Oscar night may seem like fun, but it has quietly turned the US market for serious films into a “brutal blood sport,” critic AO Scott writes in the New York Times. The highly commercial fare of January through August is followed by an “avalanche of art” after Labor Day—and those that are released too soon "will bear the stigma of failure," Scott laments.
The Academy may be more discerning now, but it also represents "a self-interested, self-involved professional clique" that is out of touch with American taste. Scott misses "the old days," when Oscar voters would "gild the lily of commercial success." Now they've become far too serious: “The wonderful thing about the Academy Awards is that they are fundamentally trivial. To pretend otherwise is to trivialize movies.”