Sometimes the Motion Picture Academy gets the “Best Picture” Award right and sometimes they get it wrong. In my opinion these are the twenty worst choices (some are good movies, but none are great) and twenty best choices (all classics).

1938 Oscar Winner for Best Picture: Good screwball comedy, but stagey and not Capra's Best

My twenty worst “Best Pictures”:

1. 1936-The Great Ziegfield (Good Variety Show)
2. 1938-You Can’t Take it With You (Funny enough screwball comedy, but not Capra’s best)
3. 1944-Going my Way (Go your way)
4. 1952-The Greatest Show on Earth (Great Cast, ridiculous plot)
5. 1956-Around the World in 80 Days (But it feels like 80 weeks)
6. 1966-A Man for All Seasons (Divorce, Henry VIII style)
7. 1968-Oliver (Good musical for kids)
8. 1971-The French Connection (mediocre cop movie)
9. 1976-Rocky (racist, stereotyped boxing movie)
10. 1978-The Deer Hunter (Vietnam War propaganda film)
11. 1980-Ordinary People (ordinary movie)
12. 1983-Terms of Endearment (fluff)
13. 1989-Driving Ms. Daisy (racist drivel)
14. 1991-Silence of the Lambs (first torture porn movie)
15. 1996-The English Patient (I fell asleep after the first half hour. I’ll try again someday)
16. 1999-American Beauty (Good, but not the best)
17. 2004-Million Dollar Baby (Very good, but the best?)
18. 2005-Crash (Yes, it does)
19. 2007-No Country For Old Men (Interesting, but the best?)
20.. 2008-Slumdog Millionaire (So that’s what “Jeopardy” is like in India. Ouch.)

Still a Great Anti-War Film

Here are my Twenty best “Best Pictures”:

1. 1930-All Quiet on the Western Front
2. 1935-Mutiny on Bounty
3. 1943-Casablanca
4. 1950-All About Eve
5. 1954-On The Waterfront
6. 1957-The Bridge on the River Kwai
7. 1959-Ben Hur
8. 1963-Tom Jones
9. 1964-My Fair Lady
10. 1969-Midnight Cowboy
11. 1972-The Godfather
12. 1973-The Sting
13. 1974-The Godfather Part II
14. 1975-One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
15. 1982-Gandhi
16. 1984-Amadeus
17. 1987-The Last Emperor
18. 1993-Schindler’s List
19. 1998-Shakespeare in Love
20. 2002-Chicago