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Oscar Dwarfs Godern Rooster?!

Popularity 2Viewed 12017 times 2013-3-1 22:02 |System category:News| Oscar Awards, dwarfs, Golden Rooster Award


As regards Oscar Award, I’ve got little to say since it has nothing to do with me except for telling me which western movies are worth watching. In fact, the Award has directed me to dozens of awesome movies, which are sure to be at the top of the field, in terms of their artistic expressions and contents, such as Forrest Gum, Titanic, The Silence of Lambs. But that’s all.


I would not excitingly keep an eye on its annual appraising process. Neither would I exclaim ‘bingo’ for Ang Lee, the Best Director Oscar for his adventure film "Life of Pi", nor am I likely to gossip about those amusing sidelights behind the glittering awarding stage. What I’d like to do is just scout the web for the available version of Argo and digest it by myself in one deep night, much like I did with other movie-competition-recommended movies.


I’m not crazy about Oscar partly because it’s not Chinese. Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not a xenophobe. But a patriot I am! We have got our own movie awards, top 3 of which involve Golden Rooster Awards, Hundred Flowers Awards, and Ornamental Column Awards. To my disappointment, none of these awards overtake Oscar in terms of popularity and influence, home and abroad. Especially in recent years, natives seemed to pay less and less attention to them. They seem to be entertaining themselves as a flash in a pan. Our talent filmmakers produced about half of a thousand movies yearly, some of which failed to stir up a ripple. But there is little doubt that there are many pop-ups such as Lost on Journey (人在囧途)(2010)well-known among our natives. On the one end of spectrum is our flourishing movie industry while on the other end, the unpopular, or even isolated, movie Awards. What’s the problem with our Awards? Why can’t they catch the eyes of domestic and abroad movie fans just as Oscar?


First of all, the phenomenon is closely related to state soft power. USA, as the sole superpower, its influence manifests itself in every aspects of our life, movie Awards being no exemption. However, this cannot explain why our Awards were so popular in 1980s-90s when our state power could not compare with that of today.


And then, it follows that the reason for our Awards’ loneliness is most likely to lie in our state policy orientation and the Awards themselves. Generally speaking, our Awards tend to take more political correctness into consideration than artistic beauty and story per se, while Oscar and the like does the opposite. On this point, as an outsider and a layman of movie appraisals, I am not sure. So I’d like to call it a stop. What I’m sure is we can learn a lot from Oscar and other prestigious western Awards, their evaluation criteria, their propaganda, and more importantly, their professional spirit.


Oscar exceeds our Awards, which cools down my enthusiastic about the world known feast. The same is true with the football Would Cup. That sounds unreasonable, and a little populism. But I cannot help myself to be so.


Ye, Argo is beckoning to me. It’s time for me to play knife and fork, anyhow.   

