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Oscar "disconnect"


Sepiatone
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In today's Detroit Free Press, sports and special features columnist MITCH ALBOM("Tuesdays With Morrie") brought up the  topic of a "disconnect" between the movies and actors and such nominated for Oscars and the movie going public's overall disinterest or ignorance of those that were nominated. 

 

Titled "Didin't see it?  It's a cinch for an Oscars win". discusses the fact that for many years now, those movies that get nominations or win the big prize are those that a reletively few of the movie going public have bothered with going to see.

 

Now, Mitch knows there's no connection to box office reciept and a movie's quality.  But he was pointing out the change over the years in movie goer's choices.  He mentioned that in the past, many movies that were #1 at the box office also made it to the Oscars to win "best picture" statuettes.  Like "Lawrence Of Arabia",  "Sound Of Music",  "Patton" and "The Godfather".  And agreed they did deserve and earned them.

 

But lately, the #1 box office winners are hardly Oscar worthy although being good movies, but mostly in the entertaining category rather than "fine cinema".  And the studios chase the money and put out MORE of the kinds of movies the bottom line indicates what they think people WANT to see.  That's why we see a plethora of movies with talking hot dogs,  cartoon animals living it up,  and "heroes" flying with computer generated ease while wearing capes filling the theaters.  And can understand why the Academy wouldn't consider an actor wired up in front of a green screen as puting in an Oscar worthy appearance.

 

I myself will admit to not having seen not only THIS year's "best picture" nominees, but also for the last several years.  Due to our health and physical situations, the last movie my wife and I went to a theater to see was GRAVITY.  But that's US.  I have NO idea what anyone else's excuse is.

 

If I could have provided a link I would have.  You could try to find the item at  Freep.com.

 

Sepiatone

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Yes, this argument crops up every year for at least the last 20 years. And you/Albom answer it yourselves. The kinds of movies that are big hits are not the kinds of movies that are award-winning. Does anyone think Captain America: Civil War was the best movie of last year? How about Rogue One: A Star Wars Story? Or Suicide Squad? Or Batman vs Superman? Those were all top-ten box-office hits from last year.

 

I haven't seen any of the movies up for Best Picture this year. Almost none of them came to my local theater (I think Hidden Figures was the only one). On the other hand, all of the box-office hits listed above came here, some even garnering two screens, which is a lot when the whole theater only has 6. I will watch all of the nominees on disc or streaming.

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Some of the nominated films are doing very well at the domestic box office, thank you!

 

"Hidden Figures" has grossed $152,815,804 million to date, according to boxofficemojo.com.

 

"La La Land," the Best Picture favorite, is next with $140,860,065 million.

 

"Arrival" just crossed the $100 million barrier. It's now at $100,305,463.

 

"Hacksaw Ridge," now at $66,954,882 million, could get to the $100 million level before its theatrical run is over.

 

"Fences" has grossed $56,531,288 million so far, but Oscar wins by Denzel Washington and Viola Davis could boost its box-office fortunes.

 

As for an Oscars "disconnect," don't forget Chris Rock's cinema surveys in 2005 and 2016:

 

 

 

 

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It's also the distribution of a film. Batman vs Superman was in approx. 4200 theaters. Moonlight is on approx.1000 screens, La La Land on 3200 screens. So there are less exhibitors showing the Academy favorites. The demographics of the theater going audiences have changed. They're younger now. The older crowds go for cable, DVD or pay per view and the nearby second run theaters that charge less for a ticket. Most people I know won't travel too far to see a movie anymore. When I was a kid, my brother and I took a bus to a neighboring town to see The Green Slime with Robert Horton. 

 

If you look at the top 100 grossing films in history, there are few Oscar winners and most of them won for technicals. Avatar at #1 was nominated for 9, won 3 for art direction, cinematography, visual effects. Box office has never been an Academy factor, although those pictures have kept Hollywood going.

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It's also the distribution of a film. Batman vs Superman was in approx. 4200 theaters. Moonlight is on approx.1000 screens, La La Land on 3200 screens. So there are less exhibitors showing the Academy favorites. The demographics of the theater going audiences have changed. They're younger now. The older crowds go for cable, DVD or pay per view and the nearby second run theaters that charge less for a ticket. Most people I know won't travel too far to see a movie anymore. When I was a kid, my brother and I took a bus to a neighboring town to see The Green Slime with Robert Horton. 

