Posts tagged “1946

Mike’s Top Ten of 1946

This may be the strongest year of the 40s. At least at the top. I’ll probably also make that case for 1948, but this year feels so strong because quite legitimately, the top four films on my list would be #1 films in just about ANY other year. And they’re also all-time greats. Two of them are legitimately two of the top 50 American movies ever made.

Aside from that, you have a smattering amazing movies. This is the kind of list where you get to a film and just think, “Ohh…. yeah.” And it gives you that feeling of happiness because it’s just so great. I love years like this.

I really don’t have a whole lot more to add. Just… look at these ten films. How great are they? (more…)


A Pictorial History of the Movies: 1946 – It’s a Wonderful Life

Technically I should have picked The Best Year of Our Lives here. Since that film actually is the film that represents 1946. But fuck it. Sometimes iconography wins out.

This film just represents cinema, and happens to have been released in 1946. Same with Citizen Kane. It’s not the year, it’s the film. And sometimes you just have to go with the film.

But make no mistake, the film that actually does represent 1946 is The Best Year of Our Lives.

Aside from that, this is a movie you cannot argue with. It’s… a wonderful movie.

The real interesting thing about this film is that it’s the last time Frank Capra achieved perfection. And maybe even the only time. All his other movies are really good… It Happened One Night, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, You Can’t Take It With You, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington… only Mr. Smith gets even close to true perfection But this film really is just a perfect entity, to the point where we all watch it every year at 8 o’clock on Christmas Eve on NBC. It’s just what we do. (more…)


The Oscar Quest: My Oscar Nominations — Best Director (1927/1928-1949)

This is part of a series of articles where I’m putting forth my opinions about what I’d nominate in all of the Oscar Quest categories (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and Supporting Actress). Normally I take the categories as they are, but I thought it would be fun to figure out what I’d vote for if I had a ballot each year. Keep in mind, this is only for NOMINATIONS and nothing else.

My only problem with this is that I knew if I did it, too many people, were they doing the same thing, would put on movies that just didn’t belong on an Oscar ballot. (I would too, in some cases. We just like what we like.) My problem was that people would take this exercise as an opportunity to really just go off the rails with stuff (which, if you read through all these articles, you’ll see me call people out for it, since I know exactly which films and which performances people would put on). So my way around this was by creating what I call a “Compromise List” — after I tell you what was actually nominated and what I’d put on my ballot, I’m making a list whereby I try to make everyone happy and keep it mostly close to what would be there, Academy-wise. You’ll see. My lists usually end up being better and not crazy.

The things to take into account with the performance categories — I can only nominate what I’ve seen. So me not seeing something will be a big reason why some stuff doesn’t appear. And, as always, I tell people not to bother me with one random person in one random category, since I have everything to think about. If you want to say something, wait until you’ve seen all the films/tried this yourself before you do it. And I don’t care about foreign performances, for the most part. There’s a long and complicated answer there, but — I don’t. And the big rule for anyone doing this — if someone won a category, YOU CAN’T LEAVE THEM OFF THE COMPROMISE LIST. Can’t do it.

Otherwise — here’s the next set of categories. (more…)


The Oscar Quest: My Oscar Nominations — Best Supporting Actress (1936-1949)

This is part of a series of articles where I’m putting forth my opinions about what I’d nominate in all of the Oscar Quest categories (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and Supporting Actress). Normally I take the categories as they are, but I thought it would be fun to figure out what I’d vote for if I had a ballot each year. Keep in mind, this is only for NOMINATIONS and nothing else.

My only problem with this is that I knew if I did it, too many people, were they doing the same thing, would put on movies that just didn’t belong on an Oscar ballot. (I would too, in some cases. We just like what we like.) My problem was that people would take this exercise as an opportunity to really just go off the rails with stuff (which, if you read through all these articles, you’ll see me call people out for it, since I know exactly which films and which performances people would put on). So my way around this was by creating what I call a “Compromise List” — after I tell you what was actually nominated and what I’d put on my ballot, I’m making a list whereby I try to make everyone happy and keep it mostly close to what would be there, Academy-wise. You’ll see. My lists usually end up being better and not crazy.

The things to take into account with the performance categories — I can only nominate what I’ve seen. So me not seeing something will be a big reason why some stuff doesn’t appear. And, as always, I tell people not to bother me with one random person in one random category, since I have everything to think about. If you want to say something, wait until you’ve seen all the films/tried this yourself before you do it. And I don’t care about foreign performances, for the most part. There’s a long and complicated answer there, but — I don’t. And the big rule for anyone doing this — if someone won a category, YOU CAN’T LEAVE THEM OFF THE COMPROMISE LIST. Can’t do it.

Otherwise — here’s the next set of categories. (more…)


The Oscar Quest: My Oscar Nominations — Best Supporting Actor (1936-1949)

This is part of a series of articles where I’m putting forth my opinions about what I’d nominate in all of the Oscar Quest categories (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and Supporting Actress). Normally I take the categories as they are, but I thought it would be fun to figure out what I’d vote for if I had a ballot each year. Keep in mind, this is only for NOMINATIONS and nothing else.

My only problem with this is that I knew if I did it, too many people, were they doing the same thing, would put on movies that just didn’t belong on an Oscar ballot. (I would too, in some cases. We just like what we like.) My problem was that people would take this exercise as an opportunity to really just go off the rails with stuff (which, if you read through all these articles, you’ll see me call people out for it, since I know exactly which films and which performances people would put on). So my way around this was by creating what I call a “Compromise List” — after I tell you what was actually nominated and what I’d put on my ballot, I’m making a list whereby I try to make everyone happy and keep it mostly close to what would be there, Academy-wise. You’ll see. My lists usually end up being better and not crazy.

The things to take into account with the performance categories — I can only nominate what I’ve seen. So me not seeing something will be a big reason why some stuff doesn’t appear. And, as always, I tell people not to bother me with one random person in one random category, since I have everything to think about. If you want to say something, wait until you’ve seen all the films/tried this yourself before you do it. And I don’t care about foreign performances, for the most part. There’s a long and complicated answer there, but — I don’t. And the big rule for anyone doing this — if someone won a category, YOU CAN’T LEAVE THEM OFF THE COMPROMISE LIST. Can’t do it.

Otherwise — here’s the next set of categories. (more…)


The Oscar Quest: My Oscar Nominations — Best Actress (1927/1928-1949)

This is part of a series of articles where I’m putting forth my opinions about what I’d nominate in all of the Oscar Quest categories (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and Supporting Actress). Normally I take the categories as they are, but I thought it would be fun to figure out what I’d vote for if I had a ballot each year. Keep in mind, this is only for NOMINATIONS and nothing else.

My only problem with this is that I knew if I did it, too many people, were they doing the same thing, would put on movies that just didn’t belong on an Oscar ballot. (I would too, in some cases. We just like what we like.) My problem was that people would take this exercise as an opportunity to really just go off the rails with stuff (which, if you read through all these articles, you’ll see me call people out for it, since I know exactly which films and which performances people would put on). So my way around this was by creating what I call a “Compromise List” — after I tell you what was actually nominated and what I’d put on my ballot, I’m making a list whereby I try to make everyone happy and keep it mostly close to what would be there, Academy-wise. You’ll see. My lists usually end up being better and not crazy.

The things to take into account with the performance categories — I can only nominate what I’ve seen. So me not seeing something will be a big reason why some stuff doesn’t appear. And, as always, I tell people not to bother me with one random person in one random category, since I have everything to think about. If you want to say something, wait until you’ve seen all the films/tried this yourself before you do it. And I don’t care about foreign performances, for the most part. There’s a long and complicated answer there, but — I don’t. And the big rule for anyone doing this — if someone won a category, YOU CAN’T LEAVE THEM OFF THE COMPROMISE LIST. Can’t do it.

Otherwise — here’s the next set of categories. (more…)


The Oscar Quest: My Oscar Nominations — Best Actor (1927/1928-1949)

This is part of a series of articles where I’m putting forth my opinions about what I’d nominate in all of the Oscar Quest categories (Picture, Director, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor and Supporting Actress). Normally I take the categories as they are, but I thought it would be fun to figure out what I’d vote for if I had a ballot each year. Keep in mind, this is only for NOMINATIONS and nothing else.

My only problem with this is that I knew if I did it, too many people, were they doing the same thing, would put on movies that just didn’t belong on an Oscar ballot. (I would too, in some cases. We just like what we like.) My problem was that people would take this exercise as an opportunity to really just go off the rails with stuff (which, if you read through all these articles, you’ll see me call people out for it, since I know exactly which films and which performances people would put on). So my way around this was by creating what I call a “Compromise List” — after I tell you what was actually nominated and what I’d put on my ballot, I’m making a list whereby I try to make everyone happy and keep it mostly close to what would be there, Academy-wise. You’ll see. My lists usually end up being better and not crazy.

The things to take into account with the performance categories — I can only nominate what I’ve seen. So me not seeing something will be a big reason why some stuff doesn’t appear. And, as always, I tell people not to bother me with one random person in one random category, since I have everything to think about. If you want to say something, wait until you’ve seen all the films/tried this yourself before you do it. And I don’t care about foreign performances, for the most part. There’s a long and complicated answer there, but — I don’t. And the big rule for anyone doing this — if someone won a category, YOU CAN’T LEAVE THEM OFF THE COMPROMISE LIST. Can’t do it.

Otherwise — here’s the next set of categories. (more…)


The Oscar Quest: My Oscar Nominations — Best Picture (1927/1928-1949)

To run down the intro quickly — this is a series of articles about what I would nominate in every single Oscar Quest category if I had a ballot. I always felt I should do them, but didn’t want to pull that shit everyone pulls of, “Here’s what I’d nominate,” even though it’s all the same five films they add on and they haven’t even seen half the stuff that was nominated. I know my stuff’s legit, because I’ve seen all the films, but I refused to start this discussion unless I was going to do it with the ability to tell people how to do it the right way, since unless you keep them honest, it’s fucking chaos.

So I decided to, along with picking what I’d vote for, create what I’m calling a Compromise List. The Compromise List is — aside from my personal nominations (which on the whole are pretty close to what would fit the typical notion of “Oscar,” since I’ve seen everything and know what is and what isn’t an “Oscar” movie and actually respect the precedents in place even though I don’t always agree with them enough to not be like, “I vote for Star Trek!”), a list of films that are basically a mix of my nominees and their nominees that I think everyone could live with. The idea is to make a list that works for everyone that’s great, and to cut out all the shit that so clearly shouldn’t be there.

The things to keep in mind: 1) if a category has five nominees, I’m only nominating five films. 2) The lists are only based on what I’ve seen. 3) Don’t bother me with your opinion unless you’re gonna go the full nine and do every single year. 4) If you’re going to attempt something like this — be honest. Don’t get too subjective, and DO NOT take off a film you haven’t seen just to put on a film you have seen. And most importantly, 5) YOU CANNOT take off a Best Picture winner. You can not vote for it on your list, but on your compromise list, the Best Picture winner MUST BE THERE. If it won, you have to include it. No exceptions.

Okay, let’s get to the next set of Best Picture years: (more…)


Mike’s Top Tens of the Decade (1940-1949)

It’s that time again. I love doing these lists.

The thing about them, though, is that they’ve been progressively more work each time. The first few, the 2000s and the 1990s, I saw most of those by just being alive. And then the 1980s, all I really had to do was watch the big movies I’d never seen, so it wasn’t that bad. Then the 1970s, I had just finished the Oscar Quest and was looking for things to watch, so it was a smooth transition. Then the 1960s and 1950s (see how smoothly I worked in the links this time?) went up while I was in the middle of finishing the Quest articles, so I just powered through them. This time, though — I had stuff going on. I was watching Disney movies and writing a script. I barely got started on watching all the movies (and there were a lot) until the end of July.

To recap how these lists work: I list my ten favorite films for each year. Underneath that, I list an 11-20 of films just outside the top ten. Then, under that, is a “fun” list. To give you more stuff to watch. The 2000s had the “Terrible Ten,” of films I really disliked. The 90s had the “Films of My Childhood,” films I loved when I was growing up. The 80s had the “Awesomely 80s Movies,” films I feel perfectly capture that decade. The 70s had the “70s Recommendations,” a list of quintessentially “70s” films that I recommend highly (many of which are hidden gems). The 60s had “Out with the Old, In with the New,” films that represent the crumbling studio system and coming of New Hollywood. And the 50s had the “Gems of the Studio System,” which were (mostly) films from major directors that have flown under the radar among their filmographies (and history). This year, it’s going to be pretty simple — just “More Great 40s Movies.” I doubt most people are versed in the 40s, so I’m not gonna get complicated. Just 10 more great movies from each year on top of the other 20. Plain and simple. Also, since it bears repeating — I haven’t seen everything. I can only watch so much within three months. The lists are only based on what I’ve seen. I’ll update them as I watch more stuff and like it.

All right… list time: (more…)


Best Original Song: A Categorical History (1946-1950)

1946-1950 today. Let’s get started:

1946: “ON THE ATCHISON, TOPEKA AND SANTA FE,” FROM THE HARVEY GIRLS

(more…)


The Oscar Quest: Best Picture – 1946

A lot of people like to argue about 1946. They like to say that It’s a Wonderful Life should have won Best Picture. Bullshit. I love that film, but it shouldn’t have won at all. 1946 is a year where America was dealing with the after-effects of the war. There was no better film to reflect those sensibilities than The Best Years of Our Lives. The fact that the film is just as good as It’s a Wonderful Life also helps. I just wanted to get my opinion on that out of the way up front, so there’s no confusion.

The Best Years of Our Lives, aside from winning Best Picture, won Best Director for William Wyler (talked about here), his second, Best Actor for Frederic March (talked about here), and Best Supporting Actor for Harold Russell (talked about here). All of those decisions make perfect sense. Best Actress this year was Olivia de Havilland for To Each His Own (talked about here). That had been a long time coming for her, and despite Celia Johnson being amazing in Brief Encounter (and that film also being amazing. Not that I ever expected Hollywood to place it on this list), was deserved. And Best Supporting Actress was Anne Baxter for The Razor’s Edge (talked about here), which was not only deserved, but makes her loss for All About Eve in four years easier to take.

So, that’s 1946. You know my opinion already, so, let’s just go into this saying — whatever your opinion is, let’s just celebrate the strength of the year more than anything. Be glad the films exist, rather than argue over whether or not they should have won.

BEST PICTURE – 1946

And the nominees were…

The Best Years of Our Lives (RKO Radio)

Henry V (United Artists)

It’s a Wonderful Life (RKO Radio)

The Razor’s Edge (20th Century Fox)

The Yearling (Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer) (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Best Supporting Actress – 1946

1946 is a simple year. The Best Years of Our Lives wins Best Picture, Best Actor for Frederic March (taked about here), Best Supporting Actor for Harold Russell (talked about here) and Best Director for William Wyler (talked about here). All were perfect decisions, and were going to happen no matter what, given the film’s subject matter and its timeliness about a major historical event. I know we all love It’s a Wonderful Life, but it didn’t have a chance.

Best Actress this year was Olivia de Havilland for To Each His Own (talked about here). That was a perfect decision, and she was well overdue by this point.

That actually covers it for the year. The only category left is this one, which was a terrific choice, since the category was really weak, and, based on performance and historical factors involving hindsight, this was actually the best decision in the category.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS – 1946

And the nominees were…

Ethel Barrymore, The Spiral Staircase

Anne Baxter, The Razor’s Edge

Lillian Gish, Duel in the Sun

Flora Robson, Saratoga Trunk

Gale Sondergaard, Anna and the King of Siam (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Best Director – 1946

No sense in wasting time for 1946. The Best Years of Our Lives, a film about the aftereffects of war on the average American soldier and his family, was going to win Best Picture no matter what. No matter how much we all love It’s a Wonderful Life, it wasn’t going to win. Not in 1946, right after the war. Not gonna happen.

