, YouTube TV and other streaming alternatives. Hulu Live costs about half what a basic "Top 120" channel package costs from Dish.

                  Originally posted by Mike Blakesley
                  I was pulling for "1917" to win for Best Picture but am not surprised that it didn't -- I was surprised that "Parasite" won though.
                  I, for one, am really surprised 1917 didn't win. That's because 1917 did win the Producer's Guild of America award for Best Picture. More often that not the movie that wins the PGA award also wins the Best Picture Oscar. Additionally 1917 Director, Sam Mendes won the Directors Guild of America award for Best Director. Winning both the PGA and DGA awards together would normally make a feature movie a lock for the Best Picture Oscar. Not this time though.

                  Originally posted by Mike Blakesley
                  I did get a chance to see "Hair Love" which was included in the Trail Mix a couple weeks ago. I thought it was a pile of crap, but maybe I was in the wrong mood for it. It seemed like a cheap knockoff of a Pixar short film.
                  I haven't seen all the other nominated shorts in that category, but I thought Hair Love was a pretty decent animated short. Not a pile of crap at all. But I think I relate to the subject matter better, given my experience with dating black women. Generally speaking I think most white people have no idea at all how much work and expense black people (and black women in particular) have to put into their hair. I didn't really know about those issues until I got a more personal look at it. Us white folks have it comparatively easy with our hair. We can get our hair wet and wash it all the time without worrying so much about breakage and other damage. We don't have to sleep with our hair protected by some cap, scarf or other covering. With that stuff in mind it's more understandable for the little girl and dad in the animated short to feel overwhelmed by her hair situation. It felt like the theme of Hair Love was the little girl learning to like her hair and take pride in it rather than hate it. Her hair is part of who she is. But to each his own. The short movie can be seen on YouTube for anyone to judge for themselves.

                  In 2009 comedian Chris Rock and Jeff Stilson made the documentary Good Hair. That's a pretty educational look about the black hair care/products industry. It's pretty revealing how "white" standards of beauty have driven that business. Those hair straightening products are pretty harsh. You can get a chemical burn from that stuff if too much gets on the scalp. If someone white gets a bad haircut that person can get it fixed in a few weeks. It can literally take years for a black woman to grow her hair out of a botched job, especially if she's getting into her 40's and older. I asked my girlfriend if she thought about wearing her hair natural, if that would be easier. Nope. Just as much work goes into maintaining a natural hairdo.


                  • #10
                    IMHO, this crop of results demonstrate that Hollywood is in significant trouble. Apart from Joker and Toy Story 4, none of the major Oscar winners were among the top ten domestic box office draws, and the AMPAS voting members thought that the entire output of their domestic industry was of such poor quality that, for the first time, they voted a movie from a non-English speaking country as best picture, and very deservedly so from everything I've read about it (though I haven't been able to see Parasite as yet).

                    Most of the movies that did win the major awards have three common denominators: they addressed politically correct talking points (Marriage Story, Jojo Rabbit, Little Women): they were critically acclaimed, and the moviegoing public largely stayed away. Then you have the hectoring political speeches and the record low TV ratings (not just that, but almost 20% down on the previous record low!) for the Oscars show itself, and it's hard to escape the conclusion that Hollywood in general and the Oscars in particular might wish to consider adopting F-T's "no politics" rule, if they wish to stop the flow of moviegoers looking to other countries, and domestic disrupters, for their entertainment. I thought it a straw in the wind when the Mexican movie Hazlo como hombre was attracting lines of cars stretching out of the lot at my local multiplex, while none of the Hollywood pictures playing in the other screens were doing much business. Even people who were nervous about the idea of dealing with subtitles were willing to give it a try. It looks like this trend is accelerating.


                    • #11
                      I wonder if the Oscars show got much publicity this year. Usually I will check into the website from time to time to see what the winners are. (I gave up on watching the actual show years ago, when it stopped being remotely entertaining.) This year, the fact that was even on completely escaped wife told me around 9:30 that it was on.


                      • #12
                        Maybe the biggest reason I skipped much of the Oscars telecast is the whole "format" of the show just seems outdated. The show is like a relic more at home in the long lost era of prime time variety TV shows -like the Carol Burnett show. This awards show (like a number of others in the entertainment industry) has been political for a long time. It's nothing new for some self-righteous yet out of touch rich entertainer to tell us how we should all be living from his high perch. It is still annoying though. To me the thing that's wearing thin is all the badly written, badly delivered attempts at comedy (or whatever) by the various presenters reading from teleprompters. Some of the stuff is really cringe-inducing. One image of Billie Eilish reacting painfully to a lame comedy moment from the telecast has been going viral. To be fair I was cringing a little at how Billie Eilish mumbled her way through her rendition of Yesterday during the In Memoriam segment (which succeeding at pissing off lots of people).

