A Century of FilmScreen Shot 2021-01-23 at 2.28.05 PM

Film History


Filmmaking had supposedly peaked in 1939 just as the war arrived to greatly limit (outside of America, film production was massively down) and influence it (in America, War films took the forefront).  After the war concluded, came the two lawsuits that changed the way of films in America.  First came de Havilland vs. Warner Bros. Pictures which altered the notion of what a studio could put in a contract.  Second came United States vs. Paramount Pictures which meant that production studios would have to sell off their theater chains.  The first hastened the end of the way films were made in the Studio Era while the second altered how they were distributed and brought an to the end to the concept of the “majors” as they had been known. (more…)

One of the more poignant relationships in film history and it's nowhere in the original novel.

One of the more poignant relationships in film history and it’s nowhere in the original novel.

My Top 10:

  1. Bicycle Thieves
  2. The Heiress
  3. A Letter to Three Wives
  4. It Always Rains on Sunday
  5. All the King’s Men
  6. Whisky Galore
  7. Thieves’ Highway
  8. Champion
  9. The Window
  10. The Fallen Idol

note:  There are two more on my list: my #11, Yellow Sky, is covered below because it is a Consensus nominee, but my #12 and #13 were not nominated by any group and are listed down at the end of this post. (more…)

A couple of very deserving Oscar winners from 1948 - a happy father and son.

A couple of very deserving Oscar winners from 1948 – a happy father and son.


This is a companion piece to three different series.  The first is The History of the Academy Awards, in which I covered each category in individual posts.  This was originally done in 2009 and additions were included in 2010.  You can find links to all of these pieces in each individual category.  I have grouped all of the categories together for the same reason that I did so originally – because most pieces on the Oscars don’t approach the awards through the categories, but through the years.  This specific piece is designed to take a closer look at the decade (with a couple of extra years, since there was no point in doing a separate piece on the first two years of the Oscars) and how I think the Academy did in those years.

The second series is my Year in Film series.  That is mentioned here because in those pieces I included paragraphs about the Oscars as a whole for each year and included a considerable amount of trivia.  Since I had based my Year in Film series and eligibility as such on the Academy calendar, it all seemed very relevant.  Also, starting in 1930-31, I started including various prizes (Worst Oscar, Worst Nomination, Worst Omission, etc) and I didn’t want to repeat myself, so following the links will bring you there.  Those links are at the end of this piece, where I do a brief summation of each year and how the Academy did.

The third series is my History of the Academy Awards: Best Picture series, where I reviewed every film ever nominated for Best Picture (except The Patriot, which is lost).  Those links are also down below, grouped by year. (more…)

It's possible that this film doesn't move you.  It's also possible you have no heart.

It’s possible that this film doesn’t move you. It’s also possible you have no heart.

You can read more about this year in film here.  The Best Picture race is discussed here, with reviews of all the nominees.  First there are the categories, followed by all the films with their nominations, then the Globes, where I split the major awards by Drama and Comedy, followed by a few lists at the very end.  If there’s a film you expected to see and didn’t, check the very bottom – it might be eligible in a different year.  Films in red won the Oscar in that category (or Globe, in the Globes section).  Films in blue were nominated (this is the first year that there are nominees for the Globes).  Films with an asterisk (*) were Consensus nominees (a scale I put together based on the various awards) while those with a double asterisk (**) were the Consensus winner.

Nighthawk Awards:

  • Best Picture
  1. Bicycle Thieves  *
  2. The Heiress  *
  3. A Canterbury Tale
  4. A Letter to Three Wives  *
  5. It Always Rains on Sunday


Broderick Crawford and Mercedes McCambridge - a pair of Oscar winners in 1949 for All the King's Men

The 22nd Academy Awards for the film year 1949.  The nominations were announced on February 12, 1950 and the awards were held on 23 March, 1950.

Best Picture:  All the King’s Men

  • The Heiress
  • A Letter to Three Wives
  • Twelve O’Clock High
  • Battleground

Most Surprising Omission:  The Bicycle Thief

Best Eligible Film Not Nominated:  The Bicycle Thief

Best Eligible English Language Film Not Nominated:  A Canterbury Tale

Best Eligible U.S. Film Not Nominated:  Thieves Highway

Rank (out of 82) Among Best Picture Years:  #60 (more…)

the dancing mushrooms in Fantasia - the best animated film of the 1940's

Well, before I go into 1949, I’ll cover the decade as a whole.  Bear in mind the decade awards cover films by their original release date, so you might find films that haven’t shown up in individual years yet.

1940  –  1949

Total Films I’ve Seen:  617

Films That Make the Top 5 in a Category:  42

Best Film Not to Make the Top 5 in any Category:  The Best Years of Our Lives

Film of the Decade:  Children of Paradise

Worst Film of the Decade:  King of the Zombies

Worst Best Picture Nominee of the Decade:  All This and Heaven Too

Worst Film of the Decade Made by a Top 100 Director:  Under Capricorn (more…)

My Top 10:

De Sica's poignant The Bicycle Thief (1949)

  1. The Bicycle Thief
  2. A Letter to Three Wives
  3. A Canterbury Tale
  4. The Heiress
  5. All the King’s Men
  6. Thieves Highway
  7. Whiskey Galore
  8. Paisan
  9. White Heat
  10. Champion (more…)