A shortlist rant worth reading…

From Anthony Kaufman’s blog

    Oscar Docs Baffle Again: “Grizzly Man” Snubbed

    Can someone explain to me the biggest snub in the recent history of the Oscar documentary branch: that “Grizzly Man” — Werner Herzog’s masterful meditation on nature’s cruelty — did not make AMPAS’s shortlist for the Best Documentary category? Since “Grizzly Man” is the best documentary of the year, the omission is baffling. I can only expect to read that the film was deemed illegible on the grounds of some strange technicality. Of course, “March of the Penguins” — as a film critic noted to me today — the “feel-good” nature film of the year made the list — and will undoubtedly win.

    While I’m quite happy to see “Unknown White Male,” “The Devil and Daniel Johnston,” and “Darwin’s Nightmare” on the list, haunting documentaries that defy the popular boring cuteness of “Penguins” and “Mad Hot Ballroom,” the “Grizzly Man” loss is truly astounding. And why no “Why We Fight,” Eugene Jarecki’s excoriating investigation into America’s war machine? As with last year’s snubs of “Metallica: Some Kind of Monster” and “Control Room,” the AMPAS documentary committee continues to confound.

    As an executive told me last year at this time, “Whatever the restrictions, whatever the guidelines, it’s not a fair
    representation of the caliber of docs. Maybe DIEBOLD should work in conjunction with the Academy to come up with a better approach.”

2 Responses to “A shortlist rant worth reading…”

  1. Matt Says:

    I think some people felt that Herzog may have been trying to present the Grizzly Man guy as interesting, complex and possibly genuine when in fact he was nothing more than insane. I sort of see the point. If the guy was some kind of visionary like Muir or Throeau it wouid have been pretty amazing. Still, I like the documentary and found it mezmerizing and disturbing but I know many who thought the guy was just nuts and not worthy of a film.

  2. Lucy Says:

    Timothy Treadwell was certainly not insane and that’s not why the film was snubbed. How one feels about him is irrelevant to this brilliant documentary. If anything, his colorful/quirky nature added to the film and made it more interesting to watch (IMO). This film was highly praised by 90 percent of the critics, many of them calling it the best documentary of the year. The omission is unforgiveable. Is there any way to find out why it was snubbed? Could it be because most of it was Treadwell’s footage and not Hezog’s? I just can’t understand it.

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