Mobi’s Moscars – The Results
As I hadn’t previously seen the film Still Alice, starring Julianne Moore, who is up for the best actress Oscar, and has won the BAFTA, I decided, in the interests of fairness, that I had better watch it.
I hadn’t particularly wanted to see this film as I couldn’t imagine anything more depressing for a 68-year-old man than watching a movie about the onset of Alzheimer’s.
Anyway, I saw an interview with Moore in which she claimed the movie wasn’t at all sad….
I’m afraid little Julianne was telling a great big fib.
It’s as sad and depressing as you can get, and reinforces all the fears that people of my age nurture as the years roll on.
In the movie, The character, Alice, is a famous linguistics professor, and her equally well-bred husband is a renowned medical professor. She discovers at the young age of only 50 that she is suffering from an early onset form of the disease.
Of course, Moore, being the brilliant actress that she is, acts her socks off and is utterly believable as she slowly starts to lose her mind. If any of you out there want to spend 101 minutes crying your eyes out, then go ahead and watch it, but buy a box of tissues first.
What pissed me off about this movie is that yet again, Hollywood has set a film fairly and squarely amongst the upper-middle classes: the chattering classes, the academia, the ‘haves’ rather than the ‘have-nots’.
It is a world where 99% of us folk living in so-called western civilised society can only read and dream about. It is a world that is not inhabited by a vast majority of us humble movie goers.
So why does this bother me?
It bothers me, because Still Alice is not the first film I have seen on the sad subject of Alzheimer’s, (and dementia, in general) – and indeed there have been a number of excellent documentaries on this subject – but it is the first, where the people affected, have had sufficient money and resources to deal with it in a civilised manner.
For most of us plebs out there in movie-land, the onset of dementia in our families is not only devastating emotionally for the families concerned, but it also turns our lives on our heads as we struggle to deal with a sick parent and struggle to find the money to make ends meet.
The lack of sufficient funds and government support for most people to deal with this kind of problem in a civilised way is a fundamental issue that is totally ignored by this otherwise, well-produced film.
If you are going to do a mainstream Hollywood film about a difficult subject, at least cover all the bases and don’t try to sanitize the problem. In the real world, Alzheimer’s is a much more traumatic event than that shown in the film.
As with ‘Boyhood’, which didn’t have single black face, (except fleetingly on the football field), from one end of the ’12-year span’ of the movie to the other, Still Alice takes place in a rarefied, middle-upper class atmosphere.
The luvvies of this world – i.e. the members of the Oscars academy can relate to this world so well, but the rest of us?
I’d much rather watch the Belgian Two Days and One Night, or the admirable Mr Turner, which show the upper classes in all their outrageous pomposity and the working classes, from which Britain’s greatest painter emerged, at their gritty, honest, selves – warts ‘n’ all.
Anyway, here are the winners of my Moscars, along with my tips for the Oscars.
Runner up: ‘Two Days, One Night’
Oscar Tip: ‘Boyhood’
Winner: Ava DuVernay, (‘Selma’)
Runner Up: Bennett Miller (‘Foxcatcher’)
Oscar Tip: Richard Linklater (‘Boyhood’)
Winner: David Oyelowo, (‘Selma’)
Runner Up: Steve Carell, (‘Foxcatcher’)
Oscar Tip: Eddie Redmayne, (‘Theory of Everything’)
Winner: Marion Cotillard, (‘Two Days One Night’).
Runner Up: Reese Witherspoon, (‘Wild’)
Oscar Tip: Julianne Moore, (‘Still Alice’)
There you are folks and tonight we shall see how close I have come with my ‘Oscar tips’.
Mobi’s Moscars will now take their final bow in the annals of the Mobi D’Ark’s blog, but I will continue to write the occasional review of films, TV programmes and even the odd book from time to time, if I feel that I have something meaningful to contribute.