And the Rewritten Oscar goes to…Apocalypse Now
The film which has aged the best is indeed the best for my money. Coppola’s unnerving trek through Vietnam is truly as visceral and frightening as it’s so often labelled. But it doesn’t win the prize without fending off some strong competition. It’s a very very strong list of contenders, each succeeding in their own, individual way.
Kramer vs. Kramer and Norma Rae each excel in their naturalism and humanism, unearthing powerful emotional truths, whilst All That Jazz provides one of the most entirely manic film going experiences I can recall, offering a visceral energy all of its own.
It’s Breaking Away that provides the toughest challenge for Apocalypse however, it’s quotable dialogue, sharp humour, and unsuspecting pathos and tension creep up on you, making it one of the strongest of all coming of age films, exceeding even Lucas’s classic American Graffiti. But Apocalypse Now is unmitigated in its affect. It has a way of burrowing into your blood stream, into your stomach and brain. It has a power you can’t shake, harnessing the atmosphere of one of history’s most nightmarish settings.
Credit to the Academy for acknowledging 5 strong films, each have persisted in their respective genres, but Apocalypse Now is unique cinema, and quite frankly, it’s a stronger film than Kramer.
This will make the fine people in the Academy 6/15.
Norma Rae 3.5/4
Apocalypse Now 4/4
Breaking Away 4/4
Kramer vs. Kramer 3.5/4
All That Jazz 3.75/4