Ghosts of Oscars Past: How Do the Last 10 Best Picture Winners Hold Up?

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We’re in the thick of awards season now, when the top contenders in each race are vying for frontrunner status as we move closer to the Oscar nominations announcement.  However, while everyone is focused on the race at hand, we thought we’d take a look at the last decade of Best Picture winners to see if they’ve stood the test of time.  Is the “best” film of 2005 still considered one of the best films of the past ten years?  Hit the jump as we take a trip down memory lane for this special edition of Oscar Beat, Ghosts of Oscars Past.

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The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King – 2003

Major Competition: Mystic River, Lost in Translation

Does It Hold Up?: Yes.  The capper in Peter Jackson’s excellent Lord of the Rings trilogy enjoyed a clean sweep at the Oscars, winning all 11 categories in which it was nominated.  While many view the Best Picture win as a win for the whole trilogy (it is one complete story, after all), it was still a warranted trophy, and the film and its companions are sure to go down as one of the great adaptations in cinematic history.

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Million Dollar Baby – 2004

Major Competition: Sideways

Does It Hold Up?: Kind of.  Director Clint Eastwood was coming off some of his best reviews in years for 2003’s Mystic River so he had a lot of momentum coming into Million Dollar Baby.  The film’s emotional story struck a chord with Academy voters to the tune of awards for Best Picture, Director, Actress, and Supporting Actor, but it’s not necessarily heralded as a classic just yet.  Controversy erupted over the pic’s mid-film twist, and some accused Eastwood of verging on saccharine, but it’s not as lambasted as some of the filmmaker’s subsequent works (ahem, J. Edgar).

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Crash – 2005

Major Competition: Brokeback Mountain

Does It Hold Up?: No. 2005 has gone down as one of the most controversial years in Academy history as they had a chance to award the heavy favorite Brokeback Mountain, a homosexual love story, and instead surprised many by handing the Best Picture trophy to the interconnected, thematically empty Crash.  Writer/director Paul Haggis’ heat from Million Dollar Baby could have been a factor as well as the Academy’s lack of comfort with the homosexuality in Brokeback Mountain, but whatever the case you’d be hard pressed to find someone who names Crash as one of the best films of the past decade.  In fact, Film Comment named it the worst film ever to win Best Picture.

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The Departed – 2006

Major Competition: Little Miss Sunshine

Does It Hold Up?: Yes.  After years of being neglected an Oscar for work ranging from Taxi Driver to Goodfellas to seemingly Academy-friendly fare like Gangs of New York and The Aviator, Martin Scorsese finally got his statue for what he intended to be a purely commercial picture.  Though it’s still a bit too early to tell whether The Departed will sit in the upper echelon of Scorsese’s filmography, the film remains as brutal, funny (the Alec Baldwin/Mark Wahlberg banter is gold), and entertaining today as it was seven years ago.

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No Country for Old Men – 2007

Major Competition: There Will Be Blood

Does It Hold Up?: Hell yes.  Arguably the first big “future classic” on this list, Joel and Ethan Coen tried something completely different for their 2007 outing, and the result was a rich, darkly complex drama.  No Country stands as one of the Coen Brothers’ best in a filmography filled with gems, and it has aged remarkably well in the ensuing years.  The film faced stiff competition in the Best Picture category by way of Paul Thomas Anderson’s excellent There Will Be Blood, but the win for No Country was a statement from the Academy itself: it was awarding its highest honor to a difficult and very, very dark film. Unfortunately that realm of thinking didn’t take root, as they turned towards more fluffy, sentimental films in subsequent years.

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  • scheebles

    Though I applaud the Academy for honoring No Country over other contenders, it was the more commercial choice over There Will Be Blood, which was a far more difficult, confounding, and dark picture. Years from now, the majority of filmgoers will still love No Country, while There Will Be Blood will be the one studied in film schools.

    • RIC

      Completely agree. I was vying heavily for TWBB to win. It’s still one of my favorites in recent memory and is brought up in many conversations me and my friends have.

      • Sten

        Same with Paul Thomas Anderson’s other masterpiece: Magnolia was snubbed back in 1999, as were Fight Club, Eyes Wide Shut and The Matrix. American Beauty is a great movie, but compared to the other four… and that’s just 1999.

