Oscar History

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« Our Kind of Voting Pt. 2 | Main | Review: "Flight" »

Our Kind of Voting. Pt 1

I did my civic duty -- I amend, my civic pleasure at 7:40 AM this morning after about an hour of queueing. If you're from the US, get to it. VOTE. If you're not, well, this is a film site and film has no borders and no president... but it does have elections that everyone obsesses over.

So let's have fun with our other favorite kind of voting: Oscar voting.

Tell me who wins your vote in some of the most famously divisive, contentious, or just plain fabulous categories ever! Explain your choices in the comments.

GWYNETH PALTROW (Shakespeare in Love) vs. CATE BLANCHETT (Elizabeth) vs. FERNANDA MONTENEGRO (Central Station) vs. MERYL STREEP (One True Thing) vs. EMILY WATSON (Hilary & Jackie)

Sunset Blvd is just out on Blu-Ray TODAY in a remastered edition with a ton of extras 1950 BEST ACTRESS
BETTE DAVIS vs. ANNE BAXTER (literally… in All About Eve) vs. GLORIA SWANSON (Sunset Blvd) vs. JUDY HOLLIDAY (Born Yesterday) vs. ELEANOR PARKER (Caged)

TOMMY LEE JONES (The Fugitive) vs. LEONARDO DICAPRIO (What’s Eating Gilbert Grape) vs. RALPH FIENNES (Schindler’s List) vs. JOHN MALKOVICH (In the Line of Fire) vs. PETE POSTLETHWAITE (In the Name of the Father)


Who gets your vote now and did they always have your support in their races or have your allegiances shifted?

see also part 2

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Reader Comments (94)

Probably Cate for Elizabeth over Gwynny. Loved Judy, sentimental over Gloria, but Bette was never better. Pete was such a fine actor he should have been awarded at least one oscar, but I would have chosen Little Leo that particular year. And the winner is … Taxi Driver!

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoe U.K.

1998 Fernanda Montenegro a gut wrenching performance

1950 Bette Davis One of the greatest performances in cinema

1993 Ralph Fiennes worst omission in Oscar history

1976 A timely movie with great performances and direction

Reece Witherspoon's win was a farce.....

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterrick

OOps!!! 1976 movie Network Taxi Driver a close second

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterrick

1998: Watson
1950: Davis
1993: Fiennes
1976: Network

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWill

1998: Gwyneth Paltrow

1950: Gloria Swanson

1993: Pete Postlethwaite

1976: Network...or Taxi Driver?

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDeivith Coast

1998: Streep in a weak year

1950: Davis gave one of the best performances of all time

1993: Fiennes epitomized horror and should have won, but Jones is a close second, and a sentimental choice of mine

1976: Network is one of the greatest films ever made; Lumet's masterwork

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

1998 Actress, probably Emily Watson - hate that Hilary& Jackie seems forgotten. 1950 Actress, Davis - there are other strong nominees here, but c'mon it's Bette Davis in All About Eve! 1993 Supporting Actor, Fiennes. 1976 - Network, by a mile - amazing performances, superb script, beautifully put together - it's very rare a film that big is so well put together in every aspect.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterScottC

98: Blanchett
50: Bette
76: Taxi Driver
93: Fieness

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdinasztie

1998: Streep - It's avery moving performance
1950: Davis - Legendary role.!
1993: Fiennes - This was a tough field, but Fiennes epitomized the banality of evil.
1976: Network - It's a film I always enjoy rewatching.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRaul

If I had more time to prepare, like a good citizen of the cinema, I would have studied all of the nominees (and seen all of them), but as of right now, I'd go:

Taxi Driver

...and Obama/Biden

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

1998: Fernanda Montenegro - Absolutely heartbreaking performance
1950: Bette Davis - I don't need a reason
1993: Ralph Fiennes - One of the most memorable, and scariest and complex, villains of all time
1976: Taxi Driver - Slut little Jodie

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSad man

GWYNETH PALTROW (Shakespeare in Love) vs. CATE BLANCHETT (Elizabeth) vs. FERNANDA MONTENEGRO (Central Station) vs. MERYL STREEP (One True Thing) vs. EMILY WATSON (Hilary & Jackie)

Definitely Fernanda. Not because I am from Brazil, but because this was the best. However, I am fine with Paltrow winning. In fact, all five were great, but Fernanda was greater.

BETTE DAVIS vs. ANNE BAXTER (literally… in All About Eve) vs. GLORIA SWANSON (Sunset Blvd) vs. JUDY HOLLIDAY (Born Yesterday) vs. ELEANOR PARKER (Caged)

I haven't seen the last two. It is really hard to choose between Davis and Swanson. I would probably go with Swanson because Davis had other chances and Swanson's is also a legendary performance.

