Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Battle of The Oscar Stars: Best Picture 1971

More talk about rip roaring, classic movie scenes, you say? As last week foretold, it is really what to be expected from all those (well, most) Oscar winning films.

Best Pic's, like Titanic, Forrest Gump, and Casablanca, are non-stop quotable, and are filled with glorious moments, but they are also supported by astounding and memorable stories (Leo doesn't hurt either).

Surprisingly, or not (there are after-all varying opinions about the credibility of The Academy), a pre-req for winning the Best Picture doesn't always mean quality writing. That's what the Best Screenplay categories are for!

When it comes to the Best Picture winner of 1971, see that epic car chase, and you've really seen all that you need to of The French Connection.

YouTube let movie fans down today, because that car chase, the most raved about in film history, is not available for anyone's viewing pleasure. So, turns out you're just going to have to bite the bullet and watch the whole damn thing.

[Money, that's what they want. Lots of... drug money]
It may take a slow introduction, following two cops (Gene Hackman and the guy from Jaws) as they begin to discover a possible drug smuggling ring between NYC and French heroin dealers (which is where the title arises), but once the film reaches that infamous moment, major anticipation has been built.

Definitely worth the time to catch the scene that has been emulated in every action movie since the 1970's.

Anytime there is an extended car chase scene, vehicles blazing through city streets, barely dodging on-coming traffic and people- all The French Connection.

For most of the story, there is not enough interest developed for anyone to care if these cops ever convict the drug smugglers. Once Gene Hackman jumps behind that wheel, racing though the congested big city streets (daringly trying to catch up with one of the criminals who hopped on a cross town train), we are rooting for him to catch the crooks, and the film is quite thrilling from there on out.

Brilliantly executed and daring, in just one scene The French Connection was transformed into the gritty masterpiece that is still buzz worthy in the halls of cinema lore.

Next Up: More guns, and gangs-The Godfather

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