The over-riding message from this year’s Academy Awards? It was: “We’ve Learned Our Lesson!” Responding to the #MeToo movement and reports of erotic exploitation and sexism, presenters and Oscar winners frequently alluded to the scandal and made sanctimonious pledges to crack down on wrong-doers.
After complaints in recent years about scant Oscar attention to people of color, numerous black and Hispanic celebrities appeared on stage and Latinos won some of the most important Oscars—including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Song, Best Animated Film, and best Foreign Language Film.
And after last year’s epic snafu with Warren Beatty announcing the wrong Best Picture winner, this year he received the right envelope.
Despite such improvements, a long predictable ceremony, with no blockbusters in serious contention, yielded some of the lowest TV ratings in Academy history.
Have the lessons really been learned?
Time will tell.