TOMMY LEE JONES (The Fugitive) vs. LEONARDO DICAPRIO (What’s Eating Gilbert Grape) vs. RALPH FIENNES (Schindler’s List) vs. JOHN MALKOVICH (In the Line of Fire) vs. PETE POSTLETHWAITE (In the Name of the Father)

I like Tommy Lee Jones now, but this nomination was a joke. He only won because the film was loved and had to win somewhere. DiCaprio and Postlethwaite were also great, but this was Fiennes easy easy win if merits were the only thing at stake.


I haven't seen Bound for Glory. Network is by far the best picture among the other three.

Marcelo - Brazil.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMarcelo

1998: Gwyneth Paltrow
1950: Gloria Swanson
1993: Ralph Fiennes
1976: Network

All easy choices for me.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEoin Daly





November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterArt

1998 Actress: Fernanda Montenegro is exceptional, so she'd get my win too. But that would mean Gwynnie would end up without her Oscar so... I couldn't do that to her. Besides, Montenegro couldn't care less about winning. She's that cool.

1950 Actress: It should have been an epic match between Swanson and Davis but the lesser performer from the five won the trophy. Bah. Since Davis had already won, I'd go with Swanson, but both of those performances are astonishing and perfect movie star turns.

1993 Supporting Actor: Ah, Tommy Lee. It's not that I don't think you're good in some movies but... I can't stand you most of the time. Your win over Ralph Fiennes' extraordinary work (or even above the underrated DiCaprio performance) is a blasphemy (at least in my opinion).

1976 Picture: NEWTORK. Because it is perfect.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJorge Rodrigues

1998: Paltrow, an unfairly derided win. I thought she was wonderful.
1950: There is no one but Swanson.
1993: Fiennes loss still hurts almost 20 years later (though I was but a toddler at the time)
1976: This is the toughest one, but I have to go with Network.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJonny

FERNANDA MONTENEGRO (Central Station) - remarkable performance much better than one which had won

BETTE DAVIS (ALL ABOUT EVE) - One of the best performances I've seen

RALPH FIENNES (Schindler’s List) - a performance that haunts whoever has seen the movie

TAXI DRIVER - it's part of the history of movie making

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSergio



RALPH FIENNES (Schindler’s List)


November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterrafael

1998-- Emily Watson. I absolutely love her, and it's sad how it seems like all she's getting anymore is the mom roles.

1950--Gloria Swanson. Sorry, Bette.

1993--Ralph Fiennes in a walk. Great category, but Fiennes stands head and shoulders above everyone else.
1976--Tax Driver, just barely edging out All the President's Men.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz N.

Cate Blanchett: (1998) Actress

Bette Davis: (1950)(1938)
(1935) Actress

Leonardo DiCaprio: (1993)
Supporting Actor

Taxi Driver: (1976) Picture

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter3rtful

1998: All performances unseen.
1950: Gloria Swanson
1993: Ralph Fiennes
1976: Taxi Driver (Network has some fair sized problems (too stagy, a bit sexist by today's standards, innately tied to the current events/current political structures) as far as working as a full blown winner against Taxi Driver from today's perspective, though silver's no mean feat.)

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Cate Blanchett

Judy Holliday

Ralph Fiennes


November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFritz

98 - I'm not a fan of any of these performances except for Fernanda Montenegro, so she gets my vote. Deservedly so I might add.
50 - Gloria Swanson in 'Sunset Boulevard' is to me one of the greatest performances ever.
93 - Ralph Fiennes, the ruthless meanness weirdly fits him like a glove.
76 - Now it gets really hard. All the President's Men, Network and Taxi Driver are all terrific movies. I like them all so much. I guess I'll go with Network, but that may be because I've just watched it again recently.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterConrado

98 best actress : Cate of course and its because she was great and it was a true STAR-IS-BORN moment. Plus I dont like Paltrow all hollywood royalty entitlement and her career thereafter doesn't warrant the win - that was her peak!!!!
50 best actress : a tie between Davis & Swanson.... cant choose one over the other.
93 Supp Actor : Fiennes because he made a despicable Nazi psychopath sexy and of the 5 its the one still vivid years after seeing the movie. All I remember of Jones is that he screamed a lot.
76 Best Pic : All the President's Men because it presented journalists doing their job well which is something missing in our partisan punditry world. This is the one category where I have changed my vote - it was Network a few years ago because it is just so entertaining and full of fantastic acting.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermurtada

1998 - Emily Watson

1950 - Davis, although I don't dispute the Judy Holliday.