 

If you look at the top 100 grossing films in history, there are few Oscar winners and most of them won for technicals. Avatar at #1 was nominated for 9, won 3 for art direction, cinematography, visual effects. Box office has never been an Academy factor, although those pictures have kept Hollywood going.

I think The Green Slime is seriously underrated. apart from the japanese frills it's pretty well-acted as well as executed.

 

it's a dam shame irwin allen kicked off before ever reprising any of his old shows like lost in space because I woulda cast Robert Horton as Professor John Robinson. fans woulda bought Horton as professor Robinson. looks just like him if you ask me. not exactly but pretty dam close.

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I think a lot of the 'disconnect' is simply a reflection of the changes in 'entertainment'..in 1939, you went to see GWTW or listened to the radio.  Granted, there were a lot of movies released then, but now, I can push a button or two and see, I dunno, thousands of films, tv shows...from last week to 75 years ago.  I always wonder if the 'big' films will stand the test of time like the films we consider 'classics'..

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The main problem is the voting rule that was SUPPOSED to bring in more "popular" films after 2008, and did exactly the opposite, because of the other problem that was supposed to "cure" the Oscars in 2005:

 

The voting system was changed to allow a system of collected points, where voters #1, 2 and 3 films, etc. up to 6, would tally up votes, instead of just their one choice.

Unfortunately, since the Academy had already shortened the voting period by one month to try and shut up Miramax/Harvey Weinstein, that meant voters now had to list more movies on less screening time.  

Which means they now do pretty much what we do:  Guess.

 

And they guess pretty much the same way we do:  We have no remote clue what even would be nominated, so we assemble who has the consensus of buzz-rumors while we wait for the NBOR Critics awards to suggest their top ten--which nearly always stand up for the independent arthouse films like "Moonlight" that they used to think would be "forgotten" by the major awards--and then wait to see what mainstream Hollywood films show,  up at the Golden Globes, so it won't be all arthouse nominees.

So, we get a nomination list that's half Globes--ie. overhyped Oscar-bait like "The Revenant" or "The Martian"--and half NBOR, ie. obscure arthouse critics'-darlings, and then fill out the rest by boosting a Best Acting or Directing nomination to qualify it for Picture.

 

There's no middle anymore--ie. the just plain good mainstream studio movie--and when there is (Hugo, Inside Out, Toy Story 3), something always happens to "snub" it at the last minute.

If we want to help improve the Oscars, I suggest three words to start off with:  KILL THE GLOBES.

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There's a definite change in content people go to see in mass numbers in the theaters. Part of it is there used to be nowhere else to go to see sophisticated content with censorship standards on TV even stronger than in the movies. Now, people watch their sophisticated fare on pay cable and streaming services. What movies specialize in now are special effects-heavy franchises and animated films.

 

All of the following films were among their year's top 10 grossers, to give you some idea of the way things used to be:  M*A*S*HPattonCarnal KnowledgeThe Last Picture ShowA Clockwork OrangeThe HospitalDeliveranceLast Tango in ParisSerpicoShampoo, TommyOne Flew over the Cuckoo's NestAll the President's MenDog Day AfternoonThe Deer Hunter and Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Sex. Films that were among the Top 20 grossers of their respective years included The China SyndromeTaxi DriverThe Turning PointNetworkBarry LyndonLady Sings the BluesThe French ConnectionKlute and Z. Not exactly a list of crowd-pleasing, adolescent-oriented fare.

 

Today, it's different, of course. Among this year's Best Picture nominees, only Hidden Figures and La La Land are among the 20 highest-grossing films. Arrival is in the Top 30. 

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Way back in the distant past there was something called "The Blockbuster Awards" based on some video rental place. It was so long ago , I barely remember it  :lol: 

 

Anyways, they had a novel concept. Take the top 50 movies according to box office for the year. And from those films, give out awards. IIRC. At least they were guaranteed to have movies people had seen and big stars nominated for the major categories.

 

You would think with all the awards shows: Golden Globes, Oscars, SAG, etc... someone would use that idea. It always got good ratings and big stars attended.

 

The fact no one used this criteria tells me that they like it just as it is. A shows to pat each other on the back and tell each other how important they are. I was watching basketball btw . 

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I corrected it.

OK, anyway.....

