Sunday, March 05, 2006

It's Oscar Night

How is that they bill it again? A Night of Stars? I won't be watching. And it isn't because of any particular movie or any particular political axe that I have to grind. It is simply that I haven't really gone to see a movie for a couple of years. Other than the Harry Potter movies-which I will watch on video so that I can see it without accompanying kid squeals, there isn't any real personal need to go to a movie. I feel no connection to the movies. But I think much of this has to do with the fact that movies in particular and most entertainment venues in general don't seem interested in capturing my imagination or attention. Although I am personally fairly conservative, I am open minded enough to at least listen to new ideas. But if I am going to spend eight bucks on a ticket, I expect to be amused. I realize this puts me in the same limelight as a monarch with a court jester, but really, I am old enough not to need lectures. And by and large, that seems to be what the entertainment community is intent on. It's been my experience that when a movie lectures, it's promoting something, even if it's just to be nice and smile more. I don't need lectures. I am a pretty decent person. I have too many animals and I generally am considerate and I work on my own time for causes I find worthy, such as Salvation Army, local food bank drives, and water conservation. As I get older, I realize that lecturing without action does little good. Many times I have heard people use the term "it's for their own good". I ask myself, is it really for "their" own good, or is it just another example of socially acceptable bullying. I get that same feeling when I watch many current films. Although the messages are worthy, the entertainment value just isn't the bang I expect for my buck. I find myself gravitating more and more to films aimed at kids such as "Chronicles of Narnia" and Harry Potter films because A. They still have a sense of wonder and that it is possible that the world is magical and changeable in some way and B. I don't cringe when I watch them with my kids. My kids are 21, 20 and nearly 17, but I shudder to watch the graphic violence, sex and general bad behavior that some movies and TV shows portray as "normal" and "acceptable". I don't know about others, but I seldom find a need to discuss other people private body parts and private body functions outside of a doctor's office. The subject just doesn't come up all that often. And the twin Hollywood disfunctions of Moral Superiority and Sniggering Immaturity leave a vast area of the population unserved. I read a good deal. I like a good story. I like a song that I can hum to myself and people that I can at least understand. I don't understand cowboys that lie through their lives hurting others, I don't understand -or want to-suicide bombers or the people that support them. But Hollywood wants to ram it down my throat. And I am not going to let them. Have they looked at the profits on movies that past few years? I would go see a movie with a good story line that AMUSED me rather than LECTURED me. "Breakfast at Tiffany's" "North by Northwest" "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" even "Chicago" were all great movies with enjoyable story lines and great actors. I just haven't seen their likes recently. And until I do, I probably will stay at home or wait until something comes out on DVD. I have heard "Walk the Line" is good, but I also have heard it's a longshot for any awards. I think that disparity between what the public enjoys and what Hollywood wants to make is the perfect example of not supplying the demand and the failure of many studios to turn a profit.

No comments: