PDA

View Full Version : 25 yrs of Oscar - just a little fun debate



Surfing Coffee
April 18th, 2006, 04:08 PM
From my little morning study, there are arguably six films over the last 25 years that are anywhere within the vicinity of "best":

Platoon
Amadeus (it JUST manages to get its toe past the line, and I mean, JUST)
Unforgiven
The Last Emperor
Dances With Wolves
Silence of the Lambs
Braveheart

Since "Braveheart," EVERY film has been colorful, at best, but mostly standard material: EP, Titanic, Shakespeare in Love, American Beauty, Gladiator(?), A Beautiful Mind, Chicago, Lord of the Rings, Million Dollar Baby, Crash. The last two films have had a nice "political" message attached.

Over the stretch of the 80s, a lot of really maudlin films with sappy scripts had their day:

Out of Africa (I like the idea of it, I like that my dad liked aspects of it - don't know which ones, unfortunately - but I don't care for the film as a whole)
Terms of Endearment
Ordinary People
Driving Miss Honkey
Chariots of Fire
Rain Man

Patterns? Looks like the 80s Hollywood really valued pretentious melodrama that emphasized love and friendship. I mean - look at these five films. Terms of Endearment, Ordinary People, fucking Rain Man. Break out the Kleenex and the 31 y/o female Long Island Elementary school teacher, here come the tears! Still, at least the 80s had a little dash - Platoon managed to stick it's nose in there. Of course, Platoon caters to an east coast, liberal mentality toward the war in every respect, but I mean, fuck, you can't ask for everything, can you? For what it's worth, writers were at least a little challenged to tackle simple themes of humanity in these films.

All-in-all, looks like the 80s represented the budding of real corporate film. Every so often, there is a trace of guts, but really, melodrama equated to hard core cash, and everyone purchased that stock.

The late 90s, however, has shown not a fucking snip of balls. There just isn't a pair of huevos in site. Terrible. It's like, after Braveheart, Hollywood became a hedge fund corporation.

Sometimes, pattern analysis doesn't work:

http://ia.imdb.com/media/imdb/01/I/44/14/50m.gif (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0109830/photogallery)
Best Picture, 1994.

I mean, honestly, what is this? The "Platoon" of the 90s? The "Deer Hunter" of the 70s? I'm lost. I like to think that "Forrest Gump's" role is to create a vicious, vicious ebb, just in case Hollywood was planning on investing any serious money into films that took the same line as "Quiz Show" or "The Shawshank Redemption." It also marks another more subtle trend - where manipulative storylines as to religion, politics, and the American Dream overtake the darker, more gritty themes of the 70s. For several years, this trend was kinduv buried under the rug - that is, until "Crash" won best picture 11 years later...