America’s sweetheart, Sandra Bullock, won the Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Leigh Anne Tuohy in "The Blind Side" at the 82nd Annual Academy Awards.
“The Blind Side" depicts the story of Michael Oher, a homeless African-American youngster from a broken home, taken in by the Touhys, a well-to-do white family who help him fulfill his potential. At the same time, Oher’s presence in the Touhys’ lives leads them to some insightful self-discoveries of their own. Living in his new environment, the teen faces a completely different set of challenges to overcome. As a football player and student, Oher works hard and, with the help of his coaches and adopted family, becomes an All-American offensive left tackle. (IMDB, 2010)
The question is… did she deserve it?
The movie is exactly as it appears to be. A rags to riches tale about how an affluent family takes in a less fortunate individual and helps to raise said individual to new heights, both academically and professionally. Where this movie differs to the conventional mold, is in terms of the acting and uninhibited, yet accurate, portrayal of often taboo themes and simply because it is based on a true story.
One of the aspects I found most refreshing about the movie, was how real and relatable it was. Personally, I know what it is like to take someone into your home, a veritable stranger, and to give them all they need to progress and further themselves in life. My family and I have done this, on more than one occasion. Additionally, I also know what it is like to, for example, venture through an ‘unsafe’ area, associated with a high crime rate, and to fear for my life… all for the greater good!
Other than relating to the main scenarios, I could also relate to how, as an affluent Westerner, we take things for granted. When I noticed the Touhy family all sit around the television for supper, I actually laughed with a familiar irony. At that moment, I was actually sitting in my lounge and having supper. When issues of race were broached, they were done so with a level of candor and honesty not found in most other films. In truth, these are the kinds of thoughts and concerns that people still have, even in the ‘new’ South Africa. So to watch a movie in which a family put the individual first, over colour, was inspiring and touching. A lot can be learnt from a movie such as this.
Where the movie shines most though, is with Sandra Bullock’s character Leigh Anne Tuohy. I must be honest, Bullock did a sensational job as the brash, honest, philanthropic and loving Mrs. Tuohy. She is instantly likeable and exudes a tenacity that captures the viewer, so much so that you cannot help but be in awe of this woman’s love and good will. For example, when Bullock gives Michael Oher (Quinton Aaron) his room and he remarks that he has never had a bed before, Bullock’s reaction is gut wrenchingly perfect. As the viewer, you actually feel her heart break for this unfortunate kid. This is no easy feat, creating a legitimate connection between the viewer and character, and is indicative of why Bullock was awarded the Oscar for Best Actress. The movie is inundated with emotionally touching scenes like the one I just described, all of which alone are worth the price of admission.
Releasing nationwide: Friday 19th March 2010.
Not only did Sandra Bullock win an Oscar for Best Actress but she also won a Razzie for Worst actress for her role in ‘All About Steve’. Bullock is the first actor to have won both an Academy Award and a Razzie in the same year. To make matters even better, Bullock actually attended the Razzie ceremony and accepted her award with a lot of tongue-in-cheek humour, to much delight and applause.
For those who have yet to see it, here is Sandra Bullock’s Oscar acceptance speech. Hands down one of the best speeches by an Oscar winner! Congratulations Sandra, you deserve it!
Until the next time “Milieunairs”!