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Top 10 Worst Best Picture Winners

Let’s face it, the Oscar for “Best Picture” rarely goes to the actual best picture of any given year. Since the inception of the Academy Awards in 1928, there have been a number of doozies that walked away with the industry’s most prestigious award – some sub-par films, some average, some just not very good at all. In light of this thinking, I have compiled my own list – “The Top 10 Worst Best Picture Winners of All-Time”

Take a look at this past year, for instance. “The Hurt Locker” won the highest honor and I wouldn’t even put that in my Top 15 films of the year. However, it was sort of a weak year for great films and because of that, I excluded it from this list. I know everyone says “Ordinary People” (1980) and “Dances with Wolves” (1990) were undeserving of winning “Best Picture” – that “Raging Bull” (1980) and “Goodfellas” (two phenomenal films by Martin Scorsese) were the better films. This is probably true and I would agree with this sentiment. However, I could not include the films of Robert Redford and Kevin Costner on this particular Top 10 List because, quite frankly, I think they are both 4-star films in their own right. Is “Kramer vs. Kramer” (1979) a better film than Coppola’s masterpiece that is “Apocalypse Now”? I certainly don’t think so. However, “Kramer vs. Kramer” won and I love the movie, so this too is also omitted.

I desperately wanted to include “Titanic” (1997) on this list. It’s not a very good film and has not aged well at all (even though it’s only been 13 years). I find the film manipulative on many levels and the script is downright hokey and poor. However, I understand why it won and it was, at the time, a great cinematic achievement on a technical level. On top of this, there were not many other films that stood out in 1997, so sadly, I could not include the over-hyped “Titanic” on this prestigious list. I don’t think “A Beautiful Mind” (2001) is a very good movie at all. The guy-with-a-disease does make for great Oscar bait, but there wasn’t much to admire in this histrionic film. And really – there wasn’t much to pick from during that anemic year for films, so I couldn’t even include this either!

A “Best Picture” Oscar winner should be an instant classic. It should stand the test of time. It should be a film that, years and decades from its release, will be remembered and looked at as a testament to its time. Some “Best Picture” winners that encapsulate this tenet are: “Gone with the Wind” (1939), “The Godfather” films (1972, 1974), “Schindler’s List” (1993), “Unforgiven” (1991), “From Here to Eternity” (1953) and “On the Waterfront” (1954). In any case, look it over, tell me what you think – and enjoy!

10

The English Patient
1996

English-Patient

I actually like this film, but given the other notable films of that year, I had to put this on the list. I mean, come on…who actually fell in love with this movie and can watch it over and over? It certainly has the looks of a “Best Picture” winner. It’s grand and epic in scope – Oscar loves that, I know. But with films like “Fargo,” “Secrets and Lies,” “Breaking the Waves,” “The People vs. Larry Flynt,” “Sling Blade,” (my personal #1 film for 1996) and “Big Night,” I sadly had to include this. Elaine Benes from “Seinfeld” had this film pegged – she was at least honest enough to admit her displeasure of this film – and was alienated by everyone (including her current boyfriend) for her candor.

9

Gigi
1958

Gigi

There have been a number of musicals to win for “Best Picture” (“Oliver!,” “The Sound of Music,” “My Fair Lady”), but this is an average-at-best MGM musical that no one really remembers today. It’s overlong and there is hardly any dancing in the film, if any. The passage of time also shows “Touch of Evil,” “Vertigo,” “Mon Oncle,” “The Defiant Ones” and “A Night to Remember” as being much stronger films. I mean, really…what film class is breaking down and analyzing “Gigi” over classics by Orson Welles and Jacques Tati from that same year?


8

Chariots of Fire
1981

Chariots

Another example of a good film that, for some reason, got away with the grand prize. I would think most people look at this movie and think how slow and boring this is. How engaging can a movie about running be to begin with? I know it’s considered by many to be a classic “sports” film, but, like golf and billiards, running is not a sport. I think Warren Beatty’s “Reds” was a masterpiece of a film. Also, released in 1981 and remembered with much greater fondness than the scintillating “Chariots of Fire” are “Raiders of the Lost Ark”, “On Golden Pond,” and the extraordinary “Das Boot.”

7

Forrest Gump
1994

Forrest-Gump-1

Run, Forrest, run! For 15 minutes of film, just run! I know, I know, it’s a modern, American classic, right? You laughed, you cried, it had great music and Tom Hanks was amazing. Whatever. I did like it though. It was hard not to like. The visual effects of putting Forrest next to a whole slew of notable 20th century figures was cool (but really, how many times could you do it?) and the love story at the core of the movie is sweet and touching. But 1994 was actually a great year for film. I couldn’t even put this movie in my Top 15 with other great achievements like: “The Shawshank Redemption,” “Quiz Show,” “Il Postino,” “Hoop Dreams,” the masterful “Natural Born Killers,” Krzysztof’s “Red” and yes, even “Pulp Fiction” which is over-rated in its own right, but still, a better choice than this schmaltzy, calculating, and poorly edited film. For Academy voters, this was the easy, safe pick for that year. Yeah, Forrest…keep running!


6

The Departed
2006

Departed

The year of the “Long Overdue” award masking as “Best Picture” and “Best Director” respectively. I love Martin Scorsese and am a huge fan of so many of his films, but this had no business winning the top two awards of the night, let alone have the honor of being nominated. If any film actually stood out that year, Scorsese would have gone home empty-handed once again. But alas, no such film existed. Here, the thinking was, “Well, he’s made some brilliant films in the past, but because there was stiff competition those years, he just never won the big one. Let’s give him his Oscar now.” Nicholson is over-the-top (shocker), Wahlberg (who I actually like) was a disaster and really, it doesn’t even measure up to the original 2002 film “Infernal Affairs.” The Departed was up again Babel, Little Miss Sunshine (which should have won in JFrater’s opinion), The Queen, and Letters from Iwo Jima.

5

Cavalcade
1933

Cavalcade2

The movie is downright dull and overlong. There’s no way around it. It made for a boring play and here it is a boring and stilted British movie. The film follows a pair of British aristocrats over the span of three decades and the turbulent times in which they live (1899-1933). There have been some terrific British films over the years. This is not one of them. If I wanted to see how World War I, the death of Queen Victoria, & the sinking of the Titanic affected society, I could watch a special on the History channel and be more entertained. Some excellent films that were snubbed in lieu of this snoozefest were: “King Kong,” “I am A Fugitive From A Chain Gang,” “Little Women” and “She Done Him Wrong” (yes, even at 66 minutes…it leaves much more of an impact than the siesta that is “Cavalcade”).


4

How Green Was My Valley
1941

How-Green

I am not sure how this film beat out a film that changed the face of motion pictures as we know it (“Citizen Kane”), but it did. I’m not one of those people who think that “Citizen Kane” is the end-all-and-be-all, but come on…it changed the way we view and create cinema. John Ford was a terrific filmmaker, but this is another lackluster, tedious film whose only claim to fame is that it bested Orson Welles’ magnum opus. The movie centers on the sorrowful lives of coal miners and is better suited for viewing in a college class on sociology or labor relations than as a piece of entertainment. Other worthy films that were released this year besides “Citizen Kane”: “Suspicion,” “The Maltese Falcon,” “Little Foxes,” and yes, even Disney’s “Dumbo” is the greater work.

3

Driving Miss Daisy
1989

Driving-Ms-Daisy

This is a sweet film with some very touching moments. Morgan Freeman is outstanding here as is Jessica Tandy (who won a “Best Actress” Oscar here). But “Best Picture”? Do you really look back to 1989 and think back on this as being the year’s Best Picture?! If you are saying, “Yes” as you read this now, I’m calling you a liar. The film’s director wasn’t even recognized as a “Best Director” nominee. This was a year where voters wanted to feel good about themselves by selecting a movie that (haphazardly) shows the evils of racism. On that level, I felt the film to be a bit insulting, to be honest. It treats its viewers like idiots, thinking we had no idea how poorly blacks were treated in the South in 1948 and that yes, racism is bad. Thank you. It ranks so high on the list for these reasons and because it indefensibly beat out such grand triumphs of film such as: “Cinema Paradiso,” “Dead Poet’s Society,” “Born on the 4th of July,” “Crimes and Misdemeanors” and “Sex, Lies and Videotape.”


2

Around the World in 80 Days
1956

Around-The-World

On any list like this one, this film you will most surely find. For all of its impressive locations and cast of actors, this is another long (3+ hours), tedious, uninteresting film. It is outdated, to be sure, with no sense of adventure or wonder to it at all (unlike the Jules Verne story that it is based on). Watch it now – tell me it doesn’t feel like you’re watching some homemade travel videos – or even those archaic educational videos you used to watch in the 6th grade. How this won “Best Picture,” I have no idea – but with cameos by more than 40 of Hollywood’s stars at the time, my thinking is that there were so many people associated with this film in one way or another, that enough votes went its way. “The Searchers,” “The Ten Commandments, “Giant” and “Anastasia” would have been much more admirable picks – all films that when we watch them today, over 50 years later, still entertain and engage us.

1

Chicago
2002

Chicago

This one was a travesty. I’ll start by saying that I did see it on Broadway years ago and loved it. It was great, sexy entertainment filled with wonderful choreography. And unlike some Broadway musicals that made successful transitions to the world of film, this just plays as silly entertainment geared to the “Glee” demographic. It plays more like the failed musical adaptations such as “Rent” and “Phantom of the Opera” than it does the ones which actually encapsulate the essence of what made the musicals great in the first place (like “West Side Story” or “An American in Paris”). The songs are great, sure – it’s a great musical. But when you leave it to a Hollywood cast who are there for box-office power and not their singing chops (John C. Reilly, Renee Zellweger, Richard Gere), the songs fall flat. It was a weak year for good movies, but no one is ever going to look back at 2002 and think, “Oh, ‘Chicago’ was the best movie that year!” “Chicago” isn’t a good movie that beat out the more deserving…it is a poor, glitz-over-substance film that beat out the more deserving. Those films would be: “Adaptation,” “Talk to Her,” “Gangs of New York,” “Frida” and “The Pianist.”

Reprinted with the permission of Peter Eramo Jr.



  • i agree with a lot of these, and a lot of my friends agree with me, when sitting around drinking and talking

    but….an extra special thanks for including forrest gump. while tom hanks probably deserved the actor oscar, pulp fiction was more deserving of best picture. i've been arguing with my friends about this for years.

    • I can't believe pulp fiction is 15 years ago! I love that film and would absolutely put it above Forrest Gump.

    • i have to make an addition to my post.
      let me start by saying that i have never seen hoop dreams (dont ask why — i dont know)

      so about 15min after i posted that message my friend texts me and asked me if i was an idiot for leaving hoop dreams out of my post……
      and i trust her opinion/cinematic taste

      so……….now that i have it on good authority that that movie kicked ass too,
      i can now make the argument that forrest gump probably shouldnt have even been nominated, much less won
      and im suposed to feel a small connection with the film because i was *at* the university of alabama when the movie came out — and my mom was standing right there when gov. george wallace stood at the door of foster auditorium when the first black students were registering for class

      the character of forrest was acted well.
      shit .. princess buttercup and lt. dan were well acted roles too
      but weak movie
      good idea, shitty execution

    • I have been arguing over this for years as well. Thanks for sharing your thoughts here. Good points made about the Forrest Gump year of 1994. And you should see Hoop Dreams. A great watch!~

    • Agreed. Shawshank is a movie that everytime it is on, either on network TV or on cable, it is almost impossible to turn it off, and many of my friends agree. Gump is a good film, however, it's not an "instant classic."

      blameblakeart.wordpress.com

    • oliveralbq

      im an idiot

  • Tragik

    Aside from calling Chariots of fire a 'good' film (when it, in fact, sucked) I agree with this list. Nicely done.

    • I watched Chariots the other day – needless to say I was very disappointed.

  • Kevin

    No Shakespeare in love? That over Saving Private Ryan has to be the worst call ever.

    • I thought the whole idea of Shakespeare in Love was so dull I have never seen it! Should I? Just to say I have?

      • Yeah, borefests like 'Shakespeare in Love' should not be even nominated for awards.

      • i dont know jamie—–

        on one hand gwennie paltrow was good, and so was judy densch as elizabeth

        on the other hand — you will*never*ever get that 2 hours and 3 minutes of your life back.

      • That would be like side stepping into some dog shit just to see what stepping in dog shit would be like. Why waste the hours of your life? Do something constructive, or watch a good movie. If you haven't seen it yet, I would recommend The Hurt Locker. I know the Academy drooled all over, and usually the Awards-fodder movies suck, but I liked it a lot. Shakespeare In Love? Pass on it.

        • BREAKING

          lol hurt locker was ‘good’ at best…the movie of the year for me was District 9 or Inglorious Basterds

      • Haha okay – clearly Shakespeare in love is one to miss. Thanks for the advice all :)

        • Tarachowski

          I quite liked Shakespeare in love :) very clever in some respects. But I would totally agree that it wasn't Oscar-worthy, considering the competition.

        • whatsinaname

          acutally, i felt Shakespeare in love was masterpiece. I studied Shakespeare numerous times and I felt the film did an amazing job of mixing subtle and common shakespeare themes into his life, which may have affected his writing. It was brilliant, funny and fun to watch. Anyone who disagrees, should study (and act in!) more shakespeare plays!

      • lou

        no, you really shouldn't. I kinda lost my will to live after I heard it had won an oscar.

    • I agree with this, although perhaps 'worst call ever' is a bit extreme.

      I saw Shakespeare in Love as part of high school english, back in the day (haven't seen it again since). From what I remember I didn't think it was all that bad, but not particularly good either. The references to his plays were somewhat clever, but the whole thing just seemed ridiculously cheesy to me. Also I think Gwyneth Paltrow's oscar acceptance speech really tainted that movie for a lot of people.

      In my opinion Saving Private Ryan was the better film and should have won.

      • oliveralbq

        i agree with worst call ever tag being a bit extreme

        after reviewing this list, and reading the comments, i think 'greatest show on earth' over 'high noon' is the 'worst call ever' no matter how you feel about ryan and shakespere

    • I completely agree! Saving Private Ryan not winning over this is just awful…

    • Zoe

      I agree!! I turned off Shakespeare in Love it was so bad.

  • ryydh

    How green was my valley is an insult to the Welsh people.

  • Nigel

    But but but the departed is one of the greatest movies of all time. Instant Classic.

    • deeeziner

      "The Departed" was no better than ANY other cop flick, with the exception of some great actors flopping on their faces with lousy Boston accents.

      • gsbr

        Yes it was.

  • pranav

    1st

  • Slumdog Millionare also wasn't that deserving in 2008…I was absolutely furious when The Dark Knight didn't won..c'mon what do you want in a best movie..

    • It wasn't even nominated. Which is straight up crap.

      • Straight up crap,huh? Do you think all the movies nominated in the Oscars 'best picture category' are masterpieces..this list exactly proves what I'm trying to say..THE OSCAR JURY is BULL****

        • No, I mean that if crappy movies like the ones in the list (and others) could be nominated and even win, why couldn't a good movie like the Dark Knight have at least garnered a nod? I agree about the Oscar Jury.

    • I loved the dark knight but I did love Slumdog Millionaire too – though I am not sure it was oscar worthy. It wasn't exactly ground breaking – just a great tale.

    • I agree. (With the Slumdog part. NOT the Dark Knight part).

      So many people loved this movie, and I thought it was great, but there was nothing Oscar worthy about it. Once the kids grew up, it just got boring. Just about everything else was better that year (except Dark Knight. I'm sorry. Heath Ledger was brilliant, and moving, and unforgettable, but Christian Bale redefined terrible, it was about twice as long as it should have been, and when the Joker wasn't on the screen, I was just terribly, terribly bored.)

      I thought Milk or The Wrestler should have won.

      • I agree with your thoughts about The Dark Knight. For me the appeal of that movie was all about Heath Ledger's Joker, and yes part of that probably stems from the hype surrounding his performance. I remember when I saw the film I just wanted to see the Joker on screen. I don't think Christian Bale is a particularly good batman, but he's not the worst either.

        As for Slumdog, I saw that movie as 'preparation' for a holiday to India. I think it won because it had a great story. Not the best film I've ever seen but entertaining enough.

        • It's been awhile since I've seen Batman Begins, but I seem to remember really liking Bale in that one. But in this one, geez, I don't know.

          The only other Batman I've seen is the Keaton/Nicholson one, so I can't really rank Bale's Batman, but I really can't imagine any of the others being as bad as Bale in the Dark Knight.

    • JokieONe

      Slumdog was not worthy.. But honestly ? Dark Knight? It was just a "good" action movie.

      Milk should have won.

    • DTshep

      dude dark night is still only the third best batman movie….this proved you know nothing about film

  • bluesman87

    I dunno Forest gump was pretty good but you are right it must of been a hard decision .(Drill Sergeant: Gump! What’s your sole purpose in this army?
    Forrest Gump: To do whatever you tell me, drill sergeant!
    Drill Sergeant: God damn it, Gump! You’re a god damn genius! This is the most outstanding answer I have ever heard. You must have a goddamn I.Q. of 160. You are goddamn gifted, Private Gump. Youre gonna be a goddamned General someday!

    But which films was the Departed up against ? I thought that movie was cool . Jack N was cool old bastard .

    Pretty good list every film cept for 6+7 are really shit .

    • ok dude—-
      —–first of all :
      feb 2007 nominations–

      the departed
      babel
      little miss sunshine
      the queen
      letters from iwo jima

      it doesnt matter if you liked one of those movies or not, but none of em were good enough to keep scorsese from winning his first oscar (hellen mirren was spot on as the queen though)

      —–second
      one of the best things about the departed was the music by the dropkick murphys

      —–third
      its quite clear that frorrest gump woulda been better if you were in it.

