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March 10, 2014 | by  | in Opinion |
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Conspiracy Corner

As I can only be as relevant as the internet connection in my classified hideaway will allow me, this week I’ve been examining a conspiracy that unites the high-profile and the low-profile, the stars and their viewers. The question on everyone’s lips, now compounded after the events of the 86th annual Academy Awards; why hasn’t Leonardo DiCaprio won an Oscar yet? And more importantly, how in the Nine Realms did Matthew McConaughey manage to win?

DiCaprio’s loss is particularly bitter this year. His latest film The Wolf of Wall Street was sweeping American ‘award season’. So-called because the movies released before the big awards shows are timed so that the geriatric Old Boys Filmgoers Club (‘the Academy’) can nominate them because they saw them recently. So, already, it’s a pretty rigged game. DiCaprio’s depiction of Jordan Belfort, the money-grubbing scumbag/economic genius from Wolf just wasn’t good enough for the Academy to finally throw the wolf a bone.

One would think that when the stars aligned in the seats of Dolby Theatre, it would be DiCaprio’s time. Even a lowly numerologist can tell you it’s auspicious, with the number 86 being associated with ending or eradicating. But it’s not enough to look at the mere signs; like the man said, we have to go deeper.

The kick came for me while I was scouring for reviews of Wolf, specifically where wealth disparity in the audience was highlighted. The general consensus from the ‘99 per cent’ viewers was that they felt that the film doesn’t go far enough in calling Belfort an outright villain. However, the top of the pyramid sees different. Business Insider reviewed the film among an audience of Goldman Sachs employees, who actively cheered as DiCaprio snorted coke, wallowed in cash and acted like a psychopath, as if to say: “Finally, a rich white male character that represents me!

The honour for Best Actor went to Matthew McConaughey for his role in Dallas Buyers Club as a rodeo cowboy afflicted with HIV. It’s this sort of performance that the Academy tends to reward: an established, handsome actor playing a beloved American icon afflicted with a condition to ‘overcome’, but one that doesn’t detract from his appearance. It’s safe and down-home enough for the old folks, but with just enough modern context and respect to those the movie depicts so that liberal whippersnappers don’t kick up a fuss.

If the Oscar went to DiCaprio instead, it would reveal the Academy for what it really is: rich people giving each other golden statues to reward themselves for making money off the middle class. Ironically, when it comes to Oscar bait, McConaughey has mastered the inception needed to persuade the Academy.

And so, as DiCaprio weeps snacking on the chocolate inside his Golden Globe, the conspiracy persists.

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