I must give a shout-out to the archive that has made this possible (and to archivists in general – after all, I’m married to a wonderful one). On Friday, I spent a few hours at the UCLA Film & Television Archive, an archive with a collection unsurpassed by any other in the world.
When I finished my Best Picture project, I ranked 503 of the 506 films nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards. The Patriot, of course is lost and can not be seen by anyone (check your attic, as the IMDb says). But that leaves two other films – East Lynne and The White Parade. Those final two films exist in one place and one place only – the UCLA Film & Television Archive. And I have now finally seen them, which makes me, I think, one of the few people around who have seen 505 of the 506 Best Picture nominees (there are only three external reviews on the IMDb for Lynne and only one for Parade).
I’ll be adding reviews later in the week (update – East Lynne is now up and The White Parade is also now up) – after we get back to Massachusetts – posting them into the original Best Picture years, while leaving each up as the top post in the blog for a day or two afterwards, and adding them into the ranking.
As for whether you should see them? Well, if you’re an Oscar completist, make an appointment at UCLA and go see them – it’s free. If you’re not, well, I can’t honestly say I recommend either of them though Parade was a better film. But thanks to UCLA for making this possible and thanks to Veronica and Thomas, who wandered around UCLA for three hours while I watched them. As a former ASU student with parents who went to Cal, I can’t say I’ll ever root for UCLA (even though my nephew goes there) except against USC, but I do have to say that the campus is absolutely gorgeous.