On Sunday, Hollywood celebrates itself and honors its own. All eyes (or most of them anyway) will be on the presentations of the
But do the Oscars always end up in the right hands? Opinions abound on this topic, and what follows is only one man's personal opinion. In any event, it makes for some interesting discussion.
Let's start by rewinding the historical clock back to 1941. That was the year of
But did "Kane" prevail at the Oscars? Nope. That award went to "How Green Was My Valley."
Fast-forward to 1952, when Cecil B. DeMille's big top blockbuster "The Greatest Show on Earth" was voted Best Picture. Probably deserved, but where was the flick generally ranked among the best musicals of all time? Alas,
Perhaps the Academy, in its infinite wisdom, rebelled against the idea of two
Speaking of musicals, if
In 1955, the year that
Few actresses have delved as deeply into their soul as did
The most blatant of Oscar crimes occurred in 1965 when
Burton made a valiant attempt for the prize the following year in
The year 1967 will be remembered as the year they gave the Oscar to the wrong Hepburn. Audrey electrified audiences in "Wait Until Dark," but the academy favored Katharine, giving her a third statuette for her more casual showing in "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner."
To my mind, the best movie ever made was "The Last Picture Show" in 1971, and indeed it earned Oscars for
In 1979, the academy turned its back on
Two years later, "On Golden Pond" not only lost, but was beaten by a cinematic nonentity called "Chariots of Fire," even though
The sleeper (and sleep-inducing) "Out of Africa" was named best picture of 1985, even though "The Color Purple" was in the running.
Glenn Close's bunny-boiling madwoman in "Fatal Attraction" took a back seat to
It would be difficult to imagine a better performance than
In 1996, the voters should have elevated
"Shakespeare in Love" was an enjoyable enough movie, but it paled in comparison to
Granted, 2007 wasn't a vintage year for movies, but surely there must have been one worthier than the putrid "No Country for Old Men." Or were the Academy voters just making it up to the Coen brothers for overlooking "Fargo" a decade earlier?
And in that same year,
"Make-up" Oscars have been common over the years, as Newman's illustrates.
Alas, Burton went to his grave 0 for 7, a statistic close to O'Toole's. They join formidable performers like Dean and Widmark, as well as Garland and
As for this year's crop of pictures and performers, who knows? If your favorite doesn't win, or is bested by a less-deserving contender, be advised that there is plenty of precedence.