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Oscars: The Morning After

Alicia Vikander I’ve always looked forward to the Academy Awards, so I don’t
want to sound jaded in discussing this year’s seemingly endless road to the
Dolby Theatre. But here is how I feel, the morning after:

                If just
one person sees Spotlight who hadn’t
been interested before (even in Compton)…

                If only
one moviegoer seeks out the gripping Foreign Language Film winner Son of Saul

                If just
a handful of viewers are now aware of such bright young talents as Brie Larson
(check out Short Term 12) and Alicia
Vikander (don’t miss Ex Machina)…

                If more
people recognize one of the finest actors of our time, Mark Rylance (primarily
a stage actor who made such a strong impression in Bridge of Spies and the recent miniseries Wolf Hall)…

                If the
impassioned speeches about rape on campus and the urgent need to address
climate change have an effect on anyone in the worldwide Oscar audience…

                And if
the Hollywood film industry realizes that it needs to be more inclusive, not as
a sign of tokenism but as a reflection of contemporary society…

                …then
all the hoopla, campaigning, controversy, and attendant blather has been
worthwhile. The Academy Awards don’t, and can’t, exist in a vacuum…but good
work and good movies were honored last night, and that’s what the Oscars are supposed
to do.

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