My Overall Thoughts:
This was the year of the independent film and only one film was made from a big studio.
The five choices are quite diverse in scope and in themes and each is a standout in their own way.
Of the five choice tho, there is only one that really “fits” within the class of being considered BP material due to its epic scope; the rest may all be very good to great films, but just didn’t have much of a chance of winning the big award.
That being said, TEP ended up winning 9 of its 12 nominations which shows the scope and breadth of this film.
- 5. – Secrets & Lies – A complicated film about love and loss and how people deal with the many secrets of life
- 4. – Shine – Rush is superb in this role but the story itself is somewhat lacking.
- 3. – Jerry Maguire – Cruise and Gooding Jr. are both great here, but the story isn’t as impactful today as it was 20 years ago.
- 2. – The English Patient – Epic film that has a great story. It’s NOT as boring as people like Elaine Benis claim it to be. The title is perfect, because you really need to be patient while watching this amazing film in order to absorb all of it’s wonder.
- 1. – Fargo – Perhaps the Coen Brothers first GREAT film (and still their best IMHO). Has amazing characters with a fun and complicated mystery.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Yes and No! Fargo is clearly the best made film, but not the kind of film that could have won. TEP definitely fits within the scope of epic films winning BP and it is a great love story that still remains so impactful even 20 years after it was made..
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!