John ended his post on the movie with:

“Pray that Blanchett doesn’t get nominated so the rest of you don’t have to watch I’m Not There.”

It appears we did not pray hard enough, as Blanchett got nominated, forcing the rest of us to watch I’m Not There. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge Bob Dylan fan. I own Nashville Skyline on vinyl and love it to pieces. I listen to Theme Time Radio Hour on XM (the show he hosts). I’ve probably built a case, at some point in my life, that The Traveling Wilburys are one of the 20 greatest bands ever. Heck, I’ve seen Masked and Anonymous. You know what, let’s start there. Masked and Anonymous was written by Bob Dylan and Larry Charles, starred Bob Dylan and all sorts of cool actors (No, seriously, go look and see who was in it.), and was totally bleeping incomprehensible. I watched it with my family, and I think my parents fell asleep, and my brother went off to go screw around on the computer. Twenty minutes into the movie. So, in a way, I can see how I’m Not There would be the biopic Bob Dylan always wanted: full of fun actors, insanely incomprehensible, seemingly pointless, a biopic only the vaguest sense of the term, and something of a morality play. Thus, one could probably argue, like a Bob Dylan song. Except that Dylan songs are, you know, enjoyable.

John and I agree that this is the worst movie we had to watch for the Oscars this year. About thirty minutes into the movie, I couldn’t wait for the stupid thing to end. But there was no escape. For-seemingly-ever. I thought the movie failed to be cohesive or interesting. Each plot line was boring and seemed pointless. The only part of the movie I liked (other than the Phil Ochs reference, which I knew my dad would appreciate) was the portrayal of the going-electric “Judas!” moment. I thought the frenetic, batshiat-crazy energy of the movie did justice to this epic moment in rock history. Could it have been better? Absolutely. Particularly in the aftermath. But I think the moment was particularly difficult for a movie like this to handle, and it did so pretty well.

Pretty much the rest of the movie, though, I’d call relatively shallow. To me, merely referencing a Bob Dylan lyric is as “shallow” as one of the spoof movies like Meet the Spartans. Sure, I’m Not There may have better actors and be more artsy, but ultimately, it doesn’t do any better job of conveying meaning, in that sense. The difference, of course, is that the spoof movies are actually funny here and there, and I’m Not There did more than just call out lyrics, at times.

But to get to Cate Blanchett, since that’s the only reason we had to see this unfortunate movie. I keep thinking how weak the supporting actress category is. In my mind, Cate Blanchett got this nomination because she is Cate Blanchett and because she was playing a man. And you know, that’s not necessarily so terrible, given the other nominations. It is just that I don’t really think she had much to work with, in the most normal of the storylines. I guess her performance during the press conference scene was pretty decent. So I probably wouldn’t have given her a nomination, if I got to pick five performances. But operating under the assumption we can only look at movies and roles Oscar would consider, then yeah, I’m on board with the nomination.

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