When you look at the movies that won the Academy Award in the category “Best Picture” the last years you will notice something they have in common. They all reflect an aspect of AmericaIsm: War, history or nationalism. Yes, it’s an American film award show but come on, how about some diversity?
The controverse movie “American Sniper” is nominated for six Oscars, also in the category “Best Picture”. If we take a look back it becomes obvious that always those movies won in that category who showed a big deal of nationalism: In the year 2010 the movie “The Hurt Locker” won which tells the story of a three-man bomb disposal team during the Iraq War. In the year 2013 succeeded the movie “Argo” which is about the rescue of six U.S. diplomats from Iran. In the year 2014 won “12 Years a Slave” that tells the story of a free African-American man who was kidnapped and then sold into slavery. And now in the year 2015 the film “American Sniper” is nominated. The name says it all, the movie is about the american sniper Chris Kyle who with 255 kills is the deadliest marksman in U.S. military history. Guess who will win?
But which movie would you chose from anyway if the nominated films are all about the same themes? Lincoln, Django Unchained, American Hustle, the list goes on and on. I know it’s an American film award show and that most people like to watch Hollywood blockbusters but shouldn’t a film academy chose the most original and artistic movies?
Strangely never those movies won who critisized the American culture like “Winter’s Bone” or “Zero Dark Thirty”. Although you have to give the Academy some credit for having more independent movies under the nominees this year. Finally the independent directors Wes Anderson (“The Grand Budapest Hotel”) and Richard Linklater (“Boyhood”) get some recognition. Also the documentation “Citizenfour” got nominated although I doubt that it will win. A movie about a whistleblower like Edward Snowden who betrayed the USA? Never!
The Oscars just send a wrong message with the selection of their movies in my opinion. The movies are being used to brainwash people and justify the actions of war and patriotism. Do the USA really have to conquer everything? Other film awards like the Cannes Film Festival or the Berlinale at least think more outside the box and chose international movies. But what bothers me the most is that “American Sniper” tells the American citizens a lot of lies.
First of all the movie suggests that the Iraq war was in response to 9/11. Really? Secondly the film invents the terrorist sniper and antagonist “Mustafa” that isn’t even mentioned in Chris Kyle’s book. But I guess the fact that Kyle killed children and women did not bode well for the story. Thirdly the movie shows Chris Kyle as a man who is tormented by his actions. Although in his book Kyle refers to the Iraqi people as “savage” and he wrote that “I only wish I had killed more.” Fourthly the family of Chris Kyle claimed that he donated the money he made from his book to veterans’ charity although he kept most of the profits. Sounds just like a teriffic guy!
Maybe I will get surprised by the winners of this year’s Oscars but I doubt it. Well, the prices aren’t worth much anyway. The award show becomes more and more a beauty pageant than a serious contribution to the art of film. God bless America!