Inside Higher Ed invited a panel of film, media, and popular culture scholars to weigh in with some Oscar predictions and analysis, and I’m one of them. I think that what’s interesting about the article is the “taste” question, when the panelists name the film that should win the Oscar, the film they liked best, in part because of the formal and political criteria that emerge in identifying an Oscar winner.
Of course, what I didn’t say in the article is that, as a documentary buff, I’m far more curious about how the best documentary categorty will play out. Iraq in Fragments is an incredible documentary, one of the best I’ve seen on the Iraq War, but I’d be incredibly curious to see the response if An Inconvenient Truth won.
By the way, I caught most of Rory Kennedy’s fascinating HBO documentary, Ghosts of Abu Ghraib, last night. I’m not sure I completely buy Kennedy’s Milgram Experiment-inspired thesis that the guards actions can be explained because they internalized the military power structure, but the decision to explore the Abu Ghraib scandal through the testimony of former prisoners and interviews with the guards was an interesting one.