Best Foreign Film – 1982

Official Nominations: Begin The Beguine. Alsino And The Condor. Clean Slate. Flight Of The Eagle. Private Life.

Not the most thrilling line-up this year, although Spain picked up their first win with Begin The Beguine. It’s fine, you don’t need to ever see it, but it’s a story you’ve seen any number of times before following a man returning home to reconnect with his past. There’s a political background, there’s the added twist of the guy being sick, but it’s par for the course. Alsino And The Condor is the best of the bunch, a coming of age war story set in Nicuragua as the US becomes involved in the Sandanista/Contra conflict. Dean Stockwell stars as an American Military pilot while Alan Esquival is the titular Alsino, a boy who believes he can fly but who is increasingly horrified by the war and violence on all sides.

Clean Slate is a little longer than it needs to be, an adaptation of an American Hard-Boiled Crime novel, transposed to a small African town. It’s funny, violent, but ultimately bleak, emboldened by the great Philippe Noiret and Isabelle Huppert. Flight Of The Eagle similarly features a familiar face in Max Von Sydow, starring in the biographical tale of three men attempting to reach the North Pole in a hot air balloon. You can guess how that went. Finally, Private Life is your typical Soviet drama – a man forced to re-evaluate his life and position after being forced to retire.

My Winner: Alsino And The Condor

Alsino y el cóndor (1982) - Filmaffinity

My Nominations: Alsino And The Condor. Flight Of The Eagle. Gandhi. The Dark Crystal. The Wall. Passion. Tenebrae. The Year Of Living Dangerously.

I carry two over from the official list, and add a bunch of my own picks. Gandhi. It’s an English film. It won Best Picture. Of course it should be here. In fact, Great Britain makes up the bulk of my picks, with The Dark Crystal’s unique story and vision taking up a deserved spot and The Wall with its excellent music and iconic imagery grabbing another.

We hop over the Channel to France and Jean Luc Godard’s Passion, the story of a director’s struggles in creating an obscure Art film. That’s what Godard does. I’m not remotely the most qualified person to discuss Art, but I’m fairly literate when it comes to Film – while much of this was lost on me, the central themes of creation and the balancing of the love of creating versus physical human love with another person, are handled with Godard’s usual intense lens, and it’s bolstered a strong lead in Radziwilowicz and support from Isabelle Huppert. It’s pleasingly swift too.

Tenebrae is Argento’s follow up to Inferno, offering a more traditional Giallo but with plenty of his trademark artistry. It lacks the complexity of his previous couple of films, but his experiences in making those films honed his knife mystery story telling skills and could be called his best straight slasher. Of course, it’s clinical, garish, and super violent – but that’s what we expect from Argento.

Finally, Australia’s The Year Of Living Dangerously has a taste of neo-noir, a dashing of war intrigue, but is of course a taut romance. You don’t get many of those these days – it’s all Rom Coms or Tragedies. Weaver is great, Gibson is great, Hunt won the Oscar. Great film.

My Winner: The Wall

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Writing (Adapted) – 1982

Official Nominations: Missing. Das Boot. Sophie’s Choice. The Verdict. Victor/Victoria

Das Boot is out – not a 1982 movie. That leaves us with a Legal Drama written by David Mamet, a turbulent movie with flashbacks to the Holocaust, a biography dealing with the search for a missing journalist, and a Blake Edwards musical. Victor/Victoria is a remake but also a musical coming in a post Cabaret world – it’s the same vibe as Cabaret but a more light movie. What was it with cross dressing this year? It’s fine, but forgettable for someone like me who’s not into musicals.

Biographies tend to be hit and miss for me, unless I’m interested in the subject. Missing is set in the aftermath of the Pinochet Dictator led and US backed overthrow of the Socialist Chilean government, leading to countless deaths and atrocities. Costa-Gavras adapts the book, detailing the disappearance of an American Journalist, but chooses to focus on the relationship between the journalist’s father and wife as they come from political opposites. It’s good, but doesn’t go deep enough in its pointing of fingers.

You can’t go wrong with David Mamet – he raises the quality of whatever he’s involved in, and rather than being a typical dull courtroom drama, we get the personal touches and sparkling one-liners regarding an alcoholic lawyer who develops a personal relationship with a malpractice suite involving the Catholic Church – his closing speech of the case is among the best you’ll hear in this sort of film.

Finally, Sophie’s Choice is an unflinching look at the long-lasting damage of the Holocaust on a woman who managed to survive and continue her life in the US. Everyone knows ‘that moment’, but the film is a series of such moments both in flashback and present day form which suggest that no amount of time or distance can free you from the past’s most decisive moments.

