CINEMA: CRYING FOR MADONNA

EXPERTS EXPLAIN WHY OSCAR SNUBBED THE STUDIOS

Pedants who complain that Academy Awards don't really honor the year's best work in cinema because they ignore little, independent art-house movies--and hey, did you know that French toast isn't really from France?--must come to terms with what they have wrought now that the Academy has indeed honored a bunch of little, independent art-house movies. The result is a dull, nonglamorous contest with, alas, little prospect for Oscar-night silliness. Secrets & Lies' Brenda Blethyn is a wonderful actress, but don't expect her to show up dressed like Geena Davis.

Of the five nominees for Best Picture, only one, TriStar's Jerry Maguire,...

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