Tuesday, March 8, 2016

1980--The Year in Review

Here we go into another decade, but, really, it’s still the 1970s. The year's best film, Martin Scorsese's Raging Bull is utterly a product of the previous decade, and yet it remains the best film of the 1980s. Unlike many movie lovers, though, its obvious superiority ironically makes me feel sorry for Robert Redford's masterful directorial debut, which ultimately won the Academy's Best Picture prize; Ordinary People has been drubbed upon for years since by movie fans angry over the denial of Scorsese's film, but I maintain Redford's film is a justifiable Best Picture choice--an absolutely devastating and intimate family drama, the sort of which I wish there were more of nowadays. Yet, really--I mean, REALLY--it should have hit an insurmountable wall with Scorsese's picture--but this supremely difficult and even unlikable movie was a box office flop, and was clearly a decade ahead of its time (the director was not yet the massive cultural figure he would become, and frankly, neither was his leading man, and certainly the two electrifying film newcomers Scorsese introduces us to were unknown quantities, audience-wise). Even so, Raging Bull is clearly the best movie of the year, with its superb cast, unrelenting brutality, and unbelievably on-point crew working at their uppermost powers (Thelma Schoonmaker's quicksilver editing may be the best of all time). In fact, the only other movie to come close to Raging Bull in craft quality is another black-and-white film, David Lynch's The Elephant Man (this is the first year in a couple of decades to feature two B&W movies in the running for Best Picture). And we’re not even beginning to talk about the Kubrick movie with which so many film fans are justifiably obsessed! And we're leaving out fantastic works like Kagemusha, Coal Miner's Daughter (whose lead actress obviously deserved her Oscar playing country star Loretta Lynn), the unjustly maligned Heaven's Gate, The Empire Strikes Back, Altered States, The Long Riders, and The Stunt Man. Plus such fine comedy this year, from Airplane!, Used Cars, The Blues Brothers, Fatso, Seems Like Old Times, Melvin and Howard, Bronco Billy, Caddyshack, The Gods Must Be Crazy, and Nine to Five. By the way, the Original Song category this year was insanely jam-packed with great tunes from movies as diverse as One Trick Pony, Fame, Urban Cowboy, Foxes, Xanadu, Nine to Five, American Gigalo, Popeye, Honeysuckle Rose, and The Jazz Singer! Strangely, though, the documentary output was non-existent, to the point where I had to omit the category this year. Even so, man, I tell ya, 1980 was a superb time for movies! NOTE: These are MY choices for each category, and are only occasionally reflective of the selections made by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (aka The Oscars). When available, the nominee that actually won the Oscar will be highlighted in bold. 


