When Martha Frankel interviewed Juliette Binoche in her Parisian home for the cover story to the August 1997 issue of Movieline, she knew there would be some cultural differences. But Binoche is completely unlike the typical Hollywood actress. Not only did she cook and serve lunch to her interviewer, Binoche ate and laughed heartily. She also discussed her recent Oscar win for The English Patient when she took home the trophy everyone expected would go to Lauren Bacall.
This set of Best Picture winners from the 1990s is a step up in my estimation from the previous decade, with two examples of outright great filmmaking and most of the rest of the winners at least doing a reasonable impression. By this point in my life I was finally old enough to see all of the nominated movies and to stay up late enough to see the whole ceremony. In fact, I’m pretty sure I attended a party on the night each of these films got crowned. I’ve slowed down in recent years in that respect. Staying up late on Sunday night is bad enough when you do it at home. Having to get in your car and drive home afterward would make rising and shining for work the next day even more difficult.
In case I haven’t explained how this series is going to work appropriately, let me detail it here. Once you guys have ranked the Best Picture winners of each decade, I’ll be presenting the top 20 vote-getters overall for you to rank against one another in two groups. Based on the results of that poll, I’ll be posting the final official list of our top 20 Best Picture winners of all time! I figure this approach should do the job of spreading the wealth through the decades while also pushing the films of certain eras up the ladder if they really deserve it.
For now, it’s time to consider the Best Picture winners of the ’90s!
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So far, our look back at the movies of 1996 has focused primarily on the year’s blockbusters. Not surprisingly perhaps, most of the movies haven’t been that great. A lot of times, good movies aren’t popular and popular movies aren’t good. As we get down to the final matches of round one, we’re going to look at some of the smaller movies. Hopefully we’ll find a few memorable releases in that bunch.