Last year, the Academy expanded the nomination field for Best Picture from five films to ten, however, of the pool, it was hard to figure five that deserved the nomination. This year, I feel that more of the ten movies nominated are Oscar worthy. A look at past nominations reveals that years ago, the number changed from as few as three to as many as ten. I have an idea for the Academy...instead of scrambling to come up with ten movies each year, why not change the rule to "up to ten" nominees?
This week's Merry Karma ToT topic is Ten (plus one) Movies That Could Have Won Best Picture.
I looked at the list of nominated movies throughout the years, and from the late 1930s to the mid 1990s, just about every picture nominated each year is a classic, and could have won. It is a difficult choice to make, but I will list ten movies that could have won, in no particular order:
1. The Queen, (2006) - The Departed won that year - a horrifically violent movie with cops double-crossing cops...bleh. Helen Mirren did an outstanding job portraying QEII. The story, set around the time that Tony Blair took office as Prime Minister and Princess Diana was killed, was enchanting.
2. Little Miss Sunshine, (2006) - (see above) - This movie was a little quirky, but it was funny and intelligent in it's humor. A little girl wants to compete in a beauty pageant, and her family joins in to help her.
3. Shine, (1996) - This biopic is based on the life of David Helfgott, a piano prodigy who was driven to a nervous breakdown. Geoffrey Rush won Best Actor for his portrayal of Helfgott., and it was well deserved.
4. The Green Mile, (1999) - Set in a prison, this movie is about an inmate with special powers that lead his wardens to wonder if he could have committed the crimes of which he is accused.
5. The Sixth Sense, (1999) - Little Haley Joel Osment sees dead people...what's not to like? This movie had everyone hooked in for the big surprise.
6. Fargo, (1996) - OMG, this movie is the epitome of quirk and I can watch it over and over again. William H Macy plays a car salesman whose scam is thwarted by his boss/father-in-law. In order to raise some money to cover his tracks, he hires some thugs to kidnap his wife for the ransom, making things go from bad to worse. Frances McDormand plays the pregnant police chief who is hot on the trail. She won Best Actress for this plumb part.
7. The Shawshank Redemption, (1994) - Great movie based on the Stephen King book about a man convicted of two murders that he didn't commit and his life behind bars.
8. Pulp Fiction, (1994) - Three stories are intertwined in this highly stylized and violent story that takes place over a short period of time. Who can forget John Travolta and Uma Thurman in that dance scene?
9. The Color Purple, (1985) - Whoopi Goldberg was nominated for Best Actress in this film about a woman who was kept down by the men in her life until one day she had just had about enough.
10. The Big Chill, (1983) - College friends get together for the funeral of one of their own and discover that they've grown up (just a little).
11. E.T. the Extraterrestial, (1982) - Everyone knows the classic line, "E.T., phone home."
There are dozens more I can add to my list, but these are a start.