Tag Archives: one flew over the cuckoo’s nest

The Best Picture Project – The English Patient (1996)

The English Patient Poster.jpgDirected by Anthony Minghella

Screenplay by Anthony Minghella, Based on the novel by Michael Ondaatje

Starring Kristin Scott Thomas, Ralph Fiennes, Juliette Binoche and Willem Dafoe.  Also featured were Naveen Andrews, Colin Firth and Jürgen Prochnow

To my mind it’s always been a hallmark of weak writing to reference the work of others, at least when it’s done for the explicit purpose of latching onto the credibility of the work of the other without actually having to create it organically yourself.  In other words, rather than actually create something on your own, you simply reach out, grab something by somebody else, shine it up a little bit and then say, “Ta da, look at what I did.” Continue reading

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The Best Picture Project – The Great Ziegfeld (1936)

Directed by Robert Z. Leonard,

Screenplay by William Anthony McGuire

Starring William Powell, Luise Rainer, Frank Morgan and Myrna Loy

For the first time in this series – in what is my 50th post in this series – we start with a quiz.  From the list below, find the outlier and tell me why it’s the outlier:

2005 – Brokeback Mountain

1990 – Goodfellas

1982 – ET

1980 – Raging Bull Continue reading

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The Best Picture Project – The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

Directed by Jonathon Demme

Screenplay by Ted Tally, based on the novel by Thomas Harris

Starring Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins

It’s somewhat funny that, as I work myself through this project, I’ve described various Best Picture winners as ‘perhaps the darkest Best Picture winner ever,’ or some sentiment along those lines.  I’ve said this about Oliver!, I’m sure I said it about The Lost Weekend, and if I didn’t say it about Platoon, I don’t know why.  The reason this is funny is that, there can truly only be one film to hold the title of ‘darkest Best Picture’, and with all due respect to those other films that I might have tried to include in the race, the reality is that The Silence of the Lambs is easily the darkest of the Best Picture winners ever, hands down. 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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The Best Picture Project – One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest (1975)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Next (1975)

Produced by Saul Zaentz and Michael Douglas

Directed by Milos Foreman

Screenplay by Lawrence Hauben and Bo Goldman

From the Novel by Ken Kesey

Cinematography by Haskell Wexler

Starring Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Brad Dourif, Danny Devito, Christopher Lloyd

 Of the fourteen films I’ve watched for this project so far, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest might be the first truly great film I’ve seen.  Annie Hall is no slouch, but of the rest – Dances With Wolves, Patton, From Here To Eternity, included – none really have the depth or subtext of One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest . Perhaps that’s a personal bias of mine – I can’t imagine what people will say when they realize that, after I watched fourteen films, Platoon could hardly find it’s way into the top ten so far.  Still, that doesn’t change the fact that One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest is simply a marvelous film. Continue reading

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