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9 Reasons 'American Sniper' Deserves 2015 Best Picture Oscar

Image: 9 Reasons 'American Sniper' Deserves 2015 Best Picture Oscar
In American Sniper, Chris Kyle (Bradley Cooper). (Warner Bros. Pictures)

By    |   Friday, 20 Feb 2015 04:38 PM

Ask American moviegoers — especially conservatives — who should win the Best Picture Oscar at the 87th Academy Awards show Sunday night and the answer is "American Sniper." Getting the Hollywood insiders who vote on such honors to agree seems to be a long shot.

Director Clint Eastwood has been praised for his stirring, intense biopic about Navy SEAL sniper and American hero Chris Kyle, whose 160 confirmed kills (and likely 200 or more) in four tours of Iraq made him the most lethal sniper in American history.

The gripping story of Kyle, who was gunned down Feb. 2 at a firing range allegedly by a fellow veteran suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) whom he was trying to help, brought a tragic end to the man known as "The Legend" by his fellow SEALs, Marines, and soldiers.

"American Sniper"'s patriotic message of duty, honor, and country, and the all-too-often terrible price that our veterans must pay for defending the U.S. against its enemies, has resonated with Americans everywhere and made the film a huge hit.

Special: Clint Eastwood: You 'Must Read' Chris Kyle’s Book — More

The following are nine reasons why "American Sniper" deserves to take the biggest honor that Hollywood can give.

1. Box Office Smash — "American Sniper" has earned over $336 million to date, more than the other seven nominated pictures combined. Fandango movie critic Dave Karger told USA Today, "Not only is it the highest-grossing film of the eight nominees, but it's also that rare movie that works equally well as an action thriller and a character study."

2. Popular Opinion — In a Vox Populi poll, 38 percent of those surveyed said they wanted "American Sniper" to take the top movie honors, more than twice as many people who voted for the second most popular film, "Selma," which drew only 14 percent of the vote.

In a Fandango poll of people who had seen all eight nominated movies, 36 percent said they want "American Sniper" to win Best Picture. Among the other nominees, "Boyhood" and "Birdman" drew just 10 percent each, "Selma" drew 11 percent, "The Imitation Game" 15 percent, "The Theory of Everything" only 6 percent, "The Grand Budapest Hotel" 8 percent, and "Whiplash" just 4 percent," USA Today reported.

Special: Get the Full Story of This American Hero in Chris Kyle's Memoir — Click Here.

3. Star Power — The movie's star, Bradley Cooper, turns in a stellar, low-key performance he called "life-changing," which has earned him a Best Actor nomination. Cooper packed on 40 pounds of muscle to play the burly Kyle, and in prepation for the role, he viewed thousands of hours of video provided by Kyle's widow, Taya, Reuters reported.

4. Critics have lauded "American Sniper" — The Guardian's movie critic Paul MacInnes wrote: "Politically, historically even, 'American Sniper' is contentious, but as a piece of art it's a deft study of a contemporary situation of personality that we might otherwise choose not to consider and that is a perfectly valid justification for giving it the Best Picture Oscar in 2015."

5. A Plea for Veterans — "American Sniper" makes an impassioned plea for understanding and help for American veterans. Even well-known liberal "Hanoi Jane" Fonda responded to that, tweeting, "Just saw 'American Sniper.' Powerful. Another view of 'Coming Home.' Bradley Cooper sensational. Bravo Clint Eastwood."

6. Heroic Story — Kyle was a genuine American hero and inspiration, who overcame a severe rodeo riding injury and eventually made it through tough Navy SEAL training, Military.com reports.

When his 2012 book became a best-seller, Kyle called the profits "blood money" and said he wanted to donate it to the families of fallen SEAL buddies and veterans groups.

To date, the book is still a best-seller in 2015, and sold 1.2 million copies in 2012 and 2013.

Special: Get the Full Story of This American Hero in Chris Kyle's Memoir — Click Here.

7. Genuine Patriotism — The patriotism expressed in "American Sniper" has brought back pride in our country. Universal's co-president of marketing Michael Moses called its message "un-ironic" and added that it "treats American values honorably." The Wall Street Journal commented, "Its success is the strongest evidence yet that audiences, including veterans and cultural conservatives who are more concentrated in the South and Midwest, feel under-served by Hollywood and will turn out in droves for movies that are inspiring, patriotic, and sincere."

8. Industry Accolades — "American Sniper" already has been praised by top movie industry professionals. Despite Clint Eastwood being snubbed by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which denied him a Best Director nomination, the Directors Guild of America nominated it. The American Film Institute chose it as one of its movies of the year and both the Producers Guild and the American Cinema Editors nominated the film.

9. Uniting Across the Aisle — "American Sniper" has brought liberals and conservatives together, and could help the Oscars' ratings. Sasha Stone, founder of Awards Daily, told the Daily Beast, "The funny thing about Hollywood is that they’re known to most [Americans] for being very liberal. The [Sean] Hannitys of the world don’t like Hollywood. They don’t like the Oscars. So now they find themselves in an uncomfortable friendship and alliance because of 'American Sniper.' ... You might see a much bigger audience of Americans who would never watch that 'liberal crap' tuning in to see if 'Sniper' will win."

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Ask American moviegoers — especially conservatives — who should win the Best Picture Oscar at the 87th Academy Awards show Sunday night and the answer is "American Sniper." Getting the Hollywood insiders who vote on such honors to agree seems to be a long shot.
american sniper, best picture, oscar, 2015
911
2015-38-20
Friday, 20 Feb 2015 04:38 PM
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