Wednesday, June 8, 2016

1983 Fisti Awards

[Images May Be Enlarged by Clicking on Them]

1983.  My LORD does this year suck.  The 80's as a whole was such a wasteland of film, which is so tragic, but this year in particular (especially when you go by Oscar's ballots) is just so incredibly dire.  So much of this year just feels so...basic.  Yeah, this movie is good and that movie was nice and then that movie over there was entertaining but at the end of the day there is very little about 1983 that makes me care at all.

And that Oscar Best Picture lineup is...unfortunate.  It's not that they're terrible films (well, Tender Mercies is borderline awful) but they are just so...blandly uninspired.  The Dresser is the only film of the five that had any real impact on me, and while it would most likely make my Top 12, I don't think it would any other year (more on the 'would' in a moment).  Terms of Endearment is nice and all, but pretty much a glorified Soap Opera, and The Right Stuff is generic biopic bait that is overlong and disengaging.  The Big Chill has its moments and is charming to a degree, but it feels more like a performance piece than anything else.

Quite frankly, I'm baffled Fanny and Alexander was snubbed, considering how much Bergman had been embraced (as far as foreign directors are concerned) but the Academy, but I'm kind of glad it was snubbed because it would have still lost and having that masterpiece lose to any of the other nominated films would have been disgraceful.

All of that said, this next truth is going to sounds really odd, but like 2013, I fudged my own rules and have 6 BP nominees.  Why?  In a year that is so dire and so...awful collectively?  Because of all the basic crap being shelled out this year, there were 6 films that were such a clear notch above the rest I couldn't not nominate all of them.

I kind of love the range of these films, too.  I mean, a nostalgic film noir straight out of the 40's, a foreign familial drama with an epic touch, a Scorsese comedy/thriller, a thought-provoking documentary, a sci-fi soap opera and a slapstick mockumentary!

After those 6 films, the quality of film drops rather drastically.  In fact, this year I didn't bother doing a Top 12 at all!  Yup, it just didn't feel right.  Sure, there are other films I like, but like enough to consider them among the 'best of the year'?  Not really.

Excited, aren't you?

Oh, and before we begin; SUCK IT HATERS, Return of the Jedi is not only an amazing movie but is, in my opinion, the BEST Star Wars film!

LOL, so with that in mind, I present to you the Fisti Awards of 1983!

Award's Tally

[7 Wins]

Fanny and Alexander

[2 Wins]

Confidentially Yours
Star Wars: Episode VII - Return of the Jedi

[1 Win]

The Dresser
The King of Comedy
Tender Mercies


  1. Not sure what soap operas you watch, but Terms of Endearment is nothing like the ones I've seen. I have a real soft spot for that film, mostly due to the fact that my Mom watched it often, for some reason. She's a tearjerker fan, so I watched it often by default. Nicholson is great. Maclaine is great. Both deserving of Oscars, and the Best Picture win was solid as well, considering (as you've said) it was a decidedly down year. You are right on about Tender Mercies and The Big Chill though. Neither is very good.

    Honestly, I think my favorite film of 1983 is National Lampoon's Vacation, then probably The Outsiders. Both childhood favorites of mine that I still watch at least once a year. I'd talk A Christmas Story as well, if TBS hadn't beaten to death for the last 20 years. I can hardly watch it now, but somehow always do several times every year. You know the day...

    I haven't gone nearly as deep as you into 1983. Many of these titles escape me, most notably King of Comedy and Fanny and Alexander. I've only seen Jedi, as far as your Best Picture noms are concerned, and, I'm sorry, but it is NOT the best one. I am actually partial to the original and the new one more than any of the others.

    I hate myself for never seeing Zelig, by the way. I took a fucking class on Woody Allen, and we just didn't watch that one, and I haven't caught up with it. It's obviously a must.

    Greatness as always, man.

    1. Hehe, look at you all calling me out for misrepresenting the nature of a film!

      In all honesty, I've never even seen a Soap Opera, at least not off mute (you know, when standing in line at a pizza place for lunch and it happens to be playing on some TV hanging overhead) but I guess what I meant was that it was melodramatic but in a way that wasn't always my personal cup, if that makes any sense. I mean, I like it...but best of the year? Hell, this year kind of blows so I guess, sure, but calling this a Best Picture feels so...not right.

