1996 is one of the few dark spots of the 90s. After the terrible decision that was Dances With Wolves, we got a somewhat poor decision with Forrest Gump (based on the competition. I love the film, but, there were better choices), The English Patient here, and then the Shakespeare in Love choice (which is also kind of a competition choice). The two insanely glaring errors to me are Patient and Wolves, because, not only should they not have won, they aren’t even good films. Maybe it’s okay that Anthony Minghella won Best Director for The English Patient as well, but, it was still up against Fargo.
I guess what sort of saves 1996 from completely going under were the rest of the major categories. Or it might have made it worse, depending on where you fall. Frances McDormand as Best Actress is a good decision, since I’m glad they gave Fargo something, though there might have been (and probably were) better choices in the category. Juliette Binoche as Best Supporting Actress for The English Patient is a decision I haven’t fully made up my mind on, but I’m okay with it as far as, I like Juliette Binoche. Cuba Gooding Jr. as Best Supporting Actor for Jerry Maguire is a decision I like a lot, mostly because I liked the character, but William H. Macy was also nominated for Fargo, so, there is a bit of complication there.
Oh, and to get it out of the way, I consider this category one of the worst decisions the Academy has made in the Best Actor category, ever. The reason for this is not because of who won, it’s what he won for and whether or not that performance was worthy of winning. And just to tell you — dude’s only on screen for like, fifteen minutes, so, he totally didn’t deserve it. And what makes it worse is the caliber of performances he did beat. That’s why, no matter how much I like Geoffrey Rush, this was a terrible decision. (more…)