My Winner: The Verdict

David Mamet, The verdict A screenplay - AbeBooks

My Nominations: The Verdict. Conan The Barbarian. The Thing. Blade Runner. Creepshow. Fast Times At Ridgemont High. The Wall.

A world away from the serious tone of the Official Nominations, my unlikely picks are a lot more fun. Along with ET, Fast Times is one of the movies which defined what the 80s was, early in the decade. Adapted from Cameron Crowe’s book in which he famously pretended to be a high school student (he was 22) and went back to school for a year to detail the lives of the kids he saw everyday. It’s a loose coming of age movie which deals with the always/never changing problems of teens as they cross into adulthood, given that LA gloss by Amy Heckerling.

The Thing is more of an adaptation of Who Goes There? than it is of the previous movie – albeit one which John Carpenter was a massive fan of. It doubles down on the paranoia of the story, sharing just enough of the characters thoughts that we learn about them but never enough to trust them – of course it helps that there’s a few great one-liners in there. Blade Runner features some of the most famous dialogue of the 80s and does arguably the best adaptation of any Philip K Dick story while The Wall is a visual extension of both the album and live show of the same name, adding more transparent detail.

Creepshow… probably doesn’t qualify as a true adaptation, but it still features stories written for another medium rewritten for the screen. Good enough for me. The stories come thick and fast, they get straight to the pulpy point from first frame and waste no time with periphery gubbins – you have the story, the characters, then the comeuppance. In a similar vein is my winner – not only an adaptation of the character and short stories of Conan by Robert E Howard, but also a story of individual strength in overcoming as written by Oliver Stone and John Milius, and again featuring some of the best cinematic one-liners and soliloquies of the decade.

My Winner: Conan The Barbarian

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Cast – 1982

My Nominations: Creepshow. Blade Runner. Diner. ET. Evil Under The Sun. Fast Times At Ridgemont High. Gandhi. The Thing. The Verdict. Conan The Barbarian.

You know me; I love a good ensemble movie and I love a good ‘small team against the odds/Dirty Dozen type movie. We have both of those this year – Fast Times perhaps being one of the first and finest examples of an up and coming ensemble forming a formless slice of life coming of age format – Judge Reinhold, Sean Penn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Phoebe Cates, Nic Cage, Forest Whitaker, Brian Backer, Anthony Edwards, Eric Stoltz, Amanda Wyss, Robert Romanus, Ray Walston, and Vincent Schiavelli all pop up.

Diner follows a similar group of youngsters in another part of the US, a group a few years out of school but also on the verge of a shift in their lives. Steve Guttenberg, Micky Rourke, Paul Reiser, Kevin Bacon, Daniel Stern, Ellen Barkin, and Tim Daly star. Looking back to a more established ensemble is Evil Under The Sun, an Agatha Christie tale featuring Peter Ustinov, Maggie Smith, Sylvia Miles, James Mason, Jane Birkin, Colin Blakely, Roddy McDowell, and Diana Rigg.

With a massive cast, albeit perhaps featuring less well known stars, is Gandhi with Ben Kingsley, Edward Fox, Candice Bergen, John Mills, John Gielgud, Martin Sheen, Trevor Howard, Rohini Hattangadi, Roshan Seth, Nigel Hawthorne, Daniel Day Lewis, Pradeep Kumar, Ian Bannen, Amrish Puri, Richard Griffiths etc etc.

It’s not all large casts though, with The Verdict relying mainly on Paul Newman, James Mason, Charlotte Rampling, Jack Warden, and Milo O’Shea, while ET introduces Drew Barrymore and Henry Thomas alongside Dee Wallace and Peter Coyote. Blade Runner features some of the most iconic casting of the year – Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Daryl Hannah, Joanna Cassidy, and Edward James Olmos. Creepshow is an anthology with little to no crossover between stories – those stories featuring Ted Danson, Stephen King, Adrienne Barbeau, Ed Harris, Jon Lormer, Viveca Lindfors, Leslie Nielsen, Gaylen Ross, Hal Holbrook, and EG Marshall.

Finally, The Thing sees Kurt Russell lead an increasingly threatened and paranoid team of snow boys including Wilford Brimley, Keith David, TK Carter, Richard Masur, Donald Moffat, Thomas G Waites, Joe Polis, Peter Maloney, David Clennon, Richard Dysart, and Charles Hallahan. It’s one of the greatest single location movies ever and it wouldn’t be that way if the cast and characters were not all likeable and relatable.

