Brett Easton Ellis and I tend to align with the same jam of thoughts when it comes to the hysterical, over-the-top, attempt by Hollywood to force inclusivity down our throats, instead of letting progress takes its form, shape into an organic, effortless movement, which is, by all means, what was happening before #OscarsSoWhite showed up in the industry and then the #TimesUp movement. Don’t get me wrong, the African-American movement currently happening at the movies is invigorating and excitingly fresh, ditto the amount of great female directors we have had emerge the past few years, but, at the end of the day, a good movie is a good movie is a good movie, as they say.
You have to go with artistic merit and not the facade-driven notion that if the movie is the first of its genre to have an African-American in the lead, or a female in the lead then it should automatically be overpraised for its outside-the-box political importance. That’s now how it should work and yet many of my colleagues have sunk towards this kind of direction in their writing and judging of filmmaking. It’s absurd and makes their writings, no doubt, bound to be read and ridiculed decades from now. Especially those that believe “Black Panther” was worthy of a Best Picture nomination.
Here’s a little snippet from a column Easton Ellis has written for THR which lays the bold, not unrealistic, claim that we’re headed towards living in a world that doesn’t care about movies anymore:
“One gets the terrible feeling that this classic would never be made today, let alone win the Oscar, in our current culture where everyone is screeching about victimhood and inclusivity and representation and identity politics — all of which distort reality and have absolutely nothing to do with creating art.
“By the time The Silence of the Lambs was heading to Oscar glory, earnest if misguided protests from the gay and trans communities appeared, and it feels like this was why Demme immediately made the overtly earnest Philadelphia — as if he was apologizing for all the fun-house dread, excitement, gore and thrills he supplied in The Silence of the Lambs.
“Despite the controversy and the protests at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the movie ultimately deserved the awards it won. Because the Oscars are supposed to ultimately go to talent and merit and not merely representation. When talent and merit are replaced by representation, then we’re living in a world that doesn’t care about movies anymore.”