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Author Topic: thoughts on oscar noms
profit mohammed
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posted 31 January 2006 09:48 AM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
im happy to see amy adams get a nod for junebug, sad that jeff daniels was overlooked for squid and the whale. hoped history of violence would get a best picture nod (over crash) but glad william hurt was recognized. i still think new world was the best film of the year, but realize most poeple hated it. constant gardener was better than syriana and should have taken its spot for director. and, of course, its too bad that crazy was passed over, though i havnt actually seen it yet.
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mary123
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posted 31 January 2006 09:52 AM      Profile for mary123     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Wow Quebec film 'crazy' was passed over. I thought it was a shoo-in.
That's just well crazy!!!!!

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skdadl
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posted 31 January 2006 09:55 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here's a link listing all the nominees.
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deBeauxOs
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posted 31 January 2006 10:15 AM      Profile for deBeauxOs     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
posted by profit mohammed: i still think new world was the best film of the year, but realize most poeple hated it. constant gardener was better than syriana and should have taken its spot for director.
So few people actually got a chance to see New World since it was released then recalled because Terrence Mallick wanted to tweak it some more; that probably more than anything else is the reason it did not make the nominations. Timing is everything - besides, these awards are often skewed by who is allowed to vote and how much (and how expensively) the studios campaigned for their nomination.

It surprises me that The Constant Gardener was overlooked; I would guess that the only "good enough", politically informed films are the movies made by 'murricans. YES by Sally Potter was a passionate, engaged film with Joan Allen and far superior to Syriana.

[ 31 January 2006: Message edited by: deBeauxOs ]


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profit mohammed
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posted 31 January 2006 10:46 AM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
mary123 - crazy had a very good chance of getting the nod. its not like a quebec film cant win the best foreign film or something. its not like it hasnt happened before, in the very recent past of anything.

[ 31 January 2006: Message edited by: profit mohammed ]


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lagatta
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posted 31 January 2006 10:46 AM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
At least Rachel Weisz got a nomination, for Constant Gardener.
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profit mohammed
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posted 31 January 2006 10:52 AM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
but why does ralph finnes keep getting overlooked?
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Crippled_Newsie
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posted 31 January 2006 10:57 AM      Profile for Crippled_Newsie     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I like Tony Kushner, but how do you get a nomination on a Screenplay (Adapted) that's an hour too long-- for Munich ?
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profit mohammed
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posted 31 January 2006 11:06 AM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
munich - george jonas. skeptical.

[ 31 January 2006: Message edited by: profit mohammed ]


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FabFabian
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posted 31 January 2006 11:11 AM      Profile for FabFabian        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
"Paradise Now" got the foreign film nom. I'm happy. If you haven't seen it yet, go. It is a far more important film than any shite by Speilberg this year.

Disappointed "A History of Violence" didn't get the nom for best pic or Cronenberg or Viggo.


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profit mohammed
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posted 31 January 2006 11:23 AM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
It is a far more important film than any shite by Speilberg this year

i dont know about that. war of the worlds WAS pretty important


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Boom Boom
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posted 31 January 2006 11:25 AM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Just how many Oscar moms are there? Oh, wait....
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ronb
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posted 31 January 2006 11:39 AM      Profile for ronb     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The directing nominees are particularly disappointing. Munich? Give me a break. Crash? Crash was a horrible unfocussed mess, particularly in the direction! Those two have no business being on that list, particularly with Terrence Mallick overlooked.

I have roughly the same fondness for Ang Lee as I do for Atom Egoyan, which is to say not a great deal - personally I found Brokeback Mountain as cold, formal and distant as Ice Storm or The Sweet Hereafter - but his is the the only remotely filmic of the films nominated. (He says, not having seen Capote.)

Animation is an interesting category. Miyazaki v. AArdman. Tough one.


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F.
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posted 31 January 2006 12:04 PM      Profile for F.     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
war of the worlds WAS pretty important

Apparently the Razzie nomination committee thought so.

Razzies.


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Timebandit
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posted 31 January 2006 12:25 PM      Profile for Timebandit     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm betting on Ang Lee for best director! (I haven't actually seen Brokeback Mountain yet, as it hasn't been released here, but if his other work is any indication...)
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profit mohammed
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posted 31 January 2006 07:10 PM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
you should see it - i disagree with ronb that it was cold and distant. i really enjoyed it and was moved my it. it is definetly slow, by have never minded slow movies. i usually prefer them. slow movies give you time to think and digest a movie while you are watching it. it engages you in a way that fast moving pictures do not.

brokeback, does, however, raise the question: why didnt they just move to san francisco? (that was a joke, however unfunny)

but i agree that crash was not very good. most overrated film of the year (along with march of the penguins). in fact, i really did not like crash. i thought it just engaged in further stereotyping.