My Winner: The Thing

Pin on THE THING 1982 -THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD 1951

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Stuntwork – 1982

My Nominations: 48 Hours. The Beastmaster. Blade Runner. Conan The Barbarian. ET. First Blood. Megaforce. Rocky III. The Thing.

We’re into peak 80s action era now, and as such we have stunts galore. Of the many swords and sandals movies released in this era, The Beastmaster is one of the most fondly remembered thanks to its silly charm and unique premise. It’s the animal work which is most notable here, but the film has plenty of sword swinging action too.

Putting every other Sword and Sandal film to shame, is Conan The Barbarian. Thanks to Milius and Stone the story has the look and smarts which most in the genre lack, and in Schwarzenegger there’s a genuine star in the making – it helps that he’s backed up by Bergman, Mako, James Earl Jones, and Max Von Sydow.  The film has several epic battle scenes throughout, from the opening village attack, the temple raids, and the climactic battle of the mounds, to many interspersed fights and encounters meaning it’s a practical stunt fan’s delight.

ET is 80s Spielberg, and while it’s not an action movie, he knows how to entertain a family audience – BMX chases. Blade Runner is not an action heavy movie but the scenes it does have are memorable for their visuals. Rocky III gets a cursory vote for for glove on glove action.

Megaforce is famously one of the worst movies of the decade, but it’s still a spectacle. While Hal Needham may not have cared much for story or character, when it came to stunts there were few better and in Megaforce he pulled out all the stops. The Thing is all about close quarters and the action is relatively contained even within the claustrophobic surroundings. Like Blade Runner, it’s all about the impact and how the action serves the story. Finally, the only genuine contender to Conan is Ted Kotcheff’s First Blood – the film which introduced us to John Rambo. A noticeably more dramatic, less action focused piece that its sequels, First Blood still sees Rambo taking out cops and amateurs in the Pacific North West using all manner of traps and tactics.

15 Fun Facts About CONAN THE BARBARIAN — GeekTyrant

My Winner: Conan The Barbarian

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Best Score – 1982

Official Nominations: ET. Gandhi. An Officer And A Gentleman. Poltergeist. Sophie’s Choice. Victor/Victoria. Annie. One From The Heart.

Here we are ladies and gentlemen; the single greatest snub/error/mistake/catastrophic fuck up in the history of The Oscars, made worse by the fact that this is another year where the Original Score category was split into two awards, and they still didn’t nominate the best movie score of all time. Lets see what they did nominate, the fools.

ET was the winner this year, John Williams racking up another one, and you can’t complain that it won out of the nominations. Really, it’s the only choice here. How one man could create so many greats scores to so many great movies remains a mystery – there is truly no-one like him. I’m not the biggest fan of ET but in truth I haven’t watched it since I was a kid – it is of course on the list of movies to show my kids. The score starts out eerie and mysterious, but before long will have you reaching for the handkerchief.

The Gandhi soundtrack is not one I’m overly fond of – I like it, I like the merging of East and West, but still it never quite touched me. An Officer And A Gentlemen shouldn’t be here, existing solely because of the popularity of the hit song which accompanied the film – half the score is the chorus melody to that song played with different instruments and the other half is other songs. No way it gets nominated here. Poltergeist is okay… for such a stellar horror film it deserves a much better score, Jerry Goldsmith was capable of so much more. Sophie’s Choice is of course a soundtrack filled with beauty and sadness and if you’ve seen the film then hearing pieces of the music are sure to tug at your heart and soul.

On to the adaptation nominations and Victor/Victoria which won the award is… look, lets not even bother. All three choices don’t need to be here, don’t need their own category, and aren’t very good.

My Winner: ET

E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial: Amazon.co.uk: CDs & Vinyl

My Nominations: ET. Sophie’s Choice. Conan The Barbarian. Blade Runner. First Blood. Halloween III. The Wall.

Stop what you’re doing. Watch this clip. Go out and buy the Conan The Barbarian soundtrack. Thank me, and thank Crom. Look at the way the conductor gets his orchestra hyped up for playing in the first few seconds – he knows. If that video doesn’t make you want to go out and punch a camel, suplex a witch into a fire, and behead some roaming marauders then I don’t think I can be friends with you. That clip has a fraction of the power of the original. And that track is only a small piece of the greatest soundtrack ever written. There is no sense in arguing – if you aren’t agreeing with me, you are wrong. If you don’t listen, then to hell with you.

