Thursday, January 22, 2015

Looks Like You Missed One

This is the list of people who made it out of last year alive. The others died in mysterious, unexplainable ways.

Ha ha ha, okay seriously, where's The Lego Movie?

Why did it have to be five nominees again? This was a great year for animation. Just look at what squeezed in – they're all great movies. Mostly. And sort of.

Yeah, this is really bothering me. When something bothers me, I rant about it in a long, long post. Freedom of Speech, blah blah. And so, I am proud to present...

True Chronicle Hiftorie of the Incredible Snubs that stained Oscars 2015
(spoilers incoming)
CODEX I: A Case For Why The Lego Movie Deserved The Nomination

Out of all the movies I saw this year, easily the best one for me personally was The Lego Movie.
I plan on watching Kaguya and Song of the Sea, but I don't think my opinion will change after viewing them. Kaguya looks very artsy and whimsical and sad all at the same time, which is great but not usually something I can say I had "a good time" at. Song of the Sea also looks awesome, but most likely suffers from the same problems I had with Secret of Kells, which is that it looks very pretty but the plot is forgettable. I'll just have to see though.

What? This is from the first movie? ...Same difference.

HTTYD2: What groundbreaking thing did this movie do, exactly? Oh no, they killed someone in a children's movie aimed nearer to teenagers! Look, there's a female warrior character who is also a mother! I'm not complaining, but these things aren't new. Lion King already effectively killed off the main character's father in a children's movie years ago, and there are dozens of other similar examples. Check out Legend of Korra if you want to see a female warrior mother, actually grandmother at that. What else did we get? Toothless does more cute things. There are more dragons. The characters look slightly different. The script doesn't suck. Again, not complaining, but it's not a great movie by itself, and especially when you compare it to the first one, it just seems like the first one did it better.

Some people have a mother and a father, some have two fathers, some have two mothers, some have one parent, and some have trolls. Uh...

The Boxtrolls: I haven't shared my thoughts on this yet, which is a good sign. I'm not "Sadly" Thoughtful for nothing, as I usually only talk about my negative reactions to a movie. And yes, I had basically no problems with The Boxtrolls. The Boxtrolls themselves do kind of irritate me, but less than I thought they would. The villain is one-sided, but they picked the most interesting side. It actually really surprised me with how much funnier it was than I thought I'd be. If I had any problems with it, it would be that the main character Eggs is pretty bland for a person who grew up in a hole. I was expecting more of a quirky Mr. Fox-type weirdo who would go off script or just make a big mess in general. But whatever, thumbs-up. The reason I don't think this should win is... well, actually I do think it should win. The Oscars really failed in 2009 when they didn't give Coraline the award. This is the year they should correct that mistake.

"Pointy objects? What are pointy objects? They apparently do not exist in my animated universe."
Big Hero 6: I'm honestly completely at a loss as to why this was nominated. It has a cute robot, yes, great, WALL-E already won an Oscar. My thoughts on this movie were basically all summed up in my assessment. It's a good but not great, thinly plotted, fun movie. So basically, it lacks everything The Lego Movie had.

"Yeah! Yeah! I'm awesome too, 'cause... I was nominated with all you guys! 'Everyone gets Oscars! Everyone gets Oscars when they're part of a team!' ...Right?"

The Lego Movie was a real surprise for me. I went in expecting a toy commercial, and what I got was a toy commercial, but one of those really, really fun ones that you watch over and over. It's just so packed full of energy and fun and then, at the end, a real purpose. It looks great, it's sometimes hilarious, and there's no fabricated heart to be seen – just the genuine article, (take a hint HTTYD2).

If I have to thank the Oscars for anything it's that they didn't nominate Book of Life. Looks like you dodged yet another rant this time.

CODEX 2: The Prediction

Alright, so previously I said The Lego Movie would win, and now that's not an option. Before that I said that The Wizard of Oz: Dorothy's Return would win, but that was one of my depressing jokes.

It's really up in the air this year, honestly I don't know. But I always assume the worst, and that's what I'll do.

WILL WIN: How To Train Your Dragon 2

Think about it. It's a bunch of old white guys. (And I'm not saying that in a general sense, the AMPAS is overwhelmingly old white guys, according to statistics published by the Los Angeles Times). Old white guys just don't "get" other cultures unless the film is really, really, really good, like Spirited Away, (which won in 2002). Just look at all the great animated foreign films they snubbed: Persepolis, The Illusionist, The Triplets of Belleville, Howl's Moving Castle, The Secret of Kells, A Cat in Paris, Chico and Rita, and most recently Ernest and Celestine and The Wind Rises. Also, they gave the 2010 award to Toy Story 3 instead of the first HTTYD installment, so now that basically the same movie has come along, they'll seize the opportunity since Pixar didn't make anything last year.

JUST MIGHT WIN: The Boxtrolls

I mean, they hit two birds with one stone with this one. It's interesting and fun, and a bit morbid, so of course I like it. It's also mainstream enough to not be too "obscure" of a win. Plus, LAIKA really deserves it. I haven't seen Song of the Sea, but if that wins, I'd be just as satisfied.

SLIM CHANCE: The Tale of Princess Kaguya

I just don't think Big Hero 6 is walking away with the Oscar this year. I don't feel like it's a better film than The Incredibles, which got the Oscar, and I don't think they'd give it to another animated superhero film, at least for a while. A lot of reviews I was reading mentioned the thin plot as well, so I think the only reason it squeezed in was its big heart and fun action scenes. Kaguya looks very visually groundbreaking and it has a 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, which just makes me mad because I know it's probably not going to win.

My prediction is pretty useless, though, because in 2013 I was sure the Oscar would go to Wreck-It Ralph. I was more of an optimist back then, I guess.

CODEX 3: What's Wrong With The Oscars

Why did they even bother showing Keith Urban?! He's just there to make Nicole look better!
The Oscars – though shallow, predictable, egotrippy and full of crap – is a very fun experience for me. I watch it because there's always a moment, even in it's stupidest iterations, where I get inspired to keep making movies. And that's nice. Of course, then reality sends you a nice Oscar hangover the next day, and everything's back to being terrible, like it should be.

The worst part of the Oscars is easily the red carpet bore parade, where they send fake-looking people to "interview" fake-looking people. Most of the time is wasted on incredibly boring small talk about "how much fun" the Oscars is or "I just saw Jennifer Lawrence falling again!" Speaking of, last year Jennifer Lawrence tripping was such a big deal that they forgot to ask "Who are you wearing?" to everyone in eyesight. Oh no! My questions about famous clothing designers went unanswered!
The irony is, expensive clothing looks terrible on camera.

The second worst thing is how they no longer do those awesome opening montages. I'm hoping that will change this year. They didn't last year, and it was such a shame. Did they really think I was there for the awards ceremony?

The third worst thing is the speeches. They tend to bore me to tears, and the ones that don't are interrupted by the ad break. These people have as much to say as a director on a commentary track, and I'd appreciate it if they would just say "Thanks", walk off, and give the real speech on the Backstage Cam, for the people who care to see later online.


There you have it. What are those other nominees again? Ah... whatever, Boyhood will win.

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