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josh
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posted 31 January 2006 07:58 PM      Profile for josh     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yeah, I can't believe Crash got nominated. The LA navel gazers must have liked all the LA navel gazing. I understand the movie had a huge PR push at the end.
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profit mohammed
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posted 31 January 2006 08:12 PM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
pr push? yeah that and munich. i long ago came to the realization that the oscars are as much bought as they are earned.

and where is cache or king and queens or 2046 in the foreign film categoty?

where is parrots of telegraph hill in documentary? where is grizzly man in documentary!

this is outrageous! stupid oscars, why do i still care about you when you let me down every year!


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Adam T
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posted 31 January 2006 08:34 PM      Profile for Adam T     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
As I'm sure you're aware, profit mohammed, the documentary voters seem to punish most docs that are succesful at the box office. Most is not all, and there are some films that contradict that general theory:.

I was surprised Capote was nominated for best picture, it's done pretty well for an indie film at the box office, but it is hardly an indie smash. I would have thought the voters would have felt nominating it for the acting categories would have been enough.

I'm very surprised that Syrianna and especially Walk the Line didn't get nominated for best picture. Syrianna has done better at the box office than Good Night and Good Luck (though Good Night has done very well for an indie film) and I would have thought Oscar voters would have been mindful of the need to bring in the "Red State" audience and vote for Walk the Line. (Though Johnny Cash certainly cuts across the "Red State"/"Blue State" divide.)

I'm not surprised Crash got nominated. I haven't seen the film, but I'm pleased it got nominated in that it was released earlier than the October-December 'Oscar season'. Any time a semi wide release, semi indie, well reviewed film like Crash does over $50 million at the U.S box office (Crash did around $53 million) it is going to get serious consideration. A History of Violence only made around $35 million. Had it taken in the $50 million figure, it probably would have got nominated.

[ 31 January 2006: Message edited by: Adam T ]


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al-Qa'bong
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posted 01 February 2006 12:46 AM      Profile for al-Qa'bong   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I just arrived home after watching "Paradise Now".

The Oscars are irrelevant.


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Sven
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posted 01 February 2006 12:54 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by al-Qa'bong:
I just arrived home after watching "Paradise Now".

The Oscars are irrelevant.


The film critic of the Minneapolis Star Tribune was on public radio after work today. He said that he anticipates that the Oscars will have low viewership because the big name awards don't include a lot of popular block-busters, Titanic or the Lord of the Rings kind of movies. He may be right.

That being said, I personally think the Oscars are irrelevant, too. I haven't watched them in years.


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Hephaestion
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posted 01 February 2006 02:24 AM      Profile for Hephaestion   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
If you read any reasonably good history of American film and Hollywood, you'll find that the Oscars were begun as an exercise in self-promotion by the studios, to get non-movie-goers interested in their "product". In short, it's advertising.

It still is.

I agree, the Academy Awards are irrelevant.

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profit mohammed
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posted 01 February 2006 02:31 AM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
irrelevant, but fun! and with the exception of crash, all nominated movies deserve to be celebrated. i enjoyed them (well havnt seen munich)

and to be honest, as much as dont like to admit it, i enjoy having just one day of the year when i can indulge in a little irrelevant celebrity culture.

and even though the awards are meaningless, and predictable, i still like to watch. and jon stewart hosting is a plus.


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Sven
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posted 01 February 2006 10:08 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by profit mohammed:
and even though the awards are meaningless, and predictable, i still like to watch. and jon stewart hosting is a plus.

Jon Stewart hosting can only be an improvement over prior years' MCs


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Willowdale Wizard
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posted 01 February 2006 11:25 AM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
crash was recognised as the top film of the year by african-american film critics, so its inclusion for best pic didn't surprise me. i think that "history of violence" should have been nominated rather than "capote".

as a documentary, "murderball" kicked ass.


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F.
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posted 01 February 2006 11:48 AM      Profile for F.     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
as a documentary, "murderball" kicked ass.

Not to be confused with "Dodgeball," which was neither a documentary nor ass-kicking.


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FabFabian
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posted 01 February 2006 01:42 PM      Profile for FabFabian        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ralph Fiennes has been robbed! The man deserves a nom. Cronenberg, Viggo and Maria Bello were robbed as well.

