Julia Roberts—arbiter of all that is fair and just in the acting world, and someone who takes the Academy Awards far too seriously—has once more cracked her mouth’s levee and let flow its unceasing, babbling brook of self-satisfied hyperbole to shower Javier Bardem, who absolutely must win an Oscar this year for Biutiful, or else Roberts’ spirit will be absolutely crushed, snuffed out by an uncaring audience who doesn’t understand, in Roberts’ words, “what he went through to show us this.”
Bardem’s co-star in Eat Pray Love—which is what Bardem went through to show us this—recently hosted a screening of Biutiful for a gathering of industry types, and afterwards she not only gushed in typical Robertsian palaver to Entertainment Weekly about Bardem’s performance (“I think it’s unexpected for a man to expose himself so deeply. And it’s incredibly agonizing in its subtleties… I know it had to hurt”), she even publicly chastised an Academy member who dared turn off the film because it was too depressing, saying, “I hope that person is haunted until the end of time wanting to know what happened.”
And as to our own collective fate should her efforts somehow not prove to be enough to nab Bardem the nomination, Robert said, “If there’s not hope for talent, then we’re fucked.” The remarks echoed those Roberts made regarding her Pelican Brief co-star Denzel Washington in 2002, when she said, “I cannot absorb living in a world where I have an Oscar for Best Actress, and Denzel doesn't have one for Best Actor.” That very year, Washington won for Training Day—and so the Earth is still revolving. Let us hope that man heeds the lessons of the past.