      A Christmas Story was also kind of...just there. Good, but great? No. The Outsiders as well. Like, these are all decent movies but nothing screamed I'M AMAZING, at least not outside of the 6 I adored.

      And that's why I scraped a Top 12. When films like Terms and Christmas Story were on it I felt kind of ridiculous for even making it, because I would NEVER consider a BP nom for either.

      The King of Comedy is HILARIOUS!!! Fanny and Alexander is epic, which is why it swept up here. Zelig is also so good. 80's Woody is, in my eyes, PRIME Woody. His best films come from this decade.

      And, as far as Jedi is concerned, I'm sorry but the hate is so...lame. Like, close your eyes and think of the best scenes in a Star Wars film. Think of the Jabba scene, the bikini, the pit? Oh, yeah...Jedi. Think of the speeders in the forest? Jedi. The epic moment with Darth scarps up his humanity to save his son? Jedi. Like...everything that is so great about this trilogy is birthed in Jedi.

      I have a very nostalgic place for it, as well, which doesn't hurt...but Ewoks be damned (and I kind of loved them), this is by far my favorite Star Wars film.

    2. Oh, I was just fucking with you, man. I totally knew what you meant, and it is a bit melodramatic, too sentimental at times for sure. Maybe that can be the theme for me and 1983. Vacation, The Outsiders, A Christmas Story, Terms of Endearment. All sentimental favorites. Now, I just need to get to work on the big titles I've missed. Zelig is already in my Netflix queue.

      As for Jedi...I'm not saying I don't love it. It's just the one I get bored with the easiest for some reason, probably because, when I watch the Star Wars films I always go in order, and, well, it's last and I'm burnt out by that point. I need to just watch it on its own one day.

    3. BAH, love you, Kev. LOL at being burnt out.

      You pretty much expressed my feelings after about an hour into the LOTR trilogy :-P

  2. Never liked Terms of Endearment. There, I said it. It's sappy and overwrought. I don't like James L. Brooks' work as a filmmaker though I do still want to see Broadcast News which I heard is very different and I'm still interested in the original cut of I'll Do Anything that featured songs by Prince. Other than that, I just don't like anything he does as a filmmaker.

    Fanny & Alexander for me is 1982 film though I understand why you put it there as it was released in the U.S. in '83.

    You're right, 1983 was bad. I do like The Right Stuff, Zelig, Sans Soilel, The Outsiders, Rumble Fish, Confidentially Yours (Truffaut's last film), and the best film of the year for me, in my opinion. National Lampoon's Vacation. You better not talk shit about that movie or I will fuck you bitch. Seriously, that is a film myself and my parents love to death. Chevy Chase was our God.

    1. Broadcast News is SO GOOD! I truly love that film.

      I really like National Lampoon's Vacation. If I had done a Top would have made the cut.

  3. I sense that we are going to be miles apart this year. I agree that it’s not the best of years but I didn’t think it was as godawful as you found it. The Big Chill is one film though that I’ve never understood the acclaim. I guess it connected with the navel gazing, touchy feely tone of the time but I wanted to slap most of those people.

    I liked both King of Comedy and Zelig but didn’t love either though Jerry Lewis was a great surprise in KoC. None of the Star Wars do much for me. They’re well made, were revolutionary when they debuted and are entertaining but that’s about as far it goes. I haven’t seen two of your picks, San Soleil & Confidentially Yours, I’ll have to look into them-I love Fanny Ardant. So now I prepare for the firestorm of saying I loathed Fanny & Alexander, it was the equivalent of a three hour root canal. Sorry.

    My choices:
    A Christmas Story
    The Outsiders
    The Right Stuff-Winner
    Terms of Endearment
    The Year of Living Dangerously

    I can see how Terms won, it is a very moving film but it wouldn’t be my choice for the prize. I love the warm whimsy of Christmas Story, Living Dangerously is viscerally engaging, Outsiders moody and evocative but maybe because I’m a space nut my winner is The Right Stuff. Perhaps it could have been tighter but even at its extended length it never dragged for me.

    Although I’m not familiar with Marker’s work your other four nominees are great directors even if their work on these particular films didn’t speak to me.

