Friday, March 17, 2006

Some Brokeback Angst

Just read this article today, check it out:>1=7701

'Brokeback' Author Peeved About Oscar Loss
Mar 14, 6:01 PM EST

The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- Annie Proulx, whose 1997 short story inspired the film "Brokeback Mountain," has penned a scattershot blast in a British newspaper unleashing her anger over the film's best-picture Oscar loss.

Proulx criticizes Oscar voters and the Academy Awards ceremony in the 1,094-word rant, which appeared in Saturday's issue of The Guardian, a liberal paper boasting 1.2 million readers daily.

The best-picture Oscar went to "Crash," which focuses on race relations in Los Angeles.

Academy members who vote for the year's best film are "out of touch not only with the shifting larger culture and the yeasty ferment that is America these days, but also out of touch with their own segregated city," Proulx writes.

The 70-year-old Pulitzer-prize winning author points out that "Brokeback," which was nominated for eight Academy Awards, was named best picture at the Independent Spirit Awards one day before the March 5 Oscars.

"If you are looking for smart judging based on merit, skip the Academy Awards next year and pay attention to the Independent Spirit choices," Proulx advises.

She even lashes out at Lionsgate, the distribution company behind "Crash."

"Rumour has it that Lionsgate inundated the academy voters with DVD copies of Trash — excuse me — Crash a few weeks before the ballot deadline," Proulx writes.

She decries the "atmosphere of insufferable self-importance" inside the Kodak Theatre, the Oscars site, and describes the audience as a "somewhat dim LA crowd." The show, she writes, was "reminiscent of a small-town talent-show night."

"Clapping wildly for bad stuff enhances this," Proulx writes. She notes that "Brokeback's" three Oscar wins, for original score, adapted screenplay and direction for Ang Lee put it "on equal footing with King Kong."

When Jack Nicholson announced "Crash" as the best-picture winner, "there was a gasp of shock," Proulx writes.

"It was a safe pick of `controversial film' for the heffalumps," she writes, using the elephant-like "Winnie the Pooh" character to describe academy voters.

"For those who call this little piece a Sour Grapes Rant," Proulx concludes, "play it as it lays."

Calls by the Associated Press to Proulx's Wyoming home and her literary agent, Elizabeth Darhansoff, were not immediately returned Tuesday.


Well cry me a river, biatch. Don't be such a sore loser. Take it like a man (I know shes a woman, but theres a joke there).

Posted by illogicist at 1:52 PM


  1. Blogger suonnoch posted at 3/18/2006 05:40:00 AM  
    I'm wondering if you might have missed the point, although I can't say that I took particular interest in the Oscars.

    Ms Proulx writes very well. I have read the short story of Brokeback Mountain which I picked up in Florida just over a week ago, and I have also read The Shipping News.

    The story can be read in half an hour. I was offered the story PLUS the screenplay, which I declined. The screenplay is much bigger.

    I can understand if the decision on the Oscar was made because the film was not thought to have enough substance. But it's the actual THEME of the film which is the substance.

    Homosexuality is still extremely TABOO in Middle America. If you read the short story, you will read a reference to homophobic killing. That really still happens.

    And if the people who chose the Academey Awards didn't want to offend mainstream attitudes, then Yes, they could well have been influenced to make a 'safe choice'.
  2. Blogger Edward Ott posted at 3/18/2006 11:47:00 AM  
    sorry but i have to agree sounds like someone had a hissy fit about losing. considering how many gay people work in hollywood think they are in touch with gay america and if hollywood did not want to offend middle america they would not make half the movies they release every year. take the sour grapes and eat them some where else.

  3. Blogger Samyah posted at 3/18/2006 09:52:00 PM  
    Sounds like a sore loser to me too. She's demeaning her story by acting this way!
  4. Blogger illogicist posted at 3/19/2006 03:53:00 AM  
    hi suonnoch. Perhaps she did have a point in that article, however in that case the article was very badly written. It came across as extremely bitter and, well, childish. Calling Crash 'Trash' is completely uncalled for, and only makes her sound like a whining little girl. Crash, I think, was a very good movie, and had an important message too. I'm not saying Brokeback Mountain didn't deserve the Oscar (perhaps it did, I havent seen it), but by lashing out at everyone else...well. I dont think she'll find many sympathisers with that.

    Hi Edward, thanks for passing by. I visited your blog, and I have to say its very interesting. I plan to get around to reading the whole martian intifada storyline.

    Sam and Edward,On homosexuality, if you read one of my previous posts about causes then you'd know homosexuality was one of the things I was talking about. Did Hotel Rwanda ever win an Oscar? I dont really follow, but if it didn't it shouldnt have. If we give Oscars to movies based on the issues we deal with, Hotel Rwanda VS Brokeback Mountain is a prime example of what I was saying. One deals with genocide and the poorest of the poor. The other deals with the rights of homosexuals. Both may be important, but in terms of which one causes more of its victims to suffer and die, I think I'd have to go with Hotel Rwanda. [that was absolutely atrociously articulated, I need to wake up...wheres my coffee?]

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