Best Of The Best Pictures: Best Visual Effects

Now it’s time for Best Visual Effects. Because as we all know, movies with a lot of crazy special effects win Best Picture all the time! (drops sarcasm) Okay, so this wasn’t as competitive a category as some of the rest, but nevertheless, I am very pleased with my top five.

First, the ones that didn’t quite make it.

25.) You Can’t Take It With You
24.) Out Of Africa
23.) Mutiny On The Bounty
22.) The French Connection
21.) The Hurt Locker
20.) Platoon
19.) Cimarron
18.) Mrs. Miniver (nominated)
17.) Hamlet
16.) Rebecca (nominated)
15.) Patton (nominated)
14.) Wings (WON)
13.) Gone With The Wind (nominated)
12.) An American In Paris
11.) Birdman

Now for numbers 10-6. The runner ups.

10.) Around The World In 80 Days

For the balloon and train scenes.

9.) The Bridge On The River Kwai

For that explosion at the end.

8.) Lawrence Of Arabia

For… actually I don’t remember, but there must have been some effects in there somewhere, otherwise I wouldn’t have initially put it up so high!

7.) Schindler’s List

For the splash of color added to the monochrome

6.) From Here To Eternity

For those planes, man.

And now for my top five. Four of these films won the Visual Effects Oscar, and seem like obvious choices.



Sometimes the best effects are the ones you don’t notice. (They didn’t really but a baby in water up to its neck.) You might not even realize that there are visual effects in this movie, because they’re very cleverly woven into the story, allowing you to see the world as only John Nash could see it.



Even back in 1959, this film looks just as beautiful as many modern films that use only CGI. The use of models and matte paintings is like no other film I can think of, creating a world that is gorgeous to behold and yet simultaneously very realistic. Oh, and that chariot scene. Wow.



From inserting Tom Hanks into stock footage to removing Gary Sinise’s legs, this film has a lot of very subtle visual effects. They’re convincing enough that you might not even know they’re effects at first glance, which says a lot considering everything that they had to do.



You will believe that Elijah Wood is three feet tall. Maybe the effects look a little dated nowadays, but they’re still pretty impressive. The action, the landscapes, and the CGI creatures all push new boundaries showing what CGI is capable of. And do I even need to mention Gollum?



The R.M.S. Titanic may have been underwater for centuries, but with the help of James Cameron, the ship can sail once again – but not for long. I love it when films like this can blend CGI and practical effects to the point where you can’t tell which is which. But you ultimately don’t care, and you allow yourself to be taken along for the ride.


5.) Titanic

2.) Forrest Gump
2.) The Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King
2.) Platoon

1.) All Quiet On The Western Front
1.) Amadeus
1.) A Beautiful Mind
1.) Ben-Hur
1.) Casablanca
1.) Crash
1.) Gigi
1.) Going My Way
1.) Gone With The Wind
1.) Lawrence Of Arabia
1.) Midnight Cowboy
1.) Out Of Africa
1.) Rebecca
1.) Unforgiven

One thought on “Best Of The Best Pictures: Best Visual Effects

  1. great choices once again Connor! I see that Titanic is getting a lot of love in these posts 🙂 but it will have trouble beating some of the others in many of the big categories

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