The Razzie Awards and the Blonde misunderstanding: is it really the worst of the worst?

According to the 2023 Razzie Awards, Andrew Dominik’s Blonde is the worst film of the year. Net of the student spirit, the prize seems a little exaggerated to us.

The Razzie Awards and the Blonde misunderstanding: is it really the worst of the worst?

Can we tell? We are a little angry with the Razzie Awards. Or rather, we are perplexed. The award, founded by John JB Wilson, has been a sort of counter-Oscar since 1981, conceived and dedicated to those films which, over the course of the year, have stood out for their… ugliness. The worst of the worst, the de-mythologizing of Hollywood in a ceremony that, over the years, has become the quintessential sculptural moment. More or less, the categories are the same as for the Oscars, with the addition of Worst Cast or Worst Prequel, plus different intermittent sections, such as Worst Use of 3D or Worst Career. Some moments, in the history of the prize geek (the symbol is a raspberry), have entered the annals: Sandra Bullock who, in grand style, presides over the Razzie ceremony, accepting the award for About Stevelater winning the Oscar (the day after!) for The Blind Side. Historical the primacy of Jack and Jill, which received ten Razzies in 2011. A record. In short, if you love the Oscars, you cannot help but love the Razzie Awards too.

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Blonde: Ana de Armas in a photo from the film

Yet, as anticipated at the beginning of the article, this year’s awards, organized by the Golden Raspberry Award Foundation, seem to have “turned” in a questionable direction, nominating and rewarding films or performances which, objectively speaking, have very little ” worse”. A digression: due to their disenchanted ugliness, many candidate films often don’t arrive in Italy or abroad, remaining confined to the US market. Any examples? Good Mourningplayed by the controversial Machine Gun Kelly, never made it to us, as well as The Moon and the Sun (The King’s Daughter) with Pierce Brosnan. Both received several nominations, and probably deserved to win. Yes, because according to the Razzie Awards the worst film of the year is Blonde by Andrew Dominik.

Tom Hanks and Blonde…

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Blonde: Adrien Brody and Ana de Armas in a photo from the film

Not only that, the Netflix movie, starring Ana De Armas, also won the Razzie for Worst Screenplay. Andrew Dominik’s script beat, so to speak, that of Morbiusthat of Jurassic World: Dominationthe script of Good Mourning and the terrible live action adaptation of Pinocchio with Tom Hanks. The same Tom Hanks which took home another unwarranted Razzie, the one for the role of Colonel Parker in Elvis.

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Elvis: Austin Butler and Tom Hanks in one picture

Also Hanks then won the Worst Couple on Screen award, as the Razzies awarded him for acting together with a “latex face” it’s a “ridiculous accent”. An absurdity, because Tom Hanks was a great interpretation, working perfectly on his voice and on his facial expressions. This is to say: really, Blonde is it the worst movie of the year? And is Tom Hanks really the worst actor of 2022? In our opinion not. Indeed, objectively, no. Obviously a film may or may not like it (it’s sacrosanct), it may or may not be appreciated, but consider Blonde the worst of the worst, it takes.

Blonde: because the dream is the only way to tell the hell of Marilyn Monroe

The worst of the worst? No, a misunderstanding…


Blonde: an image of Ana de Armas

All true, the impressionist story of Marilyn Monroe, rendered by Domink as an aesthetic nightmare dominated by obsessions and drama (with some excessive swerves), has divided opinion since its presentation in Venice 2022, with the subsequent release received lukewarmly by the public, yet the centrality of a film cannot be summed up only through the cracks, the exaggerations, the involuntary twists cringe. Blonde it is not only a fetus that speaks, but it is also (and above all) the representation of a destroyed woman, on the brink of the end. It is an indictment of the hypocrisies of Hollywood, of which the Razzie themselves become the goliardic and necessary flag. And it’s also a technically sound film: the cinematography by Chayse Irvin is excellent, as is the score by Nick Cave and Warren Ellis. So what was the reason why Blonde was voted the best of the worst? We really can’t understand it, and indeed we remain dumbfounded precisely because the Razzies have always hit the mark, unmasking the more ephemeral sides behind film productions, not caring about box office or franchises. They go straight on their way, sifting through the lowest and most improbable film productions.

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Blonde: Ana de Armas and Bobby Cannavale in a photo on the set of the film

But if everything is worth it, a certain balance should also be worth it: it’s a game, but every game has its rules. And those of the Razzie Awards have always been limpid and clear: a hilarious riot of ugliness, a declared catwalk of bizarre films, a carnival of cheap sloppiness. Here, Blonde, net of critical judgement, seems to us an intruder, and would not have deserved to be placed side by side with works such as Cats or the musical Diana. However, the problem is, perhaps, traceable to the beginning: the Razzies also nominated Andrew Dominik in the Worst Couple category “and his problems with women”. This could shed some light on the prize, explaining the misunderstanding: quite simply, the legendary Golden Raspberry did not understand the meaning of Blonde. After all, when something is not understood, it is labeled as negative. A concept that, unfortunately, does not apply only to the Razzie Awards.

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