    • Agent777

      No Country is as dark as a film gets. There Will Be Blood was good, but the darkness was funnier as DDL character was more cartoonish than any character in NCFOM, Think of the scene where Javier Bardam is strangling that cop, the look on his face is terrifying! Furthermore, in a age of awful, repetitive film scores, NCFOM was silent, bizarrely refreshing, and adds a elements that profoundly disturbing. I love PT Anderson, and his films go to dark places, but I don’t think they are dark films. No one got killed with bowling balls in NCFOM, it was that awful cow-killing device.

      Also TWBB is based on an Upton Sinclair book, so it calling out the ruthlessness of American industry, NCFOM is based on a Cormac McCarthy book who theme is about the darkness of humanity.

      Neither film is the best that there directors done, BUT, both films are immensely important chapters in the the careers of 2 (well, 3) directors who will both be discussed in film schools, and have helped elevate a period of mediocre filmaking.

      • Matt

        While I like that you raised one above the other without shitting on the other, I think its a bit funny to say there are no cartoonish characters in NCFOM. Bardem’s villain is completely ridiculous. I say that loving the role, performance, etc but his villainy is crosses a line of believability.

        I absolutely believe DDL’s performance will be studied to kingdom come. The only cartoonish moment is when he is drunk out of his mind and falling to earth after spiraling down for years.

        The nuance is there in every scene with his son, the love and the lack of love. My favorite touch by Anderson is the silent scene at the end after he tells his son to fuck off, and Anderson cuts to a moment previously unseen where they are palling around with the crew. It was genuine affection.

        The moment in the church where he’s simultaneously accepting “the blood” and fighting it, when he bursts and his voice falters on “boy” when he says, “I’ve abandoned my boy”. I’ve never been so blown away by anything.

        While I agree that There Will Be Blood did not deserve to win, I think its because Anderson ultimately decided he wanted to avoid making a strong enough statement. Its DDL’s film, for all the quality cinematography and an excellent score. Its the way that he cuts through the frame that makes it memorable.

        So yes, maybe I didn’t give the initial impression I agree that NCFOM is a better film. It is. But not for this concept of “cartoonish” performances.

      • The Flobbit

        TWBB is the better film in my opinion. It was almost Kubrickian in it’s epicness, and Dano and Day-Lewis’s performances (particularly Dano’s “exorcism” scene, “I’ve abandoned my child”, and Day-Lewis’s speech to his fake brother — “I see the worst in people”) were nothing short of electrifying. Absolutely stunning. I was in shock for days.

      • Gerard Kennelly

        DDL was doing a john Huston rip off

    • Mixed Race rich kid NYC

      Completely disagree
      No country for old men will be studied frame by frame in film school
      While there will be blood will be mentioned as an example of how to not write a movie full of one dimensional characters with a cop out and brutally unfulfilling ending

      • Man pippy

        No country is the better film, but not as deep as Blood.

      • Gerard Kennelly

        david lynch + hitchcock = NCFOM

    • Batt Damon

      There WIll Be Blood was boring as fuck. I doubt most of the Academy could stay awake for the whole thing.

  • Steeeve

    Shorter Chitwood: Comedies shouldn’t win best picture, dammit!

    • Sten

      Haha, spot on, I guess…

      Oscar-winning comedies, that I still remember: … … … did Back to the Future win something? Or… Dr. Strangelove? Life of Brian? Amelie? The Big Lebowski? Any Wes Anderson movie? Woody Allen won Best Picture once, didn’t he?

  • George

    I totally agree about Crash, such an overrated movie, and movies with a semi-similar structure (ala Traffic, Amores Perros, and 21 Grams) are much better films

    • Matt

      Crash is the most manipulative film to be accepted by critics in years. But I think it speaks to the weak competitors more than anything else.

      • Person

        Munich wasn’t weak, definitely deserved Picture, Director, Adapted Screenplay, and Editing that year. Brokeback is fine but Munich hit harder and was a bit more topical, at least for me. Overlooked gem, people tend to forget Munich these days. It’s still not even out on Blu-ray.