      • Thanks i know , i think i couldve really brought some depth and diversity to sally feilds chracter, couldve kicked her ass lol

      • deeeziner

        "it doesnt matter if you liked one of those movies or not, but none of em were good enough to keep scorsese from winning his first oscar (hellen mirren was spot on as the queen though)"

        So basically, The Departed won by default. I suspected as much.

      • I disagree – I think Little Miss Sunshine should absolutely have beaten the Departed. It was a brilliant and unique film – much better than the Departed.

    • See, Children of Men came out this year, and was only nominated for, I don't remember, film editing, and a couple of others like that.

      I believe Children of Men is the best movie to come out in years. I loved The Departed, but I think Children of Men most certainly should have won Best Picture that year, and the fact that it wasn't even nominated was extremely disappointing to me.

  • dada

    Seems to be a very personal list…

  • @#$%!!

    Haha gee never heard Nicholson called "over the top" before. And the performance is great.
    He played a crazy, murderous crime boss, btw.

    The Departed is not Scorsese's best but make it sound like the movie is total shit.

    I call BULLSHIT on that.
    You seem to think it is shit because it isn't Raging Bull, Taxi Driver or Goodfellas.
    You mistake good for bad simply because it wasn't great. Your expectations are unfair.

    • Not an idiot

      I completely agree with you 100% dude, "The Departed" was easilyt he best movie of 2006, the only other movie that came close that year was "Thank you for smoking" which of course was completely passed over…in fact the award for Best picture was effectively the only correctly awarded Oscar that entire evening. Every other category besides perhaps Helen Mirren's win for Best Actress was blatently wrong.

    • wolvie1108

      no,the departed is really a bad movie.i too like very much the work of mister scorsese,but this movie it;s so over rated.i've seen the original wich is far superior then this movie.but i guess you are too lazy to watch movies with subtitles.

  • Oh God, I absolutely despise Forrest Gump. :D

    • Welcome to the club – you have plenty of friends here :)

  • IanK

    I totally agree with The Departed being on the list for I thought it won Best Picture and Director simply because of the sympathy factor where Scorsese had not won anything with Goodfellas or Raging Bull. Moreover, I would have put the Paul Haggis' film Crash as a bonus spot

    • I thought Crash was one of the worst films ever put to celluloid. It was so contrived I couldn't stand it. It had not one redeeming feature.

      • maya88

        I liked it, although it certainly isn't my all time favourite movie…not Oscar worthy, but a good movie :)

      • I really felt bad when I was the only one in my group of friends that thought Crash sucked. Phew! I'm not alone.

        • Samzilla

          I read the list, hopping Crash would be number one. I's disapointed.

  • amrit

    cool list…i absolutely loved the inclusion of Forest Gump… well when FG got the Oscar, i was a kid and was very happy for it, even debated with friends on how boring Shawshank Redemption was… but now in retrospect….not giving SR the Oscar was a CARDINAL SIN…. IMDB voters have rated it as the BEST MOVIE EVER, even ahead of GODFATHER… cmon.. so many millions of people can't be fools…. Shawshank is a masterpiece

    • Chard

      oh yes they can, but i agree with you on that one.

    • At the time though Shawshank absolutely flopped at the cinema, its been one of those films that got it's popularity through renting and video (at the time) sales. If nobody even wanted to see it at the cinema I can't imagine people being that bothered about it not getting best picture at the time, which in turn means it obviously shouldn't have been the winner that year, in my opinion anyway!

      And Shawshank is one of my all time favourite films.

  • I see somebody has already beaten me to the Shakespeare In Love over Saving Private Ryan fiasco, but I feel it is worth reiterating: Why the hell would you pick Shakespeare In Love over SAVING PRIVATE RYAN? I don't worship the movie or anything, but it was and still is a cinematic achievement, and grit like that in war movies was rarely seen before (or even after) that film came out. The cinematography is simply top notch, and the actors all did an outstanding job (yes, even Vin Diesel. Sue me). On top of all the these things that award shows usually slobber over, it was just plain good storytelling. Good premise, good build-up, excellent execution. And now I'm done.

    As for The Departed, I personally love that movie. Maybe not Best Picture material, I'll give you that, but it was a great entertaining movie, and there aren't too many movies anymore that have the balls to be as gritty as it was. I mean,SPOILERS they blew the main characters brains out all over an elevator wall out of nowhere. It was the most unflattering death the tormented, struggling hero could endure. Most redshirts in movies get more dignified deaths, but that is what the movie did well, was be raw.END SPOILERS

    Those are my only qualms with the list, and frankly since it is an opinion list (as I am prone to writing), I won't whine about it. But since the comments are open for my two cents, there they are. Buy yourself something nice. In case I came off as bitchy, I liked the list. Good idea for one, I'd like to see a follow up. Perhaps best movies that weren't nominated?

    • Thanks for the insight, man. Greatly appreciated. Good commentary. Not bitchy at all. At least you are aware that this is an opinion list — lots of people here think this should be fact-based but not sure how the hell that can be done!__

  • well, i agree with a few entries on the list, but there seems to be a lot of spite here that goes out to the creator of a lot of movies. and what the hell is wrong is the movie is not the best work by the director but is the best movie of the year and it wins? i would have loved to see a more balanced list…

    • nothing would be wrong with that at all. and I never suggested as such. I assume you speak of scorsese here. it of course is not his best film. What i was saying was that he shouldn't have won based on that year alone, not compared to the canon of his career. Not sure where there is spite or why there would be any spite. Perhaps just very forceful, subjective commentary, which I am certainly guilty of.

  • Cam-Bot

    Fully agreed on Forrest Gump… how this godawful piece of pretentious pulp beat The Shawshank Redemption is utterly beyond me. It must rank highly amongst the worst decisions by The Academy.

    I also concur with you regarding Chicago. I actually worked on this production back in the late 90's, and it was a terrific STAGE production, but c'mon… John C Reilly (whom I adore) singing Mr Cellophane..??? Formulated, money-grabbing tripe, in my humble opinion.

  • What the…

    • What's this idiocy..please delete the coded comment..

  • I loved The Departed!

    • As does everyone. List would be good, but sucks because the Departed is on it.

      • deeeziner

        The list doesn't suck because The Departed is on it….what sucks is the list-writer didn't tell us what movies The Departed was up against that year.

  • redhatGizmo

    is listmeka iz indian(bcse they drool ver this movie like a it’s a Miracle in HW..duhh) if not then why he/she misses Slumdog Millionaire which is worst oscar winner in this millenia and more u add departed which is best scrosse mv ever …btw apart frm that nice list all suckkers (gump , driving daisey ,eng patient) are there.!

  • redhatGizmo

    is listmeka iz inidan(bcse they drool ver this movie like a it's a Miracle in HW..duhh) if not then why he/she misses Slumdog Millionaire which is worst oscar winner in this millenia and more u add departed which is best scrosse mv ever …btw apart frm that nice list all suckkers (gump , driving daisey ,eng patient) are there.!

    • I get your point but PLEASE don't use text message spelling here – it is extremely aggravating and bad English.

      • oh my god
        make him stop make him stop

        the lol cats make more sense than all that bullshit

        • long cat is looooooong! ;-)

    • Tarachowski

      What?

    • My eeeyyyeeeesss!!!

      Lol! Just playing. Omg, thought my brain was getting scrambled.

    • Dude, come on. I mean no one will bitch if you have a few typos, but damn. When I skimmed past your comment, I honestly thought it was German at first glance. Then I realized it was not a foreign language, just a poor attempt at English.

  • Okay – I am deleting the bad post but here is what Geronimo1618 said initially:

    "I dunno what grudge do these Oscar people hold against Superhero movies..I may sound juvenile but..the Batman series or more specifically 'The Dark Knight' was one of the most well-made superhero movies..stupid people.."

    • Yeah thanks man..I hope it doesn't happen again..

      • I have mentioned it to the tech support people – they are looking into it.

        • Mokos

          Please explain what happened?

          • He posted a comment but when he published it, it had all this random code and mumbo-jumbo cluttering it. So he asked that it be deleted. The end.

  • Barrett

    What about Titanic over LA Confidential and As Good As It Gets? I mean I enjoyed Titanic, don't get me wrong, but LA Confidential was amazing and truly superior.

    • As Good As It Gets was fucking awesome! Surely Titanic should've just got all of the more technical awards, because the effects were so groundbreaking – but effects don't make a good all-round film.

    • deeeziner

      The author left their observances of Titanic in the list intro.

      • Random Visitor

        Yes, he did, and when he did, he said that "not much else stood out that year", which is a load of hooey. :-) "L.A. Confidential" is one of the best films ever made. The only weakness it has that I can think of is that the plot is highly intricate, which can admittedly make it difficult to keep track of everything that's going on. (And I say this as someone who practically worships the ground that Kevin Spacey walks on and regards his work in "L.A. Confidential" as some of the weakest he's ever done; Spacey at his worst is still better than almost anyone else at his best.)

  • Liam

    I disagree with your opinion about The Departed.

    • many seem to side with your thoughts. I'm surprised at the shit I am getting about this one! Damn…

      • Ah such is the nature of film lists on listverse :) I nearly swore off writing them for a while but then realized it is much more enjoyable to see the debate that ensues :)

  • Arsnl

    How can people know if a movie can stand the test of time? You may say its a matter of feeling but since the winner is voted we can safely assume that no majority of people can see directly that a movie will be really good even after 30 years.
    Driving miss daisy i think has stood the test of time and i really dont think dead poets society was thaaaat good. “captain my captain” that was cheezy.
    Also: ” years and decades from its release, will be remembered and looked at as a testament to its time”. Its just a movie for crying out loud. Its not messiah. Too pompous for my taste.
    Ps: Maybe its just me but i really dont get why the commenting changed. I cant even reply to a comment now.

    • You can reply like this..:)

    • psychosurfer

      I also liked the old way :(

  • Avi

    Shakespeare In Love beating Saving Private Ryan was the craziest of the best picture nominations. Shakespeare was such a boring and dull movie and Private Ryan was just amazing.

  • evilspwn

    as an indian, i was mortified to hear the pile of turd that was slumdog won 7 oscars when films like shawshank won none despite 7 nominations. it is a film that benefited from some good marketing hiding beind a ' oh we are so small, we dont deserve this, this is way over our heads' ploy. damn righ it was. fuckikng shit sandwich,
    P.S: you make it sound like gangs of ny was better than the departed. cant agree with tht.

    • Not 7 my friend, but 8(more heartburn)..totally agree with you. It was plain POVERTY PORN..

    • I can't believe my memory's so rubbish i can't remember what was nominated the same year as Slumdog! There must've been something better though lol. It was one of those films where if I had found it in a bargain bucket I wouldn't have been disappointed, but the "Oscar winner" status makes you get your hopes up, and it just doesn't deliver to that level, I reckon.

      • it was

        slumdog millionaire
        milk
        frost/nixon
        the curious case of benjamin button
        the reader

        3 of those movies are actually really good….really
        i never saw frost/nixon

        • Frost/Nixon is fantastic as well, if you enjoy political movies.

  • Tarachowski

    Agree with most on this list…although I really love "Forrest Gump"! Not more than the other nominees though, it has to be said. I've never seen "Hurt Locker", but I was just glad "Avatar" didn't get it – shame "District 9" didn't win though, that was the best film of the year for me.

    • Totally agree on 'District 9'…superb movie. Avatar was nothing but a headache fantasy.

      • Enjoyed District 9 and would like to say it deserved the Oscar but as I haven't seen Hurt Locker can't really comment. Avatar was an entertaining film, it was all very pretty but didn't deserve the oscar.

    • stevezio

      I don't see why so many people thought District 9 was in any way a good movie.
      That pile of S#%& was so bad I actually walked out of the movie theater half way through it.
      I am 39 and have NEVER left a movie I paid good money for before.
      I kept thinking the whole time that they should have just exterminated all the bugs and been done with it.

      • But its basically a film about Apartheid so if they had actually done that in the film then the message would to kill all the black people so it wouldn't have worked too well.

        • lol have to agree with you…I think you missed the point stevezio! Maybe next time watch it all the way through? Although I reckon the Apartheid analogy was there from the start. I gotta say, I preferred the CGI in this to Avatar – and the fact that it had such a (relatively) small budget made it doubly impressive.

      • Can you explain "was so bad"….what was 'so bad' about it? I found it to be a pretty impressive effort on part of the director..much better than most of the sci-fi stuff released in recent times.

      • Your opinion is obviously unpopular – but I am going to stand with you in solidarity and say I found District 9 to be a bore.

    • agree. was really rooting for "District 9"111

    • @#$%!!

      District 9

      I believe will be better appreciated in the coming yrs as a sci-fi masterpiece. It's fuckin' art.

      • Yeah District nine kicks ass "wicus" was so well acted ,i thought . Also the one veiw in D9 is near my house at my favorite reefing spot- if wicus wasnt a south african actor then he should win 4 oscars just for his afrikaans accent. Loved the way the nyejees (short for nigerians ) were portrayed , they are evil turds,(human trafficing , teen girl drug sex slaves theyr horrible c&%s -) wicus could be considered a little stereo typical , but i do know people exactly like that , he was hillairious to me . (ONLY cool movie to be made in my vicinity so im bised but who cares)

  • The Mick

    and E.T. won over Blade Runner !!! lol

    As for the list, Gump beat the Gimp, but seriously, which one would you rather watch again?

    Anyway, if you haven’t worked it out already, the Oscars are political…

    ouch.

    and i’m reserving my opinion for this year’s best film until i actually watch The Hurt Locker.

    • E.T. didn't win Best Picture, it was Gandhi in 1983

      • the mick

        thanks Dan. this matter has been brought to my (lack of) attention.
        see Oliveralbq's post only 2 posts down.

  • Ok I'm sorry about this and I'm going to get chewed up for saying it but Titanic is not as bad as everyone thinks it is. It had groundbreaking special effects which made it awesome but it was overhyped and that makes people love to hate it! It wouldn't get half the bad things said about it now if it hadn't had so much advertising 15 years ago.

    Also I love Forrest Gump, I love Shawshank more though and just because a film like Shawshank didn't get an award that a film like Forrest did does not make it a worse film for it.

    By the way Shakespeare in Love is a terrible film, there is no need for it to be nominated for anything the story line is little more than an average chick flick and had no thought behind it. It just tried to make itself appear far more cultured by naming a character Shakespeare and making him a playwright. And Saving private Ryan I just found boring but atleast it had the type of story to be an Ocsar winner!

    • "groundbreaking special effects"?? You should expand your 'special effects' movie collection…now look at ALIEN- that can said to be groundbreaking,even if you watch it after 50 years it'll still remain as futuristic as it is now..and it was made in 1979.

      • OK on second thought the effects were very good :) I dunno why I get so annoyed on hearing praise of that movie.

        • Ha ha! You see people just love to hate it, I think it's because it was shoved down their throats for much of the year that now the thought of it repulses them.

          • nepratini

            I remember when Titanic came out and it was so over hyped that I was refusing to go and see it. I eventually did see it but not until it nearly finished at the cinema and even then the cinema was still packed. I dont know why people were going to see it over and over again.

  • the mick
    –sorry boss…..youre mixed up a little — in yuor first line anyway

    blade runner was nominated for two oscars (didnt win) but not the best picture
    e.t. was nominated for best picture, but it didnt win

    ghandi won……
    it beat the verdict, tootsie, e.t., and missing

    but you got the political part right for sure

    • The Mick

      lol !! you're right indeed. i did get a little mixed up.
      i can't help but get emotional sometimes !
      now, without resorting to Wikipedia or IMDB etc, i am quite sure that Blade Runner lost to E.T. for the Special Effects catagory.

      btw, wow, Ghandhi beat Tootsie… who wouldv'e thought …lol

      • oliveralbq

        it won some cinematography awards……not an oscar
        —it didnt win any oscars — ok…that keeps me from redundancy —
        effects and art something..?.art editing maybe or direction?…
        -ghandi got the art direction award
        -and yes…e.t. won for effects
        it did win a hugo….
        and something recent — i believe a saturn — for best box set (or whatever that award is called) for the anniversary edition (?) – or special release….not sure

        a touch off the subject, but by mentioning tootsie, i thought of something.

        the thing that sucks about that years ceremonies was that both the cross dressers got shafted by the academy, and they both **arguably imo** deserved to win (hoffman in tootsie, and lithgow in world according to garp) — not that lou gosset jr., or ben kingsly were bad —

        that was the first time i remember my dad ranting and raving that the ceremonies were a bunch of shit — too political — or whatever jack daniels told him they were that evening

  • Alice

    Where's Crash? That movie was terrible.

    • sorry, I loved 'Crash.' i know many find it manipulative and cheesy. i thought it was the best film of said year.

    • Withnail

      Crash was awful. Were it not for the LA setting the Academy never would have gone for it.

  • peeyaj

    ..but the 97 percent of critics in rottentomatoes disagree with you. They thought Hurt Locker is one of the best films in the year and some, in the decade.

    Maybe the 5000 members of AMPAS were wrong because they awarded Hurt Locker with 5 Oscars..(sarcasm here)

    But the fact remains, I really enjoyed Hurt Locker, and it is the best film I have ever watched for a long time..

    • I have to say I agree with you on that one – the Hurt Locker is an excellent movie.

    • that's what makes these lists so great. You are certainly entitled to your opinion and I respect that. I can't side with a movie just because Rotten Tomatoes tells me to,. i have to be honest and go with my thinking. I did not include "HL" on this Top 10, btw.

