Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The inaugural Soily Awards announces nominees

With the recent Golden Raspberry Award nominations announcement, there were some complaints about the nominees and the selection process. As a result, the film and entertainment website Movieline has launched a rival bad-movie-award called the Soily Awards. Their intent is to include movies that are high-minded yet fail.

The nominees for Worst Picture of 2011 were Abduction, Conan the Barbarian, Green Lantern, The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) and Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Abduction also picked up a Bad Acting nomination for Taylor Lautner, who was also "recognized" for The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part I. Transformers: Dark of the Moon received an additional nomination in Bad Directing for Michael Bay.

Arthur and Your Highness picked up the most mentions with three each. Arthur received nods for Bad Acting (Russell Brand, Helen Mirren) and the Shart Prize. Your Highness was mentioned for Bad Directing (David Gordon Green, also with The Sitter), Bad Acting (Natalie Portman, also with No Strings Attached and Thor) and the Shart Prize.

On Wednesday, March 14, they will introduce the Brown Note Prize, to be voted on by the public.

This exercise could turn out to be somewhat interesting. However, I am mostly indifferent to this additional anti-award. I understand the passion with which some people view films and the wish to vent against those that are aggravating. But lumping legitimate artists together with the likes of Adam Sandler is misguided and disrespectful to the artists.

True artists don't always play it safe and stick to one thing. They challenge themselves and yes, they sometimes fail. Often those failures aren't wasted and lead directly to later successes. To me, a noble failure is much more interesting than an easy success, let alone a regular failure where there's no effort to be unique.

Thus, these awards could have the unintended effect of encouraging mediocrity. It also strikes me as somewhat ironic and hypocritical that a new award would take itself so seriously as a high-brow version of the Razzies, and yet accuse their targets of pretentiousness.

The nominations and winners are selected by a critics' panel consisting of Michael Adams, author of Showgirls, Teen Wolves, and Astro Zombies; Lewis Beale, freelance film journalist; Brad Brevet, Rope of Silicon; Edward Douglas, Coming Soon; Alonso Duralde, The Wrap and What the Flick?!; David Edelstein, New York Magazine; Jordan Hoffman, freelance columnist/critic; Patric King, House of Pretty; Eric Kohn, indieWIRE; Dan Kois, Razziewatch columnist for Grantland; Will Leitch, New York Magazine; Guy Lodge, In Contention; Julie Miller, Vanity Fair; Mat Newman, writer/publicist; David Poland, Movie City News; Kevin Polowy, NextMovie; Steve Pond, The Wrap; Dustin Rowles, Pajiba; Brad Slager, Movieline and CHUD; and Jamie Stuart, The Mutiny Company.

The inaugural Soily Awards will be presented on March 23.


Complete list of nominees for the inaugural Soily Awards

The Soily for Worst Picture of 2011
The most appalling, misconceived and/or unpleasant-to-watch film of 2011. The more ambitious/pretentious, the better.
Conan the Barbarian
Green Lantern
The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)
Transformers: Dark of the Moon

The Soily for Achievement in Bad Directing
The director of the most appalling, misconceived and/or unpleasant-to-watch film of 2011 — or maybe just most appalling director? (NOTE: The award will be named after its inaugural winner.)
Michael Bay, Transformers: Dark of the Moon
Dennis Dugan, Jack and Jill
Clint Eastwood, J. Edgar
David Gordon Green, Your Highness and The Sitter
Zack Snyder, Sucker Punch

The Soily for Achievement in Bad Acting
A unisex award recognizing the worst and/or least inspired performance by any actor in any film in 2011.
Russell Brand, Arthur
Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs
Taylor Lautner, Abduction and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part I
Alex Pettyfer, I Am Number Four and Beastly
Adam Sandler, Just Go With It and Jack and Jill

The Brown Paycheck Achievement in Bad Acting
A unisex award recognizing the most lopsided ratio of salary to quality.
Bradley Cooper, The Hangover Part II
Harrison Ford, Cowboys and Aliens
Nicole Kidman, Just Go With It
Helen Mirren, Arthur
Natalie Portman, Your Highness, No Strings Attached and Thor

The Shart Prize
A film that seemed like it might be bad but turned out much, much more aromatically awful than anyone could have imagined.
Atlas Shrugged: Part I
Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star
Your Highness

The Shit-the-Bed Award
Arguably the most prestigious Soily, this honor goes to the movie that, despite its pedigree and everything it had going for it on paper, nevertheless resulted in a massive failure to move the cultural needle or achieve anything remotely resembling entertainment.
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close
The Iron Lady
J. Edgar
War Horse

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