Cram for the Oscars on February 24 with recent home-theater releases.
Best of Warner Bros 20 Film Collection: Best Pictures
Release Date: January 29, Warner Home Video
As the Oscars approach, look back and see which films have brought home the biggest award of the evening. This 20-film box set includes winners dating back to 1929 (The Broadway Melody), featuring classics such as Casablanca and Ben-Hur, along with recent favorites like The Departed and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. If you’re the betting kind, perhaps studying the past winners will help improve your own Oscar ballot.
Release Date: February 19, Warner Home Video
Ben Affleck already has an Oscar, for writing Good Will Hunting. With Argo, he takes a stab at nabbing a director’s statue to match. The film follows six Americans who narrowly escape the Iran hostage crisis, only to be marooned in the country, hiding out with the Canadian ambassador. Affleck also stars in the film, as the CIA specialist who attempts to retrieve them under the guise of a fake film shoot. It sounds wacky, but it’s based on a true—and recently declassified—story.
Release Date: February 12, Fox Home Entertainment
In the acting category, we’ve always admired John Hawkes as a character actor, creeping us out as a cult leader in Martha Marcy May Marlene or a meth addict in Winter’s Bone. So we’re pulling for him to get an acting nomination for The Sessions, where he actually gets to be a sweet, mild-mannered guy—albeit one who has to live in an iron lung and hire a sex surrogate to lose his virginity. Hawkes should get extra Oscar points for having to act without being able to use most of his body.