  • peeyaj

    @peeyaj

    erratum: it’s 6 not 5 oscars :-)

  • Sardonicus

    Ok now…7? It just ruined the whole list. Forest Gump is a movie deserving the best picture oscar and although my favorite movie which I consider being the best of all time IS the shawshank redemption,Forest Gump was totally worth of the prize. And another thin gi'd liketo point out is that I find it really odd, that this list doesn't have the most ridiculous best picture oscar of all time: Rocky winning instead of the Taxi Driver. I mean,come on…..

    • I am surprised it took this long for someone to mention the Rocky over Taxi Driver fiasco. And I agree. Whole heartedly.

      (I also love Forrest Gump quite a bit. I think 94 is one of those situations where I wouldn't be able to complain, no matter who won, whether it be Gump, Shawshank or Pulp Fiction, but no matter who won, there would be a ton of people complaining regardless).

    • deeeziner

      Nice catch…Don't know if I'd vote Taxi Driver either for the top spot that year. But ROCKY? Now that''s just some cheese masquerading as caviar. And it's a really bad piece of cheese.

    • Shawshank is your Greatest Movie Of All Time yet Forrest deserved to beat it for best picture? Please explain that logic to me. But you are right about Rocky.

      Cheers
      Lee

  • Wow. You missed quite a few…. the biggest is probably The Greatest Show On Earth (1952). Ranked by many as the single worst Best Picture winner in history. Circus story with Charlton Heston and Jimmy Stewart was one of the worst pieces of pablum ever put out by Cecil B. DeMille.

  • Opinnion

    Hurt Locker a bad film? It was deffinetley one of the best films this year. It is one of the most realistic warmovies ever. I bet you were cheering for Avatar…

    • Not at all. I would rather HL win than Avatar, quite frankly. I was rooting for "Up in the Air' or "District 9."

  • Marvellous Mart

    Funny how most of these movies are:
    1. British
    2. Made a few years ago or a centuries ago (they never the same, years down the road)
    3. Are deep and meaningful

    The ability of you Americans to debase a movie that has any of these traits above is definitely a reflection of a society of rednecks and immature pansies who would rather have movies like "Apocolypse" and Avatar as the ultimate intellectual movies.
    Whoever made this list is a joke

    • 1. Forrest Gump, Driving Miss Daisy, The Departed, and topping the list Chicago…not British movies, you jackass.
      2. The list has a movie from nearly every decade since the Oscars were given out…you jackass.
      3. You're right, "Gigi", is deep and meaningful….ya know, like "13 Going on 30".

      As for your closing arguments, you sound, to me, like the ignorant one.

      Did I mentioned you're a jackass? You're a jackass.

      Go spam a different site, please.

    • VIoletWings

      Yea, and the ability of you to completely judge the country of american by a LIST ON THE INTERNET and by what you see on your TV also makes you completely ignorant and a joke. You should now, since you are such an obviously educated and intellectual European, that the Americans you describe make up for probably .6% of our entire great country.

      • Hey, don't go judging all Europeans now! I have never claimed to be educated or intellectual :P

    • Chimey

      You honestly make no sense whatsoever.

  • A few others…

    Ordinary People (1980) – beat out Raging Bull, The Elephant Man, etc. Does anyone actually remember it?

    Out of Africa (1985) – not a bad flick, but it beat out the vastly superior The Color Purple, Kiss of the Spider Woman, and Witness.

    Titanic (1997) – Big movie, halfway decent story, great SFX… but it beat out movies that probably had more right to the best picture office: As Good As It Gets, Good Will Hunting, L. A. Confidential, and The Full Monty.

    Shakespeare in Love (1998) – Someone’s already mentioned this one. Bleh. Just keep repeating it to yourself: this thing beat out “Saving Private Ryan”. Try not to vomit.

    A Beautiful Mind (2001) – beat out Lord of the Rings: FOTR. A fun story that’s only about 60% bullplop.

    Crash (2005) – Brokeback Mountain should’ve won. Crash should’ve been a footnote.

    • Totally agree with you on The Elephant Man, The Color Purple (one of the best films ever), and Brokeback Mountain. Crash was just that – a car crash.

  • the greatest show on earth (thx elephant) definately deserves notice. a few others not in the list (or the comments — i think)

    —the whole ceremony in 1997 — out of good will hunting, l.a.confidential, titanic, as good as it gets, and the full monty — titanic may just be the weakest of the 5
    —annie hall beat star wars
    —a beautiful mind (you said you couldnt put it in the list b/c of its weak competition — ever seen godsford park"?)–or mulholland drive?
    —high noon lost to something inferior….
    too many
    i give up for now
    —sense and sensibility was as good if not better than braveheart, which won
    —an american in paris beat out 3 superior movies — the african queen — streetcar named desire — and a place in the sun
    —it was mentioned that driving miss daisy beat dead poets society, but the bigger surprise was that it beat out my left foot
    —return of the king over mystic river? and lost in translation?
    —unforgiven beat out scent of a woman
    —out of africa beat ou the colour purple

    • I prefer Annie Hall :) Lost in Translation sucked – don't flame me! :P

      • Lost in Translation is one of my all-time favorite movies. It is so subtly humorous and it introduced me to the amazing music of Peaches! Get behind me Satan!

        • hey look — for some odd reason, we are in the minority on this one
          i mean…people liked it, but no one thought it was fantastic….which i did

          in fact, ive only heard 3 people say it was one of their all time movies
          –one of em is in a puzzle house
          –one, lives in the mirror in my bathroom
          –one is the king of listverse

          i dont know what the hell people are talking about when they say it was shitty

          and my sis had told me about peaches, but that was my first exposure — and hell, it was worth the 5.25$ ticket price for that exposure, the movie itself was a great bonus

    • Sjarrel

      unforgiven was so much better than scent of a woman, its not even funny..
      also like Annie Hall, a masterpiece, probably went over ur head or something..

      • deeeziner

        NOT

      • just because i hated it doesnt mean it went over my head__(thanks deeez — not! is exactly right)____ill give you that the use of split screen was interesting, and the fixed camers, forcing you to focus on the dialogue was interesting too.__i like intellectual comidies, and the scene where truman capote walks by, and allen says 'there goes the winner of the truman capote look alike contest' was about the funniest thing ive seen in a long time.__hell, i'd even argue that it set the tone for many romantic comedies to come….____however between__neurotic, selfish new yorkers__over acting to make the selfishness and neuroses more predominant__alvy squandering countless talents__thinking the earth revolves around his particular ideologys__relying on its realism instead having that realism rely on the rest of the script__it just all seemed so passe and tired__meh…..__ive read the script and it wasnt bad____the movie?:__i'd rather watch the grass grow

        • oh—and before anyone gets their panties all knotted up saying that this movie wasnt passe or tired feing when it came out…..
          yeah…i was 1 when it came out

          but i saw it in film criticism class my junior year at alabama, and i watched it 3 weeks ago

          in similar news: i am currently watching the paint dry on the bannister
          compelling stuff…

          • sjarrel

            Fair enough, you don't like it, that comment of mine was uncalled for and I do apologize.
            I think its a fantastic movie, very funny, Woody Allen's masterpiece (although Vicky Christina Barcelona was amazing in my humble opinion, but thats a different matter). Of course it had some flaws, but then again, so did Star Wars. I've watched the original trilogy again just a few months ago, quite an ordeal. I would go for Annie Hall in this one any day of the week..

          • no prob–
            and the truth is vicky christina. was fantastic.

            and my mention of star wars — in all honestly, was something i have drawn from tons of other people (and i do not hang with a lot of people that are star wars nuts).

            i actually liked the goodbye girl better than either one of em

    • Moonbeam

      Scent of a Woman was horrible. it was like a chick flick for men.

    • High Noon DID lose out to something inferior, Very inferior. In fact you mentioned it in your first sentence, yes TGSOE beat High Noon (is there a vomit emoticon here :) )

      Not at all sure I agree about Star Wars being a better candidate for best picture that year, however if you want a real clanger try the following year where The Deer Hunter beat out Midnight Express, and Coming Home.

      Unforgiven was definitely the better movie.

      Cheers
      Lee

      • someone needs to create a vomit emoticon.

        star wars — meh….see my reply to sjarrell above

        deer hunter — totally forgot about that,…(wheres my vomit emoticon, dammit!?)

  • Hurt Locker was a good film, but it certainly wasn't amazing or best picture worthy. That being said, neither was Avatar. Again both movies were good but lacking in a lot of ways. Last year was definitely another year of weak movies.

    • The movie that should have won was Up. I cannot see anywhere in the near future where an animated film wins. If Aladdin, Toy Story, or Up couldn't win, what can? I really believe animated films should be given far more credit than they are currently given

  • djoser

    Like your list. I don't go to the movies often.

  • MatMat

    I've got to commit what seems like heresy on this debate and say that The Shawshank Redemption is the most overrated film of all time. The constant placing of it at the top of all time best movie lists just attests to the lowest common denominator over simple tastes of the majority of the movie consuming public. Let me clarify: Shawshank is an average, unoriginal story done in the most mawkish and sentimental way imaginable. Cinematically it breaks absolutely no new ground, the acting is ok and it makes you feel happy at the end – it's basically another trite Disney movie, but camoflaged as an adult film.

    I can't say enough how sick I am at hearing people bang on about this film!

    • Let me join you in that. The film is definitely good – but certainly not amazing. I watched it just a year or two ago because people raved about it so much and I was very let down.

    • nepratini

      I'm with you on this. I always thought this movie was boring and slow. It is to overrated.

  • Jamie

    hate when people think they know more than they actually do about films…

  • I agree with most on the list. So glad that you didn't include Titanic and Avatar. Both overrated and both sucked badly (at least to me).
    Agree strongly with Forrest Gump. That was just a cute movie and done in such a fantastic way.
    Nice list, Peter Eramo, Jr.

    • Avatar didn win the Best Pic Oscar missus, it was The Hurt Locker..

      • I know that.
        What I meant was the people who bitched that it didn't win over The Hurt Locker. I'm glad it wasn't included as part of the debate. Guess I wasn't obvious enough for you. :)

  • I really have to disagree!
    The english patient
    Chariots of fire
    The departed
    They are very good movies.

    • Yes – but good shouldn't be enough when it comes to the oscars. This list isn't saying those movies sucked – it is saying that there were other better movies in the same nominations that should have won instead.

  • I almost flipped when I saw Forrest Gump on here… :-(

  • tapdiva

    I agree with English Patient and The Departed, but I disagree with most of the other ones. Gigi was one of my favorite musicals growing up (and ps you don't have to have a large amount of dancing to be a musical…like Meet me in St Louis or The Harvey Girls). Forrest Gump is such a fantastic movie. Its one of the few movies that I will actually get emotional over! Chicago was awesome and to say that Renee Z. and Catherine Zeta-Jones didn't have singing chops is ridiculous. Their voices are fantastic. I think better candiates would be Slumdog (Milk should have one or Frost/Nixon), Rocky (ehh good movie but not best picture material), and Shakespeare in Love!!!

    • I never cited Ms. Jones in 'Chicago." And most would agree with shakespeare in love…i was trying to fit it but just couldn't.

  • I know a lot of people disagree over it, But I think D9 and Inglourious Basterds were way better than The Hurt Locker. And Observe and Report got pretty much no attention even though it was pretty awesome.

  • I understand that lists like this have to contain quite a bit of opinion, but I think that there is an objective way of going about this. You need to present the weaknesses of the movies that won and the strengths of the movies that didn't. I feel like you really let us down with that aspect. Every single paragraph contains way too much personal opinion that you either cite as fact or just blatantly admit as your opinion and then assume it must be true because you believe it. Write as objectively as possible and definitely, definitely avoid the stupidity of saying that running isn't a sport, along with golf. That just smacks of pretension and automatically makes me look at your list with disdain. I would agree with you that the majority of the movies here shouldn't have won Best Picture, but the way you presented this list, so smug and overconfident, really turned me off to wanting to agree with you. I think you took a great idea that I often have discussed with my friends and turned into just a horrible list. I just can't get over how offensively opinionated you decided to be.

    • sjarrel

      Well said!

    • Very interesting commentary here and i certainly respect it all. it is definitely food for thought. Yes, I think this list (done numerous times before) is a good one to post also.i could have gone into the weaknesses of the winning films and positives of the films that lost, very true. I was avoiding being lengthy and it would have been much more so than it already is. Most people see these lists and they just want to whip righ through, so i didn't want to write a whole lot on each year. Having said that, I did not mean to come across as pretentious and I apologize. The running comment was in fact a bad one and I am apologizing on this week'video rant to be posted ater or tomorrow. Thanks for the insight and feedback.

  • nathan

    The Departed was a great flick. I don’t recall much about which movies it was up against that year, but it can definitely hold it’s own in the film industry, especially in recent years.

  • Shawnlaura2010

    I am SOOOOOO glad to see Chicago on this list. I watched that piece of crap, and kept waiting for soemthing to happen that would help me understand what all the hype was about…and it never came. I am pissed at myself for having committed that time, time I will never get back. Also, I would just like to say that I think Renee Zellweger is an AMAZINGLY overrated actress…she sucks!

  • I've learned not to watch a movie just because critics raved about it. I've wasted too much money and time. Now I just listen to people I know who have seen it. I've gone to/rented movies with high expectations only to be bored silly.

  • Greg

    I disagree with your inclusion of The Departed on this list. The way that movie was constructed was brilliant. Yes, Nicholson's performance was….well…let's face it, he played Jack Nicholson in this movie. But he wasn't what "made" this movie what it was.

    The scene were Matt Damon and Leonard DiCaprio sit on the phone with each other, neither of them speaking, was one of the most awesome scenes I've ever seen in a movie. The emotional weight those few seconds lent to this picture, to me at least, cemented this movies legacy and instantly swung it up to the top of my "Best movies ever" list.

    • great scene to cite. well done. I'm getting killed for including this film.

      • Yes you are! :) And deservedly so. Maybe, and it is a hard case to make IMO, Departed didn't deserve the nod in 2006, but in no way is it such a crock of shit that it belongs on a Top 10 Worst list. Babel is just a horrible movie (and I have only seen the trailer), LFIJ and The Queen while both excellent movies I would not say are better than Departed and I haven't seen more than the trailer for Sunshine which looked OK but not exceptional.

  • wackyfunster

    While I enjoyed Forrest Gump, that gravity defying feather was very tiresome. Pulp Fiction, while being over the top, was at least unique, if only for its non linear timeline. Besides I loved John Travolta's death scene, I mean who hasn't wanted to kill him like that. Shawshank was the complete package a great story, great characters and music. Who can listen to the aria from "The marriage of Figaro" without thinking of Andy Dufrsne locked in the wardens office?

  • Iggystar

    I believe I’m the only person in the world who was happy that and Chicago won Best Picture, but you lost me at Forrest Gump anyways and I’m a HUGE Shawshank Redemption fan.

    There’s no way As Good As It Gets should have lost that race and neither should The Color Purple.

    • vdsfgdgsdfg

      Don't worry, I LOVE Chicago. It's among my top 10 movies. I liked that a movie that wasn't TOO serious and dull actually won for once.

  • crazysruzz

    I agree with so many of these,I really have no say on number 2 since I haven’t seen any movies from that year, but some of my favorite movies were released during the years these other “best pictures” won. I definitely would have loved to see Adaptation win for 2002, one of my favorite movies of all time and I’m glad you included it.

  • Trapper

    Bashing “The Departed” is just so fashionable.

    Yeah, so I haven’t seen “Infernal Affairs”, sue me.

    The Departed is a great movie in it’s own right.

    • sneeky8

      The Departed is a good movie. Calling it great is just not right!

  • sneeky8

    TITANIC????????
    1. BIG SHIP…WOW
    2. IT SINKS…WOW
    3. WINS OSCAR…HUH???

  • joe

    Agree with you on everything but "The Departed". Loved the film and cast from top to bottom. Jack is at his best when he's over the top in my humble opinion. That's what makes him Jack.

  • joshpincusiscrying

    Cecil B. DeMille's overlong, thinly-plotted, poorly-acted "Greatest Show on Earth" is one of the worst Best Picture winners ever.

    "Forrest Gump" makes my skin crawl. I enjoyed much more when Woody Allen made it eleven years earlier and called it "Zelig"

    • "Greatest Show" came close. Love "Zelig." I am not as harsh on FG as you. I liked it. Just had no business winning.

  • Reality

    Chicago at #1 is spot-on. It did not deserve that award.

    I take issue with one line in the introduction, however. "A “Best Picture” Oscar winner should be an instant classic."
    This implies that there is at least one instant classic released each year, and we know from experience that is not the case. Just a point.

    • This is a great point. In actuality, I was struggling with that phrase when I was writing it. There are instant classics, to be sure. But your point is well taken and I definitely agree with it. thanks.

  • eleven

    Running…not a sport? Wow. And I won't even go into Forrest Gump…

    • Tryclyde

      Yeah, saying that running is not a sport truly comes from an unathletic person.

    • Running as presented in FG is NOT a sport. Sport requires an element of competition. The Olympics 100m is Running as Sport, The Boston Marathon is Sport, running across the USA because you feel like it is merely insanity. Forrest was not racing against anyone or anything so what he was doing was not sport, it was merely exercise – something that all sensible people avoid :)

      Cheers
      Lee

  • Cynthia

    Ah yes, the pompous list-versers and their useless opinions. Another shit list on a increasingly banal site. Put the cursor ads back up so there is something interesting to read.

    • It's just a bit of fun – fuck off if you don't like it.

      • Damn, tarachowski got my back…I was thinking the same thing. If you hate the lists, why are you looking at it?

    • deeeziner

      Sorry the offerings do not please Her Highness. "Strap that lowly author to the whipping post!!!!!" It is time to make amends to the great Queen Cynthia, we have bored her.

      Oh please.

    • psychosurfer

      Good thing is that modest and useful Cynthia came up with this super-valuable comment to mend this mess

    • Let me guess – your favorite movie of all time is Chicago…

    • This made me laugh out loud. You're the one on the website, Sweetheart.

