The home stretch

Posted by · 9:57 am · January 20th, 2010

Oscar ballotsPete Hammond’s story concerning Academy members tapping out before listing a full slate of 10 nominees on their ballots is getting some traction today, but it’s hardly new news.  Many voters never even bothered to come up with five nominees, so the switch to 10 was always going to yield a number of incomplete ballots.

However, the point Hammond makes concerning there being a great many outstanding ballots less than a week before polls close is worth talking about, because the events of the last week or two could have more of an impact than they have in years past.

But back to the incomplete thing, what this means, more than anything, is that fringe titles like “District 9” or “Star Trek,” or even “Crazy Heart” and, hell, let’s use Pete’s example, “Drag Me to Hell” could have a presence on the Academy’s eventual slate.  With more slots to fill, those left-field #1 and #2 choices have a fighting chance and could actually register.  Which is why it’s important to note that now, more than ever, the passion vote counts.

So to those who vote with your heart: do it with gusto this year.  You might actually have a voice in this thing.

→ 14 Comments Tags: , , , | Filed in: Daily

14 responses so far

  • 1 1-20-2010 at 10:01 am

    tony rock said...

    Unbelievable. Academy members are THAT lazy that they can’t list 10 (or 5) films they liked the most from a given year. This is news to me, and quite disheartening that they care so little.

  • 2 1-20-2010 at 10:28 am

    Joe said...

    This is kind of disheartening. Even in very weak years, I could come up with at least 10 movies I liked. Why, when you get free access to movies (most theaters in LA even let Academy members in for free), would you not take advantage?

  • 3 1-20-2010 at 10:31 am

    tony rock said...

    Yeah, frankly, I don’t buy the “it’s been a weak year” argument if that is indeed the case with some Academy members. Like you said, even in weak years (and I thought 2009 was rather strong), it’s easy as hell for me to list 10 films I liked. If you’re in the film industry you should find time to watch films for christssake.

  • 4 1-20-2010 at 10:53 am

    Megan said...

    I’m with Tony and Joe. It’s a shame that so many Academy members are apparently so myopic that they can’t even peer outside their shells and give some hearty, honest thought to all the films they saw this year.

    Shit, if I had the access that they did, I would’ve seen three hundred films by now. You can’t tell me that many of these folks can’t think of other films besides Avatar, Up in the Air, Precious, Hurt Locker, and Inglourious Basterds that are worthy of any consideration?

    There’s what, 5777 members of the voting Academy? If someone liked say, Bright Star, well enough to put it on his or her ballot, who knows, maybe many others are thinking the exact same thing.

    As the old cliche goes, every vote counts. It’s almost like voters have this “oh, poor me, I’m the only one who liked that movie; I must be a turd” kind of mentality.

    BUCK UP, people.

    If I had your kind of influence, I’d make shit happen. Or try, anyway.

  • 5 1-20-2010 at 12:20 pm

    Jeff said...

    If Drag Me to Hell made the Top Ten, I would be so incredibly giddy.

  • 6 1-20-2010 at 1:18 pm

    Anonymous said...

    I like the idea of DRAG ME TO HELL too! Critically acclaimed film that didn’t get proper marketing push. Great performances by all, including Lorna Raver as the gypsy woman! Great score! Great visual effects. Super talented, under-recognized director, Raimi. Certainly as good of a movie (if not better) than “Up in the Air”, “District 9”, “Star Trek”, “Avatar”. To me it’s ten times better than those, but horror films are so ghettoized. “Silence of the Lambs” and a few others have cracked through. Maybe they can recognize the make up, production design and visual effects or score though!

  • 7 1-20-2010 at 1:54 pm

    Megan said...

    “but horror films are so ghettoized.”


    “‘Silence of the Lambs’ and a few others have cracked through”

    This may be off-topic, and it may make me look like a contrarian asshole, but am I the only one who thought Silence of the Lambs was a shit movie?

    [leaps into bomb shelter]

  • 8 1-20-2010 at 2:05 pm

    Andrew said...

    If they would bother actually seeing some films (hell they get most of them as screeners anyway) they should easily come up with 10. If this story is true, it is a sad indictment of those entrusted with important decision-making

    How about The Road, A Single Man, Bright Star, Crazy Heart?? Plenty of good “smaller” films to fill the spots

  • 9 1-20-2010 at 2:29 pm

    Jeff said...

    Megan – You’re not the only one that doesn’t get the love the Academy poured on Silence of the Lambs. While I don’t think it’s a “shit movie,” whenever I watch it, I’m surprised by the Academy’s obvious love for it.

    I’d take Beauty and the Beast over Silence of the Lambs in a heartbeat. I always wonder how close that animated film came to overtaking the live action pics that year.

  • 10 1-20-2010 at 2:57 pm

    david said...

    The Silence of the Lambs is a genuine masterpiece in my book. The acting is tremendous, the writing exceptional, and the directing is more then adequate.

    One of the best films to ever win the big prize.

  • 11 1-20-2010 at 5:51 pm

    Robert Hamer said...

    Yeah, I’m definitely in the “Love It” camp for The Silence of the Lambs and am proud of the Academy for awarding the film its top prizes, though I *kind of* see strong arguments for JFK and Beauty and the Beast.

  • 12 1-20-2010 at 7:04 pm

    Sean Stangland said...

    If I were filling out the ballot, I don’t know if I’d actually put my 2 or 3 favorite films in those slots. We can all assume that “Up in the Air” and “Inglourious Basterds” will make the cut, so I’d probably use those top three slots for “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” “Star Trek” and “The Princess and the Frog.” (Or “Drag Me to Hell,” for that matter.)

  • 13 1-20-2010 at 7:21 pm

    Megan said...

    [peaks head out of bomb shelter]

    Maybe I was mad because it felt like Anthony Hopkins had a collective 15 minutes of screen time. And perhaps I felt dejected when the film wrapped up without him eating any people.

    And something about the way the ending was paced. It was about as energetic as a bear on sedatives.

    Usually when the public at large adores a movie, I find myself at least liking it. Lambs just gave me cinematic blue balls.

  • 14 1-21-2010 at 1:43 am

    Nick said...

    Whose ballot is that in the post? Even if it’s a fake I’d love to see what the actual ballot forms look like.