    My choices:
    John Badham-War Games
    Bob Clark-A Christmas Story-Winner
    Francis Ford Coppola-The Outsiders
    Philip Kaufman-The Right Stuff
    Peter Weir-The Year of Living Dangerously

    All the other directors have more esteemed and frankly more prestigious filmographies than Clark but his affection for his project is so clear and the nostalgic warmth he achieves so seamless that the film due to his effort and that of a perfect cast glides by without a hitch.

    At last we’re closer! Courtenay is a brilliant winner, it’s a tough choice between him and the always commanding Finney. Courtenay doesn’t have the showy bits afforded Albert but still manages to offer very deep work.

    My choices:
    Michael Caine-Educating Rita
    Tom Courtenay-The Dresser
    Albert Finney-The Dresser
    Jeroen Krabbe-The Fourth Man
    Nick Nolte-Under Fire-Winner
    Runner-ups-Matthew Broderick-War Games, Tom Conti-Reuben, Reuben, Michael Keaton-Mr. Mom, Eric Roberts-Star 80 and Charles Martin Smith-Never Cry Wolf

    The year may not have been loaded with extraordinary films but the acting categories are loaded with terrific work. None are strong as Nolte's weary war correspondent though in the tough Under Fire, it’s among his best work-maybe his best. I do love Krabbe's work in the trippy Fourth Man however it would be hard to pick a runner up from those other four.

    1. I'm going to be upfront here...I checked out your comments on Josh's CinSpec Awards for this year and that's why I even saw some of the films you nominate, like Under Fire and Heart Like a Wheel. Had I not seen those comments, I would have missed out!

      So, Best Picture:

      A Christmas Story is the only one of your five that would've made my Top 12, Terms possibly, but that is a big reason why I didn't even post one. I like those movies, but far from love them, and I find them just solid but nothing special, which was why this year overall just didn't do anything for me.

      The Year of Living Dangerously didn't feel...dangerous enough. I don't know, if felt too focused on the romance and never really felt like it lived up to what it could have been. The Outsiders is good, but pales alongside Rumble Fish (IMHO), and even Rumble Fish is kind of flawed.


      LOVE that you give Clark the win. As much as I personally find A Christmas Story merely 'good', his direction was so sharply in tune with what that movie needed to be.


      I haven't seen Krabbe, but Nolte was very good (and I normally find him...hard to watch) and I'm so happy that you nominate Courtenay! He's so good, haunting almost, and such layers internally to this character who feels larger than he is, even next to Finney's expert hamming.

    2. Christmas Story is kind of an anomaly in Clark's career since most of his films were uneven to ragged to say the least. Even one of my favorites, the critically lambasted From the Hip, has a tonal shift midway that can make you dizzy. But that someone who could turn out Porky's could buckle down and turn out something so pitch perfect shows how much he connected with this particular material. I think it helped through that he cast for the proper feeling in the roles as opposed to the biggest names. The studio had tried to convince him to use Jack Nicholson as the Dad which would have been a disaster and thrown the entire pitch of the movie off. I shudder to think who they suggested for Melinda Dillon's part...Sean Young? Meg Ryan? Ugh!

    3. Ewwww...I love Nicholson, but NO!

  4. Actress:
    Haven’t seen your winner but as I said earlier I’m a big fan of Fanny so I have no problem imagining she’s aces. I was not a fan of The Hunger despite the cast (who I thought posed more than acted-I blame the director), it seemed like an extended perfume ad with violence and nudity thrown in.

    My choices:
    Jane Alexander-Testament
    Bonnie Bedelia-Heart like a Wheel
    Joanna Cassidy-Under Fire-Winner
    Renee Soutendijk-The Fourth Man
    Julie Walters-Educating Rita
    Runner-ups-Anne Bancroft-To Be or Not to Be, Julie Christie-Heat and Dust, Shirley MacLaine-Terms of Endearment, Meryl Streep-Silkwood and Debra Winger-Terms of Endearment

    It looks as if we’re far apart but all the women on my list excepting Jane Alexander are on your long list. Another group of outstanding performances and I could find good reasons to choose any of them. It was especially great to see two actresses, Bonnie Bedelia and Joanna Cassidy, whom often are cast in roles far below their skill level get the opportunity at a quality lead. Soutendijk is electric as a black widow femme fatale who would have been right at home in a 50's noir in Fourth Man, Alexander deeply moving as the mother facing the unimaginable and Julie Walters irresistible as the knowledge thirsty Susan in Rita. As brilliant as they all are my choice is Joanna Cassidy’s complex work. It’s a pity the film didn’t perform more strongly at the box office, she should have had a better career.

