Whether they won or not, every Oscar nominee walked away from last week’s Academy Awards with an awesome parting gift — a goodie bag with treats in it that cost about $45,000. Some of the items inside this year included a $12,000 trip to one of two Australian resorts, $1,800 worth of private VIP services at Heathrow Airport, $120 worth of maple syrup, Electronic cigarettes, "The Ultimate Fuzz Remover" lint roller, Windex, Laundry bag, Portion-control dinnerware, and a Water filtration system.
If the awards were given out in Brandon, our gift basket might have a rubber snake from Reptile Gardens, a puck from the Wheat Kings, plastic pooper scooper shovel from Ag Days, rubber boots from the Winter Fair, rubber boots from the Summer Fair, small inflatable boat for high water awards shows, Superman office basketball net from BU, mosquito spray, tickets to the 80’s band in town that month, and like the real Oscars, we too could give away free water filtration systems. But enough talk about those who didn’t win. Let’s talk about the winners. And not the ones in Hollywood. In fact, we need to salute the great work done right here in Westman. There’s the Razzies and the Academy Awards, but these are the "Oscar the Grouch" awards. (Since the real Oscars are trademarked)
Ladies and gentlemen the envelope please...
Best Actor in a Leading Role
Jeff Cristal in "The Games That Would Not Come." The story of a man and his group of believers who tried everything to get a special event to come to a city that was not ready to take them. In the end, the committee fell in love with another city. A city that did not even want them. The story of love, loss and learning to love again.
Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Former Brandon mayor Dave Burgess in "TTYL Top Cop." SURPRISE. When a former police chief is celebrated (played by Keith Atkinson) an old high-profile politician surprises the party with an appearance, some humour and a great performance. Comedy ensues when citizens attempt to keep him in the city by tying him to a chair at city hall.
Best Actress in a Leading Role
Mayor Shari for "Car in the Street and a Ticket to Come Home To." This mystery asks "Who parked it?" Was it Shari or the good Dr? Regardless, they came home from Cuba to answer some questions in this riveting mystery for the big screen.
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Marilyn Mackie for "Hurst Hotel." Yet another mystery starring our Mayor, this time surrounding the hotel planned for downtown. Check that — the hotel not planned for downtown. It’s teeming with suspense and many movie goers are waiting for the sequel, "Can We Have a Casino Now?"
"Head Spinner." Comments directed at Richmond Ward Councillor Stephen Montague fill the screen with action and drams. November 6 is the date that changed a city, and put a small prairie city on the national stage, until a half court basket would take the spotlight in a different movie.
Best Animated Feature
"Scooby Doo and the Bus of ’80s Rock Bands." From Platinum Blonde to Mötley Cröe and Heart. This movie features Scooby and his ’80s rock band helpers solving crimes in Brandon. Funny, creative and filled with classic rock on the movie soundtrack. However it left those under 30 going Scooby-WHO?
Best Animated Short
"Costco is Coming." This movie is pure suspense. Will they come? When will they come? Where will they go? So many questions, so few answers, but this animated short attempts to tackle the tough issues of Brandon retail in an award winning presentation. Cleanup on aisle 3.
Best Costume Design
"This Cloak is Invisible Right?" Story of girls online thinking what they do is not seen or read by anyone. Truth is, not only is it read, but they are charged for their antics. The girls were charged after allegedly threatening to harm other girls on a social media site. The opposite of a comedy. This movie teaches everyone that words have consequences, especially online.
Grant Hamilton in "Save the Brewtinerie." The story of Brandon’s most beloved old building — sorry Strand. Voted as the building most Brandon folks want to save, the movie begs others to take "direction" from this guy, if they are hoping to keep old buildings around for future generations. Served at the premiere of this movie? You guessed it.
Best Documentary Feature
"How Shovelling My Street Got Me in Irouble." One man. One snow blower. One mean call from his city, after he damages a flower bed after attempting to move the 10-foot snow drift on city property. This one is a tragedy. Not a coincidence the budget for this movie was bigger than the city’s snow clearing budget.
Best Documentary Short
"Unleaded or Regular?" The story of 3,500 homes and potentially high levels of lead in their water. Go behind the scenes in a two-hour film featuring politicians standing around sipping glasses of water and whispering to each other "I don’t taste anything."
Brandon City Council for "Voters Back in Charge." After choking taxpayers with an unbearable increase last year, this underdog favourite tells the story of sharp pencils, and dramatic belt tightening. The feel good movie of the year. (However the disaster put to the big screen by the other taxing group in the city is currently meeting widespread panning and anger.)
Best Foreign Language Film
"Where’s my Pavilion?" American is a foreign language? Have you not watched "Honey Boo-Boo?"
Shopper’s Mall, for "Target is Here." The plot is similar to the Best Animated Short, however this movie is aimed at females. In fact, many are anxious to line-up to see it already, even though a hard hat is required at this point. They haven’t screamed with delight this much since "Magic Mike".
Best Original Score
Dwayne Gylowoychuk for "First Year Chew." Sports movie with a tough ending. No playoffs in 13 years, the sequel will kick butt Chewie, we know it!
"The Shot" by Coach Gil. This movie is now world famous, and is mentioned in the same sentence as Gagnam style and SuperBowl commercials. A YouTube sensation for the big screen that has helped push BU enrolment applications up by 20 per cent. Nice work. All net.
Best Sound Editing
"The Plane Boss. Where’s The Plane?" by West Jet. Two hours of the noise airplanes make, taking off in other cities, followed by a quiet prairie airport between Winnipeg and Regina. Many hope for a sequel that is more encouraging, while others say the market cannot bear the full production of this film.
Best Special Effects
Shaun Cameron in "Re-consider Renaissance Brandon." After making the case for $50,000 and appealing to the nostalgic fondness of a booming downtown, a city council reconsiders its funding to ensure money from the province. The budget for this movie now totals over $250,000. Will 100 per cent of it go to more special effects? Or will Shaun help create a blockbuster for a city looking for a big win? Grab your popcorn and a drink. Many of these movies have sequels and some are just getting started.
JOKE This Weekend
Little Larry attended a horse auction with his father. He watched as his father moved from horse to horse, running his hands up and down the horse's legs and rump.
After a few minutes, Larry asked, 'Dad, why are you doing that?"
His father replied, "Because when I'm buying horses, I have to make sure that they are healthy and in good shape before I put good money down."
Larry, looking worried said, 'Dad, I think the UPS guy wants to buy Mom...'
Linda Mae Gill