 

I'm certain that if not for the Oscar gaffe, he'd much prefer to be remembered for REDS than BONNIE AND CLYDE.  I know I'll remember that upset and shocked look on his face when CHARIOTS OF FIRE won for "best picture"  that year.

 

 

Sepiatone

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OK, anyway.....

 

I'm certain that if not for the Oscar gaffe, he'd much prefer to be remembered for REDS than BONNIE AND CLYDE.  I know I'll remember that upset and shocked look on his face when CHARIOTS OF FIRE won for "best picture"  that year.

 

 

Sepiatone

In the long run REDS won't be considered nearly as memorable. He'll probably also be better known for SHAMPOO and HEAVEN CAN WAIT.

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Two of his most memorable films for me are Lilith and Mickey One. 

 

How about "McCabe & Mrs. Miller" (l97l)- (D-Altman?)

 

& what about what I've always felt was even more fun & perfection his 1978 rehash of "Heaven Can Wait?"-(not to be consumed with the *Don Ameche fantasy, but the 1941 version)

 

"Bonnie and Clyde?"

 

"Bulworth" (l998)

& a few others, he's very selective & I thought his Christmas release playing H . Hughes was fairly entertainment "Rules Don't Apply"

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    I was thinking that after reading about Warren Beatty on this thread:  He really hasn't made that many movies.  Without going to the IMDb or Wikipedia to check I think the number is only 22 films.  → As a memory exercise of sorts I shall endeavor to list them all and year of release.  Shouldn't be too difficult.  (One thing, however:  I do not recall the name of Warren's very recent film release.  Shucks).     

 

     Rules Don't Apply (2016)*

     Town & Country (2001)  (filmed mostly in 1998).   

     Bulworth (1998)

     Love Affair (1994)

     Bugsy (1991)

     Dick Tracy (1990)

     Ishtar (1987)

     Reds (1981)

     Heaven Can Wait (1978)

     Shampoo (1975)

     Fortune, The (1975)

     Parallax View, The (1974)

     McCabe and Mrs. Miller (1971)

     $Dollars$ (1971)

     Only Game In Town, The (1970)

     Bonnie and Clyde (1967)

     Kaleidoscope (1966)

     Promise Her Anything (1966)* (EDIT:  I did miss this one)

     Mickey One (1965)

     Lilith (1964)

     All Fall Down (1962)

     Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, The (1961)

     Splendor in the Grass (1961)

     -------------------------------------

     Did I miss any?  Beatty's contemporary, Jack Nicholson, has been in about twice the number of films as Warren.  I don't think I could list most of Jack's flicks without checking a source.  

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Did I miss any?  Beatty's contemporary, Jack Nicholson, has been in about twice the number of films as Warren.  I don't think I could list most of Jack's flicks without checking a source.  

 

Rules Don't Apply (2016)

Promise Her Anything (1965)

 

Incidentally, the only two I haven't seen, as well.

 

Jack Nicholson has been in 63 movies.

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Thanks for the info, Lawrence.  I never would've remembered 'PROMISE HER ANYTHING'.  And I note the recent Beatty flick title is 'RULES DON'T APPLY'.   :)  

     With Jack Nicholson being in almost 3 times the number of movies as Beatty I'd be lucky to remember 30 of his movies out of the 63.  One thing I recall:  Nicholson directed, but did not star in, the 1972 movie "Drive, He Said".         

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Thanks for the info, Lawrence. I never would've remembered 'PROMISE HER ANYTHING'. And I note the recent Beatty flick title is 'RULES DON'T APPLY'. :)

With Jack Nicholson being in almost 3 times the number of movies as Beatty I'd be lucky to remember 30 of his movies out of the 63. One thing I recall: Nicholson directed, but did not star in, the 1972 movie "Drive, He Said".

