Author Topic: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore  (Read 2328 times)

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Let's Watch the Oscars Together -- Right Now! ...from Michael Moore

Sunday, March 7th, 2010

Friends,

The best movie I saw this year won't be winning any awards tonight at the Oscars. It wasn't even nominated for anything. In fact, it wasn't even shown in the United States. Yet, I'm confident that, if you had had a chance to see it, you would likely agree with me that this is a brilliant film, a rare gem.

It's called "Troubled Water" (not to be confused with last year's superb Katrina doc, "Trouble the Water"). "Troubled Water" is from Norway and it is a work of art and great storytelling from the opening frame to its final fade to black. It tells the story of a young man who is paroled after spending time in prison and gets a job as a church organist. He claims to be innocent in the drowning of a child, but the boy's mother won't let it go.

When the film was over, I sat there amazed and wondering, "Why can't I see movies like this all the time?" What is wrong with filmmaking, with Hollywood? Why are most films just the same old tired assembly line stuff -- sequels, remakes, old TV shows turned into movies, predictable plots and storylines... "If you've seen the trailer, you've seen the movie."

But "Troubled Water" was not like that -- and therefore its distribution to the theaters of America was, in essence, doomed.

That's not to say we don't make great movies anymore. I loved "Avatar," "District 9," "Inglourious Basterds," "Up in the Air," and "Up" among many others.

Some critics have hailed "The Hurt Locker" because the film "doesn't take sides" in the Iraq War -- like that's an admirable thing! I wonder if there were critics during the Civil War that hailed plays or books for being "balanced" about slavery, or if there were those who praised films during World War II for "not taking sides?" I keep reading that the reason Iraq War films haven't done well at the box office is because they've been partisan (meaning anti-war).

The truth is "The Hurt Locker" is very political. It says the war is stupid and senseless and insane. It makes us consider why we have an army where people actually volunteer to do this. That's why the right wing has attacked the movie. They're not stupid -- they know what Kathryn Bigelow is up to. No one leaves this movie thinking, "Whoopee! Let's keep these wars going another 7 years!"

James Cameron has been targeted by the crazy right, too. Because -- and Fox and Rush have this one correct, too -- "Avatar" is, in fact, an allegory for America -- a land stolen from an indigenous people who were slaughtered, a nation that not only allows corporations to call the shots but let's them privatize our wars (wars in distant places with the objective of controlling a dwindling energy resource), and a people who seem hell-bent on destroying the environment.

Cameron is a brave and bold filmmaker, a college drop-out who became a truck driver and then one day just decided he was going to make movies. "Avatar" is an idea he's had in his head since he was a teenager -- and somewhere, somehow, his dreams and creativity weren't snuffed out by the machine. Thank God.

There is so much more I want to say about the state of movies these days, but you've got better things to do on this beautiful Sunday. I love this art form, and tonight is the night to celebrate it!

In fact, the Oscars are about to start. I'll try to "tweet" along with you during the show.

Finally, let me leave you with a list of 20 great movies I saw in 2009 that received little or no recognition or distribution in the U.S. They deserve to be acknowledged on this important night, and I hope you can find them somewhere, someday (a number are already on DVD). They represent the hope I have for the movies being the inspiring force I've always believed in.

Be well. And -- no extra salt or butter on the popcorn!

Yours,
Michael Moore
MichaelMoore.com
Twitter.com/MMFlint

P.S. Here's my list of 20 "best pictures" I saw in 2009:

1. "Troubled Water" (see above)
2. "Everlasting Moments" - A wife in the early 20th century wins a camera and it changes her life (from Sweden).
3. "Captain Abu Raed" - This first feature from Jordan tells the story of an airport janitor who the neighborhood kids believe is a pilot.
4. "Che" - A brilliant, unexpected mega-film about Che Guevara by Steven Soderbergh.
5. "Dead Snow" - The scariest film I've seen in a while about zombie Nazis abandoned after World War II in desolate Norway.
6. "The Great Buck Howard" - A tender look at the life of an illusionist, based on the life of The Amazing Kreskin starring John Malkovich.
7. "In the Loop" - A rare hilarious satire, this one about the collusion between the Brits and the Americans and their illegal war pursuits.
8. "My One and Only" - Who woulda thought that a biopic based on one year in the life of George Hamilton when he was a teenager would turn out to be one of the year's most engaging films.
9. "Whatever Works" - This was a VERY good Woody Allen film starring the great Larry David and it was completely overlooked.
10. "Big Fan" - A funny, dark film about an obsessive fan of the New York Giants with a great performance by the comedian Patton Oswalt.
11. "Eden Is West" - The legendary Costa-Gavras' latest gem, ignored like his last brilliant film 4 years ago, "The Axe".
12. "Entre Nos" - An mother and child are left to fend for themselves in New York City in this powerful drama.
13. "The Girlfriend Experience" - Steven Soderbergh's second genius film of the year, this one set in the the post-Wall Street Crash era, a call girl services the men who brought the country down.
14. "Humpday" - Two straight guys dare each other to enter a gay porn contest -- but will they go through with it?
15. "Lemon Tree" - A Palestinian woman has her lemon trees cut down by the Israeli army, but she decides that's the final straw.
16. "Mary and Max" - An Australian girl and and elderly Jewish man in New York become pen pals in this very moving animated film.
17. "O'Horten" - Another Norwegian winner, this one about the final trip made by a retiring train conductor.
18. "Salt of This Sea" - A Palestinian-American returns to her family's home in the West Bank, only to find herself caught up in the struggles between the two cultures.
19. "Sugar" - A Dominican baseball player gets his one chance to come to America and make it in the big leagues.
20. "Fantastic Mr. Fox" - A smart, adult animated film from Wes Anderson that at least got two nominations from the Academy.


Offline Magic Wand

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2010, 05:40:27 am »
Thank you, Reg.
Now I have TWENTY more movies to watch before summer!
Geeeeez!
"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." --Aristotle, Greek philosopher

Доверяй, но проверяй

Offline Princesa

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2010, 07:12:19 am »
Thank you, Reg.
Now I have TWENTY more movies to watch before summer!
Geeeeez!



Ohhh I mentioned 'Sugar' a long time ago but when a white man say it   :-X

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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WHAT DO BLACKS THING WATCHING "THE BLIND SIDE"?
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2010, 12:09:07 pm »
Published on The Wrap (http://www.thewrap.com)


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

March 08, 2010, 2:45PM PST
Category: MOVIES
By: Jordan Riefe -

Moore: What Do Blacks Think Watching 'Blind Side'?

The most polarizing filmmaker in American cinema, Michael Moore has waged war against the Establishment since his early days as editor of political journal, Mother Jones.

His latest movie, “Capitalism: A Love Story” exploring a system of government that he insists threatens the very life of our democracy and the very soul of our people, come out  Tuesday on DVD and Blu-ray. Moore sat down with TheWrap to talk about the moral and cultural demise of America.

You’re calling for the eradication of capitalism. Is it really that bad?

It’s rotten to its core. It’s amoral. It doesn’t have democratic principles attached to it.

You can’t gussy up something like that and make it nicer. What we can do, though, is to try to prevent the next crash, which is coming down the highway right now. The fact that we have not instituted a single rule or regulation on the banks or Wall Street is unconscionable.

Do you think Wall Street knows that next one is on the way but hopes to ride the bubble as long as it can?

Yes. Six months ago, when I did these interviews for the film, I still had this shred of hope in me. It’s not there anymore.

They’re like reckless frat boys drunk at their party and using our money to buy the keg.

I swear to God, I truly believe that 100 years from now, if the planet’s still here, they’re not going to understand.

There are studies that show a higher ratio of sociopaths in the developed world, especially on Wall Street, where a person without a conscience is considered a greater asset.

That’s exactly correct. If you’re being interviewed down there, if they spot any sign of you having a conscience, you’re not getting the job.

Are these sociopathic tendencies contained on Wall Street or do they seep into the greater culture?

I think it permeates the culture. You see lots of signs of it, and they’re not really considered signs: “Oh, all the independent studios are closing up. Oh, that’s just business. That’s just the way things are.”