      • Gerard Kennelly

        reasons i hate the Oscars,,
        crash instead of brokeback
        penn instead of rourke (the wrestler)
        hanks instead of Thewlis (naked)
        day lewis instead of phoenix (the master)

    • Gerard Kennelly

      21 grams is the movie that woke me up
      made me search out anti Hollywood stuff

  • Agent777

    Great list. Though the Artist will probably hold up better than the Hurt Locker. For how much people complain about the Oscars, I really like about a third of these movies, and that’s actually pretty good.

    • Matt

      While I understand why The Artist won, I will never understand the adulation. Its a forgettable film. While reverence is lauded in the now, no one is going to watch The Artist in ten years or twenty and on and on. They’ll watch the movies that inspired it. And I think that usually says it all about a movie. Can you eclipse what you were inspired by? Can you improve it? Can you offer a new insight? Singin in the Rain seems a more thoughtful portrait on the end of that era than The Artist.

    • The Flobbit

      The Artist is a crap film.

      • Bill

        Why? No killer robots?

      • The Flobbit

        It was overrated by nostalgic critics, while in reality it was a cute, fluffy Hollywood-supreme flick lacking any sort of weight, nuance, or subtlety. Jean Dujardin’s sappy performance should not have won over Brad Pitt or Gary Oldman’s far more experienced, subtle, and compelling performances. Michael Hazanavicius did not deserve either Oscar win. This film will be forgotten soon, along with Affleck’s Argo.

  • Luis

    I can’t believe “The Descendants” was “The Artist”‘s other big contender. “The Help” and “War Horse”, although much more commertial, are way better movies than “The Descendants.”

    Same thing with 2009′s “Up in the Air” considered as “The Hurt Locker”‘s great competition.

    George Clooney dramas are highly overrated in my opinion. Great acting doesn’t mean the movie as a whole is remarcable.

    • Josh Kaye

      I personally believed that if any film would have given The Artist competition it would have been Hugo. I remember watching the Oscars that night and Hugo was winning a lot of the early awards. I don’t remember when things began falling in the way of The Artist but once they won a big award it seemed everything went their way.

  • Sten

    2009: “The Dark Knight” was not even nominated for Best Picture. And I guess it’ll be a long time until a Superhero movie will ever be considered as Oscar-worthy again…

    The rest is spot on. Would be nice to see the same for all the Oscar seasons as part of a series. Cool article!

    • George

      The main reason why they changed it to 10 films.. if only they did that the year before, The Dark Knight might’ve gotten the recognition it deserves. Best superhero movie we’ll see for quite some time I’m sure

      • JK1193

        If they had 10 Best Picture nominees, a lot more hits and classics would have been major threats, 2008 would have had Dark Knight and WALL•E included:
        2003: Cold Mountain, Finding Nemo, Last Smaurai
        2004: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, The Incredibles, Spider-Man 2
        2005: Batman Begins, King Kong, Sin City, Walk the Line
        2006: Casino Royale, Children of Men, Dreamgirls, Pan’s Labyrinth, The Prestige
        2007: American Gangster, The Bourne Ultimatum, Sweeney Todd, Zodiac

      • Matt

        I think most of those films were correctly not nominated and prove exactly why expanding to 10 films doesn’t necessarily benefit studio pics. I think Amour and Beasts of the Southern Wild last year were two who would’ve been overlooked otherwise. Again, this year I think a movie like Her or Blue Is the Warmest Color will pick up nods due to the field expansion.

      • EBFan

        I don’t know about that. Children of Men and Pan’s Labyrinth could have easily taken the spots taken by Letters From Iwo Jima and The Queen.

      • Sten

        Adding my favourite film year ever:
        1999: Fight Club, Amelie, The Matrix, Eyes Wide Shut and Magnolia

        What a grandiose end of the Century filmwise!

      • Liam Pisan

        I disagree with 2004 (although I do absolutely love the Incredibles) and Finding Nemo, but otherwise that is a solid list. It especially makes me remember how awesome 2005 and 2006 were, with a third of my fifteen favourite movies coming out in those years.

        The Prestige and King Kong are still depressingly unrecognised.

    • Doug_101

      I was going to post something like this. Slumdog Millionaire’s greatest competition was the movie that wasn’t even nominated: The Dark Knight. Granted, I’m biased towards Nolan, but when I looked at the slate of films nominated that year, not one of them came close to The Dark Knight or even WALL-E for that matter.

