OK, the nominations for the Oscars this year have come out. Obviously there is always gonna be “snubs and surprises” and people get all bent out of shape. Normally I wait until the actual ceremony to get pissed off that a celebrity, someone who has no idea who I am (yet I somehow have a vested interest in, to the point I feel anger in the depth of my sub-cockles) loses the award. This has happened a few times in years past that I took to heart, specifically Sylvester Stallone, Billy Murray, Mickey Rourke and Michael Keaton. I still hold a grudge against the Academy for those losses, especially Stallone who I don’t see ever getting another nomination again; largely because the majority of his roles are usually him slurring his lines through action movies with the occasional monologue about how hard life is and how you need to be tough in order to get through it. Without fail those speeches always somehow make me want to get off my couch and go fight the nearest homeless man in a present day bum fight just because my adrenaline is pumping and the only person I could probably win in a fight with would be someone living in a box, drenched in their own piss and drunk at 11am on a Wednesday. Thats the effect Stallone has on my life. That’s a true artist. Hence that’s why he’s my favorite of all time.
I also have a man-crush on Bradley Cooper, that began with him telling Budnick it was the weekend and to fuck off as he had a bachelor party in Vegas to get to, so I’ve been disappointed yearly when he’s nominated and comes up short.
The year Michael Keaton lost Bradley was also nominated, so I was sure at least one of those 2 would take it home. Nope, double whammy to my heart and the Stephen Hawking guy won because of course he did. You can’t play a real life person with some human flaw or impossible to overcome odds against them (that they do overcome) and not win. It was upsetting but I knew it’d be OK for Cooper, he’ll keep putting out great performances and getting nominated. Michael Keaton I’m still holding out hope, but times running out for the best Batman. Him losing for Birdman still hurts. Like Rourke in The Wrestler that was a role made for him perfectly, and the Academy had to be a buncha dicks.
This year though, I’ve had my first blood boiling moment at simply the nomination announcements that I have had happen only once as far as I can remember. That would be the snub of Springsteen for best original song for The Wrestler (which is also the movie Rourke lost for, to Sean “suck off El Chapo in a cave” Penn, so the Oscars that year was just a buttfuck of hurt).
Bruce won the Golden Globe that year for best song, and it was pretty widely believed he’d be at least be nominated for Best Song at the Oscars. (Like Bradley for best director at the GG’s this year… it usually translates to Oscar nods) This was also the year of Slumdog Millionaire and everyone was eating Falafel while googling Duwali and pretending they had a deep rooted interest in Bollywood that began before the year 2008. Slumdog wasn’t even nominated for Best Song at the Golden Globes, where both Bruce AND Mickey Rourke won for song and actor, respectively. Needing to feed the Bollywood beast though, Bruce was left off the nominations for Best Original Song. Some BS excuse that it didn’t play during the actual movie, though that’s kinda debatable since it begins once the movie fades to black and before the actual credits roll… so it literally plays during a moment of cinematic purgatory. I still to this day would love to scream at the Academy about their blatant disregard for the song and audience pandering of Slumdog, but whatever. I’ve moved on, sorta. Slumdog wasn’t nominated for best song at the GG’s but somehow won the Oscar? Ridiculous. Some backdoor Rupee dealing had to have gone on for that bullshit. I can at least be happy Bruce has his Oscar for Philadelphia, which otherwise probably would’ve made that snub sting just a little more.
Back on topic of this years snub; Bradley Cooper for best director. A Star is Born was supposed to be the Oscar darling that would see my man-crush Bradley finally take home some gold, whether or not it was for acting, I didn’t care. He would have two shots and there was no way he wouldn’t bat .500. (Yes he was also nominated for adapted screenplay for writing it, but he shares that with two other dudes, he also would win one if it wins Best Picture but that’s another ensemble win, which I’m pulling for of course but I want the man to have his own damn moment) A Star is Born was his baby and he crushed it in all aspects.
Lets just go over what this guy did- he wrote the movie (OK there was like 3 previous versions so it probably wasn’t THAT tough, but it was worth of an Oscar Nomination and also by not being THAT tough I mean in the realm of Hollywood tough, not real life because writing 4 paragraph blogs drains me, so to write an entire movie?! Unfathomable.) he produced it, he learned to play guitar and sing like a cross between Jeff Bridges in Crazy Heart and Eddie Vedder, he directed 3 Oscar nominated performers (himself, Gaga and Sam Elliot, though honestly I would watch his character in Big Lebowski literally sit at the bar and just recite bible verses cause he’s that good) and lastly he made me cry in a movie theater an amount that rivals when I saw Armageddon the first time. Though it doesn’t come close to the amount for when I saw Marley and Me, and honestly I don’t think any movie ever will.
His performance goes without needing me to rehash how great it was, but lets just say if Jackson Maine ever put out a greatest hits album I’ll be first in line to buy the record and listen to it alone on repeat in the front seat of my truck with a 6-pack, my dog and the sad realization that this is actually a fantasy of mine being lived out. If he doesn’t win this year for that it’ll be due to some stupid giveaway award the Academy needs to pander to the audience. The work he put in to become this character, who somehow is a better musician than half the current artists who have spent their entire lives crafting their art, should be enough to get him the win. Though the academy has proven they make very little sense when it comes to this, so who knows.
Yes he came away with three possible ways to walk (*ride in a limousine with a supermodel) home with a trophy, so fingers crossed he can at least go 1-3. But I don’t know who watched that movie and thought all the effort he put in as a director didn’t warrant a nomination. I haven’t seen the other movies nominated for Best Director but I’m a Bradley guy so I’d be team Cooper regardless who the competition was this year, so sure bias comes into play here. But let’s think about this, if a movie is nominated for Best Picture and 3 of it’s stars were nominated for best acting performances, wouldn’t it stand to reason that the director did a damn good job? How does that not automatically warrant a nomination? If he doesn’t stand on stage for all of America to lose themselves in those baby blues of his while he accepts the award for one of the three nominations, someone from the Academy is gonna have a lotta explaining to do. Probably Warren Beatty since he’s old and they can just keep using him to scapegoat their mistakes for life. Should I be happy he got 3 nominations for the movie, in addition to the other nods the movie got? Sure, and I should also probably not care because at the end of the day Bradley Cooper probably doesn’t give a shit about me (though I’ll refuse to believe that, we have a deep inner connection that you have with someone you’ve never met). Still, he deserved that nomination for director and unless someone explains why he didn’t get it, I’m gonna complain. Cause this is 2019, everyone else gets to complain about whatever they want, might as well throw my voice in the ring too.