Industry blogs blew up this morning with news of the 82nd Academy Award Nominations. Click HERE for a complete list from IMDB. This is the first year since 1943 that ten best picture nominations have been announced. However, does this year deserve ten nominations? Sure, it's been a ground-breaking year with films like Avatar (which perfected motion capture work flow) and District 9 (fantastic CG/Live Action composting and character; on a budget!) But, does that qualify for a "best picture" nomination?
Our mission at AiNYC is to give you a solid foundation in narrative filmmaking. There are several challenges in studying this foundation because the filmmaker is a unique artist. This artist must deal with elements of design, direction and (most important) time. Time is the crucial element to master. In order to keep your audience interested, the filmmaker must discover and experiment with a variety of ways to engage people. The best method is through storytelling. What is the point in making a film if you are not telling a story? Right? Even the most obscure, abstract, experimental films are telling a story. For the experimental film, the character could be a place (the planet, a country, a house) and the plot could be states of being (the planet viewed through rural and urban settings, a country at a various scenes in history, a house lived in and abandoned). Successful documentaries are "stories" occurring in reality (Spellbound: children competing to win the spelling bee. Ryan: following the rise and fall of one of Canada's greatest animators). Following this logic, my belief is that the "best picture"of the year should be the film that has an equal mastery of craft (acting, directing, cinematography, etc.) and storytelling.
My challenge to you is to come up with your own opinion. Look at the top ten films this year. Are there films that should be on this list that were excluded? Are any of these films an example of master storytelling? An animated film made the list this year (the second time in the Oscar's history). Should a documentary or an experimental film make this list? Questions to ponder? Keep Thinking!!! - Director Eve.