The Well’s having their annual State of the World conversation right now. I read it for the first time last year, and I recommend following along. We’re bombarded by news and shallow political opinion all the time, so it’s good to calibrate by reading what some people with an opportunity to think more cohesively, and suggest overall trends and tendencies, away from the light and the heat, and get a different lens on it all.
We all know awards are nonsense, but I’m still getting sucked in to the Oscars to the extent that I’ve just pinned the list of nominations to the browser (and am now opening the Baftas out of a sense of national guilt). I have not and have never seen a majority of the films nominated, partially due to time in the day, but also due to the late UK release of nominated movies means that the film year actually lasts a year and six weeks.
Netflix has done well with nominations, but it turns out I barely ever watch Netflix films. Even stuff right up my alley like Annihilation and Mute are just hanging out on my watchlist. Their lack of a normal theatrical run means that’s the only real conversation about them, and if you don’t watch them when they drop, they just slip into the backlog of TV shows and stuff they’ve licensed from other studios until you sort of forget they’re there at all.
Just to get it in front of me, I hope to watch Jojo Rabbit, Marriage Story, 1917, The Lighthouse and Parasite before or around Sunday 9th. I also haven’t watched The Irishman, Pain and Glory, Harriet, Bombshell, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, Richard Jewell, Ad Astra and Judy, but I might not get to them for years. They may well be the best films of last year, but when you’ve got just under three weeks and anything but unlimited funds and opportunity, they just sort of flake out. And once you’ve missed a movie from Oscar season, they rarely crop up again outside that conversation, which somewhat undermines the whole endeavour. Baftas, I will catch up with Booksmart, The Farewell, Portrait of a Lady on Fire, Farmageddon and Bait, and may not bother with For Sama, Maiden, Only You, Retablo and Sorry We Missed You for years. I won’t be rushing these noms, though.
These nominations also reveal a lot about your habits. I have watched everything in Best Animated Feature, twelve of the thirteen highest grossing nominated films, and nothing in Documentary and International. Short films can be difficult to access, which is ironic in the YouTube age.
Why bother watching things just because they’re nominated? No reason, apart from they sound like films I want to see, and I want a better reason to be upset when Joker wins awards other than the fact I don’t like Joker.
There’s another ten days of daily blogging ahead of me, which is a little intimidating, but it’s good to create some false jeopardy in your life. Next month I will be ideally writing every day, but I will only be posting a couple of times a week, which is hopefully a more sustainable pace.
It occurs to me that if you read these, have read this far, and there’s something you want me to write about, then you need only let me know. There’s comments on the blog, there’s a contact form, and various social links. I won’t promise I will, but I might.