  • I was agreeing with you until you said Gigi was overlong! It was only 116 min! That's close to the record for shortest movie ever winning best picture.

    It's a oscar-winning movie with a song about pedophiles – how can you not love that?

    Thank heaven for little girls! (ps: i know what it's really about, i just think it's hilarious)

    • This comment made me laugh! Thank you. I may have to amend my comment on running time…I stand corrected. Thank you.

  • weegmc

    Surprised by Gump – great performance by Hanks, a pretty original story for the most part, and a touching story to boot with a good dose of humor. I can't think of a movie that touches on so many issues of a single generation, and does so without being overly hokey.

    Departed doesn't deserve the rip either. Good script, although I too thought Marky marky stunk but Decaprio was excellent, as was Sheen. Liked the story overall. Sure it had holes but it was a solid effort in what you agree was a wide open year.

    either way, enjoyable list to read and comment on.

    • Evilbeagle

      I will have to wholeheartedly disagree on Gump here. For one, the book it is based on is swallowed up by the schmaltzy, ode to baby boomers that this film became. If you read the book, you get a far more original, not to mention hilarious story that doesn't count on musical manipulation and melodramatic tragedy to bring out the laughter and tears. I didn't mind Gump until I read the book, and now I hate it with all my being. Read the book and you will see what I mean. The movie basically raped it and took its wallet.

    • Thanks for the comment, man. I understand and respect your opinions on 'FG' and Departed. I liked Gump, but thought there were so many great films out that year. Glad you shared…thanks for your thoughts!

  • Ashley

    This list is very opinionated. I agree with you on the Chicago one (HORRIBLE movie), but Forrest Gump is one of the best movies ever made.

    • Yes, the prupose of such lists is to BE opinionated. How can such a list be made based on any facts at all. The subjectivity is what makes these lists so fun!

    • Best movies ever made?? You are obviously missing out on some great films if you believe Forest Gump, a fun and entertaining movie, is the one of the best movies ever made

  • Infernal Affairs was much much better than the Departed. Much. I doubt most of the Academy saw Infernal Affairs though.

    The Hurt Locker was a great movie.

    What bothered me most about Titanic was that you had these people running around in the North Atlantic water that was flooding the ship like it was the local pool. Amazingly, people didn't start realizing how cold the water was until they were in open water. Anyone who has fallen through the ice will tell you that when that water hits you the cold shock is brutal. Isn't Cameron supposed to be a Canadian?

    • I'd never even thought about that :) Also: why didn't she just scooch over? That door she was laying on was fucking huge – I reckon she was having second thoughts about the relationship and didn't want to have to go through an awkward break-up.

      • Good point. I think she was having second thoughts. I mean, how could this incredibly young mediocre artist provide for her?

  • bassbait

    Movies that beat out better movies, and definitely didn't deserve to win

    "How green was my Valley" beat out "Citizen Kane" and "The Maltese Falcon"

    "My Fair Lady" beat out "Dr. Strangelove"

    "Oliver!" won in 1968, but "2001: A Space Odyssey" wasn't even nominated. Even though many people don't like 2001, you can't deny that it has some of the biggest achievements in movie history: The first on screen merchandising, the first motion controls, the creation of front projection, it's really a phenomenal movie.

    "The French Connection" beat "A Clockwork Orange" (to be fair, I haven't seen TFC, but I know ACO is better)

    "The Sting" beat "The Exorcist"

    "Annie Hall" beat "Star Wars"

    "Shakespeare in Love" beat "Life is Beautiful"

    and, I believe "Up" should have one best Picture, or at least hand it off to Pixar for their greatness, pull a Scorsese move.

    • sjarrel

      Wall-E was infinitely better than Up, the strongest part of which was the montage in the beginning and it was a slowly downhill from there (altho it still ended up pretty decent)

  • Why has no one mentioned "Crash" winner of best picture at the 78th Academy Awards? I have never met anyone that has watched this film, yet the Academy decided it was the best 2005 film.
    Why was this film the best of 2005? Brokeback Mountain was too gay to be the best picture.

  • just sayin'

    I agree with everyone except for "The Departed". That was a great movie. "Forrest Gump" is a good movie, but it deffinitely didn't deserve the award that year.

  • Renee Pussman

    In this thread there are a bunch of stupid people with uneducated opinions on what actually makes a movie good or bad.

    Instead they rely on how much they were entertained by the films. Some of the films on this list are actually very well made, the people who saw them are just too stupid to recognize it.

    If you all want to make intelligent comments on these films I recommend taking a film class.

    Either that or keep your opinions to yourselves.

    • This is a place where you can voice you're opinions – so why don't you run along to class, fuckwit?
      The whole point with films, literature, any art, is that enjoyment of it is completely subjective. Yes, there can be a technical mastery and all the rest, but if it don't float your boat, it don't float your boat. One person may think that Welles made the greatest film of all time, another person may disagree – both comments are valid as it is completely subjective. That is what makes art (including film) so much fun to discuss.
      The idea that a person's estimation of a film is crap because they based it on how entertained they were is utter bullshit. Some films were made to entertain, therefore whether you were or not is a completely valid way to judge it.
      Pull your head out your arse. The fact that you called a lot of people stupid because of their taste in films is laughable.

    • I took many a film class, Renee. Care to enlighten me on how MY opinions are "stupid?" The fact is that I agree with much of this list. I don't agree with the list writer's choices in each instance for what *should* have got the Oscar, but he's spot-on on most of these being inferior to other films that came out a the same time, that should have won.

      But pray tell—educate the rest of us on how wrong the list is. I'd love to hear how you thought Forrest Gump or Chariots of Fire were each a masterpiece.

    • I'm loving this thread. Can't wait to see Renee's response. And please note Renee, I never say they are bad films (except for #1)…I just say they were undeserving for the Best Picture oscar considering their respective competition. And yes, I think entertainment should be gauged — that's what the films are made for. And I took film classes and taught a film class. And I was highly opinionated as instructor to boot!

    • deeeziner

      God, I hope there are no records of who votes what for a comment…..I accidentally thumbs upped instead of thumbs down. :(

    • I strongly disagree with your idea that one must be university educated to have an opinion. Everyone is entitled to their opinion – even if they are wrong (as you are above). We could use your same logic to say that you shouldn't be posting comments here because you haven't done a degree in sociology specializing in online communication.

    • Isn't that how people are SUPPOSED to judge movies? By how much it entertained them? That was probably one of the dumbest things I ever heard. Just because it was well made doesn't mean someone has to like it. Movies are made to entertain the viewer. Why else would we see them?

  • Chris

    "running is not a sport"?

  • As a classic film buff, I was glad to see a list that wasn't only dedicated to films from the past 20 years or so, though I'd argue that Oscar used to get it right more often than wrong back in the 30s and 40s.

    So… my thoughts on this:

    Total agreement on The English Patient, Chariots of Fire, Forrest Gump, The Departed, Driving Miss Daisy, Around the World in 80 Days, and Chicago. Over-rated, overwrought films, all of them, and proof that Hollywood will always recognize the big spectacle over the smaller, higher-quality film, or in other instances, will go for the pseudo-intellectual stuff over the real thing.

    A few other thoughts though:

    One, I couldn't agree more on Cavalcade. How that one got by at the time is a mystery. I'd pump for "I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang" for that year, though King Kong would be a close second.

    Let's say something positive about Gigi–I do not find it boring. It's fun to watch, has great color, some nice songs, and Leslie Caron is fantastic. Best picture, however? No. Touch of Evil and Vertigo were FAR more deserving.

    How Green was My Valley is not and was not worthy of Best Picture, but it's not the snooze-fest some say it is. Corny at times, yes. But it's a beautiful film, visually. The camera work is occasionally stunning. It is and was a nice picture that shows a great deal of the beauty inherent in B&W cinematography. Best pic? No. But a good one all the same.

    • Randall, thank you for all of the insightful and interesting remarks here. Perhaps I was a bit hard on "Gigi" (which is on PBS this Saturday, so maybe I'll give it another viewing). Unlike so many other comments I'm reading here, with little to no thought, yours was a welcome respite. Thank you for reading and for your intelligent comments.

  • Billy

    Departed wasn't the best Scorsese movie, but look at what it was up against that year; Babel, The Queen (yawn), Little Miss Sunshine, and Letters to Iwa Jima. It was the best of the bunch

  • Helena

    Well…I can care less about some of these movies that you mentioned, but the Oscars tends to be a popularity contest anyways. On top of that, this is a very opinionated list, not everybody can agree with your choice of "good movies"

    • helena, I agree, the Oscars can be a popularity contest. The whole purpose of the list is to be opinionated. There are no fact, just opinions. that's what makes these lists so intriguing.

    • deeeziner

      "On top of that, this is a very opinionated list, not everybody can agree with your choice of "good movies" "

      Movie lists are always subjective….but they sure do open the door for some healthy debate in the comments. As for the author's choice of "good movies", I think he was pointing out that the movies listed weren't so good.

  • island_boggs

    this whole list is completely bias! none is fact based. you're just stating your opinion and saying "this sucks" and "that sucks". Although I agree with you on a lot of these, i still can't get past how this is all what you believe. you don't use anyone else's outcries against the oscars given out, no public documentation or anything. awful list.

    • First, I never said anything 'sucked". Second, the whole concept of these lists is that yes, it is opinion based. dude, it's all subjective. That's what makes these lists so fun. how can such a list be fact-based? Impossible.

  • Jay

    Chicago was great!…top celebrities that can actually sing and you still found criticism. Rest of the list is accurate though

    • As a trained singer, let me assure you: they could not sing.

    • lou

      chicago wasn't great. it was lame, and hey, richard gere??? please

  • sjarrel

    Hurt Locker wasn't that bad, and Avatar winning would've been a travesty. District 9 was somewhat better than Hurt Locker in my humble opinion, but it ain't something I'd be losing any sleep over (and it wasn't really in the running, lets be honest). Just don't think this year was a very good oscar year. My favorite movie of the year was Fantastic Mr Fox, anyway, but then I just love Wes Anderson's stuff.. Great voice acting too..

    Worse was really that she won a best director nod just because she's a woman.. Talk about politics.. She shot at a 100:1 ratio and while for instance Kubrick would should crazy amounts of footage it's a whole different thing. It's almost as if the editor should've won best director instead..

    • nice points. well stated. i loved 'fox' and i'm not a big Anderson fan at all. Put it in my Top 10 of the year actually.

    • I loved District 9. I wish it had been in the running, although Hurt Locker was very deserving. I think the reason I liked D9 so much (besides the action sequences, which were top notch), was that the 'hero' of the story was actually just a stuck-up, cowardly, racist suburban yuppie who got screwed over and just wanted it to be over, whatever the cost. The fact that the hero wasn't heroic was a great thought. I'm glad Blomkamp didn't end up doing Halo, because D9 was a hell of a way to start out. Also, the lead actor Sharlto Copley ad-libbed all of his lines, and it was his first acting role. For those reasons, I wish D9 had gotten more recognition than it did.

  • bcole

    Gigi is amazing, have you even watched it? It is much better than most musicals e.g Hair (no apparent plot, in my opinion) Also try and say at the end of each sentence my opinion because by reading the following comments most people don't share your movie taste.

    • I would not have commented on 'gigi" if I hadn't seen it. I would think that would be highly irresponsible of me.

  • Bob

    "Children of Men" should have won in 2006 instead of "The Departed." I thought it was bullshit that it wasn't even nominated. Even "Pan's Labyrinth" was right up there with "The Departed." Definitely not Scorsese's best and arguably not Best Picture.

  • O_o wow copy pasted the whole thing huh?
    must've been some hard work….

    the list is pretty crap….and truthfully EVERYONE knows these movies suck…

    so yeah could have been better

    • Not sure how to respond to the snide comment. First, yes I copy and pasted this list that i spent a great deal of time writing. The writing was the hard part…copy and pasting for this site was rather easy, yes. and according to your logic, i should have created a list with different films just for the sake of looking unlike other films? No thanks…thanks for the negativity. You're a pleasure.

    • Peter wrote the list from scratch and then he submitted it to listverse. While I normally don't publish lists that are previously published, I enjoyed this one sufficiently to break my rule.

      • Thank you JFrater. i wasn't sure what the guidelines were. I am working ona follow-up and will submit directly to you first — many here think it a good idea to have a Top 10 Greatest Oscar Winners for Best Picture and do the reverse. I like it…

  • Josh

    This list is just one persons opinion…

    You can't you go saying "Oh yeah Titanics not a good film" because many people love it. I'm not one of them but still, millions of people do. If you'd have said that in my opinion Titanics not a good film, I would have read the list.

    • *Applauds vigorously while nodding head*

    • So according to this rationale, just because millions like it, it is considered "good.' Does this mean McDonald's is 'good' food or that smoking is a "good' habit? millions eat it and enjoy and millions smoke and enjoy. And it's not a good film.

      • Smoking is definitely a good habit. But I do agree with everything else you have said :)

        • hey, I'm a smoker. I was just thinking of a fitting analogy.

    • deeeziner

      So you're basically saying that lacking the words "in my opinion" kept you from reading the list. The whole list is based on opinion. But glad to see that you keep such high standards……

  • Elnino

    Forrest Gump and the Departed both in my top 50 movies of all time.

  • M.T.

    This list is just the writers opinion and in no way contains any factual information that determines what is or is not a "Best Picture".

  • materkb

    Mr. Eramo does not seem to like a movie unless people get killed (preferably shot). Nor does he seem to like comedy or ordinary life. Like many critics, he mistakes blood for emotion and pain for drama. This is just my personal opinion, of course, but this list is just his – even if he does hand it down as if speaking ex cathedra.

    • this is a fascinating comment. I am intrigued. This is based on what actually? I am not at all a blood and guts movie fan. I love comedies and some of my most favorite films are simple, actual-life type movies. ow you can come up with this erroneous comment based on this top 10 List is unfathomable.

  • graz

    get the fu*k outta here please… your ignorance is an insult to cinematography.

  • qballextraction

    Thank you so much for #7! I have forever felt that The Shawshank Redemption deserved the best picture that year and not Forrest Gump. This was a good list.

    • You're welcome! I know it's considered sacrilege to say anything bad about "FG' but it had to be said, and many people agree. Way too many good films released that year.

  • londonafter

    Shakespeare in love is the reason why I believe the Oscars are a joke, I don't understand how a historically inaccurate romantic comedy could beat four movies that were faaaar superior than that piece of sh*t!!!!

  • NiMur90

    completely disagree with a lot of this list.

  • I enjoyed reading the list thanks not into movies much.

  • Madhav

    no friggin way Departed and Forest Gump shud be here they are classics thats just criminal

  • Gremlinmiller

    A Beautiful Mind should definitely be on this list.

  • Carlos F

    HOLY COW IN THE SKIES!!! How could you say The Departed is a bad movie!! Is one of the best movies ever: great actors, great directiosn, great screenplay… I can't believe this list

  • elroxzor99652

    I personally think that Forrest Gump is an amazing movie.

    But the biggest offense that I take from this list is your smug comment that "running is not a sport."
    ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! Why is it not a sport?? Is it because it is more individual, rather than team, based? Comparing running to golf and billiards is a slap in the face to all runners. Go and watch a track and field meet or a cross country race and tell me that they are not athletes of the highest caliber.

    • But Forrest does not compete at a Track meet nor a cross country RACE he merely runs. Running in and of itself is not Sport it is Exercise. Exercise is NOT sport. DUH

      Cheers
      Lee

      • PeopleHunter

        The comment was directed towards "Chariots of Fire", not "Forrest Gump".

  • my user name

    Good list, but I would have put Chariots of Fire at #1. Couldn't agree more with Forrest Gump, The Departed, and Chicago.

  • Tom

    This list is incredibly poor and subjective. The Departed is an amazing movie and I actually feel sorry for you that you did not grasp the scope and quality of the film.

  • ShlemmerkerHammer

    My impression of this list:
    "In 1996, 'The English Patient' won, but I liked other films better.
    In 1958, 'Gigi' won, but liked other films better.
    In 1981, 'Chariots of Fire' won, but I liked other films better.
    In 1994, Forrest Gump won, but I like other films better…" etc., etc., ad nauseam.

    Today, "Top 10 Worst Best Picture Winners" was the listverse.com list, but I liked losing my job, pooping my pants in church, and having strep throat better.

    • tobbytoy22

      hahaha… loved the comment. A rubbish list to be sure.

  • Y2K

    the only fact here is that some pictures won, and others didn't. All the rest of this is just opinion. In fact the winners only won because of a bunch of peoples opinions.

    It is a good conversation starter though, as everyone thinks their favorites are the most deserved.

    I personally think Zardoz and Fortress are the greatest movies of all time. Cinematography remains unsurpassed. Phenomenal acting. Groundbreaking effects. Truly classic "script-to-film" works.

  • Some lists are intriguing. This one…not so much. But ShlemmerkerHammer, if comments were films, yours would get my Oscar for Best Picture.

    Who picks these lists, and how did they sustain their severe head trauma just before picking this one?

    • Harsha

      Exactly. This list is basically a 'hurr-durr-give-me-some-attention-i'll-strut-around-my-opinion' list.
      He lost all his credibility when he stated that 'The Hurt Locker' didn't deserve the Oscars and wasn't his top 15, yet fails to give a worthy replacement to back up his claim. Maybe he was one of those people who was hoping that Avatard would win.

  • Hmm… I try to watch movies that are considered to be very good, and I have not seen any of these except for Forrest Gump. Anyway, I had to laugh because I have no desire to see the English Patient since Elaine from Seinfeld said it sucked. :)

    • tobbytoy22

      Agreed! That's why you made out during Schindler's List too huh?