 

The thing also with Nicholson is that many of his early films (up to the time of Easy Rider) were B-movie cheapies of which there were quite a few. Of the films he has been in , I can remember these without looking anything up:

 

How Do You Know (2010)

The Bucket List (2007)

The Departed (2006)

Something's Gotta Give (2003)

About Schmidt (2002)

The Pledge (2001)

As Good As it Gets (1997)

Blood and Wine (1997)

Mars Attacks! (1996)

The Evening Star (1996)

A Few Good Men (1992)

Hoffa (1992)

Man Trouble (1992)

The Two Jakes (1990)

Batman (1989)

Ironweed (1987)

Broadcast News (1987)

Heartburn (1986)

Prizzi's Honor (1985)

Terms of Endearment (1983)

The Border (1982)

Reds (1981)

The Postman Always Rings Twice (1981)

The Shining (1980)

Goin' South (1978)

The Last Tycoon (1976)

The Missouri Breaks (1976)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)

Chinatown (1974)

The Last Detail (1973)

Five Easy Pieces (1970)

On a Clear Day You Can See Forever (1970)

Easy Rider (1969)

 

I can recall 33. I'll probably kick myself when I see the names of some of the films I missed.

 

(And indeed, I can't believe that The Witches of Eastwick, Carnal Knowledge, The Fortune (given that it was brought up in the thread earlier) and The Passenger did not come to my mind. Especially The Passenger, because I saw that one.)

Edited by CinemaInternational
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The other Jack Nicholson movies are:

 

The Cry Baby Killer (1958)

Too Soon to Love (1960)

The Wild Ride (1960) 

Little Shop of Horrors (1960)

Studs Lonigan (1960)

Little Amy (1962)

The Broken Land (1962)

The Raven (1963)

The Terror (1963)

Ensign Pulver (1964)

Flight to Fury (1964)

Back Door to Hell  (1964)

Ride in the Whirlwind (1965)

The Shooting (1966)

Hell's Angels on Wheels (1967)

The St. Valentine Day's Massacre (1967)

Psych-Out (1968)

Head (1968)

The Rebel Rousers (1970)

A Safe Place (1971)

Tommy (1975)

The Fortune (1975)

The Crossing Guard (1995)

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    I was thinking that after reading about Warren Beatty on this thread:  He really hasn't made that many movies.  Without going to the IMDb or Wikipedia to check I think the number is only 22 films.  → As a memory exercise of sorts I shall endeavor to list them all and year of release.  Shouldn't be too difficult.  (One thing, however:  I do not recall the name of Warren's very recent film release.  Shucks).     

 

     Town & Country (2001)  (filmed mostly in 1998).   

     Bulworth (1998)

     Love Affair (1994)

     Bugsy (1991)

     Dick Tracy (1990)

     Ishtar (1987)

     Reds (1981)

     Heaven Can Wait (1978)

     Shampoo (1975)

     Fortune, The (1975)

     Parallax View, The (1974)

     McCabe and Mrs. Miller (1971)

     $Dollars$ (1971)

     Only Game In Town, The (1970)

     Bonnie and Clyde (1967)

     Kaleidoscope (1966)

     Mickey One (1965)

     Lilith (1964)

     All Fall Down (1962)

     Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, The (1961)

     Splendor in the Grass (1961)

     -------------------------------------

     Did I miss any?  Beatty's contemporary, Jack Nicholson, has been in about twice the number of films as Warren.  I don't think I could list most of Jack's flicks without checking a source.  

Good *Beatty coverage!

 

 

Ever see the fairly famous story of him virtually nagging Natalie to play Bonnie Parker though

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It would have been interesting to note thet THE FORTUNE starred both Nicholson and Beatty and the first one to have both in it.

 

And that likely the two never consider their careers to be competative. 

 

To me, the biggest difference 'tween the two is that it appeared Jack never let his ego keep him from doing a film, whatever the role.  Warren always(to me) seemed to have to be the "good guy", or romantic target in most of his films.  Yeah, I know Clyde Barrow was a bad guy, but Beatty did seem to play him as more sympathetic than the real Barrow probably was.

 

 

Sepiatone

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It would have been interesting to note thet THE FORTUNE starred both Nicholson and Beatty and the first one to have both in it.

 

And that likely the two never consider their careers to be competative. 

 

To me, the biggest difference 'tween the two is that it appeared Jack never let his ego keep him from doing a film, whatever the role.  Warren always(to me) seemed to have to be the "good guy", or romantic target in most of his films.  Yeah, I know Clyde Barrow was a bad guy, but Beatty did seem to play him as more sympathetic than the real Barrow probably was.

 

 

Sepiatone

Well, Jack lost his good looks very quickly, while Warren did not. That could have been a factor in their selection of roles. But Warren wasn't exactly the good guy in BUGSY, one of his most memorable roles.

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