1993 - Fiennes

1976 - Network

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRose

Best Actress 1998 - Paltrow (an extremely winning performance), with Montenegro a close second (Sacrilege: I kinda wish Zellweger had been nominated for One True Thing instead of Meryl)

Best Actress 1950 - One of the best lline-ups of nominees ever in this category, and I find it nearly impossible to choose from among them. I always feel the need to stick up/root for the comedies, since they never get any respect, and Holliday's timing could not possibly be any better (she makes even the most boring of actions, like organizing a gin rummy hand, fascinating to watch). But then I think of "I'm ready for my close-up," and "We had faces then". And then I think of "Fasten your seatbelts," and "Usually at the point where she has to rewrite and rethink them," and... I'm going with Bette Davis. This time. The monologue in the car clinches it.

Best Supporting Actor 1993 - Fiennes. Easily.

Best Picture 1976 - I still have a soft spot for Rocky, and I used to be an "All The President's Men" supporter, but then I finally saw Network, and... COME. ON.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdenny

1998: I abstain. No preference. Just give it to Ricci and call it a day.

1950: Davis. No question. One of the best star turns of all time.

1993: No preference.

1975: Network or All the President's Men. Never seen BFG, though it's Ashby so I need to get on that. Never a Rocky fan and I find Taxi Driver WILDLY overrated.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBeau

1998 Best Actress: Gwyneth Paltrow

1950 Best Actress: Bette Davis

1993 Best Supporting Actor: Ralph Fiennes (though i heart DiCaprio in Gilbert Grape)

1976 Best Picture: Network

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCinemateo

Cate Blanchett for Elizabeth, but Gwyneth Paltrow was great in Shakespeare in Love -- I have no quarrel with the result.

One of the all-time great list of nominees -- not only did everyone of them deserved a nomination, but you could make the claim that each turned in the best performance of her career. I'd go with Gloria Swanson in Sunset Boulevard on the grounds that it's the most iconic of the five, with Bette Davis a close second.

Ralph Fiennes in Schindler's List. Tommy Lee Jones was a hoot in The Fugitive, but I think Fiennes' performance has emerged as the best. Not really close in my mind.

Of these nominees, I'd vote for Network, but to be honest, I prefer The Outlaw Josey Wales to all of them. Which is an outlier response to be sure.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMythical Monkey

1998: Cate in Elizabeth. I don't begrudge Gwyneth her win though as I love SIL and her in it!

1950: Gloria Swanson! She is perfect and creepy and cougar-y. I'm surprised how little love (as compared to Bette) I've seen for her in the votes here. And I've never seen Parker in Caged.

1993: Ralph Fiennes. Horrific. Although at the time, I was team TLJ :D

1976: Network is just incomparable.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTravis


2) ex aequo Bette Davis and Gloria Swanson


4) Taxi Driver

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteradelutza

98: Though I remember liking Blanchett's performance my memory of it is sort of hazy because I think the film that contains it is very week, but I quite like Shakespeare in Love so I'll vote Paltrow

50: Swanson. Davis owns Eve but Swanson's performance was so smart and biting and perfectly over the top.

93: Fiennes. Great category but some consensus' are with good reason.

76: I struggle with this one but I think I'd give it to Network by a hair. I'd feel obliged to give Marty Director though... Oh wait, he wasn't nominated? Seriously?

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCasey Fiore

1950 BEST ACTRESS - GLORIA SWANSON (Sunset Blvd) with BETTE DAVIS (All About Eve) as a close second (I would have voted Swanson because Davis had yet won two Oscars)
1976 BEST PICTURE - NETWORK all the way!!!!!

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStefano

I was about to type... everyone chose NETWORK no contest with TAXI DRIVER when suddenly there was a surge of TAXI DRIVER voting. What a tough matchup! In the past i've always said Taxi Driver but I have to admit that I am more likely to rewatch Network.

and I'm with the Montenegro voters for sure in 1998 but I don't mind Gwynnie's win. It's a real movie star performance.

November 6, 2012 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

1998: Gwyneth
1950: Gloria
1993: Ralph
1976: Taxi Driver

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike in Canada

Fernanda, Bette, Fiennes, Network

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPeter

98: Gwynnie gets a lot of undeserved hate for her amazing performance. Blanchett wasn't even the best from that lineup: that honor belongs to Ms. Montenegro (all-time material IMO) but since Gwynnie was fantastic i can't complain.

