Tag Archives: marty

The Best Picture Project — Midnight Cowboy (1969)

Midnight Cowboy.jpgMidnight Cowboy (1969)

Directed by John Schlesinger

Written by Waldo Salt, based upon the novel by James Leo Herlihy

Starring Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman

Midnight Cowboy seems an unusual choice to win the Oscar – after all, until it’s win in 1969, no movie with any real, honest-to-goodness grit to it, save for maybe Marty, managed to snag the top prize.  And those that did have a tinge of grit to it – or darkness, if you prefer another word – were about big, important things, e.g. The Best Years of Our Lives.  In other words, if a dark movie, rooted in real life, wanted to win Best Picture, it had to go big and make epic statements about important topics (anti-Semitism, WWII), because, aside from that sweet little film about the lonely butcher – Marty – you couldn’t win.

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The Best Picture Project – Gentleman’s Agreement (1947)

Gentleman's Agreement (1947 movie poster).jpgDirected by Elia Kazan

Screenplay by Moss Hart, from the novel by Laura Z. Hobson

Starring Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire, John Garfield, Anne Revere and Celeste Holm

Throughout the long and winding road I’ve traveled for the Best Picture Project, I’ve learned more than a few things.  Most prominent amongst those lessons, oh my brothers and only friends, is there is no predictability about the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.  At least not in the traditional sense of predictability. Continue reading

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The Best Picture Project – Wings (1927/1928)

Directed by William Wellman

Written by Hope Loring and Louis Lighton, from a story by John Monk Saunders

Starring Charles ‘Buddy’ Rogers, Richard Arlen, Clara Bow and Gary Cooper

Some movies deserve the scorn heaped upon them.  After all, they’ve been given every chance to succeed, been given all the money to succeed, and failed and deserve to whither on the vine and die.  These would the pretentious, the superficially-important, and the later-career Michael Bay movies — in other words, films that could have — should have — been better, but just weren’t. Continue reading

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Ernest Borgnine and Longest Suriving Oscar Winners

File:Ernest Borgnine McHale McHale's Navy 1962.JPGSome months ago I wrote a post about the longest surviving Oscar winners, one of who was Ernest Borgnine.  Obviously, with his recent death, that post will have to be changed to reflect his passing.

As of this writing, the longest surviving Oscar winner in the Best Actor category is Maximillian Schell, for Judgment at Nuremberg, 1961.

R.I.P Ernie.

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The Best Picture Project – The French Connection (1971)

Directed by William Friedkin

Screenplay by Ernest Tidyman, based upon the book by Robin Moore

Starring Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider and Fernando Rey

The Oscars have been known to follow the latest trends, gleeefully heaping awards on the latest flash-in-the-pan – those films or filmmakers that show promise, or even brilliance, but who never rise to the same level again.  The earliest of the bunch that comes to mind is Delbert Mann for directing Marty.  Like any next best thing he shot to the ultimate top of his profession, winning an Oscar for directing the film, only to fall immediately back to earth.  Even if he wasn’t exactly never heard from again, it seemed pretty close to it. Continue reading

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The Best Picture Project – Marty (1955)

 Directed by Delbert Mann

Screenplay by Paddy Chayefsky

Starring Ernest Borgnine and Betsy Blair

At the beginning of this project I had one goal in mind: to see a lot of ‘good’ movies and to be exposed to what peoples of other times thought of as good movies. In a sense, this project was something like a time machine. I got to see the past but couldn’t do anything about it. Continue reading

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