Really? Well, I think there’s a little more to it than that. I think it’s another sign of moving our means of expressing ourselves off the approved path. When that happens, when art is restricted, bit by bit it’s taken away from us.

You trace it back to the ‘80s, when the corporations took over the studios.
That’s right. Take it back even to our schools, when they started cutting art and things like that. Instead of three school plays a year there’s one. Film classes … those are long gone.

It seems we have more money and better technology than they did back in the ‘30s and ‘40s, but we can’t we make movies of the same caliber.

You’ve hit the nail on the head. It’s not that people today lack talent or don’t know how to make movies like that -- they’re not inclined to make movies like that. There’s something really rotten at our core. We have Oscar weekend here and I couldn’t, with good conscience, mark 1 through 10.
You couldn’t vote for “The Blind Side”?

I was watching that and I thought, “What does an African-American feel watching this movie?” And what do they think watching “Precious”? Friends that I’ve spoken to hate the fact that white people will be watching that movie.

I don’t want to dump on the movie. I work in an industry that has a subvert and overt racism at its core. How many black directors do we have in the DGA? How many African-Americans get to direct a Hollywood movie every year?
And women…

It took 120 years of filmmaking and 80 years of the Academy Awards for a woman to win Best Director.

Your speech at the Oscars back in 2003: “Shame on you, Mr. Bush!” Were you surprised that, in this town that’s often called a bastion of liberalism, there were boos in the audience?

You hear these boos, you don’t see anybody booing cause there wasn’t anybody booing on the main floor. It was in the upper balcony. Sponsors take the sections, are given a block of tickets; some from agents and other people who work in the industry.

But look, we were on the fifth day of the war, and to have this big glam affair when we’re starting a war, how could you not say something?

And that night, I walked into the Governor’s Ball and all eyes turned to me just glaring at me like, “Dude, y’know, you ruined the night for everybody!”
Did no one support you?

Sherry Lansing saw me walk in the door and I’m just standing there alone and she made a beeline to me and came right up and gave me a big hug and thanked me for what I said. I’ll never forget that moment of her doing that.

Diane Lane was the presenter, and I remember seeing her later and I said to her, “I am so sorry I dragged you into my ordeal here.” And she said, “Are you kidding? This is historic! The fact that I got to be part of history, thank you!”
Yet in the end…

All these post-Oscar shows on the local stations were talking about me: “What a dumb thing!’’ “Why would he do that?” “He’s all done. He’s all washed up in this town.” I turned it off and I went to bed thinking, “I am done! That is it! That’s the last movie!”

But 14 months later I released “Fahrenheit 9/11.” So I clearly went back home and put my nose down and got to work and made my response to those boos.
You wanted to show them.

I wanted to make a movie that you can’t get it out of your head, that’s what we all strive for.

Source URL: http://www.thewrap.com/article/michael-moore-grilled-15057

Jenn

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2010, 02:06:14 pm »
All the black people I know love TBS. My black friends = the opinions of black America!

I think what Moore is missing is that black people tend to like TBS because of Michael Oher, and can take or leave his white family. It's a helluva story. And if I have the choice b/t John Coffey Jr and f*cking PRECIOUS, you know what side of the fence I'm going to be on. H-O-W-E-V-E-R, I think it says something that other than Bullock, I don't think it was nommed for anything else, was it? It's not like this was some writing genius here.

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2010, 02:33:11 pm »
It was nominated for BEST PICTURE.  That's something. 


Jenn

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2010, 02:33:52 pm »
Ye gods.

Offline Princesa

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2010, 11:25:02 am »
I saw the guy from The Hurt Locker got an Oscar nomination. He was not better in that movie than Nick Cannon was in American Son. nick was brilliant. And they had a latina in that movie. Just saying.

Offline Reginald Hudlin

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2010, 11:26:26 am »
I love how your all over the black/latin indie scene.  And I agree, Nick was fantastic. 

Offline Princesa

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Re: LET'S WATCH THE OSCARS TOGETHER...RIGHT NOW! from Michael Moore
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2010, 06:19:35 pm »
I love how your all over the black/latin indie scene.  And I agree, Nick was fantastic. 


Thank  you it's what I do 8)