In regards to the comment that the Academy Awards are irrelevant, I beg to differ. If a film wins it is guaranteed to increase box office revenues for the film and open it up to a larger audience. Not that it is true that if a film wins an award it is good, but people are simple that way.


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profit mohammed
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posted 01 February 2006 02:04 PM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
i thought history of violence was quite good, but not as outstanding as the critics collectively hailed it.

i think i missed something. ill have to see it again. same with crash. i found it offensive when i first saw it - i thought it traded in sterotypes and presented too facile a view of race relations. it just didnt seem realistic.

and i totally called the bullet. (but everyone says that)

i thought murderball was entertaining but not best doc. wild parrots of telegraph hill for me. and of the nominated, def. darwin's nightmare. everyone on this board should see darwin's nightmare. (dont worry, it isnt about intelligent design)


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Andy (Andrew)
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posted 01 February 2006 02:08 PM      Profile for Andy (Andrew)   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I've seen none of the films and only recognize the name of 4 actors/actresses. I still hope Brokeback mountain gets an award.
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TheStudent
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posted 01 February 2006 02:19 PM      Profile for TheStudent        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
That is unfortunately looking increasingly unlikely. As the lead-up awards (Directors Guild, SAG, Golden Globes) are given out, Capote is winning most of the awards that Brokeback is also up for.
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Papal Bull
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posted 01 February 2006 02:25 PM      Profile for Papal Bull   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Good to see the AMAZING Batman Begins getting nominated for an Oscar.
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profit mohammed
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posted 01 February 2006 02:39 PM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
list all of the awards thus far

capote? no, bbm has the momentum and all the awards. of course psh will win best actor, but nothing more for capote. but if a film is catching up to bbm its crash after the sags.

but lets be honest here. ang lee and his film will both win, and so they should


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al-Qa'bong
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posted 01 February 2006 10:07 PM      Profile for al-Qa'bong   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I should clarify my "Oscars are irrelevant" comment.

I thought that "Paradise Now" was such a strong film, with such an important message, that nothing Hollywood could do would be of any significance next to it.

It would be good, however, if Yanquis would take notice of Palestine because of the film, but then, what are the chances of that happening?

Palestine gets its first Oscar nomination with Paradise Now

[ 02 February 2006: Message edited by: al-Qa'bong ]


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pookie
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posted 01 February 2006 10:46 PM      Profile for pookie     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The only way I can stand to have the Oscars on is muted. Anybody else do this?

They're actually midly entertaining that way.


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profit mohammed
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posted 01 February 2006 10:52 PM      Profile for profit mohammed        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
nah, i like the acceptance speeches, as kitschy and maudlin as they might be. though i always wondered why they are called acceptance speeches and not thank you speeches. if its an acceptance speech, go and say "i accept", or not if that be the case, and sit back down.

besides, stewart will be funny. he always is. if you like watching the oscars on mute why not just pick up a celebrity mag.


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Boom Boom
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posted 01 February 2006 10:53 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I rather liked Billy Crystal when he was hosting the Oscars. He's funny, yet elegant. Wasn't Robin Williams a host, once? A good, witty host can make the show move along well. I wish they'd drop the musical numbers altogether and just get on with it.
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Willowdale Wizard
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posted 02 March 2006 11:00 AM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
reuters, 2 mar:

quote:
A group of Israelis who lost children to Palestinian suicide bombings appealed on Wednesday to organizers of next week's Academy Awards to disqualify a film exploring the reasoning behind such attacks.

The bereaved parents said they had gathered more than 32,000 signatures on a petition against the nomination in the best foreign film category of "Paradise Now," a drama about two West Bank friends recruited to blow themselves up in Tel Aviv.

Major Israeli cinema chains have shunned "Paradise Now," with distribution experts citing concern that its portrayal of suicide bombers could spell a low box-office turnout and even boycotts.


ETA: can't get the link to reuters to work, not even with tinyurl ... tinyurl, you failed me in my hour of need!

[ 02 March 2006: Message edited by: Willowdale Wizard ]


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skdadl
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posted 02 March 2006 11:04 AM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Posting to fix sidescroll on TAT.
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al-Qa'bong
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posted 02 April 2006 05:31 PM      Profile for al-Qa'bong   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The Angry Arab, in one paragraph, reviews "Paradise Now."

quote:
Paradis Now? Paradise Never. Not With….Sally Field.

