Monday, February 18, 2013

5 Academy Award Winning Travel Movies

The 2013 Academy Awards are Sunday, February 24, and there are a few travel related films nominated--The Life of Pi for Best Picture, and Denzel Washington for Best Actor in Flight. Whether or not those add to the list of travel movies that have won Academy Awards remains to be seen, but until we find out, here are five Academy Award winning travel movies you can check out before Sunday's show. (Some credit Lawrence of Arabia as a travel movie, but it seems more like a historical/war drama -- however, it is well worth watching and is widely considered one of the greatest movies of all time.)

Winner of Best Original Score and Best Animated Feature
A heartwarming story from 2009 of a curmudgeonly old man and a young, chubby Boy Scout on a unlikely adventure floating via many balloons (with a house as a gondola)  to Paradise Falls, a mysterious destination in South America.

Lost in Translation
Best Original Screenplay
Bob (Bill Murray) and Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson) are a generation apart and experiencing crises unique to their different points in life in this 2003 film. By chance, they meet in Tokyo, confide in each other and explore the meaning of their lives, each gaining a unique perspective that would have been impossible without their random encounter.

Out of Africa
Winner of 7 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Cinematography
Meryl Streep plays Danish Baroness Karen Dinesen Blixen who, with her husband, started a coffee plantation in Kenya in 1913, returning to Denmark in 1931. It explores her marriage of convenience to her husband, an affair with another man, and the many problems she encounters while establishing and running the plantation. Sweeping vistas of Africa and Dinesen's growing appreciation of African culture make this 1985 movie interesting to watch.

Forrest Gump
Winner of 6 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor (Tom Hanks) and Best Director
"My name's Gump, Forrest Gump ..." is a line uttered by Tom Hanks numerous times throughout the adventures of Forrest Gump, a man simple in worldly ways but a genius in affairs of the heart, practical matters and ping pong. His story will take you through iconic places and show you the iconic faces of the 1960s, 70s and 80s. Stupid is as stupid does in this 1994 film.

Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Best Supporting Actress (Penelope Cruz)
Two young women summer in Barcelona in this 2008 film. One, Cristina, is sexually adventurous, while her friend, Cristina, is cautious and engaged to be married. Cristina, over the course of the summer, becomes curious and then tempted into exploring her more adventurous side. A  Woody Allen film, so it's filled with a variety of turns and reflections on modern life.

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