      • Lol! Actually, the first time I saw Schindler's List was in high school. My whole grade watched it in the auditorium, and when a teacher was telling us blah blah blah, be mature, don't laugh during the sex scene, etc., I so badly wanted to yell "And no making out!" x)

  • Thanks, man. Very funny comment!

  • 'Unforgiven' was an utter piece of crap. The only time I have ever demanded my money back from a movie theatre. disgraceful.

    'driving miss daisy' is one of my favourite films (sadly i know) because the acting is so good. best picture it is not.

  • Swark

    there has been numerous countless loads of undeserving Best Picture winners. i'm sick of it.
    how about a list of the MOST DESERVING winners? especially the modern ones.

  • dickie

    am I the only one who thinks “No Country For Old Men” should be here…

    “Crash” was like an amateur experiment or something…
    Thanks for mentioning Chicago, Driving Miss Daisy and The English Patient.
    Shakespeare In Love over Saving Private Ryan has to be the number one outrageous choice though.

    When you speak of the “Worst Best Picture winners,” shouldn’t it be about the film by itself and not in context to the competition? otherwise, this list should be Worst Best Picture choices…

    • good question. I think I have to put both into play. It's hard not to look at the other films released that year. "No Country" could be on here, sure. I liked it very much, but didn't think it was the best film of that year at all. Glad you are with me on Chicago, TEP, and DMD!

  • medstudent24

    Good list, but it has some glaring omissions -that others have noted. This is just an opinion, but Crash has to be the least deserving Best Picture winner of the last decade, it has the subtlety of a jackhammer and enough histrionics by its actors to be considered a cautionary tale on the dangers of over-acting. Brokeback Mountain should have won, but in the way it influenced culture at the time, it kinda did.

  • dickie

    What I understand from the 10 Worst Best Picture Winners – you look at the list of Best Picture Winners, pick the worst 10 films.

    There shouldn’t be “it was not a bad film, but there were better pictures that year.”

    This is supposed to be THE WORST.

    In this sense, The Departed and FG shouldn’t be here. There are worse Best Picture winners than those two.

    • That is fair rationale and I understand where you are coming from. Many of the films that have won are at least good. It is very hard NOT to include the competition and other films released when creating such a list…for me, it was part of the criteria.

  • ffiffisop

    Why does everyone insist that Titanic isn't a good film? I love it!

    I agree with most on the list… English Patient made me contemplate pickling my eyeballs… But Chicago is a very good film… In my opinion, anyway. Though, it didn't deserve to beat Lord Of The Rings – Two Towers (which you failed to mention in your list…)

    I do have a few of my own to add though…

    2001 – A Beautiful Mind – what? No Moulin Rouge! or Lord Of The Rings – Fellowship Of The Ring, which are two of the best films… ever?!?! Outrage!
    2004 – Million Dollat Baby. Urh… No. Finding Neverland stole my heart that year :)

    Hmm. And then there are those incredible films not even nominated for Best Picture… For example Pan's Labarynth, or Girl, Interrupted…

    • Stevie

      You've got to be kidding me. Moulin Rouge? Don't get me wrong, I LOVE that movie, but it is certainly not Oscar worthy.

  • This might come up when you discuss your revenue streams. I know that there are some commenters who lack the resources to manufacture quality comments so they make up for it by mass-producing shoddy comments with the sparse and sub-par resources that are available to them. These cheap comments flood the market with low-quality and repetitive knockoffs, but have the benefit of driving up the price of higher quality, funnier, and better crafted comments such as yours. You may want to bring this up with the oversight committee.

    • The executive commenter's oversight committee is made up of raging alcoholics, neophyte dunderheads, and power hungry brown-nosers. Getting any measure past them is like diving into the outhouse pit the day after Memorial Day to recover the top of a Yoplait yogurt container just so you can read the pseudo wisdom saying written on the foil. Half of them are asleep with a cigarette butt burning down to the cotton filter and the other half are plotting to assassinate the committee chair. I sit on that committee because I want to have a say in what goes on here.

      Turns out nobody gives a frog's fat ass. We are alone. Revenue streams be damned.

      • That's bad news.

        But at least, going by your description, I qualify for the executive commenter's oversight committee. Yeehaw.

  • Dorian

    I loved Avatar but did not watch it to the nth time like i did with Titanic. I didn't think Hurt Locker deserved the oscar, Avatar did but the Oscar people couldn't really accept technological advancement in film making. if Avatar wasn't 3D it could have won easily. I agree with number 1, THE PIANIST was incredibly amazing. i watched it over and over again and marveled. i even think it was better than Schindler's List as a holocaust movie.

    • pardothepianoman

      No way "The Pianist" is better than "Schinder's List". The story wasn't particularly fascinating, and the acting was solid, but not monumental. He got lucky, then when things went awry, he was able to use his piano skills to help himself get out of a jam. Eh…

  • Lorikeet

    How could you not include The Greatest Show On Earth in this list? I have no idea who thought that film even needed to be nominated, let alone win.

    • Fair assessment. It came oh-so-close. I wanted to include it. Perhaps I should have at #10. Good call

  • deeeziner

    ""The Sting" beat "The Exorcist"

    Another one that's arguable at best. The Exorcist is a wrenching film to watch, but that doesn't mean it's greater than The Sting. The Sting does a great job in faithfully recreating an era and is still a fun watch. This is another "too close to call," not an easy out."

    There was no "close call" about it. Saw both movies during their film debut, and even tho I was only about 13 at the time, The Sting was the easy winner….hands down. I've never been able to understand all the hype over The Exorcist, although a nod to it's special effects may be in order.

    The Sting on the other hand had a fine cast, tidy story, and a soundtrack that I still keep a copy of in my collection.

    At 13 I did get a hoot out of watching all my older brother's 16 yr old friends jump out of their skin every time there was an odd bump in the night, screaming "THE EXORCIST!!!! THE EXCORCIST!!!!"

  • What a great blog, Thanks for sharing!

  • FlameHorse

    You know, there's absolutely nothing wrong with How Green Was my Valley. It's a great movie, much more entertaining and interesting than Citizen Kane. Kane had one thing going for it: technical brilliance. Well big whoop. How Green is still the better film. Kane puts me to sleep every time.

  • Lisa Marie

    RENT and The Phantom of the Opera aren’t failed adaptions. They’re awesome.

    • I'm with you on Rent, I love it especially as its not your usual musical story. And I have to disagree with your comment below- Shakespeare in Love was terrible!

  • Lisa Marie

    Oh, I have to say I’m in the minority here when I say Shakespeare in Love deserved best picture. Didn’t care for Saving Private Ryan.

    • Clark88

      You honestly have the WORST taste in movies.

  • Riu

    Reading the comments made me laugh. The author didn't claim to be an authority in film, neither would being an authority in film make his list any more than a very subjective and personal list. The great thing about film or any form of art is that everyone can have his/her own interpretation of it. I still remember seeing "Eyes Wide Shut" with two friends and having a fairly good discussion afterwards because none of us had the same interpretation of the movie. I guess it's only human nature though, to want to have one's opinions validated by others.

    • well said. This is an opinion list. No way around that. It's all subjective.

  • deeeziner

    But I LOVED "Barnyard Animals Gone Wild". *sniff*

    • You sniff barnyard animals gone wild?

      • deeeziner

        YOU sniff…..I'll watch.

  • "I'm going to comment on this list even though my commenting days have been cut back due to budget cuts, executive decisions and general douchebaggery. I have a meeting next week with the executive commenter's oversight committee to discuss revenue streams to enable me to continue."

    Fucking budget cutbacks! You need me to make any phone calls, buddy, you just let me know!

    BTW, my university is all solvent again. But then we got a 78 gajillion dollar endowment, so this "crisis" was a cakewalk.

    • My university's administration couldn't find their ass with a red target painted on it. But as I type this on a University keyboard, I guess I can't be too angry. I'm still here while 10 of my coworkers are out on their keisters. (i before e except after k?)

      BTW – my profile description WAS NOT written after I saw yours, so . . .

      • Thank Goodness for the replies. Reading your original comment I was worried someone had stolen the Bucstas ID and trying to take him all serious like. But no it seems it was just an aberration from the Bucslim we all know and love. Just be careful you don't do it too often or you will get a reputation for dragging the tone of the place Up :)

        Cheers
        Lee

        • There are subtle clues in the original post.

          First of all, no one is going to explain why they have come back to the commenting arena by bringing up an 'executive commenter's oversight committee.' Secondly, the parable of grandma serving you too much gravy in order to sway your emotions isn't going to show up on anyone else's comments. The awesome fictitious names are a dead give away. And the cherry on top of the mound of whip cream goodness is the coke snorting scenario. 'Naked quivering flesh' says 'bucslim' loud and clear.

  • The Mynah Bird

    What there different pages for comments naow? Motherbitch!

  • deeeziner

    Got to agree with the commenter who brought up No Country For Old Men. It was an unbelievable ride of a movie. I rented it, and as a home viewer found myself periodically checking the time left, because it was such a good story, I didn't want it to end.

    Then the end did come, and it sucked such great blue balls of crap that I regretted watching the entire film. It was a worse experience than having to fake an orgasm just to bring the session to a close.

    But maybe that's just me.

    • deeez – you know I love you. And I completely sympathize with your analysis. But, I have a big 'but' and a big butt, I enjoyed the ever living monkey knockers of the ending of this movie. People have huge problems with ambiguity and I understand that, I sympathize with that, I would go out with that.

      Trouble is, too many movies today are wrapped up in a tight little bow so that the audience goes home with a smile on their face, a tear in their eye or a message to grind over – that is not life in general. That's what the ending of this movie is trying to say – we don't get to know, just like almost every other thing in our lives. I know that sucks and I wanted to see what happened to the wife, the ranger and the most frightful man in movie history. But that ending made such an impression on me.

      One of the best parts of going to the theater was at the end of the movie there were so many people leaving with puzzled looks on their faces, some angry, some muttering 'I don't get it.' I got this evil delicious feeling washing over the sub-cockle area of my heart.

      Don't be a haterz.

      • "deeez – you know I love you." — Jeez Buc, is my frying pan really THAT big? You sound like a timid lion tamer going into the cage of a rabid she-lion. But I love you too.

        That said, you bring up one point about the movie we don't have in common…..You saw it at the theater. As an avid people watcher and student of the human condition, I'm jealous. I can see the draw of the situation, but will admit that I might have missed the opportunity, due to my own look of puzzlement, while departing.

        • It was pretty awesome. My smart ass son (who would have guessed that I'd have a smart assed son) and I were giggling like two teenaged girls with new Sidekicks. I've never seen so many people disgruntled, puzzled, perplexed and ruffled. I heard 'I don't get it' and various permutations of that phrase as we walked out – after a while I just was laughing my ass off.

          It was one of the few times in my life when I felt totally smug.

    • having seen it in the theatre, i knew how to handle this situation.

      the story was great
      harrelson, javier bardem, tommy lee jones, that guy from the goonies (brolin>?) all great

      so, when i watched it with a friend who hadnt seen it a couple months back,
      3 minutes from the end, i turned it off and took the remote and threw it in the yard

      now, instead of disliking a great movie, she was just minorly annoyed with me

      i dont get to hold the remote when we watch movies anymore, but that will pass im sure
      it was sooo worth it.

  • Mik

    Chicago?????? Phulize. Trash is easily the worst Best Picture ever. end the fact that you didn't even put it in top 10 makes this list meaningless.

  • Tryclyde

    Forrest Gump is a TERRIBLE movie. I think when compared to movies it was competing against, F.G. is the most egregious considering it beat out Shawshank AND Pulp Fiction. Oscar loses all credibility with that one.

  • alday

    I disagree with your assessments of The Departed, Forrest Gump, and Chariots of Fire. Chariots has one of the most memorable opening scenes in movie history (running on the beach scene). The story is brilliant and much more deep than simply about running, my film class spent an entire week studying this film because its such a good movie. I understand your that Forrest Gump beat out a lot of other great movies in, but your descriptions of it are exactly why it should have been voted Best Picture. I could agree that Shawshank could take the title but you contradict yourself here. You say that a best picture should be memorable for years after which completely describes both movies. And lastly please explain better why The Departed did not deserve a Best Picture. You say yourself that no other movie could compete that year and then proceed to make no case for why the Departed was not a good movie. The only reasoning you present is that it does not live up to the original Infernal Affairs but that doesn't mean it did not deserve the Oscar.

  • I must agree with your choices. The Departed was so a sympathy vote, and Forrest Gump is easy Oscar material. I don't agree with The Hurt Locker doing the biz this year – it only got it for political reasons anyway.

  • I just want to let everyone know that the commenting functionality is now fully complete. All old comments have been imported and things should hopefully stabilize.

    • Thanks for the update, Jamie. I'm off to hit up the "random list" button a few times.

    • i think i've hit the reply button about 113 times on this list since theyre back to closed :-(

      i'm secretly hoping that by 'fully complete', you meant 99% fully complete
      i know i know …… "in your dreams"
      right: in my pan pipe dreams

  • Techstyles

    Running is not a sport ? You must be thick…

    • It was a poor comment. I apologize. It was not worded properly. I will also make sure to apologize in my video rant which I post on my film blog tomorrow.

  • Great list, there are still so many movies I need to see.

  • as soon as I saw Forrest Gump and THEN The Departed i have completely disregarded anything that this list had to say. What an idiot.

  • Agree with most of the points you make but you should have taken a different direction with the list. You make it seem as though all these movies that won Best Picture are bad; not all of them are, or certainly not according to general consensus. You should have named the list "10 BP Winners that shouldn't have won" or something like that, focusing on the fact that there were better films rather than making them look like shit.

    On balance it was a pretty good list, though. I enjoyed it thoroughly.

    • Understood. I did preface in the intro to the list that I was not saying the films were bad. On the contrary, I think they are all very good films (except Chicago, How Green and Cavalcade). Thanks for the comment! I did not mean to make it come across that they looked like shit. My bad if it did so.

  • First off, let me state that I created an account just to comment on this list.

    I really enjoyed this list with one exception: what the f*** is The Departed on here for? The Departed is a fantastic film with great acting and enjoyable story development in every frame. I haven't seen it's parent film "Internal Affairs," but it's not really a matter of which film overshadows which.

    Let's look at 2006's contenders again. Little Miss Sunshine? Cute. That's about all it had going for it. Babel? Good film, really, but ultimately ended up being preachy. Letters from Iwo Jima? Good film, but doesn't stand out from dozens of other war films except for the fact that it's American-made and tells the story from the Japanese side. And freakin' The QUEEN? One of the most boring, uninteresting film experiences I've ever had to sit through. It was two hours of build-up to learn that, hey, this woman's frumpy and kinda sad that Princess Di got killed. Whoopty-freakin-doo.

    • you are right. Terrible category that year. I did not care for Babel. I thought Sunshine was strong, but also not Oscar worthy. Eastwood's films that year were more deserviNG i'd say. I honestly just didn't care for Scorsese's film here — it had more to do with that for me than its competition that year. I love Scorsese…this was overdone, melodramatic and at times, unrealistic..to me, at least.

  • The only film from 2006 that I can think of more worthy of winning Best Picture was Children of Men, and that film didn't even get a nomination. Granted, I will agree that probably a good part of the reason that Scorsese won is because he's had it long-coming, but that doesn't mean his film that won was any less worthy. I'll probably get slammed for this, but I enjoyed The Departed more than Goodfellas.

  • Michelle

    Good list overall, but I vehemently disagree about Chicago. The film adaptation was wonderful!

  • MadMonkey

    By the time I got to #6 I knew you were a moron, so I quit reading.

    • You know, everytime someone says, "…and then I stopped reading," I think they're lying.

      No offence. You might not be.

      But I assume you are.

  • Kay

    To tell the truth, I have not seen the hurt locker or avatar yet. But I’m glad the hurt locker won over avatar. I was so sick of hearing about avatar. Anyway, the public always seems to disagree with the critics. A movie might be panned by critics and is a piece of poo, but that does not stop millions of people to go see it and it becomes a box office hit. Then there are some movies that are a gem but hardly anyone goes to see it.

  • Mr. PersonGuy

    Driving Miss Daisy should be at number 1, no question. This list is pretty weak. My Fair Lady beating out Dr. Strangelove isn't important enough to shit on Scorsese's most recent flick? Where's Crash? Where's Titanic? Where's Terms of Endearment? And, Pulp Fiction is not overrated at all.

    This is kind of weird, but I actually liked Chicago, even though I find film musicals unbearable.

  • *shock*

    Chicago is one of my favourite movies. :)

  • Moonbeam

    I'm glad you added #3 Driving Miss Daisy. You're right it has sweet moments, but It's insulting in another way that you don't mention. I have a friend who's African American who'll say, "Yes, Miss Daisy," whenever someone asks him for a favor that's out of line or tries to bark orders. [Spoiler] After waiting on Miss Daisy all those years Hoke ends up waiting on her once again as her health fades. It seemed less like a loving gesture than just more subserviance to me. [End spoiler] Although I agree that Morgan Freeman and Jessica Tandy gave good performances.

    Freeman was a huge part of what made The Shawshank Redemtion so memorable. Love it or hate it the performances were very good. Just think of James Whitmore as Brooks Hatlen. Heartbreaking.

    As to Chicago I could never bring myself to watch it. I can't stand Richerd Gere, Renee Zelleiger, nor Catherine Zeta-Jones. The thouight of all three in one movie – SHUDDER. and as you suggest, why not hire actors who can sing when making a musical? But to suggest thatGangs of New York was Oscar quality, I'd disagree. It was one I'd call overrated. Daniel Day-Lewis was way, way over the top to the point of being ridiculous. He can be great at times but he ruined the film for me.

  • Yogipogi

    Good entertaining list!

