Thoughts on the Oscars 2018

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The Oscars took place on March 4th this year, and were characterized by vocal support for movements like Times Up and #MeToo. Ever since last year, when the Harvey Weinstein scandal erupted, it seemed like the 2018 Oscars were destined to be, for once, culturally and politically relevant.  Throughout the ceremony, multiple celebrities, including Best Actress winner Frances Dormund, used their speeches to talk about things that matter, but their extremely valid efforts were marred in part by Oscars producers’ that still insists that the ceremony is a place to only have ‘fun’ and is for ‘entertainment’, leading to many awkward clips inserted during politically charged moments in a half hearted effort to keep the Oscars from being too outspoken, while still profiting from the many social and cultural movements that have occurred in the past year. At the end of the day, the Oscars are a production desperately trying to keep its ratings up, and failing. But what the upside of this is that, even when the Oscars themselves might not be as relevant as they were 4 years ago, the political and social movements the actresses and actors of Hollywood support continue to garner media attention.  The Oscars also managed to be much more diverse than they usually are, with a person of colour winning Best Director, reminding all viewers of a time when #OscarsSoWhite was trending. However, there is no doubt that there is still a long long way to go when it comes to parity in the industry, a point that was highlighted in many of the comments and responses on social media–upset that Ryan Seacrest, who has been accused of sexual harassment, retained his position as the red carpet host. This naturally opened the door to the larger debate of adequate investigation into claims of sexual harassment, and the lack of subsequent justice for many victims.  Excuse us if we wonder if everything is just a prop. At the end of the day, the Oscars remained what it has always been: a platform to promote the film industry and distribute platitudes, which might not be a good thing, or a bad thing, but remains a thing that we will probably be watching for many years to come.

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