Opinion Brief

Should a YouTube video win an Academy Award?

A New York man trudges through a blizzard to make a short video that critic Roger Ebert, for one, considers Oscar-worthy

The video: On Dec. 26, filmmaker Jamie Stuart ventured out into New York City's blizzard, armed with his Canon video camera and a tripod. On Dec. 27, he posted the result online: A three-and-a-half-minute homage to Russian filmmaker Dziga Vertov's 1929 silent classic Man With a Movie Camera that has become known on YouTube, variously, as Idiot With a Tripod or Man in a Blizzard. (Watch video below.) After Stuart emailed a copy to Chicago Sun-Times critic Roger Ebert, the latter praised  the rapidly edited video's "almost unbelievable technical proficiency," adding "this film deserves to win the Academy Award for best live-action short subject."The reaction: It is astounding that Stuart managed to cram so much "beauty and craftsmanship" into such a short video, says Brian Barrett in Gizmodo. Idiot With a Tripod may not have been screened in art-house cinemas, "but I'm betting it can stand tall against most of the live-action short films that did." It's safe to say Stuart's "tiny film" is "a long shot" for an Academy Award, says Cord Jefferson in Good. "Still, it's a testament to technology — both its power to create and to disseminate information — that a film that took just a day to complete is receiving Oscar buzz from one of the most respected critics in the world." See the video for yourself:

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