  • I agree with many of them. But, Forrest Gump was actually good in terms of story.

  • JAD

    Ouch, 2002 was a rough year in general. I forgot how great of a year 1996 was. Out of Fargo, Big Night and Sling Blade, any one of those was a better film than The English Patient. I completely agree about The Departed. I'm as big a Scorsese fan as you'll meet, but the man's ship has sailed. He didn't win for Raging Bull, Goodfellas, Casino or even The Age of Innocence, and The Departed doesn't measure up to any of those in my view. Nice list, I take no issue with any of these choices.

    • FYI TD was not competing for an Oscar against RB, Goddfellas, Casino, or TAOI. So whether or not it matches up to them is utterly irrelevant.

      Cheers
      Lee

  • Shawshank Redemption got shanked .

    Saving Private Ryan got bombed.

    and the Gangs of New York got nabbed.

  • ME

    OK….
    First off “Titanic” is a good film. It didn’t just win for techinical achievements, there was good acting and the historical fiction is marvelous.

    Second, “The Hurt Locker” was a great movie and forget the political reasons. When was the last time in this decade that a war movie so good was made. If not “Hurt Locker” then give it to “Inglourious Basterds” because I’ve never seen such a bold film with a story like that.

    Now the reason why I commented..THE DEPARTED
    Even if there were better movies nominated along with it “The Departed” is cinematic masterpiece simply because what it doens’t lack. Great story, no matter whether it lives up to “Internal Affairs” or not. Great acting, from Leo, Jack, Mark and especially Damon. He is definitely underrated in this movie. Scorcesse’s directing is impeccable. You have to understand the scope of the film and not just watch it for what it is. There is much more than meets the eye and I suggest you watch it again to understand it.

  • This was a great list, and that has nothing to do with which films you chose to include. The reason why it's so great is because it's encouraged some excellent discussion in the comments. Of course the list is based on opinion, and I think most people recognise that fact and agree that there isn't really any other way to go about it.

    The list writer deserves credit for writing a list that encourages everyone to comment about their own opinions on best picture winners, and who was more deserving in what year. Taste in movies is a personal thing, and different films appeal to different people. If your goal was to write a list that got people talking and sharing their views, I say mission accomplished. Good job!

    • Perfectly stated. i am quoting this comment on my video web rant on my blog on Thursday for sure. Thank you!

  • Laurabelle

    Apparently, Citizen Kane was originally tapped to be best picture, but William Randolph Hearst (the man on which the character in the film was based), threatened the actors/academy if they voted for the film. Welles took the film in a different direction and really angered him, so Hearst told Hollywood that they would nver work again if the film won!

    The academy block-voted against the movie, and it lost.

  • trfan01

    No way Forrest Gump didn't deserve its honor. That was one of the most beautiful films of all time! I still watch it on occasion (just two weeks ago most recently), and it has never failed to move me. The story is amazing! It's one of those films that if I have a long night or Sunday afternoon to kill, I'll watch it for enjoyment.

    Titanic, though, I agree has not stood the test of time. It was beautifully shot, especially from the sinking of the ship on, but the story doesn't hold up. I do plan to watch it again sometime, though, since now everyone who was on the ship in real life is now dead. I know I'll feel a haunting chill down my spine when I watch the movie again. The last part of the movie, where they show a view of the ship underwater and transition to the ship being whole again, never fails to move me. The main story, though, I could do without.

  • kayla

    Running is not a sport? ok i agree the movie Chariots of Fire is not exactly entertaining but adding that running is not a sport ruined this article for me. I’m a runner and all i have to say is join cross country or track then tell me if you think running isn’t a sport, maybe even tell me if you think it isn’t one of the hardest ones out there that requires the most guts.

    • i have apologized to those who made this same comment. It did not come off how i wanted and I used poor wording. I am sorry for that – and will say so for sure on my video "Web Rant" posted on my blog on Thursday.

  • How could you not add "Rocky"? It beat out "Network," "All the President's Men" and "Taxi Driver" "Rocky" is pretty good, but "Network" is a far superior film. But 1976 was just a great year for films.

    Also "Kramer vs. Kramer" beating out "Apocalypse Now" in 1979.

    • Apocalypse is in my Top 10 of all-time. It should have won, for sure. But i also think Kramer is a 4-star film, so I could not include (this same way of thinking is why I left Dances/wolves and Ordinary People off0. 1976 was a great year. If I had a vote, I think I'd go with President's Men. BuT Rocky is a classic underdog film and arguably one of the very best sports films ever made. lots of good stuff with the original Rocky. iconic score, endearing love story and makes you cheer. You are correct though — the others may be better films. Tough, competitive year.

      • jbii

        Peter Finch did not deserve best actor! Stallone should have won! I think Rocky is better than Network….Taxi Driver was better too).

  • munrog

    i think you have to put into perspective that the "best picture" award is not just an award for the best film. the recipient is a culmination of all the aspects that go into a movie coming together to create the best picture. and you have to include politics that play a factor in the decision. for example, 'hurt locker' winning based alot on the fact that this 'war-drama' was directed by a woman.

  • I was not expecting such an outpouring of condemnation here with my posting of this list. I am overwhelemed and have read all of your comments. I commented on a good many of them. I'm thrilled to see so many people passionate about the movies they love and dislike. That's what makes these lists such fun. I post a weekly video "Web Rant" on my blog (http://magiclanternfilm.wordpress.com/) and I am posting up my reaction (positive and negative) to this entire thread of commentary which has been a great read. Hope you can check it out….

  • Billy Ciccone

    "The Departed" was definitely a vastly overrated movie; "Goodfellas 3- Beantown Massacre". "Natural Born Killers", though, is the overrated film…nowhere NEAR as good as "Pulp Fiction".

  • 288 gto

    pulp fiction is not overrated and golf is most definitely a sport, this author is a huge a$$hole

  • HCE

    Something I'm surprised you didn't mention is that Driving Miss Daisy also beat out Spike Lee's masterpiece Do the Right Thing for the Best Picture statue. I've always thought that an old, borderline-racist academy chose the "safe" film about race in order to avoid acknowledging the much more intelligent and engaging race-related film of the year.

  • Commenting after a long time!!
    Great to see the new commenting system, nice!!
    The reply system is the best.

    About the list,
    Great list, I liked it a lot. Especially about departed, I didn't like the movie at all.
    As for Titanic, I know many people think its way to overrated, but I liked it as a complete entertainer. Good love story, good effects and great actors.

    Cheers :D

    • How good to see your name commenting again!

  • Sarah

    Try titling this as "Top 10 Worst Best Picture Winners IN MY OPINION" and I'll agree with you. In your opinion, these are.

    My only real issue is your criticisms of Chicago. I agree that it didn't deserve to win. But the actors actually COULD sing and it was entertaining. Not the deepest sh*t in the world, but it wasn't made to be deep. And I don't think they expected it to win.

    Like I said, too much opinion for a list on this site. Try keeping your opinions objective, like just mentioning the movies projected to be winners that year.

    • In My Opinion makes for a silly title. One would assume going in that such a list would be the author's opinion…it is a given. Taste in art or film is not at all objective. The entire point is based on subjectivity.

  • FUCKED McFUCKERSON

    Shut the fuck up, Forrest Gump is a FANTASTIC movie. One of the few that I can watch over and over.

    • I think I just found a new name for my ex wife.

  • shakezula

    i agree with some of this list, but you lose all credibility for saying Natural Born Killers is a great film. While I enjoyed watching it, and it was very unique it is a horrible, horrible film.

  • what happened to the format here? You cannot tell which comments I was replying to — and I had replied to over 25 of them in courteous fashion. Now they all just appear randomly….

    • If the comments don’t load fast enough it defaults to the old format – we are working on a fix. When you refresh the page your comments will be as they were in the right place :)

  • Beast Of Gevaudan

    I totally agree with this list. The Oscars are a farce.

  • Eight and a half out of ten ain't bad. You're too harsh on Chicago, but I do agree with you.

    The one thing I take issue on was the write-up for "The Departed." It's your opinion whether or not it deserved the top prize, but to call it a weak year and that 'nothing else stood out' is just a stretch. 'Bob' already mentioned "Children of Men" and "Pan's Labyrinth." How about "The Prestige" (Nolan's best film), "Little Children," "Volver." 2006 was an amazing year and my favourite in the past decade.

  • JPV

    This is a great list.
    However, saying that running is not a sport is ludicrous. Does it take athleticism to run a 10-second 100 meter dash? Yep. Does it take coordination to run a sub 3:45 mile? For sure. Does it take stamina to run a marathon in JUST OVER TWO HOURS? Duh.
    Otherwise, I actually completely agree about the movies.

  • The problem with the academy awards is that the academy assumes that all the world speaks English and that the best Hollywood film of the year is the same thing as the best film of the year.

    These days I don't see as many films as I would like, but most of my favourite films of the past fifteen years (with the notable exception of Avatar) were not nominated for Academy awards. I would say that in recent years, films out of Korea, Iran and Sweden (my personal favourite is "You The Living" by Roy Andersson) have generally been more interesting than American films of the same period.

    PS. I disagree with you about Titanic. I hated this film when it came out, but have recently changed my mind. There are some issues with this film – especially the framing story feels awkward and contrived. Yet to my surprise, I enjoyed the second viewing much more than the first, revealing a real depth to the film. If we think of the Titanic as a metaphor for Spaceship earth (on which we are all travelling), then we find that all the imbalances of our society are perfectly represented. If we think of Titanic as a microcosm, then we can think of the film as a dire warning, suggesting that Spaceship earth maybe heading towards disaster.

  • darren

    Running not a sport, obviously you're not a runner. Wikipedia says running is a sport. Just because you don't like running then don't discount it.

    I liked Forrest Gump.

  • how da hell did hurt locker win best picture!!! dat shit was garbage,fell asleep half way through.it was so boring and had almost no action wats so ever.i think it should have gone to inglorious bastards,d9 or avatar.

  • Jack

    i'm so happy i just got to read ego and nothing substantial here. what crap

  • bearsfn8514

    Running is not a sport!?! are you kidding? are you really that ingnorant? the definition of a sport is physical activity governed by a set of rules or customs, explain to me how that is not a race? a race is physical activity along a set course for a given amount of time with a goal of beating the person you're running with. just because you can't run and hated doing the mile in gym class because you were bad at it does not mean its not a sport.

    • you are on the right track here…….

      racing is a sport, running is not

      @darren:
      wiki is not really an acceptable source of information

      running is a hobby….running is exercise……running is an action
      rac ing is a sport
      see, what wiki failed to differentiate is that there is no way quantifly or measure success while jogging or "running"
      it becomes a sport when it becomes a race, someone wins, you can measure your times against others….there is even team elements (relay races)

      and if your justification is that racing and running are the same action, so should have the same qualification, it just doesnt seem to wash.

      when i take my tennis racket,, and some balls, and put on my shorts and my tennis shoes, and hit the ball to myself against my garage, or one of those walls on tennis courts, i think it would be a big stretch to say i am playing tennis.

      same action, but out of the mode of competition

  • Swark

    this list is not good. u dont have a very good taste in movies.

  • tripsyman

    Sorry but I disagree about forrest gump and the departed being on here. " great films and worthy winners in my opinion. Enjoyed the list.

  • John

    It just seems like your own judgment clouded the facts. once again…… sorry, terrible list.

  • I did’t know Gangs of New York, the Pianist and Adaptatin were beaten by Suckago. If this is not a proof o how dumb or influenced/paid juries are…

  • bead

    Where is Shakespeare in Love? another interesting list too bad its written by an idiot.

  • Guest

    I absolutely HATED Annie Hall! I don't know what other movies were made that year, but this one was the worst! And Diane Keaton won best actress for essentially portraying herself! Yuck!

  • Imperator R

    Running, golfing, billiards, not a sport? What an arrogant thing to say. Lower the condensation a bit and maybe this list will be worth reading.

  • HAGEN

    Excellent list!!! I can see another one coming.

    BTW, JFrater, I really love what you have done with the place…

    • Thanks, Hagen. Have had a few mentioning a Top 10 "Best Films" to win best Picture, so i will get working on that one….

  • JH

    This list seems very familiar… I think parts of this are swiped from someplace.

  • Wow, such a lot of comments! I wasn't sure until I read the list – but I agree that there were much better titles which deserved the top spot. Good effort. Well thought out.

  • To all of those angered by my "Running" comment — I have already apologized at least 5 times on this thread of commentary. Though I stand behind everything on this list, the running comment was a silly thing to say and for that I apologize. I will make sure to apologize on my weekly video "Web Rant" on my Magic Lantern Film blog (see URL in thread) which will be posted up later today.

    • Don’t worry about it, man. It was a good list and you’ve done more than a fair share of responding to comments about your list, both good and bad. There are always going to be the drive-by posters who don’t have the courtesy to read thru the previous comments and just spout off something as if they were the first person to have ever thought it. It’s par for the course here at Listverse, but typically the regulars are smarter than that.

    • oliveralbq

      a) everything maggot said

      b) peter: it might have been silly, but only really silly in that you should have been able to predict that handfuls of people would instantly act as if they had sand in their vaginas
      –note, however, you cant (rather, you shouldn't) base your comments on whether or not panties will be all knotted up in the wake of whatever you have to say. (this doesnt imply to complete stupidity, rascism, sexism, etc., of course)

      c) youre right anyway

  • Re: The English Patient- "I mean, come on…who actually fell in love with this movie and can watch it over and over? " I can. I think it's a great film. Anyway, that's not exactly good criteria for what a Best Picture winner should be or Schindler's List would have been completely out of the running (At least I certainly hope that no one enjoys watching it over and over again!)

  • Gmoviegoer

    totally agree on Shawshank not winning. total BS. I liked Departed though

  • Hayek

    @Peter Eramo Jr.
    Finally someone on this site who is very close at realizing that the Oscars are a joke. Let me get this straight: I enjoy watching the show and all but people tend to forget that it’s just that: A show. A show to promote the products of an industry. Often very good products in my opinion. But that’s just an opinion. There’s no such thing as ‘best picture’. This is an opinion, too. The calculated one of the around 6000 members of AMPAS to be precisely. Now you can criticize that opinion as you can criticize that a van Gogh or Picasso is sold for 100 million $. But you know what? It makes even less sense than the actual event and most important: It makes no difference.
    P.S. I agree with all points on your list. Except 1994. 1994 for was really an exceptional year for movies. Léon is another example. But Forrest Gump is the obvious choice for the Academy and one of the few I can actually agree with, because Shawshank just stinks.
    And movies like Pulp Fiction and Léon will hopefully never win. Not because I don’t like them – but because I like them so much. At least I did when I was younger =)

  • GTT

    Well, unfortunately my work computer doesnt support Javascript so little comments sent via phone are all I’ll be able to write from now on… :(

    10: I like The English Patient… It’s a great movie to start watching if you are suffering from insomnia and want to fall asleep in the next 10 minutes…

    7: I agree what while FG is not Oscar material, it wasnt terrible… Shawshank and Pulp Fiction were much better (hubby just mentioned that he hasnt seen any of these… Apparently he lived in a cave until I met him…)

    1: OK, I know I’m going to get flamed but I liked this movie… It might have something to do with the fact that I was at my cousin’s house in a small town in Switzerland, surrounded by cows, no TV except a DVD player and this movie… All I can is, it’s better thab cow tipping! Oh, that and the fact that I hated Gangs of New York…

  • Obviously you completely ignored my comment RIGHT ABOVE YOURS regarding the comment on running. Jeez, get over it. And pray tell, what does the Academy use for criteria? Really – i'd love to hear your answer to this. Every Academy voter casts their balloit differently, I am sure. There are a few select rules to judge by regarding criteria. Not much research needed here. Your comments here are embarrassing. Not sure someone's opinion on 10 films can be executed poorly.

    • oliveralbq

      youre right again

      but this one is for jamie: or cyn:

      why is it that if there is a comment (like the one above) which says 'deleted by the administrator', that you keep the replies.
      i believe i know the answer you are gonna give, but my retort is this —by reading peter.eramo's reply, but not seeing the original comment, its driving me crazy as to what was said in the first place :):)——its like a mild version of torture
      it makes me go mad….mad i tell you

  • Interesting list. First of all Citizen kane is fabulous and should have won. I agree there – I like the Maltese Falcon also. I loved 80 days when I was a girl but I watch the 10 commandments every year. The Shawshank redemption should have won and although I loved chicago, The pianist was stunning.

    About the Hurt Locker. I rooted for it to beat that bloated over rated piece of junk – Avatar, but only because I had not seen Precious. Precious is a masterpiece.

    I enjoyed reading your opinions :), even though I didn't agree with some of them. Thank you.

  • sad muso

    Interesting read, but perhaps slightly too personal a list for Listverse? Felt more like a blog post than something that should be here.

    • what list is not subjective? I have looked at a number of Top 10's on this site and you know what I find? All opinions from the individuals who wrote them. Thanks for the positive energy though.

  • This is the most comments I have ever seen any list receive! Perhaps Its contriversial but its good to see that Listverse is expanding.

  • Stevie

    I agree with most of what's on here, but really, running IS a sport. It is the basis for almost every sport out there. I, being a runner, was quite offended by that.

  • sorry about the delay….my apology on the silly "running comment" is part of this week's Video Web Rant on Magic Lantern Film. took while, but you can chec it out athttp://magiclanternfilm.wordpress.com/2010/05/13/

  • Carole

    Have to disagree about " How Green Was My Valley " Nothing sadder than Maureen O'Hara ' s character on her wedding day, marrying a man she didn't love
    Citizen Kane is very dated and hasn't stood the test of time.

    • Good point. I do not believe Kane is dated at all, but you bring up a wonderful, tragic sequence in "How Green…"

  • runi

    Titanic! It won 11 oscars! 11! Why?