My hosts here expected me to see the movie Paradise Now to include in my talk about Arabs in recent US movies. I did not have a chance to see it before arriving in Seattle. One of my hosts was clearly disappointed as she picked me up from the airport. I suggested to watch it before my talk. That was promptly arranged. I was put in a room, and watched the movie on my laptop. I watched it very carefully, and even waited to the very end to read the credits. I could not help but notice at the end that Sally Field was thanked. Sally Field? What is Sally Field doing in a Film on Palestine? A film that has been widely praised as a contribution to the effort to promote the Palestinian cause in the West (more on that later). But Sally Field was part of one of the worst and most racist and ignorant movies ever made on the Middle East (Not without My Daughter). That was a movie that was shot in Israel, with Israeli experts and consultants (and you know about cultural sensitivity to Arabs and Muslims in Israel), and the natives, especially the veiled women, were portrayed as beasts. And as in typically racist Western movies, there were no subtitles when the natives spoke. And notice that the main character, the Iranian doctor, did not become abusive until he stepped foot on Iranian soil. He was a kind and loving husband on US soil, until he arrived in Iran. The premise is that Fasinjoon or Saffron may cause men to become abusive. Of course, experts on domestic violence will tell you that the premise is flawed, that he most likely was abusive back when he was in the US, but the author of the book on which the movie was based, had to tell a tale in which her story becomes more palatable to Western audiences, and then there is the obvious self-serving purpose. And now this same Sally Field gave her seal of approval to this movie? There must be a reason for that. First, in providing a critical evaluation of a movie, or of any element of popular culture, it is important that we exercise an independent judgment, and not be swayed by popular opinion, here or over there in the Middle East. It is also important that we resist the pressures to succumb to groupthink lest we stifle, wittingly or unwittingly diversity of opinion and critical debates within the community of Arabs/Muslims in the US. I also know that as the community feels, especially after Sep. 11, that it is under siege, and that may lead to lowering the standards of expectations and of decent and sensitive references to Arabs and Muslims in the West. Furthermore, the status of Arabs and Muslims have been so negative and stereotypical, and members of the community are so eager for any semblance of positive portrayal that they want so bad to raise “a star” from within. The community wants to feel pride; this explains partly the chauvinistic and ignorant—if not the laughably hilarious—From Lebanon segment that runs daily on LBC-TV. This explains why somebody like the late Mustafa Aqqad, whose real claim to fame was (the production of) the lousy and sexist Halloween movies, is such a wildly popular figure in the Arab world. And he dared to tell the community that he did those movies to fund his “more artsy projects.” What artsy projects? He never used that money for his “serious movies.” The Message and Lion of the Dessert were funded by Arab governments, and oil money, and not from Aqqad’s private fortune. But the community wants pride, and anybody would do, especially if he/she has Western “seal of commercial approval.” Oh, and the community, and people in the Middle East, believed that he lived in Hollywood. In Hollywood, I am telling you. In that sense, the community was proud of Hani Abu As`ad. There is also another point, the portrayal of Arabs and Muslims has been so bad for so long, that any lessening of the racist and negative portrayal, is seen as progress. But the question I pose is this: if Arabs/Muslims have been portrayed as 1/4th of human beings, should be celebrate when they are portrayed as ½ of human beings? Is that reason to cheer? Or should we aim higher, simple to portrayal of them as full human beings? That is the question. Or is that too much to ask? Getting back to Paradise Now. It is a good movie, as a movie, that is. The story was well-told, and it was interesting to watch. That is in general. I also liked watching a movie with the Palestinian dialect of Arabic. You don’t see that much in Arab popular culture, and rarely even see it the proliferating Arab media. Palestinian dialect is quite distinctive; you are not likely to find Arabs from the mashriq who are able to distinguish aMoroccan dialect from a Tunisian dialect, but Arabs can tell a Palestinian dialect. Phalange militiamen (allies of Hariri Inc and Hizbullah in the last parliamentary election in Lebanon) used to kill kidnapped people during the Lebanese civil war on the basis of dialect sometimes. But when I saw the movie, I also thought. Do we really allow the Palestinians to live their lives in the Arab world? I mean, as we represent them, and as we judge their coverage in popular cultures, do we allow them to be entitled to a full life, or do we insist and expect that they engage in struggle, all day long, seven days a week, and all year? I thought about that as I read on the plane on the way to Seattle the wonderful novel by Palestinian writer, Suheir Daoud, Madinat Ar-Rasas. She spoke about her life, and loves, and disappointments, without talking much about struggle. And I was happy for that. Of course, occupation and the Palestinian issue was in the background. How could it not be? How could be buried. It can’t. But we should allow the Palestinian to express themselves