Superfluous Oscar Countdown, Day Ten: 1998

I’m watching MuchMusic’s (yes, my American readers, it’s a real thing) “Top 100 One Hit Wonders” while I’m writing this post, so be warned: I may suddenly, spontaneously, burst into really embarrassing song. Just so you know. *Take my breath aa-waaaaay…*

Sorry. Where was I? Right. Yesterday, I decided to make the most of my day off and put my time to good use researching the nominees listed in our Superfluous Oscar pool.  I watched “The Sessions” starring John Hawkes and the Oscar-nominated Helen Hunt.

Helen Hunt in "The Sessions"

Good luck this Sunday, Helen!

Holy bananas you guys, was Hunt ever good in this movie! She’s flat out naked for the majority of her scenes, and in the hands of a lesser actress, the part could have seemed sensationalistic and shallow. Instead, Hunt imbues her character with a warmth and compassion that brought tears to my eyes, more than once. If you’re looking for an inspirational true story (and you’re comfortable with nudity and frank and honest discussions about sex) then I’d highly recommend this movie. And if that description makes you uncomfortable … then I’d highly recommend you get over it and see this movie anyway. As a bonus selling point: Moon Bloodgood has a supporting (and fully clothed) role!

All of which is a long way of saying that in honour of Hunt “taking my breath away” (see what I did there?) today we’re looking at the nominated films from 1998, which is the year Hunt won her Oscar for “As Good as it Gets”. And the nominees are:

  • As Good as It Gets” James L. Brooks, Bridget Johnson and Kristi Zea, Producers
  • The Full Monty” Uberto Pasolini, Producer
  • Good Will Hunting” Lawrence Bender, Producer
  • L.A. Confidential” Arnon Milchan, Curtis Hanson and Michael Nathanson, Producers
  • Titanic” James Cameron and Jon Landau, Producers

Today is a tough one for me – while you’ve got to appreciate that the Academy is showing it has a sense of humour by nominating a comedy about unemployed steel workers who turn to stripping  … and while you know I appreciate any movie that showcases Matt and Ben in outstanding late-nineties fashion:

Ben Affleck and Matt Damon

Oh, boys. Look at those outfits. It’s a good thing you’re so cute.

… Can you really argue with the spectacle and romance and drama of “Titanic”? I think I have to agree with the Academy on this one:

The Superfluous (and Official) Oscar Goes to: Titanic

What do you guys think? What movie would you have chosen for the 1998 Best Picture winner? Did Titanic live up to the hype for you? Tell me all about it in the Comments! And remember, you’ve got six more days to fill out your Superfluous Oscar Ballot! Good luck!

love amb

8 thoughts on “Superfluous Oscar Countdown, Day Ten: 1998

  1. Titanic was possibly the most inevitable Oscar winner during my years loosely following the Academy Awards. No other movie had such a feeling of certainty around it.

    • Agreed. There was no real suspense when they announced the Best Picture winner that year … although I was surprised (in a good way) when Helen Hunt beat out Kate Winslet for Best Actress!

  2. Must admit I have never really “followed” the Oscars, so I find this a surprising list. Fully Monty (fun and feel-good:-)) vs Titanic (epic and heart-breaking, but all-around predictable). Others got thumbs up and were solid, for sure. But I’m with you and Dave (IAmbave:-)) that only Titanic could have taken it.

    • This is exactly why I love the Oscars – some years things are predictable, but some years the Academy can be just a hot mess with its’ nominations. A stripper comedy VS. a mathamatical genius VS a giant iceberg … the mind boggles!

      Btw – not sure if Dave has seen recent comment threads and is aware of his newfound celeb-couple-style nickname, I’ll have to pass that along, LOL

  3. You know, I think As Good As It Gets was probably the best of those flicks, at least in retrospect.

    We also just saw the Sessions not too long ago and really dug it. I would also recommend it to anyone who enjoys good movies, or has always wanted to see William H. Macy play a catholic priest. Good stuff, and glad you liked it too, Amb!

    • Looking back on it, that really was a good year. If Titanic hadn’t been released then, it could have been anyone’s game. I liked As Good As It Gets, and the film geek in me really liked “LA Confidential” too. Revisionist film noir – good times!

      Yes, I heart William H. Macy. I actually was debating profiling Fargo in tomorrow’s post, just because of him! He was awesome-sauce in The Sessions, too 🙂

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