Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Oscar Rant

This year's Academy Awards were the dullest I've ever seen. That says a lot, given that the show itself is usually turgid with the red carpet being perhaps the only reason to watch. Still, watch I do, even though this year I multitasked and searched through 1920s Photoplays during the show.

I'll perhaps post on the dismal state of Oscar Fashion later, if I can grab the time. But in the meantime, I was particularly incensed by one of the Academy's major omissions in a year when a neo-silent film was one of the big winners, leading them to play an ostensible and largely ill-informed "tribute" to Hollywood's past. During the in memoriam section, there was no mention of Barbara Kent, who died this fall. Granted, most people have not heard of her but they haven't heard of most of the technicians, screenwriters etc. who receive tributes (as they should).

Barbara Kent was the last surviving adult silent film leading lady. She died in October aged 103. While she wasn't one of the silent era's major stars, she had a decent, if relatively short, career from 1926-32, transitioning into the talkies with ease. But alas the Academy doesn't seem to have a historian on staff or even a film buff, or someone who knows how to use google. Colour me disgusted.


Brittan said...

Oh my god, you're right! Here I was irritated that they forgot Theo Angelopolous and I forgot all about Barbara Kent! Ugh. Just another strike against this year's Oscars.

Moya said...

And I had forgotten about Theo Angelopolous in my anger about Barbara Kent. I'm sure there are several others missing--indeed I know there are.