Lose the Pretension
I was telling my cohort on TMP Sunday night it’s sad that the biggest event of our industry (film) is something I can’t stand to really watch. I do because I feel like I should, but it’s been a very long while since I’ve enjoyed the show. One of the big reasons for that, is how the Academy treats the show and it’s audience. In short they act like a bunch of snobs.
This is partly the fault of us the viewers as well. We’ve built up the Oscars as such a huge deal, the Academy (which started off so small originally) has gotten a big head and a superiority complex. As such, they now seem to cater to the ‘elite’, and the whole affair, from pre-show to after parties, smacks of aristocracy to the point where the average viewer just doesn’t care.
Films are about entertainment. They are supposed to be for EVERYONE, so why is it the biggest movie-related event, feels like it’s only for a few stuffy people? Maybe if they lost the pretension, and catered to a wider audience, the shows could be more entertaining. Which leads me too…
Have Actual Entertainment
The Academy Awards is supposed to be a celebration of the greatest entertainers in the world…So why is it so damn boring! You’d think that with such a large group of performers all in one spot, they could come up with something fun to watch.
You know, while I don’t respect many of the decisions made at the MTV Movie Awards, I always make time to watch it. They’re just more fun and entertaining to watch. You can tell that everyone involved is having a good time and genuinely enjoying themselves. A big reason for that, is they don’t have the same pretension the Oscars have.
Some more funny skits and performances would go a long way towards reaching a broader audience. While the acrobatic show was cool to see…I didn’t really see how it tied into film. Once again it felt aimed towards an entirely different audience and held little for the average movie buff watching. Movies need to be fun, so let’s have fun when we’re celebrating those films.
It’s NOT a Fashion Show
I think this is the most annoying thing for me personally…The Oscars isn’t a celebration of fashion and high culture; it’s a celebration of film. So why in the Hell is so much time devoted to fashion? It makes no sense to me. I mean, when we’re watching the Super Bowl, the pre-show isn’t devoted to what the players are wearing or who they’re dating. It’s dedicated to talking about the sport of football and analysis of the players and the game itself.
Why can’t we have that with the Oscars? I’d love to see an Academy Awards pre-show in which the actors discuss their experiences more on the set of the films they’re nominated for, or even about film in general (kind of like those videos they did this year). Instead it’s mostly about their personal lives and what they’re wearing, and other things your common cinephile could care less about.
It’s tailored to the wrong audience, and a celebration about film should cater to film buffs…not exclude them.
Use it as an Opportunity
You know what seems really backwards to me? All of us are in a tizzy in the weeks preceding the Super Bowl, because we want to know about the movie trailers they’re going to show during the game. Yet a show that is supposed to be all about the film industry has more perfume commercials than anything else.
The Oscars seem like it should be an event to showcase upcoming films as well, and a good place to debut new trailers. I can tell you now, if they were promoting a new Avengers trailer or something like that during the show, an entirely new audience of people would have been watching. Hell, the Spike TV Video Game Awards are mostly a big joke yet a large group of people watch them every year (myself included), because they’ve made such a spectacle out of it. They make a big deal out of the industry they’re focused on and debut tons of new games and trailers for fans.
The Academy Awards just feel like a big missed opportunity for promoting film and movies in general.
Lately it’s as though the people getting the awards (or just there for the show) have become more important than the awards themselves, and what they represent. Perhaps if they re-focused, got back to what’s important (celebrating one of the greatest entertainment mediums around), the shows will be worth watching once again. Until then…I’ll stick to reading recaps and liveblogs.