The Best Years of Our Lives wins Best Picture, Best Actor for Frederic March (talked about here), Best Supporting Actor for Harold Russell (talked about here), and this category. And no matter how much we may not like any of those decisions, they were gonna happen anyway. Best Actress was Olivia de Havilland for To Each His Own (talked about here), which was a fantastic decision, and she was about seven years overdue for one of these. And Best Supporting Actress was Anne Baxter for The Razor’s Edge, which was another terrific decision.

Then there was this category. Wyler’s second of three. (All for Best Picture winners, too. When this man wins, he really wins. Kind of like Clint Eastwood.) I feel less bad about this one because Capra already had three. (And Lean would win two.) It makes perfect sense. The only thing complicated about this is who the hell I’m gonna vote for.

BEST DIRECTOR – 1946

And the nominees were…

Clarence Brown, The Yearling

Frank Capra, It’s a Wonderful Life

David Lean, Brief Encounter

Robert Siodmak, The Killers

William Wyler, The Best Years of Our Lives (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Best Actor – 1946

Love me some 1946. I’m always a fan of years that have definitive winners, yet other nominees that are strong enough to make people vehemently argue that those films should have won instead, and yet not be wrong to argue for them. 1939 is one. 1957. 1997, 1994, 1991 — there are lots of them. Here, The Best Years of Our Lives wins Best Picture, as it should have (historically this is a big film for Hollywood), and It’s a Wonderful Life is the film everyone argues for. And no one is wrong. I love that.

The Best Years of Our Lives also won Best Director for William Wyler, which was gonna happen, and Best Supporting Actor for Harold Russell, which, as I said here, I actually really, really hate. Best Actress was Olivia de Havilland for To Each His Own, which, as I said here, I love and support fully. And Best Supporting Actress was Anne Baxter for The Razor’s Edge, which I liked very much, actually.

So, in all, 1946 is a strong, strong year, with only one slip up that’s actually understandable (though still bad). And this category — looking at it objectively — as much as we all love Jimmy Stewart — this was a good decision.

BEST ACTOR – 1946

And the nominees were…

Frederic March, The Best Years of Our Lives

Laurence Olivier, Henry V

Larry Parks, The Jolson Story

Gregory Peck, The Yearling

James Stewart, It’s A Wonderful Life (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Best Supporting Actor – 1946

Love me some 1946. Two great films atop the Best Picture nominees list, The Best Years of Our Lives and It’s a Wonderful Life. I know everyone gets up in arms about It’s a Wonderful Life not winning, but The Best Years of Our Lives was a fitting Best Picture choice, given the year (and the subject matter).

William Wyler also won Best Director for the film, which makes sense, and Frederic March wins Best Actor for it as well. Personally, I love all of the decisions, and think March was incredible in the film, and deserved the Oscar. Best Actress this year was Olivia de Havilland for To Each His Own (talked about here), which she was owed in spades by this point, and she was definitely good enough to win (even though I really liked Celia Johnson in Brief Encounter). And Best Supporting Actress was Anne Baxter for The Razor’s Edge, which was a great decision. She was fantastic there.

Which leaves us with this category. This is one of those categories where, while I understand how they made the decision they made, it still baffles me.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR – 1946

And the nominees were…

Charles Coburn, The Green Years

William Demarest, The Jolson Story

Claude Rains, Notorious

Harold Russell, The Best Years of Our Lives

Clifton Webb, The Razor’s Edge (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Best Actress – 1946

I love 1946. Because not only does it have a slam dunk Best Picture winner, but it also has the sentimental favorite (kind of like 1939, with Gone With the Wind and The Wizard of Oz. Only 1939 has several more sentimental favorites). The Best Years of Our Lives is, given the year it was made, an absolute no-brainer perfect decision for Best Picture. William Wyler wins Best Director for the film as well, which makes perfect sense. Frederic March also wins Best Actor for the film, which was also a great choice.