by themselves, and not impose expectations on them. This is exactly why Algerian struggler, Jamilah Buhayrad, withdrew from the spotlight, and did not want to talk to the Arab press for much of her life. She just could not handle the pressures. Did Mahmud Darwish once not tell an Arab audience to spare him their love, or something to that effect? Similarly, I applied that test to the movie, and the Palestinians, who are overtly and intensely political, as a people, also live their lives: they live, they laugh, they drink, they make love, they fall in love, they eat, they dance, they fight, they act silly, they act serious, and they listen to music, and they can watch movies do. Oh, and they also engage in struggle, many forms of struggle. I saw that as the main character (Said?) in the movie was seen to be awkward in love, not being comfortable with the woman that he liked, as if the “struggle” has prevented Palestinians from knowing how to love and be loved. And toward the end of the movie, two children were flying a kite, and the kite itself was a Palestinian flag. I mean, Palestinian life is politicized by virtue of the reality of occupation and oppression, but come on. But there are serious problems with the movie: the movie clearly was intended for Western audiences and sensibilities, and was driven by them and designed around them. And I must confess that when a movie penetrate the walls of Western barriers of acceptability of “an other,” I always wonder and brace myself. I mean, the seal of approval from Golden Globe and “the academy” must not only mean something, but must also be due to something in the movie that captured their attention and approval. This is not the best Arabic movie made, ever, and yet something in it appealed to Western reviewers, and I see why, now. I dare say that Israeli civilians in the movie are more civilian than Palestinian civilians in the movie. Even Israeli soldiers were portrayed quite humanely. This has been a staple of Western portrayal of Arabs and Israelis, that no matter what, and no matter whether they are armed or not, Israeli soldiers are more human and more civilian than unarmed Palestinian civilians. Even the last scene, Israeli occupation soldiers were seen in the buss smiling widely, and a male and a female were talking; you had to identify with them, and you had to sympathize with them, and you had to curse the killers, who dared to disturb their lives, but don’t you dare curse those who disturb, on a daily basis, the lives of Palestinian civilians. And you had to see that scene where Sa`id could not ride on the bus because there was an Israeli child. Israelis have children, Palestinians don’t. Palestinians give birth to terrorist babies, you know. This explains why Israel has no qualms about indiscriminate bombardments of refugee camps. But the major flaw and problem with the movie is the premise itself (of the plot): the false premise about how individuals get “recruited” to undertake “missions”. In the movie, there was this sneaky and suspicious fanatic Muslim character who recruited Sa`id, just like that, at a short notice. Leaders of organizations do not press members to engage in attacks, it is the other way round. In other words, members lobby and press leaders to send them on missions. This is true in secular and in religious organizations. In Munich, Palestinian fighters who were outraged at Israeli bombing rampages against Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon in February of 1972, pressed and pleaded with Abu Iyad to plan an attack of revenge (more on revenge later) against Israel. It was in this context that Munich was improvised. In the last several years, when suicide missions spread in direct response to massive Israeli killing of Palestinians, sometimes men and women would knock on the doors of several organizations before they are sent on missions. One woman had to beg several organization leaders before one agreed to sponsor her. That is how this happens. The Israeli propaganda account is that they are pressured to go, or that Saddam’s past payment to families were the motives. Of course, Israeli military propagandists also thoroughly look into the background of the individuals who undertook such missions (Lebanese and Palestinians no matter whether they are religious or communist) in order to find something about their personal life stories to deny the political motive). Even during the Israeli occupation of Lebanon (which continues in Shib`a Farms, Kfar Shuba hills, and the seven villages), Israeli occupation propagandists would also outrageously claim that the people who engaged in suicide attacks were motivated by personal reasons, that this woman once kissed a neighbor when she was 15, and that she was fearing “shame,” to the rest of the tale distilled form The Arab Mind. The movie does the same thing: we had to learn about how his father was killed as “collaborator” and that a personal motive was at play here. First, every struggle for independence entails punishment of collaborators, whether you like it or not. The French resistance did plenty of that—and many innocent people were killed in the interim, as did Algerian struggle against French colonization, and in South African struggle against Apartheid, they were “necklaced” as you may remember. But then again, Palestinian struggle for independence is subjected to the most exacting and most unrealistic standards of scrutiny. It is expectedto be a struggle that adheres to the most “humane” and most “peaceful” standards there are, while Israeli occupation and oppression is subjected to no standards whatever. The Israelis can do what they wish, and US Congress