Top Ten Films That Should Have Won Oscars


As this is Oscar weekend, it was only fair that The Geek does a top ten special to celebrate the occasion.  But this is no ordinary top ten list.  This is a top ten list of films that should have won Oscars.  The reason is self-explanatory.  The films that have won Oscars, has the impact lasted?  Yes and no and better films have been overlooked.

So here is my list of films that should have won Oscars and to make it a little bit challenging, the film had to be nominated for best picture in the same year as the winner.

Hit the jump to find out which film made the list.

10) Brokeback Mountain

What won: Crash (78th Academy Awards)


Capote, Good Night and Good Luck and Munich – any of those films deserved to win the award over CrashCrash was massively overrated.  Brokeback Mountain takes the spot on the list because of its bravery and honesty for a mainstream film.

9) The Color Purple

What won: Out of Africa (58th Academy Awards)


I remember watching The Color Purple when I was very young and it’s a film that has never left me.  Emotional and powerful not only because of Whoopi Goldberg’s acting but for a show-stealing performance by none other than Oprah Winfrey.

8) Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb

What won: My Fair Lady (37th Academy Awards)


My Fair Lady is a great film but the political and comedic satire from Stanley Kubrick wins it for me.  Always.

7) Dead Poet’s Society

What won: Driving Miss Daisy (62nd Academy Awards)


No words are needed.  One of my favourite Robin Williams performance and I still miss him.

6) L.A. Confidential

What won: Titanic (70th Academy Awards)


Corruption in 1950s L.A. told from the story point of three detectives with their own brand of justice.  Boasting an all star cast, it sometimes surprises me that it was overlooked by the money juggernaut that was Titanic.

5) The Wizard of Oz

What won: Gone with the Wind (12th Academy Awards)


To put it simply, The Wizard of Oz is a film that ticks all the boxes – colourful, musical, funny, scary (if you watched it as a kid) and magical.  A great feel good tale of good versus evil and I happily watch this again and again over Gone with the Wind.

4) Saving Private Ryan

What won: Shakespeare in Love (71st Academy Awards)


This film was the stepping stone to my endless love of Band of Brothers. It’s a worthy companion.  The first twenty minutes shows the brutal and devastating impact of war.  But the true strength of the film is the morality and companionship of war in order to find a soldier.  The Truman Show should have been nominated in this same year (which it wasn’t) but Saving Private Ryan was worthy of the award.  The fact it lost out to Shakespeare in Love…well…it’s just fubar isn’t it 🙂 .

3) Inception

What won: The King’s Speech (83rd Academy Awards)


There is nothing wrong with The King’s Speech but in a year where two films (Inception and The Social Network) showcased a modern reflection of the movie experience and the academy chose a period drama as its winner.  The Social Network would have been a worthy winner but on this occasion, Nolan’s direction on Inception made the difference.  The fact that sci-fi films do not get their fair share of recognition besides being awarded for their technical achievements means it deserves its credit on this list.

2) The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers

What won: Chicago (75th Academy Awards)


I know the following year, Lord of the Rings deservedly performed a clean sweep of award wins but no one can tell me that Chicago was a better film than The Two Towers!  What a ridiculous decision.  The Battle of Helms Deep alone was Oscar worthy.

1) The Shawshank Redemption

What won: Forrest Gump (67th Academy Awards)


Hands down this still remains my favourite movie of all time.  Showing the human spirit as beautiful, hopeful and never giving up when the odds are against you, history has shown what an outstanding film this is.

AWARD BONUS: The actor who should have won an Oscar by now…

poor leo (The Departed)

You’ll get one soon Leo…we still believe!


  1. great list! i agree with just about all of your choices, but i think that shawshank didnt have a chance at the time because it only became appreciated after it came to video (eventhugh its obviously much better than FG). the biggest snub IMHO was definitely Saving private ryan which was soooo much better than Shakespear in Love

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Yeah Shakespeare in Love even now doesn’t make sense. My list is a taster and there’s more that deserve a mention – Goodfellas, Taxi Driver, The Green Mile, Fargo and even Apocalypse Now. All great films in my opinion but sadly didn’t pick up the award.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. They cant all win unfortunately. I think 94 and 99 were the strongest years where all 5 noms were excellent and deserving. Most years only about half are really Worthy if the prize

        Liked by 1 person

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