Now, Harold Russell winning Best Supporting Actor for the film, however, was not a great choice. At least by my standards. I know he was an actual veteran who actually lost his hands during the war, but it doesn’t change the fact that the performance just isn’t very good. At least, as compared to Charles Coburn in the Green Years and Claude Rains in Notorious. Coburn gave my favorite performance in the category, but given that he beat Rains for it in 1943, I don’t see how they don’t immediately give the award to Claude Rains I know there’s the sweep thing, but — it’s Claude Rains. The whole affair just baffles me.

The other awards that didn’t go to The Best Years of Our Lives were Best Supporting Actress, which went to Anne Baxter for The Razor’s Edge, which not only was a great decision in the category, but also a great one historically, since Baxter earned an Oscar for her performance in All About Eve alone, and then this award, which was several years in the making.

BEST ACTRESS – 1946

And the nominees were…

Olivia de Havilland, To Each His Own

Celia Johnson, Brief Encounter

Jennifer Jones, Duel in the Sun

Rosalind Russell, Sister Kenny

Jane Wyman, The Yearling (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Rankings — Best Director

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest Rankings, specifically for Best Actor. Just in case the one big article is too much for you and you just want one specific category.

(Underlined means that’s what won. An asterisk (*) means that’s what I’d have voted for. Anything in RED means I haven’t seen the film yet.)


Best Director

2013 – 1. Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity *

2. Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave

3. Martin Scorsese, The Wolf of Wall Street

4. David O. Russell, American Hustle

5. Alexander Payne, Nebraska

2012 – 1. Ang Lee, Life of Pi *

2. Steven Spielberg, Lincoln

3. David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook

4. Benh Zeitlin, Beasts of the Southern Wild

5. Michael Haneke, Amour

2011  1. Martin Scorsese, Hugo *

2. Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist

3. Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life

4. Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris

5. Alexander Payne, The Descendants (more…)


The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide — Best Director

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide, specifically for Best Director.

A reminder about the color code:

Films in RED are films that are essential. These are films you need to see, whether you like them or not. Though you’ll probably like most of them. A few of these may be part of a personal bias, but this is my list. Just think of the films in red as films you need to see if you want to be film literate (in the most basic sense). At least 70% of these are films that, if you haven’t seen them, you should be ashamed of yourself. These are the prerequisites you need to get into the class. (5-star films.)

Films in ORANGE are films that are my personal favorites (that aren’t already marked red). While not “essential” per say, these are films that I love dearly. They’re essential to me. They’re films that I will tell you that you need to see. I’d say that 80% of the time, these are going to be films that most people would enjoy. A few of them might be subjective to me, but on the whole, these are all very good films. I tried to limit the orange ones to only the best of the best, my absolute favorites. But either way, I love them, and you should definitely see at least 80% of them. (My 5-star films. At worst, most people’s 3-star films. Generally 4’s for everybody.) (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Rankings — Best Supporting Actress

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest Rankings, specifically for Best Supporting Actress. Just in case the one big article is too much for you and you just want one specific category.

(Underlined means that’s what won. An asterisk (*) means that’s what I’d have voted for.)


Best Supporting Actress

2013 – 1. Julia Roberts, August: Osage County

2. Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave *

3. June Squibb, Nebraska

4. Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine

5. Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle

2012 – 1. Anne Hathaway, Les Misérables *

2. Sally Field, Lincoln

3. Helen Hunt, The Sessions

4. Jacki Weaver, Silver Linings Playbook

5. Amy Adams, The Master

2011 – 1. Bérénice Bejo, The Artist

2. Jessica Chastain, The Help *

3. Octavia Spencer, The Help

4. Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs

5. Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids (more…)


The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide — Best Supporting Actress

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide, specifically for Best Supporting Actress.

A reminder about the color code:

Films in RED are films that are essential. These are films you need to see, whether you like them or not. Though you’ll probably like most of them. A few of these may be part of a personal bias, but this is my list. Just think of the films in red as films you need to see if you want to be film literate (in the most basic sense). At least 70% of these are films that, if you haven’t seen them, you should be ashamed of yourself. These are the prerequisites you need to get into the class. (5-star films.)

