And the Oscar goes to...

Here's an interesting one-sheet almanac on Oscar trivia and factoids.

Looking at the past 25 years of Best Pictures (going back to 1983's Gandhi), which ones stand the test of time? Which are truly enduring cinematic classics?

The most deserving Best Picture winners
1. The Silence of the Lambs (1991), obviously
2. Unforgiven (1992), genius
3. Titanic (1997), popcorn filmmaking at its best
4. Platoon (1986), operatic in a good way
5. American Beauty (1999), the whole is far greater than the sum of its familiar parts
6. Chicago (2002), razzle-dazzle fun

The most undeserving and ridiculous Best Picture winners (and who should have won)
1. the insipid Shakespeare in Love (1998) (Saving Private Ryan packed a far stronger and more important punch)
2. the tedious Gandhi (1982) (Tootsie is about as perfect a comedy as you can make, but the Oscars don't reward that kind of thing)
3. how many people have actually seen The Last Emperor (1987)? (Fatal Attraction captured the 1980s zeitgeist, but the best film is probably a toss-up between Moonstruck and Broadcast News, although neither has aged well - guess 1987 wasn't so good a year)
4. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (2003) (sorry, The Cheese Fry is one of those people who think Lost in Translation is sublime on every level)
5. the bombastic, empty-headed Gladiator (2000) (the most exciting film of the year was Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon)
6. the solid but familiar biopic A Beautiful Mind (2001) (the true cinematic masterpiece was Moulin Rouge)

Who will win this Sunday? Look for a strong showing by No Country for Old Men.

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