Err on the Side of Human

Barry Boyce on why the 201Academy Awards are a lesson in embracing your mistakes.

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At 2017 Academy Awards, the night’s big award, best picture, was largely a contest between two movies: La La Land, a bubbly, lighter-than-air musical depicting beautiful people traipsing through the hills, valleys, boulevards, and freeways of LA; and Moonlight, a gritty coming-of-age story about a young African American marginalized not only through racial discrimination but because he is poor, gay, and being raised by a mother addicted to drugs. Despite its grave theme, Moonlight uplifts; it’s about resilience and love in the face of untold odds.

In the inevitable social media wars, La La Land was denigrated for even being considered in the same league as a movie of the depth of Moonlight. So, when La La Land won the night’s final Oscar, many Moonlight fans turned off their TVs. When the La La Land acceptance speeches were halted to announce that the true winner was Moonlight, it shocked everyone involved. A truly human moment emerged when the teams from both movies expressed their respect and admiration for their counterparts. The pettiness stirred up in the social media universe was not in evidence onstage. Though they made very different movies, their behavior suggested a mutual appreciation for the artistry involved…