Oh, 1982. A good year capped off by a boring Best Picture winner. Gandhi is many things — a great film, a terrific biopic on one of the most important men of the 20th century — but an interesting film it is not. It didn’t need to win Best Picture. It’s just too on-the-nose. Which, kind of what the 80s were for the Oscars — a boring decade. Think about it. How many interesting decisions did the Academy make in the 80s? Amadeus? Platoon? Rain Man? Terms of Endearment? Even the ones that won weren’t great decisions. At best they’d be strong films in other decades. So, I just count this as one in a long line of boring 80s choices.
Richard Attenborough winning Best Director this year was — well, I talked about it already. Recently too. Meryl Streep winning Best Actress was — well, I talked about that too. Jessica Lange winning Best Supporting Actress was a fine decision, and Lou Gossett Jr. winning Best Supporting Actor was — well, it was. Which leaves this category. The most interesting of all the categories this year. It’s tough talking about it. Because on the one hand, he played Gandhi. But on the other hand — well, is the other hand. It’s kind of a lose-lose.
BEST ACTOR – 1982
And the nominees were…
Dustin Hoffman, Tootsie
Ben Kingsley, Gandhi
Jack Lemmon, Missing
Paul Newman, The Verdict
Peter O’Toole, My Favorite Year (more…)