  • Film_Fan

    While no match for "Citizen Kane," from the standpoint of technical innovation, "How Green Was My Valley" is nonetheless, a powerful and beautiful film. The ending, especially, has an ethereal quality rarely captured on film — "Your father came to me just now…" — that packs an emotional wallop. The haunting, glowing image of the mother stays with the viewer for a long time.

  • FIRST! or maybe 5th now…
    anytthing but chicago should've won. who bought out that award?

  • Corey

    Come on, how can you write a list like this and not include "Saving Private Ryan" losing to "Shakespeare In Love"?!?!

    • I explained as much in my video web rant I posted on my film blog. I stand by it and I'm not even a huge fan of Shakespeare in Love.

  • MVZ

    You lost credibility with me when you called Dead Poets Society a great achievement in film.

    That said, the list is funny and well written.

  • TrinaB

    I could not agree more with you on Chicago. How that beat out The Pianist, Gangs of New York(imo this is one of the greatest movies I've seen), and Adaption(also a great movie) is astounding. I watched Chicago shortly after it released on DVD and it was just terrible. It was quite possibly worse than cancer.

  • Mike

    I never got why Raging Bull is so beloved? The film didn't do a thing for me.

  • sochej

    Shakespeare. In. Love. That is all.

  • tikitavi

    I'm surprised Crash didn't make this list. That was a pretty big travesty.

  • Heleen

    Shakespeare in Love beat out Saving Private Ryan AND Elizabeth. Gwyneth Paltrow also beat Cate Blanchette for the Best Actress Oscar. I have long since lost faith in the Academy Awards…

  • thisguy

    shaksphere in love…

  • nfrillman

    A Lord of the Rings movie was released in 2002, so unless there is another VERY strong option then it should have been a no brainer. In this case the LOTR's movie was The Two Towers, which is waaaaay better than Chicago. I mean give me a break, Chicago!?!?!?!

  • Mark

    Oh my. I disagree with so many of your opinions. Definitely not on my Top 10 Greatest Lists.

  • Jenn

    I'd add Crash and Hurt Locker. I consider myself a snobby movie-goer. Really, I actually like slow depressing intellectual movies. But Hurt Locker is slow slow slowwww with tons of editing mishaps. It was supposed to take place in the beginning of the Iraqi War, and they reference things like YouTube and iPods. Uh, those things weren't around yet guys. I totally second the notion that District 9 should have got it. Superb acting, brilliant script, engaging plot, and utterly uncontrived, unlike Dances with Wolves in Space (Avatar).

    Also, Crash, really? Brokeback was a way better movie. Better acted, better directed, better cinematography, and better plot. It was also ballsy in its subject matter. Crash was about drug addicts, I think. Lame. Requiem for a Dream was a hell of a lot better, and that was years before.

  • oliveralbq

    …"The English Patient- "I mean, come on…who actually fell in love with this movie and can watch it over and over"

    my ex-girlfriend

    which is precisely why she's my *ex*-girlfriend

  • Tannis H.

    I have to LOL at the ignorant idiots who say "This list is criminal for including 'classics' " and such. Seriously, it's just the opinions of the writer of this list; no need to treat him like that just for having different tastes in movies than you do.

  • thisguy

    I dont know why theres all the hate for chicago, am i the only peron here who actully liked it.

  • Parker

    The best film of 2006 wasn't even nominated. The Departed wasn't nearly as great as Alfonso Cuaron's "Children of Men," which should have won several awards that were given to less deserving films.

    If you haven't seen it, stop what you're doing and go watch it. Shit's a masterpiece, I tell you.

    Oh, and Natural Born Killers totally sucked. Oliver Stone pissed all over an awesome screenplay and threw in his psuedo artistic directing style to make a completely sub-par film.

  • homer simpson

    running is not a sport? what a stupid statement. isn't a running race the most blatant and most simple form of competitive sport? good list, dumb remark. if a marathon is not a sporting event then nothing is.

    • still running

      Glad to see his apology for the dumb running comment. Wow, a mistake. What is he human? Check out his web rant on this.

  • mstar

    why isn’t SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE on this list? that was really one of the least deserving movies to win the best picture! I mean, seriously? the only extraordinary acting i saw in it came from the kids. And the story was oh-so-boring after the second half(where the adult actors came in).

  • Jon

    RE-do the LIST, and put 'shakespear in love' as number one

  • shane

    The masterful Natural Born Killers? That is hilarious.

  • Dancing in the Sun

    ALL you film freaks need to get out more.

  • Carrie Sherman

    Great. Another 'Let's complain about the Oscars' article. The Oscars never usually get it spot on. Get over it. They've been around since the 20s so they're an institution here to stay. How any times do internet commentators have to complain before they sit up, take notice and say, 'You know what? THE INTERNET IS RIGHT!'.

    Also, 'I think' and 'I find' was said too many times in this. I agree with some points, yet disagree with others. This article is far too personal.

    • Sin A. Maa

      It's personal because it's his list.

  • Saint Cad

    I think the title of the list is wrong and that the author is referring to the most "undeserving" Best Pictures by comparing them to the other movies of the year and not the other Best Pictures. For example: Tom Jones and Oliver! should certainly be at the bottom of the list of 82 Best Pictures but within their own year, the competition was mediocre enough that they may have been deserving of the win.

  • jebus

    the Oscars are crap anyway

  • Rob

    It's a shame that the U.S.A generally makes awful movies …. full stop!!!
    Especially considering the money they waste on them.

    • oh as opposed to ? Alot of good movies come out of britain . But the bulk of movies come from US . The shame is not that the USA make crap movies . Alot of the movies they make are awesome – the shame is that the US film idustry makes 5 times more family disney-ass movies then they do regular cool films – because family films make so much more money than your regular kickass movies . Its just business and life i suppose . Where do all the "great films" you like come from ? imagine a world with out clint eastwood – Im 100% sure id be pretty bored with out american movies as they make the most blockbusters and also make up the bulk of the movies i watch . I guess i can pretty safely say the same is true for you (especially if you speak english) just use your barin and be selective , its easy if you try .

      • Jay

        Not terribly important but relevant: As far as movies are concerned, Clint Eastwood started in Italian productions. And the USA does make a LOT of awful movies. Much of what comes from the rest of the world is in a language I don't speak. They MIGHT be great. Much of the best horror comes from SE Asia right now. American movies seem to be devoted to the special-effects blockbusters which most older people find tiresome and sophomoric.

        Since we're always looking for list ideas, how about a list of the LOWEST-grossing American movies? I've heard that there was one the executives wanted to bury, but the contract said it had to be shown. So they ran it for six days in a little theater in Texas, and the total take on a 10-million-dollar movie was $20.

  • You can tell the person who made this list isn't very knowledgeable about films.

  • pardothepianoman

    As a musical theater enthusiast, Chicago was a FANTASTIC movie; a movie that single-handedly revived the movie musical (Dreamgirls, Hairspray, Nine, Rent, etc.) The only cast member whose singing chops weren't on par with his Broadway counterparts was Richard Gere, and even he did a commendable performance. John C. Reilly and Catherine Zeta Jones were flat out perfect. (And Jones started out on stage in the West End, and is currently on Broadway in "A Little Night Music". Why shouldn't she be cast?) I was frankly disappointed that Rob Marshall didn't win for best director.

    Rocky should have been on the list, clearly, but I prefer "Network" to "Taxi Driver". It is incredible how relevant that film has become in the last few years, since the reality TV boom.

    Forrest Gump is often debated, and I am fairly indifferent to the argument at this point. Any one of those nominees could have beat out winners from other years, and they have all stood the test of time.

    Thank you for giving a send-up to "Cinema Paradiso". It is one of my all-time favorites.

    Can you make a sequel for actor/actresses? Let me start with a suggestion: Al Pacino over Denzel for Scent of a woman/Malcolm X. That was a bad case of "lifetime achievement sympathy vote", which turned into a "oops I guess I should right the wrongs" vote, when Washington beat out Crowe for "A Beautiful Mind"

  • Chad

    1983 – Terms of Endearment

    Schlocky dreck. Yeah, I get the tear-jerker factor, but honestly "The Right Stuff" was a downright great film.

  • graz

    What?!?!? Clockwork Orange is WAY better than French Connection, which is one of the most boring movies I've ever saw, while CO is THE Masterpiece.
    Life is beautiful is deep, is awesome, Shakespeare in love is just BORING.
    The Sting is a good horror movie, the exorcist=splatter.

  • Mike

    I was furiur Hurt Locker won best picture and director. I mean, i can understand best picture, it was a pretty good movie. A little dull at points, and I felt like i never "got" it. The suspense was fantastic, but I just found it difficult to relate to the main character if he's such an asshole all the time. But for best director!!! are you kidding me? Say what ayou want about Avatar as a movie, but it being directed is one one of the finest achievements in cinema! he redefined 3d!! Seriously, Bigelow won for two reasons:
    1. She was a woman-not to be sexist, but a woman had never won best director before. She's a great director, and could have won it some day, but seriously, this was Cameron's year. Political garbage. I don't know why we bother with the Academy anymore.
    2. She was Cameron's ex-wife, and they wanted to send a message. Seriously, such political garbage.
    Hurt Locker was good, but it wasn't the second coming liek everyone made it out to be.
    Also, i Benjamin Button should have won over Slumdog. Slumdog was a cool movie, very intense and will probably be remembered, but Button left me with such emotion from its brilliant cinematography I was in awe. Slumdog seemed sort of gimmicky with its directing style.
    2.

  • phillyk

    Peter,
    You might not agree with Chariots of Fire winning the best film award but you are a joker for thinking running is not a sport. The act of running itself might not be a "sport" per se, but racing and track & field is the original & ultimate sport. Tell me that what Usain Bolt does isn't a sport. I would stick to commenting on films.

  • Ilka

    What about "Gladiator" and "Crash"? "Gladiator" over "Traffic", "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" AND "Erin Brockovich"? Really? And "Crash"? Do not misunderstand me. I do like "Crash". But it just did not deserve an Academy Award. Not over "Brokeback Mountain" and "Munich". And sorry for Scorsese's fans, but "The Departed" was not better than "Little Miss Sunshine". And I do love "Natural born killers".

  • Matthew

    This list is a perfect example of why NO ONE should do "Worst Best Picture" lists. First, this is an industry award. Why do people NOT IN THE FILM INDUSTRY think their opinion even a little bit matters? It does not. Furthermore, everyone will have a different opinion. As a writer, I was incensed a one-trick pony like The Crying Game won Best Screenplay over David Webb Peoples so-good-its-sick Unforgiven script. Then I see you talk about how "over-rated" Pulp Fiction is…compared to…wait for it…Natural Born Killers. One of the great movies of the 90s is overrated but Oliver Stone's WORST movie (and that's saying something considering The Doors) was "masterful?" Puh-leeze!

    And that is why these SHOULD be industry awards. Because for everyone that hated this film or loved that film is going to disagree; the times where an obvious choice loses to an obvious "over rated" film is actually fairly rare For instance: I've tried to watch The Godfather numerous times…and I agree with Peter on The Family Guy: in insists upon itself. HATE IT! Does that mean Chato's Land, Deliverance or Slaughterhouse-Five should have won because I like them better? Probably not. I liked Kansas City Bomber more than The Godfather!

  • Felixxx

    Hold on just a moment. I've only seen one comment regarding these two, but they are the greatest robberies in Academy award history:

    1968 – "Oliver" beats "2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY

    Who the fuck watches Oliver these days, who has ever watched it and quite honestly who cares!? But 2001 is almost unanimously lauded by top critics as one of the top 10 greatest films of all time.

    1977 – "Annie fucking Hall" takes out "STAR FUCKING WARS"!!!

    Annie Hall has to be one of the most inane, dull and overrated films of all time. And Star Wars went on to pretty much rule the world and start a bunch of religious movements and made every one of us fantasize about light saber battles and using the Force. Epic Oscar fail.

  • sam simpson

    Forrest Gump and the Departed are two of my favorites, but I too thought the English Patient sucked. And where is No Country for Old Men?

  • sdfcrgvhb

    why forest gump. you dun goofed

  • In my opinion Chicago was a quality film. Much better than other best picture winners such as Titanic and Slumdog Millionaire. In fact Titanic is just a terrible movie with cool effects cause of its huge budget.

  • Tkat

    How on earth can you call Natural Born Killers "masterful?" It was a groan-inducingly-awful movie!

  • Atli

    My pick is "No Country for Old Men". A more overrated film eludes my memory. Hardly anything happens other than people gasping in delight over Javier Bardem's performance (which was that of a character with no depth). No depth, no pace, no nothing. Dreadful waste of time.

  • JImmy Y

    I agree with all o these except forrest gump, and the departed. The english paitient has it's moments but fargo def should have beaten it. as for chicago how it won over the hours, or how adaptation didn't even recieve a best pic nod is beyond me!! for shame

    • JImmy Y

      also I love driving miss daisy so im glad that one!

  • langawx

    Correct me if im wrong “The Departed” is an adaptation of an original taiwanese movie of the same title. And comparing the two the original is way better (for me).

  • trevor

    i pretty much agree exactly with jimmy y, and to langawx, the departed was a remake of infernal affairs, a chinese film from 2002, the taiwanese film had a different plot.

    great list though jfrater, you do know your movies.

  • brett

    You thought "A Beautiful mind" wasn't a good movie, your list is invalid.

  • xxx

    I cannot agree with English Patient being in this list. And you desperately wanting to include Titanic in a bad-movie-list sounds too typical

  • Duke

    The Departed!!!!??? Really? over Crash? Really? that was a masterpiece.

  • Jason T

    Wait you don't list "Crash"? Are you serious? 2005, a weak year for film, had the best modern masterpiece of the year- "Brokeback Mountain"- lose to a cliche and obnoxious little movie about racism, due to homophobia. And considering "Brokeback Mountain" had won nearly every precursor in the book made it a travesty.

    But what's worse, you go on to list "The Departed" as one of the worst? No fucking way. Sorry, but it was one of the coolest films of 2006. What was going to win instead? "Little Miss Sunshine"? Please. "The Queen"? That snoozefest? Don't tell me you were rooting for "Babel". Just because it wasn't "GoodFellas" you feel it wasn't deserving. Most would beg to differ.

    Where's "Rain Man", or "Rocky", or "An American in Paris"? Those are way more deserving then "Forrest Gump", "Chicago" and "The English Patient"- all worthy winners in my eyes. And you always go on about 'well, I actually like this movie but…' but WHAT? Worst means what it says- Worst. If you like it, it shouldn't be on here.

  • Name

    Seriously, 'Titanic' isn't top of this list? Why?

  • akelz7

    10: #1
    9: whatever IDC
    8: DUH DUH DUH DUH DUH DUH!!!! DUH DUH DUH DUH DUH =)
    7: you make a good point for dissing my 3rd favorite movie ever. /respect.
    6: IDC
    5: ^^^
    4: ^^^
    3:^^^
    2: ^^^
    1:^^^

  • pappymcslappy75

    yo this list blows

  • Sub_v.

    I disagree 100% with Forrest Gump. Not one of those other films mentioned had the epic, multi-dimensional thematic subtext Forrest Gump had. Shawshank Redemption comes closest to beating it out. But if you honestly think Forrest Gump didn't deserve best picture that year, you know nothing of film. Period.

    And if you honestly truly believe Natural Born Killers was a better movie than Forrest Gump, you're an easily amused schmuck. NBK had the potential to be an amazing film, and in certain ways it was, but Oliver Stone doesn't have a subtle bone in his body.

    • Sub_v.

      Alright, Quiz Show too. Genius film

  • disappointed

    this was a terribly uninteresting list

  • dccorona

    What about Annie Hall beating Star Wars?

    Woody Allen is without a doubt the most overrated PERSON (not just director, person in general) in the history of hollywood.

  • guigby

    I was furious to see forrest gump on this list as it's one of my favourite movies. However, I read your reasons and I must say you're quite right.. Shawshank Redemption edges forrest gump in my faves

  • dtodorojo

    I could yammer on and on and on about your post striking a familiar nerve, but since you handily revealed that the emperor as appeared several times in public, wearing no clothes, I'll do you the honor of keeping it brief.

    You were spot on. The Departed was an embarrassing make-up call for the slight in 1990, and an obvious and unforgivable one at that. And "The English Patient"? Both "Fargo" and "Slingblade" have became valuable hunks of quotable popular culture, whereas no one has ever, EVER quoted "The English Patient." Not even by accident.

    But what about 1998, bro? "Shakespeare In Love" over "Affliction," "The Thin Red Line," Peter Weir's "The Truman Show," Vincent Gallo's masterpiece "Buffalo '66," Wes Anderson's "Rushmore, and Aronofsky's "Pi"? What the hell happened in '96? Even the Coen brothers' "The Big Lebowski" has become far more iconic than most of the nominees put together. Christ, everyone knows that "Shakespeare In Love" is little more than a film reel with shit smeared on it. It's easily in my top three worst. But what the hell does the Academy know anyway?

    Now I'm not saying I don't agree with your other picks. But if you're hanging around 1996 to stick it to the thoroughly forgettable "The English Patient," you're certainly within striking range of that gawd awful Shakespeare crap.

  • Sam

    You are beyond stupid. Please do not share your opinion anymore. You obviously oversimplify everything and watch movies like a 6 year old does.

    • Name

      geez whats your problem ?

  • PamelaRose

    I think everyone is getting their knickers in a twist over the Oscar choices when it seems clear the choices over the years aren't really about what's truly 'Great' but more about appeasing both private and public sentiment for 'hard-hitting' truths, historical 'fictions', political temperament, schmaltz and/or Who's-Hot-and-Who's-Not. Now and then a classic gets through, but I'd say, overall, narrow-sightedness is a big part of the determining factor.

