Last year, I failed at Oscarpalooza because I had a newborn. As in, my daughter was born after the nominations came out. I was excited for this year, because I had a decent chance of seeing more of the movies. My boyfriend, Graham, is generally working a morning shift, so he is home early enough for me to, in theory, leave Simon and Irene with him and go see movies in the theatre. Unfortunately for me, he then got called up to do a training for a little over three weeks, leaving me home with the kids the entire time. And babysitting didn’t really work out for me.
Some years, I can get by okay with just what I can rent, but in most years, in order to see as many nominees as possible before the ceremony, you have to go to the theatre. Black Panther has knocked the last of the nominees out of the theatre around here, but in previous years, I’ve seen as many as a dozen nominees in the theatre after nominations came out. The problem this year was that I couldn’t even really rent much, because the kids were always around. There are doubtless a lot of people who have the same problem, and their issues don’t get talked about. I was told I had no excuse not to see some movie or another now that it was on Netflix, and all I could think was, “Is it appropriate to watch in front of a four-year-old?”
Traditionally, on the day of the ceremony, I write my predictions list. I’ve been doing it for about ten years now. But I feel as though I don’t know enough about the nominees to have an opinion this year. I’ve been avoiding knowing details of the movies I want to see, and there are one or two where the details I know are enough to know I don’t want to see them. When the nominees were released, I’d seen three of them, I think. I’ve since had a chance to see a few more, but not even all the ones I have free access to from the streaming services I already pay for. I just haven’t had time.
I probably could’ve found a way to see The Post, if I’d sat down and made the arrangements with the friend who wanted to see it with me. (We were agreed that it had to be better than Into the Woods, the other Meryl Streep movie we saw together.) But we had to work around babysitting for her one and my two, and it didn’t happen, and it’s not in our local theatres anymore. So there we are. I suspect it isn’t going to win either of its nominations, because I’m not sure they’ll want to give Streep another Oscar and am sure they won’t want to give Spielberg another, but I don’t even know enough to get into a conversation if it deserved to win.
But I will be watching, when I find the remote and can turn the TV to the right channel. I have that time, at least, and Graham’s home to chase the kids around for me if they distract me—or anyway, he gets off work at four, right around the time red carpet coverage on ABC begins. It still makes me feel at least a little connected to the broader movie experience, and I wouldn’t be surprised that it feels that way to a lot of more casual movie buffs.
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