                        "Parasite" provided the few surprises of the night. Most of the other "winners" were pretty much known already before the telecast began. With suspense lacking all viewers can do is watch the live music numbers and montage clips. The stage design (and LED-based 'jumbotron" technology built into it) seemed pretty cool and likely pretty expensive. That's not enough to carry a 3+ hour awards show though.

                        I agree the version of the "Hollywood" movie industry as we know it is indeed in trouble. This stale, corporate Save The Cat! template-driven model where they sell the same fucking idea over and over again is not going to work forever. Maybe modest yet notable success of Parasite is a wake up call for that.

                        Originally posted by Leo Enticknap
                        I thought it a straw in the wind when the Mexican movie Hazlo como hombre was attracting lines of cars stretching out of the lot at my local multiplex, while none of the Hollywood pictures playing in the other screens were doing much business. Even people who were nervous about the idea of dealing with subtitles were willing to give it a try. It looks like this trend is accelerating.
                        I think the American general public is softening its stance on subtitles. Or maybe it's a sign of changing demographics and generational differences. I, for one, can't stand watching movies that are dubbed. Das Boot is one of my favorite war movies and I very much prefer watching the original German language version and reading the English subtitles. The performances are more real and it's just more authentic listening to German U-boot crewmen speak to each other in German. That's even considering the fact the same actors re-did their own lines in English for the dubbed version.

                        Funny thing: I think streaming services like Netflix are helping non-English language shows find wider audiences and making shows with subtitles more acceptable. Narcos and Narcos:Mexico have both been popular on Netflix. Viewers spend much of that series reading English subtitles. And I'm glad the subtitles are there. Because half the time the actors are mumbling the hell out of their lines! If they were speaking English I'd want subtitles!


                        • #13
                          I actually don't even notice subtitles when I watch a movie. The first minute or two... oh, subtitles. Then after that I just read along and my experience is no different than watching any other movie.

                          Subtitles, no subtitles.... meh. Just give me a good movie.


                          • #14
                            The Oscars always were and always will be kind of boring unless one is very into the particular stars or films involved. As far as the Oscars go, I thought this year's version was okay. They attempted to incorporate some "entertainment" into the show more like what the show was decades ago, but with less tackiness now. I think Janelle Monáe is incredibly talented and she sang live, which is very unusual when choreography is involved. I can't stand it when singers lip-synch on these types of shows.

                            Ratings will continue to drop because the audience is so fragmented. Ratings are dropping for every single show on broadcast TV. All the late night shows combined have a lower rating than a weak night of the Tonight Show when Carson hosted it. In fact, the combined ratings are probably lower than even Dick Cavett's ratings, which were always low.

                            The Oscars are not supposed to represent the most popular films. If that was the case, they wouldn't need voting - they could just give out the awards based upon box office take and there are the People's Choice Awards that cover popularity. So the fact that there was inconsistency between the winners and popularity didn't bother me. And Parasite has taken in $186 million worldwide, which is amazing for a Korean film.

                            Considering all the myriad ways one can now see a movie, I actually think Hollywood is doing quite well, even from a theatrical audience perspective. Having said that, I think Hollywood is fooling itself (or the streaming companies are fooling themselves) if they think every household is going to subscribe to five or more streaming services. And I think retention is going to be a big issue. Disney+ will probably do well because a large portion of films will be theirs and Amazon will do well by virtue of it being melded with Prime, but I think many of the others, including Apple, are going to have problems.

                            In 2019, movies per capita in North America was around 3.4. That sounds low, but it wasn't all the much higher before streaming and even before home video, unless we return to the era before TV. It was 3.9 in 2010, 4.54 in 2000, 4.29 in 1990, 4.07 in 1980, and 5.42 in 1964. In 1950, before TV was ubiquitous, it was 17.16 and in 1946, the biggest year ever for the movie business, it was an astonishing 29.36.


                            • #15
                              That last paragraph of yours is just what I keep saying.... considering the fact that the "media" keeps on hammering the non-truth that the theater industry is dead (or dying), and despite the fact that there are a zillion more entertainment options than there were even a decade ago, and despite the ever-shrinking video window, people still like to go to the movies in droves when there is a good movie to see.