Film: Can 'best' = 'most popular'?

October 28, 2008
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Interesting stat in today's New York Times: The last four winners of the Academy Award for Best Picture ("No Country for Old Men," "The Departed," "Crash," and "Million Dollar Baby") combined didn't bring in the box office money of 2003's winner "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King."

Yes, it's already Oscar season--the time of year when "prestige" films pack the release schedule. But the Times sees something changing this time around. This year, it seems, Hollywood studios are going back to pushing some of their more popular films as potential Oscar winners. These include "Wall-E" (which could be the first Best Picture nominated animated film since "Beauty and the Beast"), "The Dark Knight," and "Iron Man."

Does this feel like a push to sell out to the moneymakers and drive up ratings? Certainly Batman vs. the cute robot would attract more eyeballs than last year's low-viewership match-up between "No Country for Old Men" vs. "There Will Be Blood."

Or have the best films so far this year just so happen to also be the biggest at the box office?  

Looking backwards, is it embarrassing that popular hits "Titanic" and "The Greatest Show on Earth" won Best Picture (and "Ghost" and "Love Story" were nominated)? Or are these justly rewarded films that happened to bring in lots of money?   

Your thoughts?
ADVERTISEMENT
  • Maybe there should be an award for highest money making film of the year. This would be like New York best seller or a record going platinum. It wouldn't matter if it was up to Oscar standards, just as long if it made money.
  • Lord of the Rings: Return of the King was a great movie, full of pathos. Just because it made beaucoup bucks doesn't mean it was a lesser film than the other mentioned.
  • As a film viewer, amateur creator, and critiquer, I believe very rarely does the most popular film equal the best film. Being married and busier I don't always get to see the more critically acclaimed films anymore since my wife prefers more entertaining fare than artistic films (I haven't seen any of last years best pic nominees yet). This might be one of the few years that popular=best. If a film maker can combine art and entertainment - they should win best picture. Wall-E, Dark Knight, and Iron Man are all solid movies, both for entertainment and art and deserve to be considered for best picture. Box office should not indicate what are the best films, etc., then again, popularity contests shouldn't either.

Post a comment to this blog

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT
  1. President Obama has referred to the ACA as "Obamacare" any number of times; one thing it is not, if you don't qualify for a subsidy, is "affordable".

  2. One important correction, Indiana does not have an ag-gag law, it was soundly defeated, or at least changed. It was stripped of everything to do with undercover pictures and video on farms. There is NO WAY on earth that ag gag laws will survive a constitutional challenge. None. Period. Also, the reason they are trying to keep you out, isn't so we don't show the blatant abuse like slamming pigs heads into the ground, it's show we don't show you the legal stuf... the anal electroctions, the cutting off of genitals without anesthesia, the tail docking, the cutting off of beaks, the baby male chicks getting thrown alive into a grinder, the deplorable conditions, downed animals, animals sitting in their own excrement, the throat slitting, the bolt guns. It is all deplorable behavior that doesn't belong in a civilized society. The meat, dairy and egg industries are running scared right now, which is why they are trying to pass these ridiculous laws. What a losing battle.

  3. Eating there years ago the food was decent, nothing to write home about. Weird thing was Javier tried to pass off the story the way he ended up in Indy was he took a bus he thought was going to Minneapolis. This seems to be the same story from the founder of Acapulco Joe's. Stopped going as I never really did trust him after that or the quality of what being served.

  4. Indianapolis...the city of cricket, chains, crime and call centers!

  5. "In real life, a farmer wants his livestock as happy and health as possible. Such treatment give the best financial return." I have to disagree. What's in the farmer's best interest is to raise as many animals as possible as quickly as possible as cheaply as possible. There is a reason grass-fed beef is more expensive than corn-fed beef: it costs more to raise. Since consumers often want more food for lower prices, the incentive is for farmers to maximize their production while minimizing their costs. Obviously, having very sick or dead animals does not help the farmer, however, so there is a line somewhere. Where that line is drawn is the question.

ADVERTISEMENT