I had the…um… privilege of finally seeing Brokeback Mountain last night.
SPOILERS BELOW SO READ AT YOUR OWN RISK
Let me just say before I start that the fact the movie sucks balls is NOT because of the story. In and of itself there was something beautiful and simple about the love story. And yes, I did cry when we found out Jack had died and the grief that came from that. The acting was great and the tragedy I get. But that is beside the point.
I know I am probably going to cop it for saying this, but it is pretty clear why this was nominated for Best Picture and a slew of other awards. And no, not in a good way. The movie was filled with so many film clichés and Oscar moment schmaltz, it was unbearably comical. I am sorry, but at some points the movie was so corny it was laughable. It was so corny that we actually laughed out loud hysterically at some of the key dramatic moments of the movie. Not good.
First, the nauseating landscape shots. Yes. We get it. It was on a mountain. It was rugged. The seasons changed. I get it. But FUCK, if I see one more film-school-kid-with-a-million-dollars-and-a-crane shot of the Brokeback landscape, I think I will vomit. Something as simple as a shot of Heath Ledger on a horse became a friggin crane shot. It was like a friggin Enya video.
Second, I had no friggin idea what Heath Ledger was saying most of the time. Look, I love him, I think he’s a great actor — and yes, I get why Innes was speaking that way. But when your FINAL, PROFOUND, EMOTIVE LINE in the film is incomprehensible — and the audience needs to go “what the fuck did he just say?” when the credits roll, its a bad thing.
Third, and this is the clincher corny guaranteed-Oscar-winning moment was when Jack and Innes were having their final conflict — it is intense and sad that 2 people who love each other so deeply have spent 20 years living a lie — Jake Gyllenhaal delivers “all we have is Brokeback Mountain” Da-ta-da… Fuck, I cringed. I’m sorry Mr Lee, but that was imcomprehensibly over the top and cheesy. And completely unnecessary. Gag.
As a result, the movie was almost a pisstake of every Oscar moment in history. Now, having seen the movie, I certanly felt touched by the story, but, as I see it, Ang Lee RAPED that film with his over the top sentimentality, metaphors that slapped you in the face, and general Oscar brown nosing. I left the film glad it was over, rather than moved by the beautiful story.
With shit like that, you can guarantee yourself a nomination. But I can see why it didn’t win. Compared to something like Million Dollar Baby — no way.