President Trump has been taking a beating on social media over comments he made at a rally in Colorado on Thursday during which he mocked the Oscars for giving the movie “Parasite” Best Picture, which he called “a movie from South Korea.”
“How bad were the Academy Awards this year?” Trump asked the cheering crowd, as reported by Variety. “Did you see it?”
President Trump admitted to not having seen the movie he was lamenting about having won Best Picture and hoped for Hollywood to bring back classics like “Gone with the Wind” and “Sunset Boulevard.”
“The winner is… a movie from South Korea! What the hell was that all about? We got enough problems with South Korea with trade,” said the president. “On top of that, they give them best movie of the year? Was it good? I don’t know. Let’s get ‘Gone With the Wind.’ Can we get ‘Gone With the Wind’ back, please? ‘Sunset Boulevard’? So many great movies…”
As the audience cheered, Trump continued to mock the idea of a foreign film taking home the Best Picture Oscar instead of “Best Foreign Film,” a category that the Academy recently changed to “Best International Feature.”
“The winner is from South Korea!” the president said. “I thought it was best foreign film, right? Best foreign movie. Did this ever happen before?”
To answer the president’s question, no foreign language film has ever won Best Picture, though some have been nominated, such as Taiwan’s “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” or Italy’s “Life is Beautiful.” Some might argue that a foreign film winning Best Picture was bound to happen at one point or another.
Trump goes off on the Oscars for giving Best Picture to Parasite because it's a South Korean movie pic.twitter.com/GUGKdExTbw
— Claudia Koerner (@ClaudiaKoerner) February 21, 2020
Critics on social media denounced the president as an ignorant racist for the remarks, taking particular issue with his nostalgia for “Gone with the Wind,” which has faced severe scrutiny the past few decades for pushing the “southern lost cause” narrative.
“The most revealing part is that Trump asked for ‘Gone with the Wind’ back. Patriarchy, slavery, celebrating the Old South. Yikes. Trump really does signal to his voters’ worst instincts,” tweeted professor Robert Kelly.
“Trump loves Gone With The Wind but he prefers to watch it backwards to see the slaves learn their place,” tweeted John Fugelsang.
“I’m sorry but this is SENDING me. The racist audience cheered for ‘what happened to Gone With the Wind’ but then was quiet for ‘Sunset Blvd.’ Too gay for us!!!!!!” tweeted TV writer Ira Madison III.
“This is not a comment on Parasite. It’s white identity politics. It’s a signal of group identity & romanticism of an entertainment age before non-whites were socially prominent/influential,” tweeted Sirius XM’s Luke Thomas.
“Trump attacks The Academy Awards for naming PARASITE Best Picture, as ‘We have enough problems with South Korea, with trade!,’ suggests GONE WITH THE WIND (from 1939) instead. Audience cheers approval. These are people without minds or value. Can’t ‘save’ them, don’t need them,” tweeted producer Bob Chipman.
“Gone with the Wind is a romanticized white wash of slavery and the antebellum South and the author Margaret Mitchell had tremendous ‘economic anxiety.’ Of course Trump would prefer it over PARASITE, a brilliant movie commenting on classism and income inequality,” tweeted CNN’s Wajahat Ali.