7 Day Film Diet #26 | QUAD Skip to main content

Find what you’re looking for

Close menu

7 Day Film Diet #26

7 Day Film Diet #26

QUAD Cinema Programmer Adam Marsh with another batch of suggestions of films to stream at home during lockdown.

As we enter the first quarter of the year, usually we would be getting excited about Golden Globes, Oscars and the like. With the current circumstances, the Oscars have been put back to April with the nominations in March. We thought what better time than now to cast a reflective eye over some of the award winners and nominees of days past.  

Day 1 – 1960s 

Doctor Zhivago – Winner of Five Oscars 1965

Available on BBC iPlayer.

Doctor and poet Yuri Zhivago (Omar Shariff) is brought up in the family of Alexander Gromeko, whose daughter Tonya (Geraldine Chaplin) he eventually marries. But his true love is for the passionate and beautiful Lara (Julie Christie), the mistress of a political opportunist. With the outbreak of The Great War, and with Moscow transformed by the Revolution, their romance is disrupted by the social upheaval surrounding them. David Lean directed this adaptation of Boris Pasternak’s novel.

How The West Was Won – Winner of Three Oscars 1963 mi

Available on BBC iPlayer 

Epic western about three generations of a pioneer family, showing how its fortunes fluctuated during the dynamic westward expansion of America during the 19th century. Three top directors (Henry Hathaway, John Ford, George Marshall) each tackle separate episodes of the story, filmed in the short-lived three camera Cinerama process, and with an all star cast. 

Midnight Cowboy – Best Picture Winner 1969 

Available on Netflix 

Dustin Hoffman and Jon Voight star in this iconic drama directed by John Schlesinger. Texan dishwasher Joe Buck (Voight) moves to New York in the hopes of making his fortune as a male prostitute. However, his initial attempts are quickly foiled and the naïve Texan finds himself struggling to adjust to life on the merciless streets of Manhattan. An encounter with street hustler Enrico ‘Ratso’ Rizzo (Hoffman) leads to an unlikely friendship developing between the pair, but as their bond strengthens their hopes of making it big appear more and more unlikely. 

West Side Story – Best Picture Winner 1961 

Available On Netflix 

A neighbourhood in Manhattan, New York, provides the setting for a love affair between Tony (Richard Beymer) and Maria (Natalie Wood), a young man and woman caught on opposite sides of a gang war. Maria is the sister of Bernardo (George Chakiris), leader of the Sharks, and Tony is the best friend of Riff (Russ Tamblyn), leader of the Jets. The two gangs are sworn enemies. This musical adaptation of Romeo And Juliet won ten Academy Awards in total. 

Day 2 – 2010s 

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy – Nominated for three Oscars 2011 

Available On the BBC iPlayer 

Gary Oldman plays George Smiley in this Oscar Nominated adaptation of the late John Le Carre’s Cold war novel about a retired MI6 agent who must track down a Soviet mole within the British Intelligence service’s ranks. Oldman got a Best Actor nomination to add to the films noms for Best Screenplay and Original Score. 

La La Land - Won 6 Oscars in 2016 

Available On the BBC iPlayer 

Mia (Emma Stone), an aspiring actress, and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), a dedicated jazz musician, fall in love while struggling to make ends meet in a city known for crushing hopes and breaking hearts. Set in modern-day Los Angeles, this award-winning musical about everyday life explores the joy and pain of pursuing your dreams. 

The Big Short – Winner of Best Adapted Screenplay 2015  

Available on the BBC iPlayer 

Oscar-winning drama based on real experiences featured in Michael Lewis’ bestseller. Defying market reasoning, a few shrewd but oddball fund managers and traders start betting against the US mortgage system’s stability. They are predicting (and counting on) its collapse, but the unforeseen circumstance prove devastating. Nominated for Five Oscars including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Supporting Actor.  

Marriage Story – Winner Best Supporting Actress 2019  

Available exclusively on Netflix 

Academy Award nominated filmmaker Noah Baumbach directs this incisive and compassionate look at a marriage coming apart and a family staying together. With Scarlett Johansson, Adam Driver (nominated for Best Actress and Best Actor) and the ever excellent Laura Dern (Winner of Best Supporting Actress). 

Day 3 – 1970s 

Bugsy Malone – Nominated for Best Original Song 1976 

Available On the ITV Hub

New York, 1929. A war between two rival gangsters, Fat Sam and Dandy Dan. Dan is in possession of the dreaded ‘splurge gun’. Can Bugsy Malone get the girl and help Fat Sam defend his business against deadly Dan and his dastardly tricks. A gangster film played by child actors! 

