Take this observation about this morning’s Oscar nominations with a grain of salt because I haven’t seen about half the Best Picture nominees. (I live in Manhattan, where going to the movies is an exercise in masochism, and most of the Oscar-nominated films are still languishing near the back of my Netflix queue.) Based on my limited experience, I can’t quarrel with the nomination of The Social Network, The King’s Speech or (the unexpectedly wonderful) Winter’s Bone.
But I’m having a hard time believing that Ben Affleck’s The Town didn’t make the bloated Best Picture roster, or at least earn Affleck a Best Director nomination. Jeremy Renner’s Best Supporting Actor nomination is small consolation. All by itself, the scene where Renner pauses to take a sip from a discarded paper cup before going out for a final shoot-out with the cops puts The Town in an entirely different league than Inception and The Kids are All Right. Does Hollywood bear some kind grudge against Ben Affleck?