  • V123

    The Departed was mediocre at best.

  • chris

    you are correct in most of your analysis. however, english patient should be higher on this list, first because it was terrible, and second because it was up against 2 of the best movies in the last 30 years in sling blade and fargo.

  • Clarita

    I liked your list…until #1. You lose all credibility with it. Okay, if you insist on not liking “Chicago,” I can’t stop you. But to actually think it’s a worst Best Picture choice than the other 9 — as well as some others you didn’t include, or some of the ones you mentioned in your intro. Well, how do I put this? You’re just wrong. wrong wrong wrong. I’m guessing you are an occasional at most consumer of musicals, and non-musical fans are bad judges of musicals. Any musicals, because they come in with a huge prejudice. I enjoy musicals on both stage and screen and have had enough conversations with people who don’t like musicals to know this to be true.

  • LeslieJ955

    I agree with most of the list but not Gigi! I love musicals and I love this one. It has great acting, humor, songs and is a joy to watch!

  • John

    Hmm… Chariots of Fire was an excellent film in my opinion. The fact that some might consider it long isn’t really a problem with the film so much as a problem with the Humming Bird audience that television has bred. I enjoy it thoroughly when a director or writer disregards those with attention deficit disorder and creates a film or book that drags its feet a little bit. Thank god this audience wasn’t around Gone With the Wind was filmed or Moby Dick was written.

  • iseestupidpeople

    Apparently, those who hate motion pictures come out of their caves this time of year to trash best picture winners…if you don’t like movies or don’t have the attention span of a carrot, stick to cartoons!

  • JEFFY

    All but The Departed i agree with

  • Lala

    Not being a troll here but IMHO if you did not live during the time the movie was made your opinion about that movie is null and void.

    Our lives and culture affect so much of what goes into and comes out of a film. Movies like “how green was my valley” might have touched on something like the depression that we really have no concept of. You can’t judge them based on technical merit, acting, etc… Alone.
    What were the people whtching it dealing with. How did it make them feel?

    Jus sayin….
    Thanks
    :-)

  • sigh

    7 of these film absolutely deserve their spot a best picture. you need to to study film a little more.

  • Kyle

    How about Titanic… the most overrated film ever. It beat out L.A. Confidential(which should have won) while Boogie Nights wasn’t even nominated.

    Oh, and The Departed deserved it over the garbage that it went up against it, but both Pan’s Labrynth and Children of Men are better films while in 1996 you neglected to mention Trainspotting.

  • Terra wood

    Bull. Driving Miss Daisy is a good film.

  • count lou

    well done. thoroughly enjoyed reading your prose.

  • Shawshank Redemption is IMDB’s highest rated film, obviously the “Academy” missed the boat on that one.

  • Coocoo Cachoo

    What kind of Oscar loving idiot would forget the greatest show on earth beating singin’ in the rain

  • Name

    the disney remake of .80 days was much better i couldn’t even make it thru the first 5 minutes of the original PE YU!!!

  • Name

    the academy almost never makes the right choice when i herd that toy story 3 DIDN’T win best picture i just wanted to kill those fu!#%^*%$#@!**&^$^$#[email protected]@#[email protected]$$%%%!*@&#^$%%!^&*^#@!##*% idiots!!

  • Name

    3 words THE KINGS SPEECH

  • Hannah

    Chicago is one of my favourite films of all time. Definitely doesn’t deserve to be #1 on this list. Agree with forrest gump though, shawshank is an amazing movie!

  • Jessica

    Um, hurt locker was awsome, I don’t know what you’re smoking. I hate lists like this because everyone has their opinion, so who are YOU to decide what movies didn’t deservive an oscar?

  • HLAN

    Some I don’t agree with (i.e Forest Gump and The English Patient, I feel that they where the better films of that year.)
    But! Your number 1 spot is dead on! Gangs of New York should have won!
    Very good list.
    Note: If Avatar would have won over the Hurt Locker then it should (could) have been the number one spot instead. :)

  • Name

    Running isn’t a sport? what?

  • What about Shakespeare in Love???????? That film had no sho for best picture against Saving Private Ryan and somehow it won. WTF???????????????????

  • Dances with Wolves over Goodfellas was utter nonsense

  • Name

    I loved Forrest gump and it purposely put him next to so many famous people and give him an unreal amount of good fortune to show that even though he was slow he remained true and uncorrupted while all his friends did drugs or became alcholics

  • Kim

    Couldn’t disagree more with some of these. I love Titanic, Chicago and Gigi. LOVE THEM. Forrest Gump I can take it or leave it. I love these films, and the only two I knew that had won best picture were Chicago and Titanic. Now I haven’t seen the stage Chicago, but I love the film. I also thought that John C. Reiley did a good job with the song. I really enjoyed that it wasn’t stupid like his other films. I’m glad this is just your opinion and not truth, because I thought these films were great! I own them all and enjoy them very much!

  • Kerri

    I’m going to have to strongly disagree with your inclusion of “The Departed” on this list, sir. I love that movie and I think it deserved to win Best Picture.
    However, I might be slightly biased being an Irish Bostonian myself.

    BTW, I can’t believe they finally caught Whitey Bulger! Lol, oh well, he had a good run.

  • Jay

    I would also like to mention Crash winning over Brokeback Mountain.

  • ozzydagreat

    While i agree that chariots of fire is a boring movie, i must disagree with your opinion on running. it may be boring to watch, but running is indeed a sport. the amount of physical training, dieting, and downright discipline that runners have to put into it, makes it, not only a sport, but a sport on par with football and basketball.

  • Cho

    If I were you, I would drop Forrest Gump, which I think either that or The Shawshank deserved it. (one of the toughest years for the Academy i bet besides 1976) and i would place Shakespeare in Love… Saving Private Ryan was robbed i think and even the media agreed..

  • P5ychoRaz

    Sex in a tub? That doesn’t work!

  • Brant

    OK, just so you know, I have seen every film nominated for, and every film that won the Oscar for best picture. I cannot say I loved every film that won, but I have only ever argued against one win, that of Tom Jones.
    Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but what frustrates me is that when hundreds of opinions come together and one film emerges victor, everone whose opinion was diferent complains that the winner is just plain wrong. Hurt Locker not on your top 15 for the year? Fine. But it was for a majoity of members of an academy devoted to awarding motion picture art and science.
    With that in mind, no one has any right to diss Titanics win. The effort, time, energy, and heart put forth by the filmmakers is on the level of those who create masterpieces in sculpture, paintings, and scientific breakthroughs.
    I can allow someone with no recollection or comprehention of bohemian poetic styles of love to call Titanic “sappy” or roll their eyes at it. That’s fine. I remember being twitterpated and I remember appreciating love stories and sappy romantic music because of it. But I cannot allow anyone the think that Titanic does not deserve the highest award for motion picture ART AND SCIENCE when the entire film is saturated by some of the hardest work, the steadiest of hands, and a masterful vision that has only graced the silver screen a few dozen times. No, it’s not my favourite, in fact, it’s not on my top 50 favourite list, but it is more deserving of the Oscar for best picture that most of them. Watch it again. Turn your scenses back on! Pay attention. See it. Hear it. Feel it. The film is a prime example of Oscar worthiness.

  • UnDeadPopcorn

    the big problem I see with this list: its opinion based, YOU wouldndt give the best-picture academy award to certain movies. I for example cant allready agree with your introduction “Hurt Locker” Desverd ts Oscar especialy over other nominee “avatar” titanic hardly deserved any and so on and so on. although i can agree with you that there are a lot of times where the awrd went to the worng movie (same goes for other categories).
    ps excuse my grammar, englsich is not my first language
    pps. cant agree with you on forrest gump, just sayin’ (but again perosnal opinion)

  • Erin

    Soory but I only like 2 CHICAGO [2002] 2 IS GIGI [1958] BUT I do like one of these mini pictures here. I just LOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOVE!!!! DOES IT LOOK WILD AND DANGEROUS?

  • Frankie

    This is all very subjective and purely based on personal taste. I think it’s pretty difficult to make a list like this, because it can never be universal. I especially disagree with your choice of Chicago. That was a superb movie. And who says a Best Picture can’t be entertaining?

    And you actually liked the broadway show better than the movie? God. I saw it a couple of years ago and it was AWFUL. This is one case where the movie was just LEAGUES ahead of the show on which it was based. But that’s my personal opinion. And if I had made this list, Chicago would not be on it.

  • Film

    Chicago is “geared to the “Glee” demographic” yet Glee was released a decade later and the the Glee demographic never would have existed if Chicago had not helped create a resurgence of musicals for the 2000s. Another lame, thoughtless Listverse list.

    The more you know.

  • EchoMe13

    I disagree strongly with at least 50% of this list! Forrest Gump, Chicago, The English Patient and Driving Miss Daisy are all AMAZING examples of cinematic achievement. Also, the fact that you wanted to put Titanic on the list is just ridiculous!

  • Alicia

    You have the nerve to almost add Titanic. If that’s not a great film, then what is?

  • willem

    forrest gump is the best and completely deserved it

  • Christopher Bauer

    How could you forget DeMille’s “The Greatest Show on Earth,” which, in every aspect from direction to writing to acting was painfully awful without a single redeeming moment.

    I found Forrest Gump to be morally objectionable. If one is against the war, one dies of AIDS. God favors Forrest by causing a storm that somehow gets him an enormous shrimp harvest – it doesn’t seem to care about the other fishermen whose lives are ruined. Of course, if one wants to get one’s boy through school, all that one has to do is prostitute oneself- hey, she was only a Southern woman, right?

  • I can’t believe Gladiator wasn’t on this list.

  • Alexander_Fred

    Honestly, I feel you don’t have any idea what you’re talking about. When creating a list such as this, you do not analyze a film in terms of how well it has aged or is it now a classic, you have to analyze the time period. For instance, you look at How Green was My Valley which won over Citizen Kane. Analyzing the historical situation, we understand why Citizen Kane lost, but we still see that at that time, it was known to be the greater film. So in this instance, you are correct. Why this is not number 1, well that’s a problem on your list. Second, you also seem to choose films out of pure enjoyment, rather than cinematic majesty. You must take into account directing, acting, technical aspects, screen writing, editing, the film score, and so much more to determine the best picture of the year. If a certain film reigns greater overall in these categories then it becomes best picture (or at least it should). Dancing With Wolves is better directed than Good Fellas with no inconsistencies. Both are great films and Good Fellas may be better, TODAY. But Dancing With Wolves is made better, so at least I’m happy your enjoyment factor didn’t place that on the list, though contemplating it proves your idiocy once more. Third, placing Forrest Gump on here honestly invalidates your entire list because Forrest Gump is one of the most cleverly written, well directed, well acted pieces of cinema in the history of cinema. And simply because you don’t like it doesn’t change that fact. Fourth, you then you forget to put on Crash. Brokeback Mountain won more best picture awards than Schindler’s List and Titanic combined. But you probably enjoyed Crash a little more, correct? Fifth, there is no way to know if a film is an instant classic, only time will tell if a film becomes a classic. I thought Slum Dog Millionaire was an instant classic, but it seems to have faded over the past few years. That doesn’t make it a less well built film. In the end, 1,500 people choose these films and you one man tries to invalidate it all. Sure they messed up a couple of times (Crash and How Green Was My Valley) and there are actors and actresses, directors and screenwriters who may not deserve their award, but in the end, they’re paid to this decision. I wouldn’t want them doing my job and so I won’t for one minute try to do their’s unless there is great agreement. Reading these post, I see little agreement with your list.

  • Muertelicious

    Pulp Fiction was one of the most influential movies of all time. It should have won. How many recent Academy Award winning film actually created a new cinematic sub-genre?

  • RJ

    I stopped reading the rest when I read this line: “but, like golf and billiards, running is not a sport”. You’re not credible enough. Sorry :)

  • jay

    this is the only time i do not think you know what you are talking about at all

  • Paul

    Forrest Gump is my favourite movie of all-time!

  • Bile

    That is an insult to giant self righteous turds.

  • Benson

    Fuck you, you worthless piece of shit. Chicago sucks donkey anus.

    And most of the movies you listed are extraordinary.

    • atpmolloy

      I am trying to think what words of five letters were left out by this post. Any Clues?

  • Sardondi

    I was re-reading this list and got a wonderful laugh out of this line about Driving Miss Daisy, the Best Picture winner for 1989: “This was a year where voters wanted to feel good about themselves by selecting a movie that (haphazardly) shows the evils of racism.”

    How true. An insightful comment about mainstream America’s 1989 obsession with and guilt over its past racism; and its irrational reaction to its inability to deal honestly with it.

    What brings a chuckle today is how sharply and even more broadly relevant the comment remains. Because 20 years later that same irrational attitude about race and the unchanged inability to deal honestly with it led something over half of American voters to elect an incontrovertibly unqualified President solely because he was black. Americans voted for a man for no other reason than they wanted to claim they had a “post-racial attitude.”

    One can only hope the country can survive such a foolish, self-destructive attitude to learn from our mistake.

  • ericvg16

    I agree with many on this list, but not quite all. I think they got “Chicago” right, and I also think they got “Chariots of Fire” right.

    Also, I think there were two reasons why Reds lost: it was a “pro-Communist” movie during the Reagan years, and, as Estelle Parsons put it, “the Academy hates Warren Beatty.” I mean, Beatty has won only once in 14 nominations. Not a good track record.

  • RJ

    DEPARTED IS A MASTERPIECE. ABSOLUTELY DESERVED THE BEST PICTURE AWARD. PERIOD.

  • Jaggers

    The idea of “DRIVING MISS DAISY” winning Best Picture of 1989 becomes even more absurd when you consider the fact that Spike Lee’s DO THE RIGHT THING also came out that year, and had much more passionate, intelligent things to say about race relations in America than DRIVING MISS DAISY.

  • abeLdRei

    hey! Forrest Gump was a great movie.

  • milly

    hi number eight chariots of fire you said running is not a sport.guess what? it is a sport and a very common sport as well. also, the titanic and forrest gump rock so stop hating on them.

  • atpmolloy

    Lists are purely opinion so should get respected as such, would like to add personal opinion myself on a couple of cases

    Agree totally with the strong objections to Shakespeare in love, the result of a fortune in concentrated, last minute promotion to the small target audience that is the academy membership. IT BEAT Private Ryan !!!!!!!

    Braveheart was a good film but I have to object to on the grounds of the totally, absolutely, BS history it portrayed. Some variance is acceptable in a historical film but this was way beyond that, even for the nutter Gibson.

  • Patrick

    Shakespeare in Love over Saving Private Ryan was a disgrace

  • Silly Writer

    Terrible, this site needs a button that eliminates everything on my personal viewing list from authors of my choosing. Dumb list bro.

  • Nikisright

    I agree that “Das Boot” should have won, but… Citizen Kane, On Golden Pond, Cinema Paradiso? No, I think not. And, I loved “The English Patient.”

  • Happygirl

    I liked driving miss daisy. it was about the relationship between her and Morgan freeman and the fact she was pretty unaware of racism and how he opened her eyes. enjoyed but have always had a soft spot for it. But to put Gangs Of new york over Chicago is just silly. gangs of new york was absolutely terrible hated it! But agree with English patient and Titanic they were both boring and awful

  • Dylan Walters

    I agree with all the following movies except Forrest Gump. The reasons for many of the films for why they should not have won are great explanations. However, I am willing to fight to the death on why you believe Forrest Gump should not have won. I agree that there are some elements to the film that make it weak, in a sense, but overall it is one of the 90s classic films. If you consider the time in which it was made and the era of films that it surrounds, Forrest Gump is truly one of the best films of the 90s. Yet, if you are to look at it nowadays, I would agree with your statements about why it should not have won in the first place.

  • Ceara

    I’m appalled that any movie made in the same year as Citizen Kane was deemed better than it. Citizen Kane is my absolute favorite movie, and I’m only 20 years old. Anyone who thought any movie made that year was better than the Orson Welles masterpiece needs to have their head examined. It’s called “The Greatest Movie of all Time” for a reason.

  • Stef Jam

    The film that should have won in 89 was Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing, without a doubt. The fact that the film didn’t even get nominated, is one of the biggest head scratchers of recent times.

  • Fargo over The English Patient, Touch of Evil over Gigi, Raiders of the Lost Ark over Chariots of Fire, Shawshank Redemption over Forrest Gump, Letters from Iwo Jima over The Departed, I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang over Cavalcade and The Searchers over Around the World in 80 Days.

  • Yamaha Naninginyama

    I know this is going way back [1929-ish], but I think one of the worst is The Broadway Melody. The entire movie is “I love you, I hate you” dialogue and the actresses flirting with the camera [poorly].

    I did enjoy many of the early movies, though, like Wings and All Quiet on the Western Front.

  • joshuawright1988

    Whoa, whoa, whoa. What? Chicago really beat out Gangs Of New York for “best picture”? Holy hell man. That’s insane. Alex, the top OP on this topic, you’re a tool. Braveheart had some amazing scenes. That was Mel Gibson’s finest work before going off the deep end. The ending of his torture and execution were brilliantly screened out. Rocky was also exceptional for a first time Stallone up to bat at directing. Again, another American Classic. Put it to you this way, I haven’t seen any lame “It’s chicago weekend marathon!” on AMC over the past decade or so. It’s usually been Rocky or Braveheart getting heavy play time. And yes, I have seen Chicago. And yes, it was pretty cool. But it had no business being the “best picture”. I don’t care how nice Catherine Zeta-Jones’ ass looks good in a tu-tu. Gangs of New York was awesome! And it John C. Reily was in both of them!

  • Iron_Maiden

    wow

  • Dave

    I can say the same for your selections. Rocky and Midnight Cowboy are not only great films but important ones. Chicago is simply horrible.