50: Haven't seen Holliday or Parker, but: Swanson >>>> Baxter >>>>>>>>>>>>>> Davis

93: Fiennes and it's not even close

76: Taxi Driver is Marty's best movie but Network is another masterpiece and one of the best screenplays ever written, so that

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commentereduardo



Taxi Driver


November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercal roth


November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterwglick

1998: It's between Blanchett and Montenegro, but I'd say Montenegro.

1950: Davis. Runner up: Swanson.

1993: Ralph, the incarnation of evil. Runner up: Leo was really good in "Gilbert Grape..."

1975: Network. Runner up: Taxi driver.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSupposed_working_rightnow

This is hard, ya'll!.

I STILL haven't seen Shakespeare in Love, but my Mom had just died a few years before, so I give it to Streep, because the character reminds me of my Mom.

Bette Davis in a perfect performance in a perfect film, All About Eve.

Someone upthread said Raph Fiennes made a horrible horrible person "sexy" and that is true. Stunning work in a stunning movie. Posthewaite is my close 2nd though.

I still believe, on this anxious Election Day, that Rocky is one of the most American of all American films. It's simple, it's straightforward, it's inspirational, and it's beautiful. It believes in a future, where as the other films do not. Rocky it is.

P.S. Do MORE of these!!! This is fun!

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterforever1267

1998: Emily Watson
1950: Gloria Swanson
1993: Ralph Fiennes
1976: Taxi Driver

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMeghan

Watson by a mile, though that was a pretty good year.

Bette Davis, in one of the top 5 female performances OF ALL TIME.

In '93, I said Feinnes, but we've seen this role from him numerous times since. So I'll go Leo.

Clearly the worst film won. I vote Network.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSawyer

1998 Cate Blanchett. Best work of her career.

1950 Gloria Swanson. Would go with Anne Baxter next followed by Davis.

1993 Ralph Fiennes. DiCaprio is a distant second. Fiennes' performance is one of the best of all time as far as I'm concerned.

1976 Taxi Driver, although I feel wrong for not going with Network or All the President's Men.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDoug

1998: Fernanda Montenegro
1950: Gloria Swanson
1993: Ralph Fiennes
1976: Network

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterca

Paltrow was fine
Fiennes (almost DiCaprio)
Network Vs. Taxi Driver ...jeez..I have to say Taxi Driver, leaving best script for Network. Those are two of the most influential, important, and great films, but I think Taxi Driver is overall a superior film.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDino


November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJS

1998: Gwyneth Paltrow: I think she plays the typical muse role with surprising aplomb and added gravity that normally you wouldn't expect. Her British accent is still perfection,and she is just incandescent in the film. She's lit from within. Stoppard's script helps, but she is genuine, gamine, and sweet. Watson a 2nd for me. Like Tom Cruise in Rain Man, mighty Zellweger should have been nominated for One True Thing not Meryl.

1950: I love the art imitating life role so Swanson and Davis both have it in spades. My heart is with Davis. It's always been 1 and 1a for me, but Davis just gets these zingers, looks, and moments that seem to just define who she was as an actress. She's at the top of her power and looks smashing. Eleanor Parker is nothing to sneeze at though. Man is she underrated. #Baroness4theWin

1993: They're all so good! DiCaprio finds ways to emerge from the trappings of the "special needs role" and Fiennes is so deliciously cocky and seductive even within his evil. But I'm going with Jones. His naturalism and his no nonsense attitude is such in stark opposition to the heightened drama of The Fugitive that you can't help but be drawn to him. I feel like he is a Federal Sheriff when he isn't acting.

1976: Network is great. It's ahead of its time, incredibly acted (especially Holden imo). Rocky is thrilling, audience-pleasing flick that doesn't play into the vanity of the leading man and delivers on all of the drama. But I'm going with All the President's Men. The abrasive collison of acting styles by Redford, Hoffman and supporting players (Robards, Balsam, Alexander etc.) the script of perfect pitch and drama, and the tension that still thrills on multiple viewings created by Pakula. Stunning.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDrew C

1998: Cate Blanchett
1950: Bette Davis
1993: Ralph Fiennes
1976: Taxi Driver

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

1998: Montenegro (Paltrow is a good choice though)

1950: Even in one of the best lines-up ever, Bette wins this easily for me. Too bad that Judy Holliday's only chance to shine completely on the screen came out that year. And Swanson is #5 in my list.

1993: Every one of them could have been a deserved winner, well except Malkovich I guess. My personal choice is the Academy's: Jones.

1976: 3 masterpieces here, but my personal choice is definitely Network.

November 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterhcu

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