I read this headline: "Viewer Numbers Increase a Bit for Oscar Show" and I hit an eureka! moment.
And this is it: The Academy, in all its overstuffed, greedy glory, saw that Latinos are hot this year and that Latinos are many this year and it saw Ugly Betty and saw that it was good. And so it decided to put a bunch of Latinos up in competition for the simple reason of increasing ratings. Just like it does with other ethnic groups once in a while. With Black artists it is finally learning the lesson that you don't put them all in the same year and then forget about them, but that you continue acknowledging their talent every year. With Latinos we're not there yet. It took the Blacks how long? So don't hold your breath.
This revelation also explains to me why none of the nominated Latinos won anything of import (except Guillermo Navarro's cinematography and 2 other Oscars for Pan's Labyrinth and Santaolalla's underwhelming music for Babel). Because it is all marketed. This year was not only the year of the Latinos, it was the global year. And the year of global warming, and the year of lesbians. I am all for it, but I wonder what our fates will be next year. If they're not careful they may run out of lame p.c. causes for the show. And then what?
This also explains to me the otherwise unfathomable indifference (some call it conspiracy) against Children of Men, a movie good enough, strong enough, entertaining enough and political enough to deserve a best movie of the year award.
But it was not to be, uno, because it's rather dreary, even with a sort of happy ending tacked at the end, and dos, because even though it was directed by my esteemed compadre Alfonso Cuarón, who is a Mexican, shot by Emmanuel Lubezki, ditto and edited by Cuaron and Alex Rodriguez, another Mexican, the movie does not have a recognizable Latino bone in its body, like the movies of the other Two Amigos do. So, therefore, it doesn't count.
Now I see it. And that's it for the stupid Oscars until next year.