Birdman and the Hugos

posted in: Blog, Reviews | 0

Since the snow had finally decided to give us a cease fire, and since all my American friends had been raving about it, yesterday we decided to go see what Birdman was all about.

Birdman really is a fantastic movie, both for the story, the acting, and the direction. Every single choice points to its focus on duality, real and imagined, stage and backstage. It’s made to look like it was shot all in one take, and there are very few seams visible. The actors play characters who embody the worst characteristics of their real life alter egos. And it all ostensibly revolves around a play within a play (or movie, in this case), while really being about something else entirely.


However, I’m really confused as to why people would even consider nominating it for the Best Dramatic Presentation Hugo.

It’s not SFF, at all. There are a few scenes that could qualify as magical realism, though it’s really, really hard to understand if any of them actually happened or they were all in Riggan’s mind (IMHO, the magic in magical realism must be actually magic – something that could not have happened otherwise – otherwise it’s just cheating).

It’s true that Riggan and Birdman are a very direct reference to Keaton’s career after the 1990s Batman movies, and there are several references to the modern resurgence of masked heroes in the media, but that makes it, at most, about SFF.

Had I been able to see the movie before the nomination deadline, I would’ve considered nominating it for Best Related Work. Best Dramatic Presentation, though? Not at all.