  • Marissa Evans

    I don’t think Argo will hold up. At least it doesn’t to me. People will [hopefully] wake up and realise how fabricated the story was for “dramatic purposes” that it forgets the real heroes of that mission. It’s quite good, but I think it was more Affleck’s directing they were impressed with, in which case the Best Director award I would not have been opposed to. But not Best Picture.
    But hey, who gives a fuck in the end.

  • Mixed Race rich kid NYC

    Mystic river and lost in translation are better movies than the 3rd lord of the ring
    Sideways is one of the best movie ever made
    Brokeback mountain is already a classic while crash is a liberal wet dream, a mess of a movie
    The departed is a great movie while little miss sunshine will be known as the movie that robbed Eddie Murphy of an Oscar
    No country for old men is a classic while there will be blood is a pretentious mess like the master was (PTA best movie is magnolia)
    2008 was a mess of a year for movies, so was 2009 nothing stood out except inglorious basterds (Tarantino best movie )
    2010 was a mess of a year for movies, nothing but overrated commercial junk
    The tree of life is the best movie of the past decade and it belongs with citizen Kane as one of the greatest American movie ever made
    Last year, beasts of the southern wild and amour will be classics studied by young independent filmmakers worldwide while Ben “I hate republicans ” affleck will be forgotten as soon as batman vs superman flops and bankrupt Warner brothers

  • Mixed Race rich kid NYC

    I just want to say this year has been a great year for movies
    I just saw the wolf of Wall Street
    Wow
    What a great movie!!!
    Despite its runtime, nobody moved out of tgeir seats
    Everybody was laughing and having a good time
    How did it get an R rating ???
    There was a scene where we see a main character rubbing her pu$$y

    Anyway, I can’t even decide what my favorite movies are this year

    2013 a great year in movies

    • jack

      How did it get an R rating? The amount of drugs consumed, the t & a on display, the language, the few scenes where it looks like an orgy…..way more reasons than just one character rubbing her vag.

      • Anon

        I think he means how didn’t wolf of Wall Street get a worse rating than R, like NC17.

  • Kathryn Bigelow Is a Hack

    Zero Dark Thirty is the exact opposite of important. Completely unnecessary is more like it.

    • Kathryn Bigelow Is a Hack

      Unlike Chris Nolan. Now THAT’S a director! Such range, such drama, such brilliance . . . not to mention piss that you could toast with your whole family for Christmas! LULZ! ;-)

  • -

    My take (not that anyone cares that much)
    LoTR: I honestly would’ve preferred a Lost in Translation win, but I can’t really argue with LoTR winning.
    Million Dollar Baby: didn’t see it
    Crash: Do I even need to say it? It’s not just a bad *winner*, it’s a bad film (or at the very least a mediocre one). How the late Roger Ebert saw this as deserving of the Oscar, I don’t know, lol. Brokeback should’ve won, but virtually any of the other nominees would’ve been way more deserving.
    The Departed: I don’t recall seeing many other films from the same year but The Departed is insanely rewatchable to me and easily remains (WoWS notwithstanding because I haven’t seen it yet) his best film since Goodfellas, so my gut says it was deserving.
    No Country for Old Men: Although it’s easily in my top 5 films of the 00′s, There Will Be Blood should’ve won.
    Slumdog Millionaire: While I generally find the Nolan trilogy a little overrated, The Dark Knight not getting nominated, let alone winning, is still one of the most egregious Oscar snubs in recent years. That and Wall-E were much better than Slumdog Millionaire (I even liked Benjamin Button more, even if it is riffing – to put it mildly – off of Forrest Gump).
    The Hurt Locker – Better than the other nominees that often get mentioned as deserving this. I’d have preferred a win for ‘Up’, though.
    The King’s Speech – Pretty bad pick. Toy Story 3, Inception, The Social Network, 127 Hours, True Grit and the not-nominated Blue Valentine all did way more for me than The King’s Speech did (in spite of Colin Firth’s fucking amazing performance, which I do think he deserved the Oscar for). My pick would’ve been Toy Story 3 but any of the first three I mentioned would’ve been good picks imo.
    The Artist – Probably not deserving, but I can’t think of any one film from 2011 that stands out as the best. If I had to choose one I’d probably say Midnight in Paris, but you’ve also got Drive and Shame, so I don’t know. I think Hugo was more deserving too.
    Argo – Not a bad pick, but Zero Dark Thirty and Amour would’ve been better choices to me. I know it was quite divisive, but there’s no other film in 2012 or in the decade so far which is anywhere near as memorable to me as The Master.