There are many many people who will turn their nose up at this, the mere notion that a Schwarzenegger movie could win a Best Score Oscar. There are many film fans who aren’t even aware that this exists. Once again, stop what you’re doing, and listen to this now. That second clip is Poledouris himself conducting, his only live performance, a few months before he died. The sound quality on it is crap, but still – I guarantee it’ll wipe the floor with anything else you’ll hear today. Never before or since has a movie soundtrack had so many integral pieces, so many memorable cues and melodies. Most movie scores have a main theme, maybe an additional love track, character track, or quirky track but Conan The Barbarian never lets up for a single second.  You can listen to this without ever seeing the film, but seeing it certainly raises the score to another level, just like the score raises the film. If I have one wish from writing these hundreds of Oscars posts, it’s that anyone reading listens to this soundtrack. Go. Now.

What competition was there this year? If you don’t care about Conan missing out on a nomination, surely you feel that Blade Runner deserved one? I guess they didn’t want Vangelis winning again. Jerry Goldsmith was nominated this year, but it should have been for First Blood. It’s unusual for action movies to receive good scores, classy scores, but as we saw with Conan, it’s not always the case – the 80s has a host of monumental scores for action movies.

Although I’m loathe to mention it at all, given that it’s one of the worst films ever made, Halloween III does have a great score, once again provided by the maestro John Carpenter. It’s much different from his previous efforts in the series, uses much more synth, but is filled with threat which the film itself doesn’t have. It’s another score you can stick on and enjoy without seeing the film – in this case that’s probably the best option.

Another travesty, especially when they added an extra category, is that The Wall did not receive a nomination. Pink Floyd’s album may be the best album ever and the film adds additional tracks as well as reworking some from the original. There’s so much wrong with this category this year. Also getting a nomination from me is Morricone’s score to John Carpenter’s The Thing. It’s interesting that Carpenter didn’t write it as it sounds exactly like something he would have written  – I wouldn’t be surprised if he wasn’t heavily involved with its composition.

My Winner: Conan The Barbarian

Feel free to leave a comment once you have listened to the Conan soundtrack, and tell me how it has changed your life!

Best Director – 1982

Official Nominations: Richard Attenborough. Wolfgang Peterson. Steven Spielberg. Sydney Pollack. Sidney Lumet.

It’s a two horse race this year. Richard Attenborough got a well deserved win for Gandhi, bringing everything the Academy loves – a famous biographical character, an epic David Lean scale, stirring performances, and visuals for days. Attenborough commands the scope and it’s hard to vote against him here. Peterson is great, but this wasn’t a 1982 movie so he’s immediately out of contention. Steven Spielberg made perhaps the 80s movie in ET and at the same time it’s maybe this movie and his directing which nails the Spielberg feel. Plus it’s all wrapped up in a heart-warming eternal story, complete with some of the most famous images in Cinema. It’s between those two.

Lumet (The Verdict) and Pollack (Tootsie) perhaps have less of an authoritative stamp on the two movies – good movies, but when weighing up what a Director brings to a movie it’s clear they’re not going to win versus Spielberg or Attenborough. You can’t go wrong with either pick, but for me I think Attenborough takes it. Ask me again tomorrow and I may change my mind.

My Winner: Richard Attenborough.

1982: Best Director - Richard Attenborough "Gandhi"

My Nominations: Richard Attenborough. Ridley Scott. Barry Levinson. Steven Spielberg. Alan Parker. John Carpenter.

The two main picks cross over to my Nominations, joining at least one glaring omission and a few cult picks. While Alien picked up a single Oscar and put Scott on the radar, and while Blade Runner received two nominations, it’s a bit of a mystery that Scott was not nominated here. It’s the single most visionary movie of the year and Scott’s stamp of authority is all over the movie. The movie was misunderstood and not the greatest success, but you have to have Scott taking over a spot from Lumet or Pollack here.

I add Barry Levinson for his debut Diner, a movie which doesn’t look like it does much on the surface but has so much heart and humour bubbling underneath – it takes a director who understands the material and the relationships to make a film like this work, to make it authentic. In some ways it’s not an obvious pick in this category, but from another angle it seems like something the Academy would choose.

Alan Parker gets immense credit for bringing The Wall to the big screen – it doesn’t always work as a film, as a story, but Parker is all in with the tone and the visuals and the pain. Finally, The Thing may be Carpenter’s best achievement and his greatest accomplishment as a director. It’s a superb, stylized, cold exercise in taut tension. I’d love to pick Carpenter here, because I don’t know if he will have another opportunity to win. But….

