As you have probably heard by now, The Blind Side scored what was most likely the tenth and last spot for Best Picture of the Year at yesterday's Oscar Nomination ceremony. As soon as I heard it myself, I rolled my eyes and sighed not because I was mad that the movie was nominated, but because I knew that the pundits, bloggers, and nameless comment droppers on various websites would NEVER shut up about it. More importantly, they would use it as proof that ten nominations was a waste of time. I hope to refute that by the time this article is over.
First, while The Blind Side scored the lowest of the nominees on RT (70%), it still had decent to okay reviews from most major critics. Furthermore, this is not a critic's movie. That C average from critics was matched by an A average among fans. For the first time in a long time, the general populous finally got it's movie into the running. I know what your thinking, isn't that what the People's Choice Awards are for? True, but with ten nominees, it was nice to see at least one movie stick in, that blazed onto the Oscar scene because of the fans that loved it and the inspiration it exuded from it's frame. Furthermore, it's not that bad of a movie. Hell, it's ten times better than The Reader, which is the worst Best Picture nominee in the last 25 years.
Second, okay so let's say you are still fuming about The Blind Side. The question I have is what about the other 9? Every year we get at least one stinker, or each of us has one or two movies we can't stand that still get into the Best Picture race. Movie reviewing is subjective in itself, and so what made you think that even with ten slots that all of the sudden you were going to like all of the movies. Furthermore, minus The Blind Side, the other nine were a nice mixture of art house films (Precious, An Education, A Serious Man, The Hurt Locker), middle-ranged adult themed films (Up in the Air), and well-reviewd blockbusters (Avatar, Inglourious Basterds, Up, and District 9). So if you don't like The Blind Side, hell for that matter, if you don't like one or two or even three of the nominees, be happy that with the edition of five more nominees, some incredible works of art who would have normally missed out are getting their due.
So you ask, what do I think? In my opinion, the ten nomination experiment gets a good grade from me. If Precious, Up in the Air, IB, Avatar, and The Hurt Locker were the favored five, then the inclusion of movies like Up and District 9, movies the Academy would have most likely ignored, makes it all worth it for me. I think were going to have to give this a couple of years to see if it continues to be so successful, but the Academy got exactly what they wanted with the previously mentioned mix that crosses a range of categories, and more importantly, they hopefully have caught the attention of a couple million viewers who normally would have changed the channel.