Saturday, April 24, 2010

'The Hurt Locker' as best picture



I just watched "The Hurt Locker" which this time around won the Academy Award for best picture.  Somebody please tell me that was a joke.

Granted, the staging was very accurate as to its portrayal of Iraq as a typical Moslem Middle Eastern hell-hole:  garbage in the poorly-maintained streets, the locals living in 12th century luxury, and a complete disregard on nearly everyone's part for the niceties of the rule of law.  It probably also was accurate as to the intelligence level of everyone involved on the military side:  the smart ones stay alive by being as wily and as suspicious as a feral cat;  the others die in various gruesome ways that are, for the most part, painless for being mercifully quick.

If this film has any value it is that it shows the American people what all that money is being spent on, and it may urge a few more to wonder whether rescuing Iraq (or Afghanistan or Kuwait or ...) from its instant condition is worth the expenditure of even one American soldier's life.  If it does that it's worth watching, but does raise the interesting follow-on question "how would we know we've 'rescued' them?"

But...  best picture?  The only way this could be a 'best picture' would be for the producers to take all the money they saved on script-development and cast salaries and use it to grease the palms of the judges.  I'm not a film critic by any means but shouldn't an award like 'best picture' have some positive correlation to the coefficient of I-want-to-see-it-again ?



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