Opinion > Star Staff
On Sunday, the 85th Academy Awards will be hosted, honoring some of the year's best films. As an avid movie enthusiast, it's something I look forward to each year.
With that said, the Oscars (as they're informally known) are more of an event that I hate-watch more than actually watch for my own sake. That's because the academy has a knack for honoring movies commonly referred to as "Oscar bait" -- you know, the inspirational stories and tear-jerker films.
Take 2010's ceremony, for instance. "The Social Network" was as close to a modern marvel as you can get, yet it was beat by the inspiring story of England's King George VI overcoming his speech impediment in "The King's Speech."
"The Social Network" featured snappy dialogue, haunting music and unique perspectives from a variety of angles. The film was also relevant in modern culture, given the ubiquity of Facebook and its founder Mark Zuckerberg. Despite being lauded as the best film of the year by countless critics, however, it fell short.
The Oscars have never been a ceremony to stray from tradition. Science fiction films are never given the respect they deserve, evident in the fact that Stanley Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey" wasn't even nominated for best picture. Yet in the most recent American Film Institute Rankings, it's the considered the 15th best film ever -- and the best science fiction film of all time.
Kubrick himself never won a best director award either, even though most directors would probably tell you he deserved at least one. That's probably because he strayed from tradition and made unconventional films.
There are a lot of good films that were released this year, and it surprised me quite a bit that I actually think "Lincoln," this season's closest thing to Oscar bait, was easily the best film of 2012.
Led by Daniel Day-Lewis in the eponymous role, "Lincoln" gets pretty much everything right. It makes Abraham Lincoln a human character instead of treating him like a modern celebrity. He still commands respect, but it humanizes him to an extent perhaps never seen in a film depicting a U.S. president.
Sure, "Argo" and "Zero Dark Thirty" may have featured more flair, but "Lincoln" was a movie teeming with personality. Sadly, however, it looks like I'll be disagreeing with the academy's selection yet again -- this year the Oscar bait hooked me.