1975 is the kind of year you just glance at and then move on. It’s one of those years where, at face value, nothing is wrong, and then after the fact, you think, “Wait, were those the droids I was looking for?”
What I mean by that is — all of the choices they made (well, most of them. One of them — whatever), you look at them and immediately go, “Yeah, good choices. There’s nothing really wrong here.” But, when you do think about it, are they actually good choices?
Take Best Picture and Best Director from this year. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. A classic film. A great film. There’s no denying that. Miloš Forman. A great director. Has made some classics — Amadeus, Man on the Moon, Ragtime, The People vs. Larry Flynt, Hair — there’s really no denying that the film and director are great. But — are they really worthy of winning Best Picture? Or more specifically, are they worthy of winning Best Picture this specific year? It’s just a thought. I’ll bring it up later when I actually go over the categories. It’s just something that I’ve been thinking about every time I go back to the categories. If you want to get a head start and try to see what I mean, take a look at what else (and who else) was nominated (and by exclusion, wasn’t). Just take a look. (Hint: My argument is going to have something to do with being cinematic vs. being theatrical.)
Anyway, the other major categories that happened this year basically amounted to a clean sweep for Cuckoo’s Nest. Jack Nicholson and Louise Fletcher took hom Best Actor and Best Actress. Interesting fact on that, because lord knows I’m all about the interesting facts. The only two times Jack Nicholson has won the Best Actor Oscar, his costar also won the Best Actress Oscar as well. That’s an interesting fact, right? Every time Jack has won, he helped his costar win too. That says something, methinks. What, I don’t know. But something. (more…)