    Supporting Actor:
    Lewis is a wonderful choice, he’s brilliant in King, too bad he didn’t play it straight more often. A shame he missed on an actual nomination this year, he was certainly stronger than a couple of the actual nominees, odd since he was acclaimed when the film came out.

    My choices:
    Matt Dillon-The Outsiders
    Gene Hackman-Under Fire
    Ed Harris-Under Fire
    Jerry Lewis-The King of Comedy
    Darren McGavin-A Christmas Story-Winner

    Dillon is a better actor than he’s usually given credit for, variable but always at least competent and at times extraordinary. He really connected with Dallas in Outsiders and managed to stand out from the pack. Hackman is almost Nolte's equal in Under Fire and Ed Harris is chilling in his cavalier ruthlessness as a soldier of fortune in the same film. McGavin though is priceless as Ralphie's hot tempered and beleagued father in A Christmas Story.

    Supporting Actress:
    At least we have a couple we agree on and Pfeiffer though she didn’t make my list was the best part of the awful Scarface. I have to be honest and say I willfully have only the vaguest memory of F&A and so I can’t really speak to Froling’s work in the movie.

    My choices:
    Rebecca De Mornay-Risky Business
    Melinda Dillon-A Christmas Story
    Linda Hunt-The Year of Living Dangerously-Winner
    Alfre Woodard-Cross Creek
    Runner-ups-Diane Lane-Rumble Fish, Mary Kay Place-The Big Chill

    The other actresses were all super but Hunt is unbeatable in Living Dangerously. I don't know how she and Weir arrived at the idea of her playing Billy Kwan but never for an instant does it feel like stunt casting. It’s the one instance where I agree with the academy.

    Though I hold the film in no particular esteem I agree that Return of the Jedi had great production and costume design. LOVE the picture you chose for the costume nom, what else could it possibly be!

    1. Actress:

      So, I won't pretend that The Hunger is a great film, but for what it is I feel like it's more than posing, especially from the two leads who are more than up to the task. Sarandon, for me, is the standout because she has such a character transformation and actual conflict of character that bares itself wonderfully in her portrayal.

      I could not get a copy of Testament. I couldn't find it anywhere.

      Loved Bedelia a lot, actually, and she was probably #7 for me. Great turn.

      Sup. Actor:

      Your winner was my #6, bumped out in the last minute by Dillon. Hackman is also great, I just wish he were in the film more, to be honest. Harris did little for me, but I often don't care much for him.

      Sup. Actress:

      Not awarding Hunt is probably controversial, but I LOVED what Froling did. She ruined me, such incredible emotional timing. Hunt was my runner-up and a very, VERY deserved winner. Love to see Cher in your lineup, and De Mornay!!! Such a fun turn. I loved Cruise in probably his loosest and most natural turn, but De Mornay is also very good.

      I didn't see Cross Creek. I planned on it, and then I saw the trailer and it looked just...boring and not something I wanted to spend 2 hours with and so I passed, especially since I love the hell out of my acting lineups already.

    2. Alfre Woodard as is often the case is the ONLY reason to see Cross Creek. The rest is eminently missable.

      Bonnie Bedelia is so wonderful in Heart Like a Wheel. The movie around her is somewhat ramshackle, though Beau Bridges is very good as Connie Kalitta, but she is a powerhouse throughout. This movie actually is how she got cast in Die Hard. Bruce Willis had seen the film and admired her work so when time came to cast the picture he requested her. A great decision since she is absolutely right as Holly. I go back and forth on whether she'd be my 2nd or 3rd choice, either way she's simply great but Joanna Cassidy always comes out of top.

