Mark Kermode's Oscar Winners: A Secrets of Cinema Special

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Mark Kermode's Oscar Winners: A Secrets of Cinema Special



Film critic Mark Kermode has reservations about the Oscars. As he says, rather brutally, the 1989 Best Picture winner Driving Miss Daisy wasn’t even the best movie Morgan Freeman made that year let alone the best film of all. He also points out that Alfred Hitchcock, Howard Hawks and Stanley Kubrick never won Best Director while female and black directors have only recently been recognised by the Academy. But over the past nine decades clues to Oscar’s taste have emerged and using these Kermode cleverly dissects what kind of film you need to make before you think about practicing your acceptance speech.

He divides his cinematic lecture into genres such as the “war is hell” movie (“Flag waving is always a winner!”) or ones depicting struggles against injustice. The best bet for winning a best actor or actress award, he suggests, is by playing characters overcoming seemingly insurmountable odds such as a disability – or historical figures (the Queen, Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln). As with his previous series, this is wonderfully sharp, witty and thought-provoking.


As the red carpet season reaches its climax, film critic Mark Kermode looks back at past winners of the prestigious award, and celebrates some of the most memorable performances.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Mark Kermode
Executive Producer John Das
Producer Mark Kermode
Series Producer Nick Freand Jones
Writer Kim Newman