Will Sam Mendes’ “1917” be the next war movie to win Best Picture at the Oscars? Scroll through our photo gallery above to see all of the war movies that have triumphed, from “The Hurt Locker” (2009) to “Wings” (1928). In all, 16 such films have prevailed in the top category, which is no surprise considering that war movies provide Oscar voters with everything they require in a Best Picture contender: impact, empathy, range and hope in humanity. “1917” opens wide Friday, January 10.
Universal’s one-shot war flick is predicted to walk away with nine Oscar nominations on Monday, January 13: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Production Design, Best Score, Best Sound Editing, Best Sound Mixing and Best Visual Effects. That’s actually the same number as “The Hurt Locker” 10 years ago, though that Kathryn Bigelow-directed feature also earned noms for acting (Jeremy Renner) and writing (Mark Boal), while “1917” is expected to miss out on those all-important bids.
“1917” is flying high after recently winning Best Drama Film and Best Director at the Golden Globes. At the podium, a shocked Mendes declared, “That is a big surprise.” Indeed, his war movie was expected to lose the top picture race to either “The Irishman” or “Joker,” but it staged a major coup by prevailing on Golden Globes night.
The film takes place in northern France during the first World War, as two young soldiers (George MacKay and Dean-Charles Chapman) are tasked with delivering a message that would prevent their countrymen from stepping into a trap. In almost real time, we follow the men as they race across enemy territory, encountering various obstacles — both human and otherwise — along their journey.
Of course, “1917” isn’t the only war movie this year hoping to join the esteemed list of Oscar Best Picture winners. There’s also Taika Waititi‘s “Jojo Rabbit,” a satirical look at the Nazi uprising as told through the eyes of a child (Roman Griffin Davis). Similarly, Terrence Malick‘s “A Hidden Life” takes place during World War II and tells the story of a man (August Diehl) who refuses to fight for Hitler’s army.
PREDICT the Oscars now; change them until January 13
Be sure to make your Oscar nominee predictions today so that Hollywood insiders can see how their films and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions as often as you like until just before nominees are announced on January 13. And join in the fun debate over the 2020 Academy Awards taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our film forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.
SIGN UP for Gold Derby’s free newsletter with latest predictions