  • Person

    You hit it right on the head. LOTR, Departed, NCFOM are all fantastic. I would argue that Million Dollar Baby is also part of that club though. Slumdog, Artist, and King’s Speech are all good but hugely overrated.

  • João Paulo

    I think you guys are right about Crash, that win was the worst victory of oscar history, Brokeback Mountain totally deserved win best picture in that year. I think Argo share the same fate of Crash, because Lincoln or Zero Dark Thirty or Life of Pi were better movies.

    In other hand LOTR, Departed, No Country For Old Men, Million Dollar Baby are classics

    I agree about The King’s Speech, The Social Network is better.
    About Slumdog Milionaire I don’t agree, the movie is great and for example here on Brazil is a totally sucess everytime the movie pass on tv.

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  • NMphotog

    Return of the King – Yawn

    The Artist – Black and White. French. Show Biz. That’s all they needed. Snooze.

    Million Dollar Baby – I rate it more as ten cents than a million dollars. Total pander job. Sideways was the best one.

    No Country – I loved it. It’s filmed in my backyard but I can see where some may not agree. No hard feelings. Daniel Day Lewis was great in There will be Blood, but it’s a snooze. Chigur drank his milkshake.

    Argo – Hell no. Another movie where Ben Affleck talks into his chest for two hours. And definitely not after that airplane chase scene.

    Slumdog Millionaire – Indifferent. But better than anything else nominated that year. Fun doesn’t have to be snooty. Snooty? Snotty.

    Departed – eh. Good but Infernal Affairs is still the better film. And not even close to Scorsese’s best.

    The King’s Speech – eh. Social Network? LOL. Yeah right, it was so boring. The Fighter was the real winner.

    Hurt Locker – What a trolling. It was absolute garbage. My Army cousin said it was the best comedy he’d seen all year.

    Crash – It is absolute 100% Oscar bait. And since Oscars are hardly deserved, Crash and Oscar deserve each other. I think the real problem is using academics or Oscars to define what a good “film” is. I’d rather see IMDB hand out awards. The comments section there is always more entertaining anyway.

    Where’s the debate on whether How Green Was My Valley was better than Citizen Kane? And Gladiator? REALLY!?!?

    • -

      “I’d rather see IMDB hand out awards.”
      damn nigga, u funny

  • Tyler

    Disagree. Slumdog totally stands on its own even now. I still love the film!

  • hg

    argo did’nt deserve the win i know argo was a good film but ang lee’s life of pi was better written,scored,directed than argo there is a reason ang lee got best director argo winning BP was more of a pity vote

  • JK1193

    The last two years has been filled with head-scratching snubs. I’m definately a fan of the evantual nominees, but they left out some really good ones:

    2011: Drive, Shame, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, Bridesmaids

    2012: The Master, Skyfall, The Dark Knight Rises, Moonrise Kingdom

    Two of the best films of the year for me that will most likely fall under the same snub category are Prisoners and Rush. In my opinion, those are much more compelling and well made films than Nebraska and Philomena, which are nice, but simple movies.

    • Liam Pisan

      Harry Potter under no circumstances deserved any academy recognition (well, ignoring the more technical awards about which no one cares), apart from MAYBE a nomination for Alan Rickman. The fact that movie has a nearly perfect approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes honestly disgusts me.

      As for The Dark Knight Rises, I am a massive Batman and Nolan fan, and as a result The Dark Knight Rises is one of my favourite movies, but it definitely did not deserve any recognition. Nolan’s directing was nothing special compared to most of his other films (he is without a doubt the Leonardo DiCaprio of directing: brilliant but entirely ignored by the Academy), and honestly I would have been annoyed to see it nominated while The Dark Knight was snubbed. This way we can just say the Academy hates superhero flicks.