PICTURE: RAGING BULL (US, Martin Scorsese) (2nd: Ordinary People (US, Robert Redford), followed by: The Shining (US/UK, Stanley Kubrick); Kagemusha (Japan, Akira Kurosawa); The Elephant Man (UK/US, David Lynch); The Long Riders (US, Walter Hill); Coal Miner’s Daughter (US, Michael Apted); The Empire Strikes Back (US, Irwin Kershner); One Trick Pony (US, Robert M. Young); The Stunt Man (US, Richard Rush); Heaven’s Gate (US, Michael Cimino); Altered States (US, Ken Russell); Fame (US, Alan Parker); Airplane! (US, Jerry Zucker, David Zucker, and Jim Abrahams); Used Cars (US, Robert Zemeckis); Breaker Morant (Australia, Bruce Beresford); The Long Good Friday (UK, John McKenzie); Inside Moves (US, Richard Donner); The Changeling (Canada, Peter Medak); Carny (US, Robert Kaylor); The Blues Brothers (US, John Landis); Fatso (US, Anne Bancroft); My Bodyguard (US, Tony Bill); The Big Red One (US, Samuel Fuller); Night of the Juggler (US, Robert Butler); Berlin Alexanderplatz (West Germany, Rainer Werner Fassbinder); Stardust Memories (US, Woody Allen); Atlantic City (US/Canada, Louis Malle); Superman II (US, Richard Lester); Mon Oncle d’Amérique (France, Alain Resnais); Out of the Blue (US, Dennis Hopper); The Great Santini (US, Lewis John Carlino); Resurrection (US, Daniel Petrie); Return of the Secaucus Seven (US, John Sayles); Permanent Vacation (US, Jim Jaramusch); Playing For Time (US, Daniel Mann); Bad Timing (A Sexual Obsession) (US/UK, Nicolas Roeg); Melvin and Howard (US, Jonathan Demme); Bronco Billy (US, Clint Eastwood); Dressed to Kill (US, Brian de Palma); Urban Cowboy (US, James Bridges); Seems Like Old Times (US, Jay Sandrich); Nine to Five (US, Colin Higgins); Brubaker (US, Stuart Rosenberg); Foxes (US, Adrian Lyne); The Ninth Configuration (US, William Peter Blatty); The Fog (US, John Carpenter); Rude Boy (UK, Jack Hazan and David Mingay); Spetters (Netherlands, Paul Verhoeven); The Last Metro (France, François Truffaut); McVicar (UK, Tom Clegg); The Idolmaker (US, Taylor Hackford); The Dogs of War (US, John Irvin); Private Benjamin (US, Howard Zieff); Popeye (US, Robert Altman); Gloria (US, John Cassavetes); The Gods Must Be Crazy (South Africa, Jamie Urys); A Small Circle of Friends (US, Rob Cohen); Somewhere in Time (US, Jeannot Szwarc); Foolin' Around (US, Richard T. Heffron); American Gigolo (US, Paul Schrader); Breaking Glass (UK, Brian Gibson); The Blue Lagoon (US, Randal Kleiser); Caddyshack (US, Harold Ramis); The Apple (US/West Germany, Menahem Golan); Cruising (US, William Friedkin); Times Square (US, Allan Moyle); Forbidden Zone (US, Richard Elfman); Taxi Zum Klo (West Germany, Frank Ripploh); Xanadu (US, Robert Greenwald); Flash Gordon (US/UK, Mike Hodges); The Jazz Singer (US, Richard Fleischer); Friday the 13th (US, Sean Cunningham); Insatiable (US, Stu Segall))



ACTOR: Robert De Niro, RAGING BULL (2nd: Timothy Hutton, Ordinary People (won as Supporting Actor), followed by: Jack Nicholson, The Shining; Tommy Lee Jones, Coal Miner’s Daughter; Peter O’Toole, The Stunt Man; John Hurt, The Elephant Man; Bob Hoskins, The Long Good Friday; Robert Duvall, The Great Santini; John Savage, Inside Moves)



ACTRESS: Sissy Spacek, COAL MINER‘S DAUGHTER (2nd: Ellen Burstyn, Resurrection, followed by: Mary Tyler Moore, Ordinary People; Linda Manz, Out of the Blue; Vanessa Redgrave, Playing for Time; Theresa Russell, Bad Timing (A Sexual Obsession); Debra Winger, Urban Cowboy; Shelley Duvall, The Shining)



SUPPORTING ACTOR: Donald Sutherland, ORDINARY PEOPLE (2nd: Joe Pesci, Raging Bull , followed by: Levon Helm, Coal Miner’s Daughter; Scatman Crothers, The Shining; Jack Thompson, Breaker Morant; Matt Dillon, My Bodyguard; Judd Hirsch, Ordinary People; Cliff Gorman, Night of the Juggler)



SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Cathy Moriarty, RAGING BULL (2nd: Eva Le Gallienne, Resurrection, followed by: Pamela Reed, The Long Riders; Charlotte Rampling, Stardust Memories; Mary Steenburgen, Melvin and Howard; Dolly Parton, Nine to Five; Beverly D’Angelo, Coal Miner’s Daughter; Diana Scarwid, Inside Moves)



DIRECTOR: Martin Scorsese, RAGING BULL (2nd: Stanley Kubrick, The Shining, followed by: Robert Redford, Ordinary People; Akira Kurosawa, Kagemusha; David Lynch, The Elephant Man; Richard Rush, The Stunt Man; Walter Hill, The Long Riders; Alan Parker, Fame)



NON-ENGLISH LANGUAGE FILM: KAGEMUSHA (Japan, Akira Kurosawa) (2nd: Berlin Alexanderplatz (West Germany, Rainer Werner Fassbinder), followed by: Mon Oncle d’Amérique (France, Alain Resnais); Spetters (Netherlands, Paul Verhoeven); The Last Metro (France, François Truffaut))  



