I was taking a walk with my wife Sunday evening when we noticed that there was hardly anyone out and about. It took a moment or two before we realized: oh yeah, it’s Oscar night in southern California. Sort of like Yom Kippur in New York: if you’re anywhere else, you don’t even know it’s happening, but here, it shuts down everything.
So home I went eventually and ff’d through the extravaganza on the DVR and here’s something I noticed.
We’re all so sick of a few Hollywood louts and loudmouths hectoring us at inappropriate moments about whatever fashionable left-wing cause will help them get invited to parties that we tend to leap on one of them whenever he does it. So, for instance, after this year’s awards ceremony, a lot of righties focused on that documentary guy who said something about how corrupt Wall Street businessmen should go to jail without ever mentioning that, okay, sure, but Barney Frank and Christopher Dodd ought to be right in the cell with them.
But what I noticed was how generally classy and well-behaved and appropriately apolitical the vast majority of the recipients were – including leftist screenwriter Aaron Sorkin, whose script won for The Social Network. Even when Barack Obama made a brief video appearance, he received only a polite smattering of applause. Now possibly that’s because he’s the most hapless, anti-democratic and incompetent president in the history of the nation. But it may also be because the spoiled, ill-behaved, ungrateful and boorish generation of baby boomers is at last passing away (would they could die without taking me with them!) and a new generation is taking their place.
The show was aimed at a younger demographic — a group of people who may look at movie stars, not as glamorous elites but, more realistically, as a bunch of lucky shmoes who just happen to have won the lottery of life. Movie people at the Oscars are genetically gifted with looks and/or talent; they’re mostly in America so free to do and say what they please; they work in a profession where they’re overpaid and catered to — and basically, the right thing for them to do is act with a bit of humility and gratitude. Especially when grotesquely celebrating each others’ wonderfulness, it’s just basic courtesy for them to be attractive, entertaining, polite, thank their mothers and shut the hell up. Which, to a very large extent, and to their credit, they did. So good on them.
Also, I think it’s immensely important for everyone to go back to my post of January 31st and notice that I predicted every major winner, except director, where I risked the idea that Fincher would win even though his movie lost. Otherwise, a perfect score. FTW!