Films that didn’t win Best Picture Oscar

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10 films that didn't win Best Picture Oscar but should have …

The Oscars always causes a debate among film buffs. We’ve pulled together a list of 10 films that were up for best picture and were denied the golden statue by another movie that, in our opinion, didn’t quite deserve the accolade. Do you agree with our selection or was the Academy right all along? 

Shawshank Redemption (1994)
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Shawshank Redemption (1994)

Shawshank Redemption (1994)

Lost to: Forrest Gump
While there’s certainly a lot about Forrest Gump that makes it a winner, it’s a shame that the outstanding Shawshank Redemption didn't get the recognition it deserved. Despite seven Oscar nominations, it went home empty handed. Since this initial snub it was voted number two film of all time (after The Godfather) by IMdB and with standout performances by Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins it’s a regular on best ever film polls.     

It’s a Wonderful Life (1947)
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It’s a Wonderful Life (1947)

It’s a Wonderful Life (1947)

Lost to: The Best Years of Our Lives
It’s a Wonderful Life is one of those films that we all presume did win an Oscar. It’s longevity and the iconic performance from James Stewart have given it an untouchable status in film lovers' hearts and means we just can’t help watching it every Christmas. They just didn't see that coming in 1947 when they voted for The Best Years of Our Lives instead. 

The Color Purple (1985)
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The Color Purple (1985)

The Color Purple (1985)

Lost to: Out Of Africa
The Color Purple was nominated in 11 categories and sadly, came home empty handed in 1985. In fact that’s a joint record of nominations without a win. It’s arguably one of Stephen Spielberg’s finest films with outstanding performances from Oprah Winfrey, Danny Glover and Whoopi Goldberg. If you haven’t seen it put it on your list to watch now. 

Fargo (1996)
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Fargo (1996)

Fargo (1996)

Lost to: The English Patient
Fargo is admittedly not as mainstream as the beautiful romantic drama The English Patient but the Coen Brothers’ genius coupled with an exceptional cast surely did enough to take home the big prize. Small compensation, but at least Francis McDormand was recognised for her performance as the wonderful Marge Gunderson. There is also a strong argument for The Usual Suspects being a worthy winner in this great year for movies (although it wasn’t even nominated) but we’re going with Fargo

Brokeback Mountain (2005)
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Brokeback Mountain (2005)

Brokeback Mountain (2005)

Lost to: Crash
Brokeback Mountain was nominated for a total of eight awards in 2005 and whilst Ang Lee did pick up the best director statuette we believe this heart wrenching love story should have won best picture. With fine leading performances from Heath Ledger, Jake Gyllenhaal and a wonderful supporting cast it’s a timeless movie that was overlooked with the 78th Best Picture Academy Award being won by Crash

Citizen Kane (1941)
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Citizen Kane (1941)

Citizen Kane (1941)

Lost to: How Green Was My Valley
Over time Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane has earned the reputation as one of the most influential films ever made. Back in 1941 it lost out to the now little known How Green Was My Valley. Not fully appreciated at the time, its ground-breaking film-making techniques and cinematography have led to most people having it down as a winner anyway. 

The Graduate (1967)
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The Graduate (1967)

The Graduate (1967)

Lost to: In The Heat of The Night
It was the film that made a star of Dustin Hoffman and is still a must see today. With an outstanding soundtrack from Simon and Garfunkel as well, we can’t believe this Mike Nichol’s film lost out. The Graduate is a classic now and should have been a winner at the 40th Academy Awards. 

Do The Right Thing (1989)
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Do The Right Thing (1989)

Do The Right Thing (1989)

Lost to: Driving Miss Daisy
In fact Do The Right Thing wasn't actually nominated for an Oscar – but it should have been. The very genteel Driving Miss Daisy is a great film but pales in comparison to the dynamic and challenging issues dealt with by the brilliant Spike Lee in his ground-breaking film about American race relations. 

Goodfellas (1990)
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Goodfellas (1990)

Goodfellas (1990)

Lost to: Dances with Wolves
It’s not that Dances With Wolves wasn’t a great film (If you’re a Kevin Costner fan!) but the incredible individual performances of Joe Pesci and Robert De Niro, coupled with the fantastic direction of Martin Scorsese makes Goodfellas a worthy winner in our eyes. The film has a remarkable energy that drags you along with it through this epic tale of organised crime.   

A Clockwork Orange (1971)
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A Clockwork Orange (1971)

A Clockwork Orange (1971)

Lost to: The French Connection
This is a controversial one but we’re going for it. A Clockwork Orange lost all four of its nominations in 1971. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea but must be admired for Stanley Kubrick’s creation of a mad but beautifully strange world. It’s a difficult one to call as The French Connection is undoubtedly a worthy winner but it just seems an injustice that A Clockwork Orange was not recognised by the academy at all.   

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