Best Art Direction: 1982

Official Nominations: Gandhi. Annie. Blade Runner. La Triviata. Victor/Victoria.

A solid list of nominations with no real surprises, as period pieces and musicals are represented as the regularly are in this category. Blade Runner is perhaps the unusual choice given it’s a Sci-Fi movie, but it was so visionary that it couldn’t be overlooked. Let’s be honest, Blade Runner is going to be my winner. Gandhi picked up the official win – an epic in every sense and one which would have been considerably less impressive had they not nailed the look.

Annie is a musical – we all know the story, the songs, the red hair. Musicals have exactly two things going for them – music and visuals. The songs are mostly irritating yet catchy in Annie, and it looks okay. It’s hardly a standout visual treat. Victor/Victoria fares better on the visual front while La Triviata puts a lot of stock in its interiors but can be dismissed as a 1983 release.

My Winner: Blade Runner

Blade Runner (1982) | film freedonia

My Nominations: Blade Runner. Conan The Barbarian. The Dark Crystal. The Wall. Poltergeist. The Thing. Tron.

While it’s a foregone conclusion that Blade Runner is sweeping up here, there are a number of notable also-rans to consider. Tron was every bit as revolutionary as Blade Runner yet aged much more quickly and lacked the narrative quality to warrant anything more than a brief nod in awareness of its existence. The Dark Crystal too deserves a mention, given the amount of dedication, talent, and effort involved in creating its world. The Wall brings together all manner of chaotic art styles in its smorgasbord of debauchery, while Poltergeist takes its suburban setting and wrenches every ounce of dread out of it as any Haunted House movie has in the past.

Conan The Barbarian suffers from looking cheap in comparison to some of the other films on the list, but excels in its world-building in a time of brutality, while The Thing uses its edge of the world setting in just as claustrophobic a manner as its long corridors and shadow encrusted rooms do.

My Winner: Blade Runner

Let us know your winner in the commenrs!

2 thoughts on “Best Art Direction: 1982

  1. John Charet November 11, 2022 / 12:48 am

    Great post 🙂 I too would choose Blade Runner 🙂 Anyway, keep up the great work as always 🙂

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