This is the time of year that critics and other groups get very hot and bothered about handing out accolades and prizes for the best in entertainment. Normally I get into the act to a disturbing degree (and, in future weeks, I will lay out some personal favorites), but this year I've chosen to sit out the overhyped awards season. There are reasons:
1. I don't have as much time. I haven't mentioned this yet, but I've been toiling away at a non-law job these past few weeks, because even non-Christians can use some holiday money. The real job search continues, but now I don't feel as passive about it. (In case you're curious, I work in a cashier cage in an old casino that's soon to close. Working at my parents' convenience store in years past was far more stressful, so doing this is a comparative breeze. Plus, it gives me time to let my mind wander in the inevitable heist direction, though I've decided I will not follow through because I don't know ten cohorts I trust enough.)
2. I feel my tastes are changing. I think having retired parents live under the same roof tends to do this. Just as your tolerance toward syndicated episodes of Everybody Loves Raymond starts to slowly rise, so does your taste for edgy cinematic fare begin to fall. I'm at a point in my life where I feel less inclined to handle a movie experience that I know is going to depress me. This makes me a more guarded viewer, and one not as likely to protest mainstream choices as I have in the past.
3. I'm not sure I would enjoy it. The Oscars in particular have become a bit formulaic in what gets a win -- it usually involves star power, a heavy-handed message, and a costly awards campaign. Where in the past I would regard a Best Picture winner as something worth seeing, their choices these past few years have been disappointing. (I saw A Beautiful Mind and didn't care for it. I liked Chicago, but my enjoyment at its cleverness diminishes in future viewings. I'm boycotting The Lord of the Rings movies, and after three opportunities to watch it for free, I still haven't seen Million Dollar Baby.)