My Winner: Ridley Scott

Best Cinematography – 1982

Official Nominations: Gandhi. Das Boot. ET. Sophie’s Choice. Tootsie.

Gandhi is your obvious and official winner this year – none of the other candidates come close in terms of visual scope and spacing. It helps that the films it goes up against are far from the strongest of the year – Das Boot being a 1981 movie and immediately dismissed. ET would be my second pick, and while it would be unfair to compare it to Spielberg’s previous work, those comparisons nevertheless come and the film seems less impressive. Sophie’s Choice is a fine nomination, but there always seemed to me something a little too glossy, too greased lens about its appearance for the subject matter, while Tootsie feels like less of a genuine nomination for the work as much as getting another notch on the belt for the film’s resumé.

My Winner: Gandhi

The Film Sufi: “Gandhi” - Richard Attenborough (1982)

My Nominations: Gandhi. Conan The Barbarian. Blade Runner. Koyaanisqatsi. Liquid Sky. Poltergeist. Tenebrae. The Thing.

This is a much more interesting list, and one which more accurately shows the quality of 1982. Few of my films were likely going to get a genuine nomination, but out of them all Blade Runner seems like the one with the best shot. Does anyone seriously argue that Tootsie should be nominated above Blade Runner? If you drop Das Boot and Tootsie from the Official Nominations, one of those places would be picked up by Blade Runner. Jordan Cronenweth did pick up a BAFTA for his stunning work, and while influence is difficult to determine at the time of release, we now know just how influential him and the film have become.

Koyaanisqatsi had an outside shot of being nominated – every so often an indie or experimental film will grab a random nomination and while this no longer has the impact it once would have had, it still makes an impression on first time viewers. Similarly Liquid Sky will leave a lasting impression with its weird concoction of visual and audio assault techniques, but it’s far too offbeat to ever be spoken of in polite Academy circles.

I can sympathize with an argument for Poltergeist being nominated if ET is – or at least there being a 50/50 choice between the two. While ET may have the more iconic images, I think Poltergeist uses its visuals in a more impactful way on the viewer and on the story. Tenebrae is stunning – we’re at peak Argento and Tovoli here and aside from the colouring and lighting, the technical feats throughout the film exceed any of the Official Nominations.

My final picks, while unashamedly biased, are also wonderful examples of making a film’s look and feel an integral part of its overall tone. Conan The Barbarian is a gorgeous movie from start to finish with a sense of the epic to suit its tales of high adventure sensibility, while The Thing – a film almost purely about paranoia and tension – is suitably with low angles, from around corners, and from within shadows.

My Winner: Blade Runner

Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Best Picture – 1982

Official Nominations: Gandhi. ET. The Verdict. Missing. Tootsie

Gandhi is your official winner this year, and it’s difficult to argue otherwise. It’s a masterwork on an impressive scale, reminiscent in colour and scope of Kurosawa’s later work, and with a brilliant lead performance. It’s not a film I ever feel the need to revisit, but it’s one everyone should see. I feel the same way about each of the official nominations – Tootsie is not my cup of tea but is held together by a level of charm, humour, and good performances, Missing is tense but Costas Garvas doesn’t go for the throat as much as I would have liked, while The Verdict is about as good a Courtroom Drama as you’ll ever see but is not a genre I care for, propped up by a stellar cast and script. My winner then, as much as I’m not the biggest fan of it, is ET as it remains a beautiful family friendly film and further showcased Spielberg’s ability to mix entertainment and art like few others can.

My Winner: ET

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982) - IMDb

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

While I’m not always a fan of simply including my personal favourites in this (or any) category, it just so happens that my personal picks are strong enough to warrant inclusion here. Of course, it would be difficult for me to avoid arguably my favourite Musical of all time, two of my favourite Sci-Fi movies ever, and my favourite Fantasy movie. Poltergeist is Tobe Hooper/Steven Spielberg and is more fun for me than ET. It’s family friendly-ish, and a wonderful introduction to Horror with a fair share of both gore, lore, and scares. The Wall is the film adaptation of one of my all time favourite albums, and as troubled an end product as it is, the fact that it exists and isn’t a complete mess is something of a miracle. Rather than being a mess, it’s a tortured trawl through the fictional and real minds of those involved.

