As always, my favorite backstage Oscar photo - Hepburn had won the year before but here Kelly would win.  Both deserved it.

As always, my favorite backstage Oscar photo – Hepburn had won the year before but here Kelly would win. Both deserved it.


This is a companion piece to three different series.  The first is the 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 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, I include 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.  Word note on the Year in Film posts – I did those before started putting up official information about release dates.  Several films have been moved from the years where they appeared in those posts – see the Nighthawk Awards posts for more accurate placement – I have included links in the years.

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…)

Sleeping Beauty: the best animated film of the 1950's

So why do this now?  Well, because I already covered the years in film, with 1950 – 1955 coming back before I started the History of Best Picture, and I have finally caught up with where I began my History.  So, since the next film year will be 1961, in which I will do both Year in Film and Best Picture, now is the time to wrap up the 1950’s.

1950  –  1959

Total Films I’ve Seen:  692

Films That Make the Top 5 in Any Category:  40

Best Film Not to Make the Top 5 in Any Category:  The Searchers

Film of the Decade:  Sunset Blvd. (more…)

One of the magnificent shots towards the end of The Bridge on the River Kwai - the film that swept all the awards in 1957

The 30th Academy Awards, for the year 1957.  The nominations were announced on February 18, 1958 and the ceremony was held on March 26, 1958.

Best Picture:  The Bridge on the River Kwai

  • 12 Angry Men
  • Witness for the Prosecution
  • Sayonara
  • Peyton Place

Most Surprising Omission:  Wild is the Wind

Best Eligible Film Not Nominated:  Paths of Glory

Rank (out of 82) Among Best Picture Nominees:  #53


My Top 10:

the main title for The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) - the Best Picture choice for pretty much everyone, including me

  1. The Bridge on the River Kwai
  2. Paths of Glory
  3. Smiles of a Summer Night
  4. Sweet Smell of Success
  5. 12 Angry Men
  6. Nights of Cabiria
  7. Witness for the Prosecution
  8. Tin Star
  9. A Face in the Crowd
  10. Order (more…)

Kirk Douglas in Kubrick’s Paths of Glory, one of the best films from 1957

A little note before my article: I have a new article appearing on on Tuesday. It’s a response to a New York Times article about the lack of decent women’s roles in summer movies.

The Myth of 1939

We are so fond of anniversaries. Just look at everything we celebrated last year. The 80th anniversary of the Academy Awards. The 40th anniversary of the Summer of Love and Sgt Pepper’s. The 30th anniversary of Star Wars and the Summer of Sam. But did we forget the best anniversary from last year? Isn’t the big number supposed to be 50 (“not to fifty” Christopher Guest shouts as that classic turned 20)? Shouldn’t we have been looking back to 1957? For movies, after all, it might have been the peak of artistic creation, both on the national and international front. (more…)