The Hurt Locker was my favourite film of 2009. Eleven months ago I was bigging it up to a class of undergrad students on a module about contemporary Hollywood cinema, telling them how advance buzz suggested it would be the first successful modern war film since Bush launched his war on terror. Even showed them the trailer, such was my enthusiasm for the then-forthcoming feature.
The Hurt Locker didn't make a fortune at the box office - grossing about $16 million worldwide, against an estimated budget of £11 million. That's small change compared to its main rival at the Oscars, Avatar - the biggest grossing film of all time. I like to think of The Hurt Locker as the little engine that could, a gem by director Kathryn Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal.
Even if The Hurt Locker wasn't a blockbuster, it earbed a lot of critical praise and those that saw it, tended to love it. [Duncan Jones' Moon was much the same, shame it didn't get some Oscar love.] So I'm very happy to see it got nine mentions when the Oscar nominations were announced today in Los Angeles - tying with the big blue behemoth that is Avatar.
I still haven't seen Dances With Smurfs, even though I know the best way to experience it would be on a big screen [ideally while wearing daft glasses]. So I know who I'll be cheering for come Sunday night, March 7th. It's ludicrous no woman has even won the Oscar for best director. Fingers crossed The Hurt Locker changes that particular statistic of shame.