      That all said, I completely agree with Prisoners. Firstly, if it does not receive a cinematography nomination, that will be an incredibly egregious oversight. However, the more upsetting snub will probably be Hugh Jackman. He completely captured the agony of a father losing his young daughter, and perhaps for the first time since Andy Serkis played King Kong made me feel for an actor in his role. I would want nothing more to see him win the award (especially since he missed out on probably his best chance to do so last year thanks to Daniel Day-Lewis), but at this point I do not think he will even end up being nominated, which truly does not do justice to the immense quality of his performance.

    • D721

      I agree with you that Rush is going to get snubbed for Best Picture and maybe Best Supporting Actor for Daniel Bruhl. It was such a fantastic movie.

  • Jamie Teller

    I’m going to go ahead and say that Argo won’t really hold up as a winner. It’s just not, as far as I’m concerned, an outstanding film in any particular respect. It provides some good thrills, and is completely competent across the board, but I think more people will realize how weak the humor is, how one-dimensional the hostages are as characters, how obvious the dramatic license taken really is. I think Django Unchained and Zero Dark Thirty are going to be considered the “should have won”s of 2012, and their joint failure to get Best Director nominations (while Silver Linings Playbook and Beasts of the Southern Wild got nominated for their, shall we say, less impressive helming) will be seen as a major gaffe on the Academy’s part.

  • The Flobbit

    That image of Brolin is from True Grit. And good on you for applauding LOTR as some of the greatest films ever made.

  • The Flobbit

    A Beautiful Mind (2001) – Hold up: Not really. ABM is still an excellent film with subtle performances, great cinematography, and a moving tone, but in the long run…it’s rather not that enduring.

    Chicago (2002) – Hold up: Not at ALL. However did this ever win? Let’s erase this travesty from memory. Sorry Catherine Zeta-Jones. Not you.

    The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) – Hold up: 100%! As shown by the 4th time I saw this film, Peter Jackson’s magnum opus remains as powerful, epic, beautiful, and moving as the day it came out in New Zealand.

    Million Dollar Baby (2004) – Hold up: Mostly. Excellent film. Roger Ebert loved it, but this is not going to rest in ANY pantheons.

    Crash (2005) – Hold up: No. This film never should have won, and is remembered absolutely NOWHERE as the best film of the year.

    The Departed (2006) – Hold up: Yes. Martin Scorcese won his loooong overdue Oscar. And while this isn’t as great as Taxi Driver and Goodfellas, it still packs an intoxicating punch.

    No Country for Old Men (2007) – Hold up: Yes, absolutely. Although TWBB was the most daring, brilliantly acted, shot, and directed film of the year, 2007 marked a great year for the Oscars, without a single American taking home a major Oscar. Diversification = good.

    Slumdog Millionaire (2008) – Hold up: Yes. I disagree, Adam. I know many many people who love this film and call it among their favourites. Danny Boyle’s kinetic, colorful cinematography combined with great acting makes this a win. Not the best film of the year, though.

    The Hurt Locker (2009) – Hold up: Mostly. American propaganda, but the opening scene is still chilling, and it’s depiction of modern warfare is relevant and terrifying.

    The King’s Speech (2010) – Hold up: No. Ok, that’s what it was. Okay. Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush, and especially Guy Pearce were excellent, but that’s about it. A feel good melodrama. Social Network deserved the win.

    The Artist (2011) – Hold up: No, absolutely NOT. I cannot believe this piece of Hollywood hogwash won best picture over Martin Scorcese’s wonderful labour of love to cinema – Hugo. Where is Jean Dujardin now, I ask you? HMM…? Gary Oldman deserved the Best Actor. Sacre bleu!

    Argo (2012) – Hold up: No. More Hollywood and America-supreme nonsense. Completely historically inaccurate (Affleck’s character was a short, balding, mustached Mexican, and he stayed in Iran for 2 days). Excellent tone and brilliant finale, but already this is fading into memory.

    • Liam Pisan

      That is not what “digress” means.

  • Meadowe

    I just watched slumdog millionaire for the first time in the summer and I thought it was very good. So I would have to disagree with this list as far as that is concerned. I still haven’t watched king’s speech or the artist, hurt locker, argo, or crash so I will reserve my opinion until then.