Rocky – Winner Best Picture 1976

Available On Amazon Prime 

Sylvester Stallone became an instant superstar with his portrayal of the underdog boxer who gets a million-to-one shot at boxing’s World Heavyweight crown. Spawning five direct sequels and two spinoff Creed movies, Rocky was a juggernaut that began in the year of the bi-centenary 1976.  

The Conversation – Nominated for three Oscars 1974 

Available On Amazon Prime 

Francis Ford Coppola beat himself at the Academy Awards ceremony celebrating the best films of 1974 as he nabbed the Best Picture award for The Godfather Part II. This thought-provoking drama in which Gene Hackman’s Harry Caul, expert surveillance man, hears something disturbing in his recording of a young couple in a park, really tapped into the paranoia of the early to mid 70s. Released months before Nixon’s resignation, it really had its finger on the pulse.  

Close Encounters Of The Third Kind – Nominated for 8 Oscars 1977 

Available On Netflix 

Steven Spielberg’s classic sci-fi drama about a UFO-obsessed man (Richard Dreyfuss) who is drawn to the mysterious Devil’s Tower mountain. As experts are baffled by the inexplicable events happening worldwide, the man is lead to a life changing encounter. Nominated for 8 Oscars it only managed to win 1 (Best Cinematography) as the voters went with critical hit Annie Hall (4 wins) and Star Wars (6 wins) instead. 

Day 4  - 2000s 

A Beautiful Mind – Best Picture 2001 

Available On Netflix 

In a decades-spanning biopic, brilliant mathematician John Forbes Nash Jr (Russell Crowe) struggles with schizophrenia while making history in his field. Winning four of its six nominations, A Beautiful Mind won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress (Jennifer Connelly).  

Inglorious Basterds  - Best Supporting Actor Christoph Waltz 2009 

Available On Amazon Prime 

Inglorious Basterds begins in German-occupied France, where Shoshanna Dreyfus (Melanie Laurent) witnesses the execution of her family at the hand of Nazi Colonel Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz). Shoshanna narrowly escapes and flees to Paris, where she forges a new identity as the owner and operator of a cinema. With Brad Pitt and Diane Kruger among an all-star cast. Nominated for 8 Oscars. 

No Country For Old Men – Best Picture 2007 

Available On Netflix 

The Coen Brothers are no stranger to the Oscar ceremony and No Country for Old Men, based on the novel by Cormac McCarthy won four awards from its 8 nominations. A drug deal gone bad and a bag full of cash entwine an unsuspecting hunter, a veteran sheriff, and a murderous hitman in the stark West Texas Desert. Javier Bardem won Best Supporting Actor for his role as Anton Chigurh to go alongside the Coens’ Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay awards. 

Gladiator -  Best Picture 2000 

Available on Amazon Prime 

Russell Crowe nabbed the first of his two year double Best Actor Oscar wins with this Roman epic. Drawing its inspiration from Anthony Mann’s The Fall Of The Roman Empire (1964) and Stanley Kubrick’s Spartacus (1960), Ridley Scott’s Oscar-winning take on the Roman epic lavishes the genre with the very latest in computer generated effects technology that literary raised the dead by completing filming after Oliver Reed untimely death.  

Day 5  - 1980s 

The Killing Fields – Won 3 Oscars 1984 

Available On Amazon Prime 

This historical real-life drama follows a lone man’s fight for survival, as he navigates the ravages and horrors of the Cambodian War which claimed the life of over two million civilians. A powerful, honest, raw and beautiful masterpiece of cinema, starring John Malkovich and Sam Waterson that is considered by many one of the best films of all time. Nominated for 7 Oscars winning three including Best Supporting Actor for amateur actor Hain S Ngor in his first role.  

Field Of Dreams – Nominated for 3 Oscars 1989 

Available On Amazon Prime 

Based on the 1982 novel Shoeless Joe, this film stars Kevin Costner as an Iowa farmer who constructs a baseball diamond in his fields after hearing the inspirational message, “If you build it, he will come”. Whimsical fantasy drama that seemed to catch the imagination of moviegoers in the late 80s, foreshadowed Costner’s arrival on the Oscar scene. 

Crocodile Dundee – Nominated for Best Original Screenplay 1986

Available On Netflix 

Riffing on the classic fish-out-of-water storyline, Crocodile Dundee was a surprise hit of 1986 catapulting star Paul Hogan into the realm of household name. Crocodile hunter Mick Dundee is plucked from the Australian outback and brought to the urban jungle of New York. “That’s not a knife!”. This film has the distinction of being the most watched Christmas Day film in UK television history, garnering over 21 million viewers Christmas Day 1989. 