Conan The Barbarian is severely underrated – or maybe it’s simply elevated beyond what anyone would expect from its genre. When you measure it against any Fantasy movie made till 1982, there is no comparison in terms of scope, invention, script, and beauty, and it wasn’t surpassed until LOTR. Blade Runner was sorely misunderstood upon release but is now rightly held up as a pinnacle – groundbreaking in its visuals and in pushing the genre forwards as a serious art form. Finally, The Thing is John Carpenter’s masterwork – horrible, tense, with breathtaking effects work, an ambiguous script, and a story which has echoed through the ages.

My Winner: The Thing

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Supporting Actress – 1982

Official Nominations: Jessica Lange. Glenn Close. Teri Garr. Kim Stanley. Lesley Ann Warren.

A solid if unremarkable list this year, with Jessica Lange picking up the win for Tootsie as a struggling actress in a dodgy relationship with her director. The weird thing is… it should be a Best Actress nomination, not a support. The support pick should stay with Teri Garr in the same movie as a somewhat more ditzy up and coming actress enamoured with Dustin Hoffman’s character. Both are good – Lange especially. Close is great in her debut, The World According To Garp, playing Robin Williams’ mother while Kim Stanley plays the mother of Frances Farmer (Lange again). She’s fine, but it’s a Lange vehicle. Finally, we get our mandatory musical nomination with Leslie Ann Warren as the somewhat unhinged gal to a local gangster. Fine.

My Winner: Jessica Lange

Linda Hunt in 'The Year of Living Dangerously' | Just Suit Me | Purple Clover

My Nominations: Sean Young. Adrienne Barbeau. Phoebe Cates. Karen Allen. Linda Hunt.

Lets get the silliness out of the way first – Linda Hunt wins this very award for The Year Of Living Dangerously in 1983. It’s a 1982 movie, so I’m sticking her here instead, for yet another gender/race-bending role. Questionable these days for numerous reasons, but she’s great.

Beyond Hunt, all of my nominations are new picks. Sean Young is the glassy eyed replicant, foil to Harrison Ford’s Deckard in Blade Runner and it remains the performance she is most remembered for – somehow more human than the people and machines around her, but with the same coldness which is so pervasive throughout the film. Phoebe Cates appears in her most iconic role as the literal girl of your dreams, but as with many of the characters in Fast Times, the writing and performances are such that she is elevated above a one note caricature into a well rounded coming of age icon.

Karen Allen attempts to break free of her Raiders Of The Lost Ark fame by playing as Albert Finney’s mistress in the gloomy Shoot The Moon, a film in which the wrong stars got the attention. Finally, I’ll allow myself a bit of a personal preference for Adrienne Barbeau as she gives one of the most memorable performances in any anthology movie, that of the sneering overbearing wife Wilma in Creepshow. She has a whale of time, as do we watching her.

My Winner: Linda Hunt

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Animated Feature: 1982

My Nominations: Flight Of The Dragons. Hey Good Lookin. The Last Unicorn. The Plague Dogs. The Secret Of Nimh.

While I may be biased given the fact that I grew up in the 80s, I’ve been known to say that the decade was a golden age for animated TV shows. On the Feature front, it was less impressive but acted as a gateway towards the modern era. 1982 is an unusually strong year for Animated films, especially if I include TV films. This goes against Academy rules, but screw it. Flight Of The Dragons is a film I remember fondly and was one I enjoyed more than many of the more famous big screen releases, and features a cool title song and a cast including John Ritter and James Earl Jones. One which more people remember, and more fondly, is The Last Unicorn – which too has a strong cast and score, with Mia Farrow, Jeff Bridges, Christopher Lee, Alan Arkin, and Angela Lansbury all contributing.

Hey Good Lookin is for some a retread of ideas already covered by Bakshi in earlier movies – hardly surprising given it is an overhaul of a previous live action/animated mash-up. It’s a lesser Bakshi film – but there wasn’t anyone making movies like this at the time, and hardly anyone since.

The Plague Dogs is the lesser known spiritual follow up to Watership Down, and is an even more uncompromising watch directed more at older viewers than unsuspecting children. My winner though, is a film which was frequently the choice forced upon us in the last days before half term or end of term at school – The Secret Of Nimh – Don Bluth’s first, and arguably best movie since moving on from Disney, and one of the films which arguably forced Disney to up their game. Often frightening and violent, though not on the same levels as The Plague Dogs, it’s a refreshing and exciting story about mice and, well, super-rats. And family.

My Winner: The Secret Of NIMH

12 Facts About 'The Secret of NIMH' | Mental Floss

Let us know your winner in the comments!