When compared to the Grammys, the Academy’s track record of awarding the best work of the year is dramatically easier to defend. When examining my list of films below, truthfully, each of those that took home the Oscar for Best Picture are strong works deserving recognition. The question is, looking back, I can;t help feel there were a few times where the BEST FILM did not win.
Year What Won Better Choice(s)
1942 “How Green Is My Valley
Yes, the Orson Welles film, that for 70 years has topped lists as the best film of all time?
1952 “Greatest Show on Earth” “High Noon”
Cecil B. DeMille Fred Zinnemann’s
” The Quiet Man”
”Singin’ In the Rain”
1968 “Oliver!” “Romeo and Juliet” Franco Zeffirelli
“2001: A Space Odyssey,” Stanley Kubrick
Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece that has stood the test of time and has established it’s self as a classic that transcends the Sci-Fi genre as is often sited as one of most influential movies ever made. 2001 is a film that directors frequently site as a major influence and inspiration. The idea that Kubrick lost the Oscar to Carol Reed- even Hal 9000 can’t figure that one out.
1976 “Rocky” “All the President’s Men,”
John G. Avildsen Alan J. Pakula
Based on the story of Woodward and Bernstein, the two uncover Reporters that made the name “Watergate” famous and led to the only resignation of an American President.
A film filled with the powerful writing of Paddy Chayefsky.including the famous line “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore”
The first Scorsese film to demonstrate that he would become one of the greatest directors in history.
1979 ` “Kramer vs. Kramer” “Apocalypse Now”
A powerful tale set during the Viet Nam War, of a clandestine mission into Cambodia to assassinate an American colonel played by Marlon Brando, who has lost touch with reality.
1980 “Ordinary People” “Raging Bull”
The black and White film showed boxing with a clarity and power that hit the audiences as hard as the fighters in the ring. This film has held up well over time, and has become a true classic.
1982 Gandhi” “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,”
Richard Attenborough Steven Spielberg
When ET phone’s home all America hoped the call would go through. When so many films about Extra Terrestrials are shown as evil and bent on destroying the Earth; it was fun to cheer of the cutest alien to ever appear on screen.
1983 “Dances With Wolves” “Goodfellas,”
Kevin Costner Martin Scorsese
Here was the Academy’s chance To fix their recent mistakes and give Scorsese films the recognition the deserved, opportunity missed.
1994 “Forrest Gump” “Pulp Fiction”
“Pulp Fiction” gives us a film filled with drug dealers, Assassins, and crooks who live in a world of violence, yet they are surprisingly likeable.
Is often listed as the #1 viewers pick on IMBD. ”
James Careron “Good Will Hunting.” Gus Van Sant
Cameron’s “I’m the king of the world” acceptance speech bothered many as much as the fact that the better written Good Will Hunting film did not take home the Oscar.
1998 “Shakespeare in Love” “Saving Private Ryan”
Battle scenes have a tendency to hold our attention, but “Ryan” transcended the cliché and demonstrated what can only be called masterful film-making.
2005 “Crash” “Brokeback Mountain”
No one has yet presented a credible explanation how after wining best director and best adapted screenplay, “Brokeback Mountain” lost the award for best picture to Crash.