- Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)
- Click to print (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window)
- Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)
The glitz! The glam! The tears!
It is time once again for the annual extravaganza that is the Academy Awards. This year marks the 87th edition of the venerable awards show that honors excellence in film. Oscars will be handed out in 24 categories beginning at 5:30pm PST on Sunday, February 22, with the red carpet starting earlier in the day. Got your ballot all filled out?
Did you know that the show was not always the spectacle that is is today? The first ceremony was held in 1929 at the Roosevelt Hotel in Los Angeles and was attended by just 270 guests. The winners were no surprise–they had been announced three months earlier! Although the Academy soon kept more control over the results, it was not until the 1940s those fancy sealed envelopes came into play.
And what about the award itself? We know it as the Oscar, though its official name is the Academy Award of Merit. How the Oscar got its name is not totally clear, but the most well-known story has a local connection. A woman named Margaret Herrick, born in Spokane and a graduate of the University of Washington, was the Academy’s first librarian. She is said to have remarked that the statuette looked like her uncle Oscar and the name stuck. And speaking of the statuette, ever notice that many winners seem to have trouble handling their Oscar? Well, that’s because each statuette weighs 8.5 pounds!
Want to know more? Take a look at some memorable moments throughout the years, read up on the history or check out a past winner from the library, and then test your knowledge with the LA Times’ Oscar quiz.
Or add yourself to the long, long hold list for the dvd.
(Last count 772!)
As a film student, getting to meet professional actors and directors is greatly inspirational for me. I recently got the opportunity to meet the writer and director of The Artist, Michel Hazanavicius, and one of the actresses from the film, Berenice Bejo. They were speaking at an event that my film class attended, during which we had the opportunity to ask them questions and analyze their film The Artist. The most exciting part for me was to hear about the reasons for making the movie and what Michel and Berenice gained from it.
The Artist came into the world of cinema at a very interesting time. In the twenty-first century most people think of hit movies as comedies, action movies with more violence than plot and romantic “chick flicks”. However, if you say the term silent film people generally think of old movies made in the early 1900s. Yet The Artist is a one of a kind film, as it is a silent film released in 2011 instead of 1920. It was brave of Michel to release such a unique film into an arena of very modern films. I think this movie in particular really gets to the core of classic filmmaking. It’s not about violent action or intense dialogue; it’s about images and emotion. To me, the images of films are what separates them from books and what makes them so unique. The emphasis on imagery and using it to tell a story without dialogue is what makes The Artist so special. Continue reading
Six Words: Ex-burglar old man befriends interesting robot.
Mood(s): Witty. Thrilling. Fascinating.
“The human brain, a lovely piece of hardware.”
Bonuses: Beautifully filmed. Realistic depiction of the future.
Additional: Seems outlandish and ridiculous at first, but you’ll be hooked once you start. Profanity. 13+
Six Words: Documentary about Burma; expands your worldview.
Mood(s): Impassioned. Revealing. Informative.
“I think politicians who think they’ve gone beyond being politicians are very dangerous.”
Bonuses: It’s like traveling to Burma without leaving your couch. Very honest documentary.
Six Words: Two friends try more; twist ending.
Mood(s): Charming. Exploratory. Witty.
“That’s the problem with heartbreak, to you it’s like an atomic bomb and to the world it’s just really cliché, because in the end we all have the same experience.”
Bonuses: Finally a romantic movie that ends differently than you expect. Very funny.
Additional: Profanity. Momentary nudity. R
Six Words: College girl and guy go out.
Mood(s): Teenage. Modern. Heart-wrenching.
“Because it’s the halves that halve you in half.”
Bonuses: Gorgeously shot scenes. Jennifer Lawrence makes an appearance.The ending.
Additional: If you have a tumblr, you’ll know where all those gifs are from after watching it. 13+
Six Words: Rwandan genocide’s impact; hotel manager saves.
Mood(s): Gripping. Emotional. Heavy. Violent.
“There’s always room.”
Bonuses: You learn something new about the Rwandan genocide.
Additional: Depicts the division between the Tutsis and Hutus accurately. 13+
–Regina, 17, West Seattle