Lane focuses on one of her favorite Oscar-winning films. She recommends Joel and Ethan Coen’s No Country for Old Men, which won 4 Oscars for Best Picture, Directing, Adapted Screenplay, and Supporting Actor (Javier Bardem).

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Joel and Ethan Coen’s adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s No Country for Old Men was my first real Oscar pick. It’s a violent, suspenseful western with stand-out performances from Tommy Lee Jones, Josh Brolin, and Javier Bardem. It’s atmospheric, thanks to incredible cinematographer Roger Deakins and minimal music from Carter Burwell. It meditates on good/bad guys while also subverting genre conventions.

In 2007 I was 15 and developing my “adult” taste for film. I remember rooting for Chicago or Lord of the Rings or Ray in past Oscar ceremonies, but I watched the event for pageantry and celebrity (let’s be honest, I still watch for that). No Country for Old Men is the first film I saw in theaters, appreciated, celebrated at the Oscars, and still enjoy today. 2007’s Best Picture category also included nominees AtonementJuno, Michael Clayton, and There Will Be Blood. What a year! Those nominees, also films I enjoy to this day, demonstrate how 2007’s Oscars selections shaped my taste and pushed me toward film. While the Oscars aren’t everything, they are a gateway drug to cinema.

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