  • Kevin

    My favorite of these years are:
    2003: Return of the King
    2004: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
    2005: A History of Violence
    2006: Pan’s Labyrinth
    2007: Eastern Promises
    2008: There Will Be Blood
    2009: In Bruges
    2010: Fantastic Mr. Fox
    2011: Inception
    2012: Hugo
    2013: The Invisible War

  • Nomis1700

    Completely disagree with The Hurt Locker. What a stupid film. It was hollow and yet another film about Iraq. Also, there was a chance to let a woman win Best Director, I think that did it. While I like it for Bigelow that she won, I hate the film she made.

    As for Kings Speech, it’s a better film than the Social Network. It has much more heart and strikes exactly were it needs to.

    • Person

      King’s Speech is good but sloppy. Film takes place over several years between WWI and WWII and yet the children never age throughout the movie. It’s one of the most ridiculous goofs I’ve ever seen in a mainstream movie, let alone one that won Best Picture nearly everywhere that year.

  • Sameer Shahnewaz

    Hurt Locker held up , really ? up , up in the air , an education and district 9(my pick) ……………………… and you think hurt locker held up , that movie is already a distant memory , what a blatant propaganda piece of shit

  • Mohi1

    I will never understand why Crash gets such a bad rep. Maybe Brokeback Mountain deserved the Best Picture Oscar, but that should take away the fact that Crash is a very good film.

  • The507thDoctor

    Right I’m sorry but how does what’s happening in the world or to the country really affect people’s enjoyment of a film? It’s like I hear all that crap about “this film was better received in a post 9/11 world”. Ok yeah that was terrible but what the hell does it have to do with people enjoying films? Slumdog won at the time cos it was the best film of that year, it had nothing to do with whatever was going on in the U.S at the time.

  • ScratStitch

    Honestly don’t get ANY of the comments made about Slumdog Millionaire being a “fluff piece,” cause if you’ve seen the film recently (and honestly, it doesn’t sound as though you have), you’ll know it has some VERY dark moments. Slumdog Millionaire was pure, good old fashioned cinematic storytelling, with the one thing that “instant future classic” No Country for Old Men didn’t have: A good ending. I don’t think it had ANYTHING to do with any of the things said here about “America’s current state.” That’s like saying “A Beautiful Mind” won because 9/11 happened because, you know, it was about the guy overcoming…odds and stuff, which was…what America was doing….you know?

  • lukemode

    i agree with all, except The King’s Speech. I liked The Social Network, but I didn’t like how Zuckeberg was kind of presented as an asshole (just saying). i can also see become dated in a few years. But I fricking loved the King’s Speech. It’s one of my favourite movies of 2000s. the cinematography and performances are just fantastic. and the friendship between firth and rush is excellent. It maybe doesn’t follow history perfectly but i still love it.

    • Liam Pisan

      Wait, what? Zuckerberg is far worse in real life. The most common criticism I have seen is that it makes him out to be a far more decent human being than he is in actuality.

  • james

    There is a reason slum dog millionaire doesn’t hold up well. Its cuz there was a much better movie that came out that year called The Dark Knight which deserved that award completely and everybody knows it.

  • tyler durden

    excuse me, but why are you talking about AMERICAN economy when “rewieving” a BRITISH film set in INDIA? i don’t know have you thought about it but i really don’t think slumdog millionare was intended for (at the time) depressed american audiences only. so to complain about it being too “happy” for sad americans is pretty much the same thing as someone complaining about pan’s labyrynth having too much spanish for americans

    ps. how many people were actually sad when Bush era stopped?

    • stylus59

      yes, but the Academy are a mostly-American voting body so it is their views who are reflected on the win

  • Gerard Kennelly

    Argo – 2012
    Major Competition: Lincoln, Zero Dark Thirty
    no matter what won that year
    best pic was going to American propaganda

  • Louric Rankine

    I love Crash and thought it was thematically saturated of racism and the interrelated stories. Crash was a film underdog and dark horse and finally the dark horse won. People just thought Brokeback Mountain was better because it was just better and more deserving. But not all dramatic controversial films should win all the time

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