“I’m Spartacus!” No, “I’m Spartacus!” No, “I’m Spartacus!”
People, people, relax. Kirk Douglas was Spartacus (and, apparently, a very naughty young man, if you believe today’s reports). But you? You’re just a random stranger who the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has starring in its minute-long commercial spot, featuring some memorable lines from film history, which is part of its amped-up campaign to convince us to watch the big show on Feb. 25.
Now, hmmm. Over the past day or so, I’ve had to make repeated visits to the official Oscars homepage, where the clip is currently inescapable, and my feelings for the ad have fluctuated between irritation and obsession. That Aussie girl at the beginning? Kinda cute, kinda gives me the willies. The “Mrs. Robinson” dude? Oy. The silver fox (pictured) who channels Al Pacino in The Godfather Part III? Adorable. Then again, does The Godfather Part III really deserve this recognition? I suppose that “pull me back in” blurt has become famous, but the movie is hardly a classic. And while it’s nice to see Blazing Saddles get placed in the company of Gone With the Wind and Taxi Driver, where, I wonder, is the love for ever-quotable classics like The Wizard of Oz or – hello?! – Casablanca? Yo, Adrian, is the Academy putting a strain on our beautiful friendship?