Platoon – Best Picture 1986

Available via a 7 day free trial MGM via Amazon Prime 

Oliver Stone’s award winning film tells the story of a young innocent 19-year-old soldier, Chris Taylor (Charlie Sheen), who is thrown headfirst into the bloody Vietnam conflict. He is forced to fight not only the Viet Cong, but also his own fears and intense anger. Nominated for 8 Oscars winning four including Best Director. Both Willem Dafoe and Tom Berenger were nominated for Best Supporting Actor losing out to Michael Caine for Hannah And Her Sisters

Day 6 – 1990s 

Silence of The Lambs – Won The Big Five Awards 

Available via a 7 day free trial MGM via Amazon Prime 

For only the third time in its history, the Academy Awards in 1991 gave the top film awards (Best Picture, Actor, Actress, Director, Screenplay) to one film. In 1991, Jonathan Demme’s The Silence Of The Lambs swept the board with Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins winning the acting awards. Clarice Starling (Foster), a top student at the FBI’s training academy lands herself a special assignment: the FBI is investigating a vicious murderer nicknamed Buffalo Bill and believes that brilliant psychiatrist Hannibal Lector can provide insight. The only downside is that Lector is a violent psychopath serving life for murder and cannibalism. 

American Beauty – Best Picture 1999 

Available on Netflix 

While struggling to endure his tightly wound wife (Annette Bening), an unfulfilling job and a surly teen (Thora Birch), a man (Kevin Spacey) becomes obsessed with one of his daughter’s friends (Mena Suvari). Nominated for 8 awards winning five including Best Actor (Spacey), Best Director (Sam Mendes), Best Screenplay (Alan Ball) and Best Cinematography. 

A Few Good Men – Nominated for 4 Oscars 1992

Available on Amazon Prime 

Rob Reiner directs this drama starring Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson. Lieutenant Daniel Kaffee (Cruise) is a Navy lawyer assigned to defend two men who accidentally killed a soldier by strangling him with a towel. Initially working out a quick and easy plea bargain with the prosecuting lawyer (Kevin Bacon), Kaffee is persuaded to investigate the case further by a determined colleague (Demi Moore). Together they take on the might of the army establishment, as the trail of evidence leads to the accused’s commanding officer (Nicholson).  

The Full Monty – Nominated for 4 Oscars 1997 

Available On Amazon Prime 

Representing the British contingent in the 1990s Oscar race is the smash hit comedy from the steel city of Sheffield. Six guys with nothing left to lose try losing their clothing for fun and profit in this international hit comedy. Gaz (Robert Carlyle) and Dave (Mark Addy) are two former steelworkers who are devastated by the economic downturn in their community. Winner of the Best Score Academy Award and nominated for Best Picture, Best Director and Best Original Screenplay. 

Day 7 – 1950s 

North By Northwest – Nominated for 3 Oscars 1959 

Available on BBC iPlayer

Classic Alfred Hitchcock thriller. When advertising executive Roger Thornhill (Cary Grant) is mistaken for the mysterious Mr Kaplan by a ruthless espionage ring, he soon faces deadly peril, framed for murder. On the run, Thornhill seeks Kaplan, the one person who can verify his story.  

The Nun’s Story – Nominated for 8 Oscars 1959

Available on BBC iPlayer

Gabrielle van der Mal (Audrey Hepburn) enters a nunnery as a nursing postulant, but she is frequently at odds with her superiors as she can’t help putting care for the patients above her obedience to the order.  

Singin’ In The Rain – Nominated for 2 Oscars 1952 

Available On BBC iPlayer

A masterpiece that wasn’t entirely recognised on original release (nominated only for Best Supporting Actress and Original Score). In fact 1952 is probably a year to forget for the Academy as the Best Picture winner The Greatest Show On Earth was widely criticised and only two of all the nominated films this year have found a place on the AFI Best American Films Of All Time list (High Noon is the other one). A wonderful musical romp through the unstable years when Hollywood transitioned from silent to sound with the effortless Gene Kelly. 

Guys And Dolls – Nominated for 4 Oscars  1955

Available On Amazon Prime 

When Nathan Detroit (Frank Sinatra), a New York gambler, decides to set up a craps game he realises that all that stands in his way is the $1000 he needs to rent the space. As he tries to obtain the money he meets up with old friend Sky Masterson (Marlon Brando), a big time gambler willing to bet on just about anything. Nathan bets Sky $1000 to take a woman of Nathan’s choosing to dinner in Cuba. Thinking he has won an easy bet Nathan rests up; he failed to imaging however that Sky and straight-talking, gambling-opposing Sarah Brown (Jean Simmons) would actually hit it off.