Monthly Archives: April 2011

The Best Picture Project – Forrest Gump (1994)

Film poster with an all-white background, and a park bench (facing away from the viewer) near the bottom. A man wearing a white suit is sitting on the right side of the bench and is looking to his left while resting his hands on both sides of him on the bench. A suitcase is sitting on the ground, and the man is wearing tennis shoes. At the top left of the image is the film's tagline and title, and at the bottom is the release date and production credits.Directed by Robert Zemeckis

Starring Tom Hanks, Robin Wright and Gary Sinise

Screenplay by Eric Roth, from the Novel by Winston Groom

Forrest Gump is probably not the worst film to ever win Best Picture.  After all, it’s hard to be the worst when films like Cavalcade, Gigi and Around the World In 80 Days all took the top prize.  But just because it’s not the worst, it’s victory might just be the most egregiously wrong in Academy history.

After all, to get the crown, Gump had to overcome two other classic movies – Pulp Fiction and The Shawshank Redemption – but even taking those two out of the equation, it’s still not nearly as good as the two other movies left in the race, Quiz Show and Four Weddings and a Funeral.  Quite simply, Forrest Gump might not be the worst to win Best Picture, but it’s easily one of the creakiest. Continue reading

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The Best Picture Project – Amadeus (1984)

Directed by Milos Foreman

Written by Peter Schaffer, adapted from his play

Starring F. Murray Abraham and Tom Hulce

Amadeus is one of those films honored by the Academy that, because of the perfect storm of subject, lack of recognizable stars, and what-have-you, is for the most part, generally unknown by the modern public – at least that’s the way it seems to me. After all, whenever I discuss any movies, especially Best Picture winners, nobody mentions Amadeus. The action-nerds talk about Platoon, the sci-fi guys talk about 2001 and Star Wars getting shafted, the costume drama buffs talk about Gone With the Wind, and the musical buffs have a million to choose from. Even thriller guy gets to talk about Silence of the Lambs. Continue reading

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A Quick Jaunt to Nashville…

Last week, as a bit of a Spring Break trip, my family and I hopped on down to Nashville to see the U.S. national team play Paraguay – that was in soccer , for those unfamiliar.  While the outcome of the game was a bit of a bummer – Paraguay caught a  lucky goal and then parked the bus in front of the net the rest of the game, leading to an otherwise dreary 1-0 score line – it actually was pretty well-played by the U.S., except for a decided lack of finishing.

Along the way we stopped for some great food at Neely’s Bar-B-Que – I say it was great because, well, I’m not normally a rib person, and I thought the ribs were marvelous.  I also figured, whilst we were in Nashville seeing some other sights, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to visit a couple local landmarks that made memorable appearances in Hollywood over the years. Continue reading

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