Well, the 2017 Academy Awards were last night and I was pleased to see that the ceremony’s ratings were an all time low. It suggests that perhaps TV viewers are getting smarter. It’s been a while, but I’ve seen a few Oscar extravagances in the past and I still read about them every year.
It’s difficult for me to see them as anything more meaningful than the terminally self-absorbed engaging in flattery, sycophancy and politically correct jaberwocky. I go to 50 or more movies a year, and so I saw all the major films except the one about the two gay guys — and if that one stays in the theaters long enough I’ll see it too.
Anyway, for me, who gets an Oscar is equivalent to who gets to be the king and queen of the average 8th grade prom — pretty much just a popularity contest driven by what happens to be trending in H-wood or Pinewood Middle School at the moment.
While the Oscars were on I went to see Red Sparrow. Oh my, it should have been called “Dominika Goes to Whore School.” I don’t particularly like Jennifer Lawrence due to her outspoken pro-abortion stance but I actually felt sorry for her that she was in such an abomination of a film.
She plays a Bolshoi prima ballerina who gets injured and is then recruited by her uncle to be a spy — a spy who is schooled in how to mainly use her hot bod and feminine wiles as the vehicle for espionage. She does this because she needs the rubles to keep her aging mom in the nice apartment furnished by the ballet. She and mom were going to have to move down-scale because she was no longer making big rubles as a prima ballerina. To me, mom still looked pretty good, but she appeared emotionally fragile, or perhaps on the edge of early dementia.
Anyway, there are tropes aplenty: spy flick tropes, Russian tropes, Cold War tropes, CIA tropes, etc — and enough Boris and Natasha fake Slavic accents to flot a bot. I thought it was interesting casting that Matthias Schoenaerts (the uncle) looks like a younger taller Vladimir Putin, who was indeed a colonel in the KGB.
The film was loooong and the pacing glacial. It was sort of a love story between her and Joel Edgerton (CIA guy). It mostly seemed to be about getting J-Law into one nude or scantily clad scene after another. There was some full frontal nudity plus several graphic scenes of gore and the stuff of S&M. I would not recommend it for the faint of heart — or anyone for that matter.
I enjoyed the opening ballet sequences and the music — for me the best part of the film. The ending was the second best part of the movie. I’m easily confused by movies with convoluted plots and double crosses and triples crosses and I got lost in this one. I thought the ending was delightfully ambiguous. Or maybe I just didn’t understand it. Anyway, then I got up and went home so I could watch PBS and not watch the rest of the Oscars.