and media will provide pretexts and justifications. Was that not what they did after Jenin? I sat in this country while watching people arguing in polite company and on TV that the Jenin was NOT a massacre because a mere 54 Palestinians were killed. Such are the non-standards applied to Israeli killing. In the case of the Palestinians, all forms of their struggle, including peaceful forms, are subjected to such minute scrutiny that there was an uproar once because Israeli propagandists, and their parrots in the US, objected to a line in a poem by Mahmud Darwish—how dare he? The Western pearls of wisdom in the movie were delivered by well-known French (or is she Belgium?) actress, Lubna Az-Zabbal, who appears in French movies. But that was significant, very significant. She was supposed to be the person who represented “rationality” and “civility” while the Palestinians were the “emotional” and “the agitated.” And her pearls of wisdom were rather silly. She delivered those “insights” as if the Palestinian people had not contemplated such thoughts before, or more importantly, as if the Palestinians had not exercised such options before. Well, o visiting French actress to Palestine, the Palestinian people did, AND STILL DO, engage in a variety of struggles against occupation, and most of them are NOT violent, although that is not focused on—not in US media and culture, and not in this movie that pleased many US reviewers. Palestinian struggle for independence was largely, if not exclusively, non-violent from 1948 until the 1960s, and Israel—contrary to the preachment of the visiting French actress—did not need an “excuse” to attack and kill Palestinians, her pearls of wisdom notwithstanding. Even in Benny Morris’ account of the Arab-Israeli conflict, he talks about Israeli killing of thousands of Palestinians who peacefully used to try to visit their lands from 1948 until the 1960s. As if the world took note of the plight of Palestinians during the time. In reality, the world did not notice Palestinian struggle until the Palestinian took up the option of armed struggle. That is a fact. Prior to that, Golda Meir could say that there is “no such thing as the Palestinian people” and not be challenged.” And even today, most of Palestinian struggle constitutes non-violent means and methods. But that does not get into the media. It has to be buried. Because even Palestinian chants and songs are “terrorist.” How many of you actually read the Road Map (to Peace?)? You have to read it, and that is why, among other reasons, why it is important to oppose it. The Road Map would ban not only violent struggle but non-violent struggle of the Palestinian people would also be banned under that “plan” the perpetuation of Israeli occupation and hegemony. And why did the film portray suicide bombings in such Islamic religious light? Dying to Win was just published, and it shows that most suicide bombings were not by Muslims, and that non-religious people did most of the suicide bombings in recent decades. And notice that in the West, Islamic religiousity (and fundamentalism) is seen as more silly and more "fundamentalist" than Christian or Jewish fundamentalism and religiousity. And why is the Islamic paradise sillier than Jewish or Christian paradise? I notice from years of teaching Islam in the west, that it is easier, much easier, for non-Muslims in the US to mock elements of Islam than it is to mock elements of Judaism and Christianity. I mean, have you actually read the Old Testament (or the New)? On this point, I remain firm. You either mock all religions, or you are a bigot. And the “enlightened” Westerner in the movie (made to be half-Palestinian to give her credibility) expressed outrage that the motive of Palestinians may be revenge. Revenge? Who engages in revenge in 2006 (except US, Israel, and others of course). But Western revenge is not seen as revenge; only Easter revenge is portrayed as “revenge” to underline its backward and atavisitic nature. Was Munich (the movie) not based on a book called Vengeance? Was the war on Afghanistan not a war of revenge par excellence? And the debate on the war on Iraq was really a debate over whether the war was “legitimate revenge” versus “excessive revenge.” Israel itself refers to its own wars and regular bombing campaigns as “retaliation”, another polite word for revenge, of course. But the Palestinians, again, subjected to scrutiny and standards not applied on any other struggle in the world, are not supposed to engage in revenge. And do you notice that Palestinian struggle is the only struggle that is supposed to pursue options and courses of actions—or inaction—determined by its enemies? By its own enemies? This is like asking the victims of Apartheid to ask for recipes of action, or inaction, from the white minority regime in South Africa. This movie does not deviate from that. But a Palestinian director was seen chatting with Hollywood celebrities; the nation should be proud, and the community has to abandon its own standards and sensibilities, at least until the show is over.



From: Saskatchistan | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
FabFabian
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 7496

posted 03 April 2006 01:54 PM      Profile for FabFabian        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I really wish that the Angry Arab would discover the wonders of paragraphs. I still say that "Paradise Now" is a film worth seeing, if only because any Palestinian voice being heard through film is a rarity.
From: Toronto | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged

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