Best Director Oscar awarded to Katherine Bigelow

…who is, of course, the first woman to receive the distinction. While on one hand the milestone itself is something to be glad of, one can still wish it had gone to a less controversial figure. Her Hurt Locker  has been criticized by Iraq veterans for failure to grasp both military culture in general (the Army’s catch-all interjection “Hooah” is apparently absent from the protagonists’ vernacular) and the procedures of bomb-disposal units specifically.

I haven’t seen the film, or for that matter served in Iraq. I’ll probably do neither in the foreseeable future. But that’s the controversy.

In any case, we can all be glad Avatar didn’t win. That makes me happy. Humanity isn’t entirely irredeemable. Well, yes it is. But it can still muster some measure of decency and intelligence at times–usually the most trivial and unhelpful of times. But still. To mop Sisyphus’ brow does not grant him salvation, but it gives him nothing to complain about.

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