The Blind Side in the Best Picture race? Really?! Over Star Trek, A Single Man, Invictus, and a host of other films that made the top 10 lists other than this one? (Seriously, I would have been less surprised over The Hangover being mentioned instead.) My big fear here is that this nod will cinch Sandra Bullock the Best Actress crown over Meryl Streep, whom, it must be said, I am really rooting for this year, because despite her 16 record nominations, the woman last won in 1982. That’s also only a 0.125 batting average. There weren’t just gasps this morning upon the inclusion; there was also a bit of stuttering.
So, why is post author Ellen Kim so astounded? Does it somehow irk her that a movie painting Christian conservatives from the South (who happen to vote Republican) has done well both at the box office and with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences?
Or is it that the movie does a great job revisiting of a classic Hollywood theme (fortunate person helping disadvantaged individual overcome self-doubt and realize his potential) to our times? That it shows the goodness in human hearts and has a happy ending?
So, what if it wasn’t on most tope ten lists? You know the people who write most of those lists are film critics, often with the learned cynicism of their profession and the politics of the liberal “élite.”
If film critics didn’t have such a jaundiced view of what makes a good movie, they might not be so surprised by the success of this flick. The villains (if there are any) are not drawn from left-wing stereotypes of those oppressing the unfortunate (you know, corporations, Republicans, Christians, the military, white men, in general). It shows us how necessary encouragement and guidance is for success in this world and shows how the determination of two individuals, of different sexes and different races, can help a talented young man with much talent and little opportunity.
And it celebrates the power of faith. Maybe that’s what got Miss Kim so upset.
And so what if Sandra Bullock wins the Best Actress crown? While great in Julie & Julia, Streep has delivered better performances. And Bullock was brilliant in Blind Side–and she has yet to be honored (at least by the Academy . . . as Meryl has).