LIVE ACTION SHORT: A JURY OF HER PEERS (US, Sally Heckel) (2nd: Act of God (UK, Peter Greenaway), followed by: Werner Herzog Eats His Shoe (US, Les Blank); Making The Shining (US, Vivian Kubrick); Closet Cases of the Nerd Kind (US, Rick Harper and Bob Rogers))



ANIMATED SHORT: THE FLY (Poland, Farenc Rofulsz) (2nd: The History of the World in Three Minutes Flat (Canada, Michael Mills), followed by: Le Menage (France, Marc Caro and Jean-Pierre Jeunet)



ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY: Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, USED CARS (2nd: Bill Bryden, Steven Smith, Stacy Keach and James Keach, The Long Riders, followed by: Bo Goldman, Melvin and Howard; Jim Abrahams, David Zucker and Jerry Zucker, Airplane!; John Sayles, Return of the Secaucus Seven)

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: Paul Schrader and Mardik Martin, RAGING BULL (2nd: Alvin Sargent, Ordinary People, followed by: Christopher DeVore, Eric Bergen and David Lynch, The Elephant Man; Jonathan Hardy, David Stevens and Bruce Beresford, Breaker Morant; Valerie Curtin and Barry Levinson, Inside Moves)


CINEMATOGRAPHY: Freddie Francis, THE ELEPHANT MAN (2nd: Vilmos Zsigmond, Heaven‘s Gate, followed by: Michael Chapman, Raging Bull; Takao Saito and Shoji Ueda, Kagamusha; John Alcott, The Shining)

ART DIRECTION: THE SHINING, Heaven’s Gate, The Empire Strikes Back, The Elephant Man, Kagemusha 

COSTUME DESIGN: THE ELEPHANT MAN, Kagemusha, Somewhere in Time, Heaven's Gate, Popeye



EDITING: RAGING BULL, Fame, The Long Riders, Coal Miner's Daughter, The Blues Brothers

SOUND: RAGING BULL, The Empire Strikes Back, Fame, The Elephant Man, Altered States 



ORIGINAL SCORE: Ry Cooder, THE LONG RIDERS (2nd: John Williams, The Empire Strikes Back, followed by: John Morris, The Elephant Man; John Corigliano, Altered States; John Barry, Inside Moves)



SCORING FOR A MUSICAL/ADAPTATION SCORING: Paul Simon, ONE TRICK PONY (2nd: Michael Gore, Fame, followed by: Harry Nilsson, Popeye)



ORIGINAL SONG: “Out Here On My Own” from FAME (Music by Michael Gore, lyrics by Leslie Gore) (2nd: “How The Heart Approaches What It Yearns” from One Trick Pony (Music and lyrics by Paul Simon), followed by: "Magic" from Xanadu (Music and lyrics by John Farrar); “On The Road Again” from Honeysuckle Rose (Music and lyrics by Willie Nelson); “On The Radio” from Foxes (Music by Giorgio Moroder, lyrics by Donna Summer); “Late in the Evening“ from One Trick Pony (Music and lyrics by Paul Simon); "Fame" from Fame (Music by Michael Gore, lyrics by Dean Pitchford); "Call Me" from American Gigolo (Music by Giorgio Moroder, lyrics by Debbie Harry); “Is It Okay If I Call You Mine?” from Fame (Music and lyrics by Paul McCrane); "Could I Have This Dance" from Urban Cowboy (Music and lyrics by Wayland Holyfield and Bob House); "America" from The Jazz Singer (Music and lyrics by Neil Diamond); "I Sing The Body Electric" from Fame (Music by Michael Gore, lyrics by Dean Pitchford); "Look What You've Done to Me" from Urban Cowboy (Music and lyrics by Boz Scaggs and David Foster); “Looking for Love” from Urban Cowboy (Music and lyrics by Wanda Mallette, Patti Ryan and Bob Morrison); “Nine to Five” from Nine to Five (Music and lyrics by Dolly Parton); "I'm Alright" from Caddyshack (Music and lyrics by Kenny Loggins); "Love on the Rocks" from The Jazz Singer (Music and lyrics by Neil Diamond); "He Needs Me" from Popeye (Music and lyrics by Harry Nilsson))

SPECIAL EFFECTS: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, Altered States, Superman II

MAKEUP: THE ELEPHANT MAN, Altered States, Raging Bull

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