A note on the February 2001 academy award nominations

There are big mistakes in the nominations for best picture.

Nominated were Chocolat, Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Erin Brockovitch, Gladiator, and Traffic.

From my point of view, one of these is an excellent candidate and one is a plausible candidate. Traffic is deserving of a nomination; it took a serious look at a serious subject and was well written, acted and crafted. Erin Brockovitch is a plausible candidate; it tells a good story well and with some cinematic style and is decently acted.

Gladiator, Chocolat, and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon were weak movies, from my point of view. Gladiator had impressive spectacle, but it was slow and pointless, with fake looking scenery and close-ups of the fighting scenes that precluded seeing the big picture, with much gratuitous gore. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon had inventive acrobatics and the stunning Michelle Yeoh, but was otherwise confusing and dull. There must have been 50 or 100 better movies in the year than the silly, unnecessary fairy tale, Chocolat.

Among the movies I would have nominated before Gladiator and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon are Boiler Room, High Fidelity, Wonderboys, The Contender, You Can Count on Me, Croupier, The Pledge, Best in Show, Dr. T and the Women, State and Main, Five Senses, Tao of Steve, O Brother Where Art Thou, and Dancer in the Dark; and half of those I think are really not academy award quality.