I’ve already told you about my plans for the first round of the All-Time Film Awards (and I’ll have more pieces in regards to that soon enough), but I’ve decided to add another piece, one which will be updated more regularly than the ATFAs (which I will probably update annually or biannually) and my Top 100 (which will probably be updated annually).
Tuesday, 8/18 – Cavalcade may be the most obscure Best Picture winner of all time, but at least I can check it off my own list. My thoughts ended up taking up so much space I just decided to share them as a separate review, but to sum up, it’s not too great; it’s stagy, ham-handed, and just has very little to offer a modern audience. It’s not a bad film, and totally watchable if you’re an Oscar completist, but that’s about the only reason you’d have to watch the damned thing. 59/100
Mister Buddwing is one of those films I knew about long before I ever saw it. I forget exactly how–I think I saw a vintage promotional film on TCM–but I also knew it had a couple of Oscar nominations, for its sets and costumes. Not because the sets and costumes were so memorable, mind you, but because it came out in the final year of the B&W/Color split for Art Direction, Cinematography, and Costume Design at the Oscars, and suitable nominees were scarce.
Wanting to finally see the film for myself, I checked it out of the library, and was not shocked to discover that it was no lost masterpiece, but an odd film with a few strong features that mostly earns its obscurity.
Is there a more obscure Best Picture winner than Cavalcade? It was the last winner to get a solo DVD release, it has less than 3,000 user votes on the IMDb (the fewest of any winner), and when is it ever mentioned, outside of Best Picture lists? To be fair, most of the early winners save All Quiet on the Western Front are scarcely mentioned, but Cavalcade is almost conspicuously forgotten.
And there’s a reason for that: it’s not very good. I don’t know if it’s the worst film ever to win–there are still quite a few winners I’ve never seen–but it may have the least of any winner to offer a modern audience.
Owing to technical issues, this week’s Movie Journal will not be published until Tuesday. Hopefully the updates to my Award Predictions v. 1.5 will be ready tomorrow, and sometime this week the first installment of my catch-up reviews for the first part of 2015 will go up. I’m just not positive when.
Apologies for any inconvenience.
I’m thinking I’ll do a full round of predictions in early November, when the state of the season is really starting to take shape, but here, based on what I’ve seen to date, advance word, and trailers, are some rough guesses at what I’ll drop on you come February:
- Arabian Nights
- Hard to Be a God
- The Hateful Eight
- The Lobster
- Mad Max: Fury Road
- A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence
- The Revenant