    3. Bridges was very close to snagging a nom from me, too. Excellent performance.

  5. I was nodding along with your intro (though not in full agreement) then you went said something crazy. Jedi, the best SW flick? No way, no how. I don't hate it or anything...just, no. Let's move on.

    My great shame is that I haven't seen Fanny and Alexander. Aside from that I find three films absolutely great that you seem kinda lukewarm about. The first is A Christmas Story. I love every second of that film. It's so perfect. The other two is pretty much the polar opposite of that one, Videodrome and Scarface. Glad to see you give both noms, here. Videodrome is Cronenberg's best of what I've seen. And Scarface is one of my all-time faves. I'm really struggling with Pacino not getting a nod for Best Actor, here. He'd be my winner, for sure. Well, maybe Eric Roberts in Star '80. That dude was scary.

    Good stuff, as always, friend. Lets me know I still have lots to see from '83.

    1. I said it, I live by it...Jedi is the BOMB!

      I like A Christmas Story. It's sweet and nostalgic, even for someone like me who saw it for the first time a week or so ago...but it's nothing special (outside of that moment when he gets the gun and I was in tears) and so it's just a solid, good movie that I'll never care to watch again.

      That making my Top 12 felt...odd.

      Videodrome is good. I'm not a huge Cronenberg fan, so I think that prevents me from fully embracing his stuff. I do LOVE The Fly, though.

      Go figure.

      Scarface is fun, but it's so messy. Pacino is great, but somewhat OTT...but he just missed, so I do in fact like him. That being said, he'd never have come close to winning in a lineup with Courtenay and De Niro.

  6. Fanny and Alexander wasn't nominated because it was two hours too long.(for the regular cut, and several hours for that extended) lol

    Yeah, this year was uneventful. Give me Return of the Jedi, and everything else can go home. (Except Videodrome, that's on my watch list)

    1. Gurl, wut?

      LOL, what is it with everyone crapping all over Bergman's masterpiece? I'd take 12 hours of Fanny and Alexander over, like, an hour of most other stuff. It's glorious from start to finish!

      But yeah, the year in general is just...blah. Videodrome is good, but not, give me The Fly over this, but Cronenberg knows how to make gross-out sci-fi look kind of remarkable, so I'll give him that.

      But he's never really been my cup-of-tea.

  7. Iesu. Kirisuto. Why is '83 so damn thin? I've only seen Fanny and Alexander and Scarface from your lists believe it or not XD btw, a really GOOD film from this year is Local Hero :-) Also for the editing pic, dat ass :P XD

    1. I couldn't get a copy of Local Hero, but I tried.

    2. I'm working on 1945...but that is completely from scratch since I've only seen about 5 films from that I'm thinking a year from the 90's or 00's will be next, since they're pretty much all complete and ready for re-posting.

  8. So much YES! Love these.

    Must watch Confidentially Yours and Sans Soleil. Like, yesterday.

    Fanny and Alexander is brilliant, but I really need to give it another look, especially for the performances. I’ve not seen it in years!

    I love that we’re 3/5(6) in BP, and Zelig was my #6, I think.

    OMG! Your Best Supporting Actor lineup!!! Matt Dillon JUST missed when I made my ballot ages ago, but I’d easily put him in now. Really, I’m just drooling over ALL of the acting noms I’ve seen. :)

    And, yes, Return of the Jedi is AWESOME!

    It looks like I don’t have much to see from this year, so maybe I’ll try to brush up on it soon.

    1. UGH, as much as I find this year as a whole so...underwhelming, I LOVE my acting noms/ballots this year, especially Sup. Actor and Lead Actress. Like...OMG, LOVE!!!

  9. I barely remember anything released this year Drew! But I like Flashdance and The Outsiders, oh and Return of The Jedi too which I watched much later. Flashdance is more of a guilty pleasure as I love the music. Boy I need to see Years of Living Dangerously as I think I only saw it in bits & pieces. It's about my home country during a tempestuous political time, but it was filmed elsewhere as it's probably too, um dangerous to film in Jakarta then.

    1. There are aspects of The Year of Living Dangerously, but it gets a little sloppy and soap opera like with it's focus on the romance angle. It loses the focus it should have and feels less that it could have been.

      But Hunt is fantastic.