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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Reply Report huaren2323 2013-3-2 23:47
Thank You Mr. Wang. I did not have a chance to see from the Chinese film viewers point of view until you pointed it out. I remember the popular (Hua Pi = Painted Face about 2 female protagonists exchanging faces... horror movie category). Cinema produced in China is somehow limited by criteria set up by the protectors of China. Yang YiMou Chen Kaige are very artistic and have been instrumental in getting Gong Li, Zhang ZiYi into the limelight. Gong Li decided to marry and failed to attend an important culture event in China because she was getting sworn in as Citizen of Singapore so she was boycotted leading Zhang Ziyi a chance to rise up. Jet Li had to strike out on his own in Hollywood without much help from China. Luckily he had some good assitance of Hong Kong people who lined him up with Hollywood and he re-invented himself. Have you ever wonder why Hong Kong production even with China's participation succeeded in international scene..a case in point " Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon", The legend of Flying Daggers (using  Korean Japanese actor), or " Confucius by Hong Kong actor Chow Yuen Fat and lately the blockbuster : "Journey to the West" another Hong Kong led production, have a common Huaren influence? To be truthful An Li ( Ang Li ) did not get any help at all from China or from Hong Kong but from Taiwan. He succeeded out of sheer talent and hardwork climbing the Hollywood ladder. I proudly ascribed his triump as Chinese soft power because many foreigners still can not culturally distinguished between Chinese from China, Hong Kong,Singapore or Taiwan. An Li had been jobless for many years and supported by his loving Jean Li wife from her salary as molecular biologist in New York. His struggle of self identity ( Taiwanese hybrid of Chinese and Japanese influence living in a foreign culture and trying to outshine in a foreign land =USA) actually finetuned his skills of making meaning out of conflicting realities...Like Sense and Sensibilities (breaking the female shackles in Male dominated Victorian England) , Brokeback Mountain ( Social acceptance of Gay relationship between two male rancher that won him the first Oscars), Flying Dragon Crouching Tiger (Clash of Tradition and Individual Aspirations and the underlying theme of the 18 Immortals that one finds immortality by flying from the pinnacle into the abyss=the last scene when Zhang Ziyi leaps from the mountain to certain Death? or Immortality? or both?)....The richness of culture is not in the surgical limitation of what genre are allowed to prosper. A garden of spontaneous growth is more beautiful and long lasting than a greenhouse of cultivated plants. Confucius is not even popular during his lifetime and is actually shun by many and outcast many times. If his works were curtailed and censored out of history..then you and I may be speaking Nipponggo. I do believe that Oscars have the highest veiwership around the world MAINLY because of USA's Soft POwer= The culture of USA is a melting pot of other world's culture that suit their society's needs. But I would not go the extend that they overshadow other awards. The Life of Pi is no longer shown in many cinemas in Canada. So is the" Beast of the Southern Wild" or "Amour" or "Lincoln". "Django Unchained" is still shown but what it makes in multimillion dollars is very poor in culture and historical context. In this bad economic times people do not want to ponder and think they wanted to be entertained within the 2 hours they are in a forgotten space and time with their popcorn and beer.
Reply Report huaren2323 2013-3-3 00:04
Oh..Mr. Wang....I just wanted to share something...There is this amazing..."Story of Chun Yun" circulated in Canada with real life Shaolin Masters performing Martial arts of incredible strength and flexibility...compared to Canada's own production of " Cirque Soleil". Both are acrobatic and entertainment category but Cirque Soleil is Bilion Dollars YEARLY revenue ( being shown in China and using many many Chinese acrobats) while Chun Yun is virtually unknown and languishing in the basement archive. It is such a waste of wonderful talents? I wonder why this is so? ANyone? care to comment?
Reply Report ALittleBoat 2013-3-3 11:09
huaren2323: Thank You Mr. Wang. I did not have a chance to see from the Chinese film viewers point of view until you pointed it out. I remember the popular (Hua P ...
hi, my friend, you have got a deep insight into the issure.
you're openminded and take the excellent cultures of the whold world as a whole into consideration, that's great. Wheather the cultures have roots in China, Egypt, USA or Canada,   they can be embodied in a well-made movie in any other country. Culture bears no national boundary. Culture belongs to the whole human beings.
Reply Report ALittleBoat 2013-3-3 11:15
huaren2323: Oh..Mr. Wang....I just wanted to share something...There is this amazing..."Story of Chun Yun" circulated in Canada with real life Shaolin M ...
on government censorship, i think it's omnipresent with a difference of loosing from tighening. Comparatively filmmakers in US enjoy a more lenient atmosphere, thus top movies flourishing.
Reply Report huaren2323 2013-3-3 13:07
ALittleBoat: on government censorship, i think it's omnipresent with a difference of loosing from tighening. Comparatively filmmakers in US enjoy a more lenient at ...
I was hoping the lossening is happening......but I do understand what and why the Protectors ( censors) are doing for the gtreater good of China...Happy to hear tha things are changing...

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