Films in ORANGE are films that are my personal favorites (that aren’t already marked red). While not “essential” per say, these are films that I love dearly. They’re essential to me. They’re films that I will tell you that you need to see. I’d say that 80% of the time, these are going to be films that most people would enjoy. A few of them might be subjective to me, but on the whole, these are all very good films. I tried to limit the orange ones to only the best of the best, my absolute favorites. But either way, I love them, and you should definitely see at least 80% of them. (My 5-star films. At worst, most people’s 3-star films. Generally 4’s for everybody.) (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Rankings – Best Supporting Actor

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest Rankings, specifically for Best Supporting Actor. Just in case the one big article is too much for you and you just want one specific category.

(Underlined means that’s what won. An asterisk (*) means that’s what I’d have voted for. Anything in RED means I haven’t seen the film yet.)


Best Supporting Actor

2013 – 1. Jonah Hill, The Wolf of Wall Street *

2. Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club

3. Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave

4. Bradley Cooper, American Hustle

5. Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips

2012 – 1. Robert De Niro, Silver Linings Playbook *

2. Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained

3. Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln

4. Philip Seymour Hoffman, The Master

5. Alan Arkin, Argo

2011  1. Max von Sydow, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close *

2. Christopher Plummer, Beginners

3. Kenneth Branagh, My Week with Marilyn

4. Nick Nolte, Warrior

5. Jonah Hill, Moneyball (more…)


The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide — Best Supporting Actor

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide, specifically for Best Supporting Actor.

A reminder about the color code:

Films in RED are films that are essential. These are films you need to see, whether you like them or not. Though you’ll probably like most of them. A few of these may be part of a personal bias, but this is my list. Just think of the films in red as films you need to see if you want to be film literate (in the most basic sense). At least 70% of these are films that, if you haven’t seen them, you should be ashamed of yourself. These are the prerequisites you need to get into the class. (5-star films.)

Films in ORANGE are films that are my personal favorites (that aren’t already marked red). While not “essential” per say, these are films that I love dearly. They’re essential to me. They’re films that I will tell you that you need to see. I’d say that 80% of the time, these are going to be films that most people would enjoy. A few of them might be subjective to me, but on the whole, these are all very good films. I tried to limit the orange ones to only the best of the best, my absolute favorites. But either way, I love them, and you should definitely see at least 80% of them. (My 5-star films. At worst, most people’s 3-star films. Generally 4’s for everybody.) (more…)


The Oscar Quest: Rankings – Best Actress

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest Rankings, specifically for Best Actress.

(Underlined means that’s what won. An asterisk (*) means that’s what I’d have voted for. Anything in RED means I haven’t seen the film yet.)


Best Actress

2013 – 1. Judi Dench, Philomena *

2. Sandra Bullock, Gravity

3. Meryl Streep, August: Osage County

4. Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine

5. Amy Adams, American Hustle

2012 – 1. Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook *

2. Naomi Watts, The Impossible

3. Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty

4. Emmanuelle Riva, Amour

5. Quvenzhané Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild

2011  1. Rooney Mara, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo *

2. Michelle Williams, My Week with Marilyn

3. Viola Davis, The Help

4. Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady

5. Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs (more…)


The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide – Best Actress

Here is my subset of The Oscar Quest: A Viewer’s Guide, specifically for Best Actress.

A reminder about the color code:

Films in RED are films that are essential. These are films you need to see, whether you like them or not. Though you’ll probably like most of them. A few of these may be part of a personal bias, but this is my list. Just think of the films in red as films you need to see if you want to be film literate (in the most basic sense). At least 70% of these are films that, if you haven’t seen them, you should be ashamed of yourself. These are the prerequisites you need to get into the class. (5-star films.)

Films in ORANGE are films that are my personal favorites (that aren’t already marked red). While not “essential” per say, these are films that I love dearly. They’re essential to me. They’re films that I will tell you that you need to see. I’d say that 80% of the time, these are going to be films that most people would enjoy. A few of them might be subjective to me, but on the whole, these are all very good films. I tried to limit the orange ones to only the best of the best, my absolute favorites. But either way, I love them, and you should definitely see at least 80% of them. (My 5-star films. At worst, most people’s 3-star films. Generally 4’s for everybody.) (more…)