Connect with us





Benedict Cumberbatch is Julian Assange

Benedict Cumberbatch is Julian Assange

In the past week GravityCaptain Phillips and The Fifth Estate are among various potential Oscar nominees criticized for damning factual inaccuracies. But will it damage their Oscar hopes? And do we even care?

In an article on The Wrap yesterday, two of the big Oscar hopefuls next year have been scrutinized over claims that they lack factual accuracy. Notable and highly popular physicist Neil Degrasse-Tyson has put a spotlight on some of the scientific oversights in the otherwise resoundingly successful Gravity starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney. The film, which took seven years and the development of new technology to make, has apparently failed to notice it got the orbit wrong for the Hubble Telescope and Space Station, while Bullock made a bowel-related blunder by not wearing diapers. Poor George.

Meanwhile, back on Earth, it turns out Sony Pictures’ Captain Phillips was not actually much of a hero, according to Disney owned news network ABC and Time Warner’s CNN, who have conveniently unearthed interviews that show the real Captain Phillips as a reckless coward. Funnily enough, Gravity is made by Warner Bros. and fellow Oscar hopeful Saving Mr. Banks is distributed by Disney, but I’m sure that has nothing to do with it.

12 Years A Slave PosterAnd finally, there’s the news on Variety that Julian Assange sent a scathing letter to Benedict Cumberbatch regarding The Fifth Estate, a film the Wikileaks owner blasted as “presenting me as someone morally compromised and placing me in a falsified history. [It] creates a work, not of fiction, but of debased truth”. Though on multiple occasions Assange demonstrated the utmost respect to the actor, he made multiple accusations regarding the film’s accuracy.

Another big film to be questioned, and perhaps the one most damaging to its reputation, is 12 Years A Slave, as the film’s emotional resonance stems from its historical legitimacy. But it is not so much the film being attacked as Solomon Northup’s autobiography itself, and the motivation behind the author (or authors, possibly) at the time of writing.

So what have we learnt? In a nutshell – movies are not real life. And a film ‘based on’ real events is about as true as me using Wii fit and claiming I go to the gym. And there are still people who are shocked by this. Let’s be honest, we go to the movies to be entertained. Of course there’s a line, but in today’s world it is surely our obligation as consumers to be aware of the potential credibility of the material as much it is the producers’ obligation to be sensitive to the source material. Great movies find that balance.

Just For You