  10. Pfeiffer! Sarandon!!! YES!

    1. Sarandon's turn in The Hunger is EVERYTHING...such transformation and depth of character. LOVED her there (but, she's pretty much always amazing).

  11. Even though I personally think The Empire Strikes Back is the best Star Wars, I love seeing it get a lot of love here! I also love the Dillon nomination for The Outsiders. It's been a while since I saw that film but I remember Dillon being a powerhouse in it.

    1. I'll always love and defend Jedi to the bitter end.

  12. Ok...finally here and ready to say...I always wanted to see Fanny and Aalexander but have yet to see it. I remember when this came out because I was 19. There was a huge backlash as to why it was not nominated and I believe the Academy said it was because this was shown on Swedish TV as a 2 part miniseries and therefore was ineligible. I haven't seen Zelig yet either but, when everyone was saying how unique Forrest Gump was for Hanks interacting with famous people of history, I thought, "Wait...Woody Allen did it and it look much better". I didn't realize how sucky 1983 was but there are some real horrible movies that came out that year(Jaws 3). I have not seen Tender Mercies because it just never really appealed to me. Silk wood is quite good and I thought Cher was excellent. I like the 2nd Star Wars film....the Ewoks were just furry little bears that with their slingshots and rocks took down big ass techno evil I think you just can't get Carrie Fisher out of your mind in her little outfit:) War Games is excellent. The other film you mention, Confidentially Yours, I have never even heard of. I want to see it!

    1. I think Scenes From a Marriage suffered that fate with Oscar. Poor Bergman and Swedish TV!

      LOL, Forrest Gump, the poor man's Zelig!

  13. So you may or may not find this creepy, but I got bored earlier and decided to run some sites thru the Wayback Machine (your blog being one). Yeah, this place hasn't changed much. Lol. But it was cool to see how your old awards looked :P Why'd you get rid of the descriptions under the pictures? It's so cool, and made the movies seem more enticing, at least i thought so haha.

    1. What's the 'Wayback Machine'? Is that a thing?

      I took out the descriptions because it made it easier for editing. There may be years that get edits down the road when I see more films, and so this way it was an easier and quicker process. That's also why I took out the silver and bronze placements.

    2. This XD

  14. So much to love here. Especially Jerry Lewis's win. He was so nuanced in King of Comedy, which was almost completely opposite from everything he had been doing his entire career with Dean Martin. And Tom Cruise getting nominated for his breakthrough performance in Risky Business is so awesome aswell.
    I do think King of Comedy is the best film among your nominees and Scorsese's most underrated but Fanny and Alexander is very worthy winner as well, its definitely one of Bergman's best and I like Return of the Jedi too, more than Star Wars even.
    National Lampoon's Vacation is probably one film I'd put in my picks. I think it's one of the few truly timeless comedies.

    1. another fanastic Fistis! So very glad to see these back.

    2. Thanks, Khalid! I'm glad to post these.

      Love to see love for Cruise's breakthrough. It's such a natural and charming and fun performance. Love to see you loving King of Comedy as well...brilliant film, and such a great side of Scorsese. I wish he'd do more like it!

  15. omg man I found an online film class taught by Werner F***ing Herzog!!!

    1. Hey what if you took it? :) I'm thinking of trying it too ^^

    2. It's all about finding the time. We'll see.

    3. One Deadly Summer looks good btw haha.

    4. I liked it a lot, and Adjani is pretty incredible. She's play psycho brilliantly.

    5. Duuuuude spoilers >~< XD Speaking of great acting I FINALLY watched Dancer In the Dark :D

    6.'s not really a's pretty obvious early on (like, the whole setup), and DAYAM...Bjork is otherworldly in Dancer in the Dark.

      I need to repost my 2000 Fistis!

    7. Well, do it then! I wanna see them XD Also I just finished my 2012's ;)

    8. Thank you for the feedback!!! :) btw what do you think of Lars Von Trier?

    9. I'm mixed, but mostly I really like him.

    10. I reaally wanna like, interview someone about what they think of him and make an essay out of it haha

    11. That could be interesting, for sure. If you do, post it to your blog. It would be an interesting read.

    12. What if I interviewed you? xD

    13. Sounds like fun, but I just don't think I can find that sort of time. I'm sorry.