Monday, December 11, 2006
Why? (Or do I really have to ask?)
Matt Damon seems to be responding to the news from Wesley Morris
"Here's a shock," Wesley Morris, the Globe's witty-but-superficial movie second-stringer informs us in today's paper: "The Departed, Martin Scorsese's hit about Boston mobsters and the cops they corrupt, was a hit with the Boston Society of Film Critics, too. The thriller was voted best picture, and the society named Scorsese best director and William Monahan's adaptation of a Hong Kong cat-and-mouse tale best screenplay."
Morris doesn't tell us who's actually IN the Boston Society of Film Critics, but I suppose it's the usual list of suspects from the Globe, Phoenix and Herald. And looking over the history of their award, it's clear they haven't done so badly in the past (Brokeback Mountain, Sideways, The Pianist . . .) But really - was the hometown buzz of The Departed enough to banish ALL thought of its many flaws? Was it really a better movie than Little Children, Shortbus, or even Little Miss Sunshine? I suppose the Scorsese award is just one more attempt to give the guy the recognition he was due in the seventies (but no longer merits) - but how, exactly can you justify giving Best Supporting Actor to Mark Wahlberg? Or best screenplay to William Monahan? The mind continues to boggle.
A quick addendum: And why, exactly, does the Boston Society of Film Critics have a "foreign film" category (the award this year apparently went to Pan's Labyrinth, which I haven't seen). I understand why the Oscars hold on to that anachronism - they are, in the end, a marketing tool for Hollywood. But why would a film critics' society maintain the fiction that Hollywood cinema should be held to a different (i.e., lower) standard than world cinema (except, perhaps, to participate vicariously in "Oscar buzz")?