The 2010 Oscar de Low-Renta Awards

Peter Cavagnaro


On March 7th many of Hollywood’s best and most finely manicured will spill out of limos onto the red carpet outside of the Kodak Theater with dreams of taking home Oscar. Indeed “the Oscars” are watched with keen interest and joy by nearly everyone associated with film—even those of us operating well outside of the Hollywood spotlight.

Nonetheless it’s easy to feel left out when we hear about those lavish gift bags. It is in this spirit that we decided to have a little fun by presenting our own awards in categories not recognized—not yet at least—by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Unlike the Academy, which polls their 6,000 or so members with help from a high-end consulting firm, we have but a single judge, jury, and executioner, BAM/PFA film and video curator Steve Seid.

Ladies and gentleman, without further ado, the 2010 Oscar de Low-Renta Awards …

Best Recent Film Based on a Novel with the Same Title as a Recent Film:
Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire, directed by Lee Daniels

Best Silly Scientific Theory in a Silly Scientific Story:
Red Matter, Star Trek, directed by J.J. Abrams

Best Animated Feature with Animals more Animated than their Human Counterparts:
Fantastic Mr. Fox, directed by Wes Anderson

Best Film About Iraq that Couldn’t be Re-Written for the Vietnam Era:
The Hurt Locker, directed by Kathryn Bigelow

Best Ironic Typos in a Title Meant to Imply the Director was Ironically Above Irony:
Inglourious Basterds, directed by Quentin Tarantino

Best Tribute to American Consumerism:
Mall Cop, directed by Steve Carr

Best Film with Highly Evolved Technology and a Scenario Devolved to the mid-Sixties:
Avatar, directed by James Cameron

Best Salute to John Carpenter’s They Live:
District 9, directed by Neill Blomkamp

Best Method Acting that Passes for Twelve Step:
Jeff Bridges in Crazy Heart, directed by Scott Cooper

Best Surprise in a Remake:
Travolta’s sideburns in The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3, directed by Tony Scott

Best Horrific Hormone Plot that Should Have Starred Sandra Bullock:
Jennifer’s Body, directed by Karyn Kusama

Best Biographical Acting that Did Away with Authentic Meryl Streep-Like Tics and Twitches:
Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela in Invictus

Best Argument for Staycations:
The Road, directed by John Hillcoat

Best Documentary with a Subject Who Should Already Know if He Won or Not:
The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers, directed by Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith

Best Re-Purposing of a Cliché Already Used by The Core:
Unobtainium, Avatar, directed by James Cameron

Best Use of Bovid Effects:
The Men Who Stare at Goats, directed by Grant Heslov

Best Paean to Generational Salesmanship:
Taking Woodstock, directed by Ang Lee

Best Film Title that Prophesized Its Own Box Office Numbers:
Drag Me to Hell, directed by Sam Raimi

Best Lederhosen in a Film With a Budget Over $35 Million, Supporting Actor Category:
Bruno, directed by Larry Charles

Best Empowerment Message for Youth:
Orphan, directed by Jaume Collet-Serra

Best Toy that Became a Film that Became a Toy that Became a Film:
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, directed by Michael Bay

Best Film with Antimatter and Tom Hanks:
Angels & Demons, directed by Ron Howard

Best Biographical Film that Makes Clift Notes an Anachronism:
The Last Station, directed by Michael Hoffman

Best City Not Destroyed in 2012:
Boise, Idaho


Oscar de Low-Renta-award winner Taking Woodstock, which previewed at BAM/PFA in August.