The LAMB Devours the Oscars – Best Documentary Short Subject

by Dylan · February 5, 2009 · LAMB Devours the Oscars · 2 Comments

Editor’s note: Welcome to the seventh of a 24-part series dissecting the 81st Academy Awards, brought to you by the Large Association of Movie Blogs and its assorted members. Every day leading up to the Oscars, a new post written by a different LAMB will be published, each covering a different category of the Oscars. To read any other posts regarding this event, please click the tag following the post. Thank you, and enjoy!

By Mike of Spaghetti Sauce and Sweet Peas.

It’s somewhat comical that as a self proclaimed Oscar blogger, I got stuck with this category. I’ve been analyzing the Oscars since 2000 and this is one of the hardest to do. Why? No precursors. Also, most people have not seen these films besides members of the Academy, so it’s difficult to know how each film really stands.

I guess the point I’m trying to make is I’m going to keep this really short (well, it is a short subject category). I’m not going to fill you with in-depth analysis when I simply don’t have any. It’s a waste of time.

I usually go off a couple things when predicting this category. First is word of mouth. Second is actual subject matter. I’ve actually predicted the last two years correctly using that very simple formula. So let’s take a quick look and see if I can make it three years in a row.

Here’s a short synopsis of every nominee that was lifted directly from the Academy Award’s official website.

The Nominees:

The Conscience of Nhem En
In the wake of Cambodia’s takeover by the Khmer Rouge in 1975, a sixteen-year-old soldier named Nhem En was instructed to photograph the tens of thousands of citizens who passed through a processing center on the way to their execution.

The Final Inch
Contributing to the global efforts to eradicate polio worldwide, dedicated individuals in India travel throughout the country urging parents to vaccinate their children against the disease.

Smile Pinki
Pinki, a girl in rural India whose cleft lip has made her a social outcast, has a chance for a new life when she meets a dedicated social worker.

The Witness – From The Balcony of Room 306
The Reverend Samuel “Billy” Kyles, a witness to Martin Luther King’s assassination, reflects on King’s life and legacy as he recalls the events surrounding his murder.

I like two films in this category. The first is The Conscience, which is directed by the only returning nominee (three nominations with one win in 1990). I feel like that shows that the filmmaker has some real talent and probably knows how to make an effective short subject documentary. The synopsis seems also very heavy and Oscar friendly.

The second is The Witness, which is a film that has the subject matter going for it. It’s about Martin Luther King’s assassination. With the recent inauguration of Barack Obama, a subject like this feels relevant even though King was killed 40 years ago. It’s also the only film to take place in the United States, which helps voters relate to the subject even more. This film just feels like it packs the most punch and has the most going for it.

Prediction: The Witness – From The Balcony of Room 306

Again, this is a tough category to predict and analyze. Many times it’s simply luck in this category. Good luck ladies and gentlemen.

I will also be doing my own analysis on all the Oscar categories. Feel free to check it out as I have a good track record. I’ll also be putting on an Oscar contest and will be giving away a PRIZE. You can enter it HERE.

Okay, I’m done.

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2 Responses to The LAMB Devours the Oscars – Best Documentary Short Subject

  1. Fletch says:

    Solid breakdown of a difficult category, Mikey. I’ll surely be following your advice for any Oscar pools.

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