deaf, dumb, and blindsided

Well, the honor of receiving a Best Picture nomination is now officially meaningless.

Thank God for Oscar nominations to break me out of my blogging hibernation. The Academy Awards are my favorite television event of the year, an obsession dating back to 1997/1998 and the domination of Titanic at both the box office and the Oscars. (Gimme a break, I was twelve. And oh my, was Leo DiCaprio dreamy.)

As luck would have it, my baser instincts eventually blossomed into a general love of all things movie-related (and okay, maybe glamourous, too), and this appreciation for cinema honed my burgeoning critical eye. As I got older, I started buying in to Oscar Hype, eagerly gobbling up Entertainment Weekly‘s predictions and handicapping every awards season, weighing their opinions against my own.

My years-long devotion to these awards is why today’s nominations are so shocking — or rather, one nomination in particular. With the Best Picture field open to ten films this year in lieu of the traditional five, there were bound to be some surprises. But while the Academy is known for an odd choice here and there (and being a wee bit out of touch), The Blind Side‘s selection as one of the year’s best is truly baffling.

Full disclosure: I haven’t seen the film. But that’s because it looked awful. And critics I respect thought it was pure, unrefined, dumbed-down sap. So yes, I find it difficult to believe that The Blind Side deserves this nomination. And while I know it doesn’t have a chance in hell of winning (as Roger Ebert observed, there are only five real nominees), shouldn’t someone over at the Academy — along with its 6,000-plus members — be embarrassed? I know I am.

Although maybe I’m just upset because (500) Days of Summer was completely snubbed. Hard to tell.

(And as always, Videogum puts it all into perspective.)

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