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Best Films – 1975

Ramon Novarro biography Beyond Paradise

Dog Day Afternoon1975 is the only year in which all films nominated for a Best Picture Academy Award also figure in our Best of the Best list. The five films are: Barry Lyndon, an 18th-century morality tale; Dog Day Afternoon, a very 20th-century tale of media irresponsibility, urban violence, and inner angst; Jaws, the gripping tale of a shark addicted to yummy human meat; Nashville, a mordant satire on American values through the prism of the entertainment world – and with some surprisingly good country music to boot; and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, a corrosive critique of authoritarianism and social conformism.

Our top pick for 1975 would be a tie between Dog Day Afternoon and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, but since we’ve made a point of choosing only one top film per year, we have solomonically split our choice into two: Best Picture to Dog Day Afternoon, Best Director to Milos Forman for One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.

Now, focusing on our Best Film choice, the brilliant Dog Day Afternoon revolves around a botched bank robbery and hostage taking during a sizzling-hot summer day in New York City. Based on actual events, Frank Pierson’s screenplay attacks both the American media, which transform the bank robbers into instant celebrities and the hostage situation into a circus show, and human beings in general, who lose their awe – and respect – for the bank robbers because, well, those guys just ain’t vicious enough. Sidney Lumet (Twelve Angry Men, Network) directs with the sort of unrelenting gutsiness that Hollywood directors have long since forsaken for manipulative razzle-dazzle, while star Al Pacino (The Godfather, Scent of a Woman) is superb as the robber wannabe who risks it all for the love of a woman-in the-making.


Dog Day Afternoon
Barry Lyndon
Love Among the Ruins
The Man Who Would Be King
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
Picnic at Hanging Rock
The Wild Party

Milos Forman (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
Robert Altman (Nashville)
George Cukor (Love Among the Ruins)
John Huston (The Man Who Would Be King)
James Ivory (The Wild Party)
Stanley Kubrick (Barry Lyndon)
Sidney Lumet (Dog Day Afternoon)
Steven Spielberg (Jaws)
François Truffaut (L’Histoire d’Adèle H. / The Story of Adele H.)
Peter Weir (Picnic at Hanging Rock)

Al Pacino (Dog Day Afternoon)
James Coco (The Wild Party)
Jack Nicholson (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
Laurence Olivier (Love Among the Ruins)
John Wayne (Rooster Cogburn)

Katharine Hepburn (Love Among the Ruins)
Isabelle Adjani (L’Histoire d’Adèle H. / The Story of Adele H.)
Ann-Margret (Tommy)
Katharine Hepburn (Rooster Cogburn)
Glenda Jackson (The Romantic Englishwoman)
Romy Schneider (Les Innocents aux mains sales / Innocents with Dirty Hands)

Brad Dourif (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
John Cazale (Dog Day Afternoon)
Christopher Lloyd (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
William Redfield (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
Will Sampson (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)

Gwen Welles (Nashville)
Geraldine Chaplin (Nashville)
Shelley Duvall (Nashville)
Louise Fletcher (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
Barbara Harris (Nashville)
Judith Malina (Dog Day Afternoon)
Sylvia Miles (Farewell, My Lovely)
Susan Peretz (Dog Day Afternoon)
Rachel Roberts (Picnic at Hanging Rock)
Lily Tomlin (Nashville)

Frank Pierson (Dog Day Afternoon)
James Costigan (Love Among the Ruins)
Cliff Green (Picnic at Hanging Rock)
Lawrence Hauben & Bo Goldman (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
John Huston & Gladys Hill (The Man Who Would Be King)
Stanley Kubrick (Barry Lyndon)
Walter Marks (The Wild Party)
Joan Tewkesbury (Nashville)
François Truffaut, Jean Gruault & Suzanne Schiffman (L’Histoire d’Adèle H. / The Story of Adele H.)

Nestor Almendros (L’Histoire d’Adèle H. / The Story of Adele H.)
John Alcott (Barry Lyndon)
Russell Boyd (Picnic at Hanging Rock)
James Wong Howe (Funny Lady)
Paul Lohmann (Nashville)
Douglas Slocombe (Love Among the Ruins)
Harry Stradling, Jr. (Bite the Bullet)
Robert Surtees (The Hindenburg)
Haskell Wexler (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
Billy Williams (The Wind and the Lion)

John Barry (Love Among the Ruins)
Jack Nitzche (One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest)
David Shire (Farewell, My Lovely)
Bruce Smeaton (Picnic at Hanging Rock)
John Williams (Jaws)




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