I have Oscar-itis today (and a sore throat to go with it – but not caused by Oscar). No, I wasn’t raving or ranting this year about the dresses or the movies I wanted to win. I was proud of myself for having seen almost all of the movies nominated for best picture.
I do love to view the Oscars each year. I do love to watch what everyone is wearing and critique the dresses at what has become an annual ritual with my daughter A and my friend R. We sat and ate my homemade Shrimp Pad Thai at dinner as we watched all the stars walk the red carpet.
Which boomer women (and younger ones too) had used botox? Who had real boobs or fake ones? Did the stars look tired or well rested? Were their dresses appropriate for their figure and age? Were their hair and makeup appropo? It always so much fun to be a critic to the stars.
I was intrigued this week to learn that there is a graying audience returning to the movies. According to the New York Times article called “Graying Audience Returns to Movies, in Glasses That Aren’t 3-D,” the older moviegoing audience has begun to assert itself. The article’s authors Brooks and Michael say that “baby boomers were weaned on movies” but, they seem to have left the theaters during decades prior due to all the action and fantasy movies.
I’m glad the movie industry is trying to lure me back into their seats. I used to go to the movies all the time with my sister N. Back in our twenties, we used to wait on long lines in Manhattan to see the new Woody Allen movies the same day or close to the same day they were released. Annie Hall was my all-time favorite. And of course I dressed the part. I bought my chinos at the army/navy store and wore a used man tailored vest and button down shirt. I did not wear Annie’s hat. No hat for me. I didn’t like flat hair then and don’t like flat hair now.
Ah, the movies, the movies. While the younger audience like my millennial kids bought 32 percent of the movie tickets in North America last year, boomers like me bought less than a quarter of the tickets. However, Brooks and Michael say that “the actual number of older moviegoers has grown enormously since 1995, the year before boomers started hitting the midcentury mark. Then about 26.8 million people over the age of 50 went to the movies, according to GFK MRI. That number grew to 44.9 million in 2010.”
As we finished our Oscar evening and put our critical eyes to sleep, I started to wonder what new movies will be coming out that will target boomer women in the future. I heard that Barbara Streisand will be back on the big screen again sometime soon and Dame Judi Dench (my namesake Judi at age 77 is such a jewel of an actress) will be in a new movie called “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.”
Oscar night has inspired me to start to get the pedal to the medal and start to get my memoir in order.
“When I get up on stage to accept my Oscar for best picture, screenplay and costume design for my story ‘A Year To 50’,” I told my daughter A and friend R last night, “I will thank you both for supporting me through the years. And I will make sure the lights shine on both of you who will definitely be in the audience. Finally, we will be able to really walk the red carpet in Hollywood once and for all.”