Political Oscars – anti-war classic, Navalny and Women Talking

Lee Heidhues 3.12.2023

The Academy Awards would not be complete without at least one political statement.

This year there were three.

It’s a telling statement about the state of political discourse in the United States when the best international film is stridently anti-war German production.

The best documentary film is about a Russian dissident who is imprisoned for standing up to Vladimir Putin.

The best adapted screenplay Academy Award went to Women Talking, written and directed by Sarah Polley.

This is the first win for Sarah Polley, who was nominated for the same award in 2007 for “Away From Her.”

“I want to thank the Academy for not being mortally offended by the words women and talking so close together,” Ms. Polley said in her acceptance speech.

Perhaps those privileged members of the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Science want to send a message that says, “We care.”

It begs the question. Where are the courageous dissidents in the United States?

I am sure there are many who are fighting for environmental justice, civil rights and a fair justice system. You just don’t often read or hear about these people in the mainstream media.

The wealthy are too busy worrying about the their holdings at the failed Silicon Valley Bank and breathing a sigh of relief that Washington has bailed them out of their predicament.

The rest of America is too busy obsessing over the soon to be indicted wastrel Donald Trump and how this criminal charge will impact his run for the White House in 2024.

Excerpted from Deutsche Welle 3.12.2023

All Quiet on the Western Front wins best international film

Midway through the evening, German production All Quiet on the Western Front won the Academy Award for best international film.

The Netflix original film brought audiences a gruesome anti-war message almost a hundred years after the original book by Erich Maria Remarque was published.

Navalny wins best documentary amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

A documentary about jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has won the Oscar for best documentary feature.

Navalny explores the poisoning that nearly killed the Kremlin critic in 2020 and his subsequent detention upon his return to Moscow in 2021.

“My husband is in prison just for telling the truth. My husband is in prison just for defending democracy,” his wife, Yulia Navalnaya, said at the ceremony.

“Alexei, I am dreaming of the day when you will be free and our country will be free. Stay strong, my love.”