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I Am Going to Hold My Breath and Stomp My Feet Until ‘(500) Days of Summer’ Gets an Oscar Nod

Declan Sullivan | Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ok, so easily the best movie released in the past 12 months was “[500] Days of Summer.” Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel, this romantic comedy managed to take a genre that is flooded by awful Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Aniston vehicles and turn it into something with a message on the complexities of modern relationships that, at the same time, remained entertaining due to an offbeat sense of humor, a great soundtrack and visually dazzling moments that conveyed the emotions of the characters in a way that words never could.

But that wasn’t good enough for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Instead, the Academy gave a nomination to an actress whose most famous role was that of Gracie Hart of “Miss Congeniality” and “Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous” fame.

“[500] Days” at least deserved a nomination for Best Original Screenplay or Best Actor. That’s not to knock the movies nominated in those categories — they are pretty solid. But the fact that “[500] Days of Summer,” a movie that not only completely changed the way an entire genre is perceived — think “Star Wars” to sci-fi and fantasy movies — but also appeals to nearly every person that it is shown to — I’m talking about coasties-to-stoners range of appeal — did not garner even a single nomination makes me nervous about our society in general.

Despite all its praise, “[500] Days” was not the most popular movie of the year — or even close to it. No, instead that recognition goes to a movie that is about two degrees away from furry porn. “Avatar” did look sweet, but its plot was a shallow rip-off of countless other movies — “The Last Samurai” and “Dances with Wolves,” to name two — and yet it has NINE Oscar nominations. That’s crap. It deserves the technical awards, but Best Picture? No, no it does not. Instead, it is merely taking up a spot that “[500] Days” should be occupying.

I’m not saying “[500] Days” deserves to win Best Picture, or even be nominated for it, but looking at some of the movies up for the award, it is at least as good or better than half on the list. I mean, “Up” was a good movie, but aside from the first 15 minutes, it’s a pretty standard Pixar flick. And I don’t think standard flicks should be rewarded with both Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay nods.

The Academy has upset me before, but I have not been so upset with a snub that I wanted the Academy members AND their families to suffer, at least until now. I curse you Academy members. I curse you to another decade of declining ratings for the Oscars. I curse you to increased claims of irrelevancy. I curse you to the level of the Kids Choice Awards. “[500] Days of Summer” deserved the nomination, and you not giving it to them just shows how oblivious you are to the difference between good movies and movies with big budgets and star power. If not giving the nomination seemed like the right move to you, then I don’t want to be right.

P.s. If you haven’t seen “[500] Days of Summer,” you really should. Zooey Deschanel is sooooo hot.