Monday, June 22, 2015

Topic Of The Day: Why The Struggle?

Hello, Bloggers, welcome to another episode of Topic Of The Day. For today's topic, I will discuss a slight issue regarding the Oscars that I have thought about for quite some time. Here we go:

Now, I have thought about how the Oscars have recognized films that center on black, female, and gay protagonists. But usually the only time films with those protagonists get that type of recognition is when they deal with the black, female, or gay struggle. So I asked myself, "Why the struggle?" Why is it whenever a black film is in the conversation, it has to only portray the main characters dealing with slavery or fighting for civil rights? While slavery is something nobody should ever have to endure, there are still films about the black experience that don't deal with that sort of thing. The same thing with the women. Whenever there is a female driven film in the conversation, the female is often battling their husband's illness, overcoming their own illnesses, or is a struggling mother. Lastly, when a gay film is recognized, the gay protagonist is often fighting for gay rights or battling AIDS. Now, I am not saying that these stories about slavery, women's rights, or AIDS shouldn't ever be told. What I am trying to get at is that when a black, female, or gay film is recognized, look beyond the struggle. That's why the Best Actress category last year was SUCH a missed opportunity because there were such rich and complex female roles (i.e. Essie Davis in The Babadook, Jenny Slate in Obvious Child, Emily Blunt in Edge of Tomorrow, etc.) that slipped through the cracks because they hardly deal with the female struggle and that's a shame.

Still, I ask myself why a black, female, or gay film that gets awards recognition has to be about their struggle? Is it because, since the Academy is mostly made up of white and presumably straight males, they are trying to feel better about themselves? Is this the result of studios pushing for these struggle films, hoping that voters will take pity? Are the studios running the campaigns not paying any mind to their own films about the black, female, or gay experience rather than the struggle?

What do you guys think? Please feel free to write your thoughts in the comments section if you have an answer and if you agree or disagree with my thoughts. Thanks for reading!