Best Visual Effects – 1975

No official award this year, but another tiny step towards making an official category as Albert Whitlock and Glen Robinson were given a Special Achievement award for The Hindenburg. 

My Nominations: The Hindenburg. Barry Lyndon. Jaws. The Land That Time Forgot.

The Hindenburg obviously makes the list, though it does look fairly dated now, as you would expect. The Land That Time Forgot contains a variety of honed Harryhausen delights – again dated but I love the stop motion appeal. Jaws would be the most obvious winner here, with practical shark work as well as blood fountains and boat destruction. The pioneer though would be Barry Lyndon – you won’t notice that there are visual effects at work here, but the amount of technical progress to behind the scenes to make the film possible trumps anything else this year.

My Winner: The Land That Time Forgot

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Lyndon is the real winner, but I love me some McClure and Harryhausen. Let us know in the comments which film you pick!

Best Visual Effects – 1974

My Nominations: Earthquake. The Towering Inferno. The Golden Voyage Of Sinbad. The Man With The Golden Gun.

Although the team of Glen Robinson, Albert Whitlock, and Fred Brendel won a special achievement award for Earthquake, we still had no official category this year. That’s a shame, as we have some interesting films which deserved a nomination. Earthquake obviously gets a vote along with The Towering Inferno – two of the major disaster movies of the era. The Golden Voyage Of Sinbad is another Harryhausen treasure-trove, featuring a griffin, a dwarf, a wooden siren coming to life, a wizard who gains invisibility, a centaur, and a six armed, sword wielding Kali. The Man With The Golden Gun is the requisite Bond nomination, but it’s not overly effects heavy. If you wanted, you could add Zardoz here too….

My Winner: The Golden Voyage of Sinbad

Let us know your winner in the comments!

Best Visual Effects – 1973

My Nominations: Westworld. The Exorcist.

It’s somewhat surprising that after the Visual effects bonanza and disaster epics of the previous year that this year sees such a downturn. Perhaps it took that extra year for the industry to catch up – hence the onslaught which will be featured in this category next year. Westworld toys with robotics and sci-fi action, but our real winner is The Exorcist – using effects not merely to wow us, but to shock us with their realism and accompanying the plot and character. It’s almost safe to say The Exorcist is an effects driven film such is the power of the head spinning, stomach carving, spider walking, bed raising antics. But it’s more accurate to say that the effects are there to facilitate the descent of Regan and make us feel helpless and horrified.

My Winner: The Exorcist

Let us know your pick in the comments!

Best Visual Effects – 1970

Official Nominations: Tora Tora Tora. Patton

Tora Tora Tora is the more action packed movie and has more obvious effects work – dated now of course, but fair for the time. Patton isn’t a film you think of when you think Visual Effects, but I get that they wanted to keep their nominations to certain types of movies.

My Winner: Tora!Tora!Tora!

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My Nominations: Tora!Tora!Tora! Beneath The Planet Of The Apes. Kelly’s Heroes.

It’s a new decade and the first decade where computer generated wizardry would come to the fore. That is in a few years time though, so for now we are making do with those maestros of puppets and pyrotechnics. As such, we look to War and Action movies for spectacle – sci-fi and horror were out of popularity at this point. It’s slim pickings this year, even with the various War movies – Kelly’s Heroes and BTPOTA both feature fairly standard effects.

My Winner: Tora!Tora!Tora!

Let us know in the comments which film of 1970 has the best Special Effects!

Best Visual Effects: 1968

Official Nominations: 2001: A Space Odyssey. Ice Station Zebra.

There was always only going to be one winner this year, right? It still looks amazing today, so imagine how impressive it was upon release. From the ships to the new techniques such as front projection, rotating sets, and on to the trippy light show, the work by Kubrick, Turnbull and the many many others is one of the most obvious Oscar wins of all time. Ice Station Zebra by comparison has a lot of good moments but they pale in comparison with the miniature work in particular looking out of date alongside Kubrick’s masterpiece.

My Winner: 2001: A Space Odyssey.

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My Nominations: 2001: A Space Odyssey. Ice Station Zebra. Destroy All Monsters. Planet Of The Apes.

Any nominations I put alongside 2001 are going to look silly so I’ll keep Ice Station Zebra, add in Destroy All Monsters for Kaiju fun, and Planet Of The Apes because why the hell not?

My Winner: 2001: A Space Odyssey.

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Are there any other films released in 1968 which you feel deserves recognition for Visual Effects? Let us know in the comments!

Best Visual Effects: 1965

Official Nominations: Thunderball. The Greatest Story Ever Told.

An old school epic versus another edition of the upstart James Bond. Although Thunderball isn’t my favourite Bond with the underwater scenes being too slow, it does still top the work done on The Greatest Story Ever Told with the climactic explosion being particularly spectacular.

My Winner: Thunderball

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My Nominations: Thunderball. Battle Of The Bulge. The Flight Of The Phoenix. Von Ryan’s Express. Frankenstein Conquers The World. Planet Of The Vampires.

It wasn’t a stellar year for Visual Effects, and my nominations show that. Battle Of The Bulge and Von Ryan’s Express have fairly standard effects work, while Flight Of The Phoenix goes one further with its impressive crash work. Frankenstein Conquers The World has some interesting work with severed hands crawling around to add something different to the usual giant beast in background versus little people, houses, and cars in the foreground. Planet Of The Vampires similarly uses forced perspective to great effect as well as all manner of tricks forced by (and to shroud) the low budget.

My Winner: Thunderball

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Let us know in the comments which film of 1965 you fell has the best Visual Effects!