The 45th Academy Awards - 1973

Updated on October 9, 2015

45th Academy Awards

Forty-five years of Academy Awards. Another year to review and revere whether for the story content or the cinematography, each Award winner is one to be seen. We may not agree some choices are the best of the year, but we know someone chose them as the top films.

The most memorable thing about the 45th Academy Awards was Marlon Brando's boycott of the Awards. He sent Sacheen Littlefeather to explain why he would not show up to collect his award. A bold move, one seen by many as a slap in the face to the Academy. The reason for his rejection as read by Sacheen:

"I'm representing Marlon Brando this evening and he has asked me to tell you ... that he very regretfully cannot accept this very generous award. And the reasons for this being are the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry —"

Those present at the Awards were stunned and some even booed.

The movie for which he was nominated, The Godfather, is said to be one of the most acclaimed and beloved films of all time.

Tom Hagen: I have to get back to work. It's part of the wedding. No Sicilian can ever refuse a request on his daughter's wedding day.

— The Godfather

James Caan played Sonny Corleone


The Godfather

Who hasn't seen The Godfather? Seriously? You don't know about the horse head in the bed? Oh my. You know there were two more right? From the book The Godfather, to the movie, and so much in between. The author of the book, Mario Puzo was a gambler who owed some money to some gangsters. He needed his book published to pay off his debts. At times it was doubtful the book would be published, but it was and it was on the New York Times Best Sellers list for sixty-seven weeks.

The Corleone family is reputed to be one of the biggest crime families ... certainly in film history. The opening scene is Vito Corleone's (Marlon Brando) daughter's wedding. Machinations begin here and continue throughout the movie.

I understand the real "Mafia" did not want this film made, but they were obviously unsuccessful. Obviously too much exposure.

The film follows the Corleone family through its rise to power as well as attempts to wipe out the Corleone family both here and in Italy. If it appears I am being vague there's a reason for that. You really have to see this movie to understand what happens. When Michael (Al Pacino) the free thinker, returns from the Marines, when Vito is shot and when Sonny (James Caan) advises everyone he should be the one to exact revenge, and so much more. If you haven't seen it, prepare for some violence and see it!

1972 - Facts and Favorites

Here's a real test for Baby Boomers, some now famous people born in 1972:

Brad Paisley, Tracee Ellis Ross, Maya Rudolph, Taye Digs, Jude Law, Jennifer Garner, Ben Affleck....feeling old yet?

What were you doing in 1972? Here's a few facts to jog your memory:

The 1972 Summer Olympics were held in Germany. The maxi dress was in and the first Star Trek Convention was held in New York City. Roald Dahl's book "Charlie and the Great Glas Elevator" was released. Remembering anything here?

Liza Minnelli in Cabaret



Completely on a different track from the Godfather, is Cabaret. A musical set in Berlin, following the relationship between American Sally Bowles (Liza Minnelli) and English Brian Roberts (Michael York). Twists and turns are accomplished with Brian's sexuality. He's not sure if he prefers men or women, and don't forget this was in Nazi Germany. He experiments with both and winds up with Sally. Then, Maximilian von Heune (Helmut Griem) enters and invites them to his country estate, where he makes love to both of them, at separate times, causing confusion in their relationship. Sally is faced with some tough decisions.

Joel Grey played the Emcee, just as he had in the stage version.

You may have heard some of the song, such as ""Willkommen (Welcome)", or "Cabaret". If you like musicals and/or Liza, this is a must see. If you're wondering if there's a happy ending, well, watch the movie.

Doctor: Explain this to me again. I didn't know somebody could shoot themself with their own arrow.

— Deliverance


There's nothing like a thriller to speed up your heartbeat. Here's a movie where you are most likely familiar with the opening music scene, "Dueling Banjos". This is a dark movie, a trip into an unknown wilderness. Four businessmen (Burt Reynolds, Jon Voight, Ned Beatty, and Ronny Cox) take the canoe trip of a lifetime, one you wouldn't want to repeat.

The four split up into two canoes. The male rape incident is totally unexpected and needless to say, a dark moment. After murdering the rapist the men agree to bury his body and not tell the police, this is not the only body in this movie. A treacherous rapids ride leaves one of the men with a broken leg, and the others afraid some mountain men are following them. I'll let you see the movie to find out what happens to all of them.

Movies Nominated That Did Not Win

Best Picture
Best Actor
Best Actress
Michael Caine - Sleuth
Diana Ross - Lady Sings the Blues
Laurence Olivier - Sleuth
Maggie Smith - Travels with My Aunt
The Emigrants
Peter O'Toole - The Ruling Class
Cicely Tyson - Sounder
Paul Winfield - Sounder
Liv Ullman - The Emigrants

More Movies From 1972

Usually the best movies are picked for Academy Awards, however, not everyone agrees with the choices. Sometimes people's favorites are overlooked or just down right ignored. Then there are the movies we can't figure out, the ones that make us scratch our head and wonder why they were even made. Either way, every year contains lots of movies to choose from, movies to scare us, movies to make us laugh, and movies we're glad we saw. Here are a few from 1972:

Jeremiah Johnson
Hitchcock's Frenzy
Last Tango in Paris
Play it Again Sam
Joe Kidd
Butterflies are Free
The Candidate
The Way of the Dragon
The Man from La Mancha
The Mechanic
The Poseidon Adventure
The Cowboys
What's Up Doc?
Slaughterhouse Five
Conquest of the Planet of the Apes
Buck and the Preacher
Up the Sandbox
The New Centurions

Do you have any favorites in 1972?

See results

In Closing

While this isn't the most original title for a closing, it is what it is. In closing I have to say Jeremiah Johnson was one of my favorites! Robert Redford was superb as a Mexican-Amercian War veteran who decided to live in the mountains. Lucky for him he comes across a real mountain man who teaches him how to survive. He also finds a native bride and somehow angers the Crow Indians. Definitely worth watching.

On the other hand there is Ben. Nothing like a movie about rats to get you interested. When it was released it was a big deal. What boy doesn't have a pet rat? You need to see this to believe it!

I could go on and on, but now it's your turn to check out the movies you haven't already seen and leave some comments about the ones you have. I'm sure there's something here that will at least interest you even if it doesn't turn out to be your favorite movie of all time.

Copyright Tillsontitan - All Rights Reserved

"Bringing you movies that are part of your memories."


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    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      Genna, I think you are right. Brando's boycott certainly didn't help his career. It is amazing the things actors come up with to make their acting more real.

      I love Jeremiah Johnson and though Deliverance can be tough to watch it is certainly a good movie. Have a great day. BTW it is almost time for the next installment. I have been trying to do them monthly now.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 

      4 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Brando's boycott of the award ceremony is legendary...and it cost him in the long run, I think. I read that he stuffed cotton inside his cheeks along his jawbone to give him that slightly puffed look, and to muffle his voice when speaking as the Don. And he was quite the prankster on set. Godfather will always be a classic. This was an extraordinary year for films. You have highlighted my favs, including Jeremiah Johnson and Deliverance. Thank you, again, Mary for this terrific series...reading these installments is a high-spot for me.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      Deb, wouldn't it be great to pick your own Academy Awards?

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      As always, a wonderful synopsis. Makes you want to do an Academy Awards Day, doesn't it?

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      You're most welcome Matt.

      Sha, it's not always easy remembering what movies came out in what year. Once you start researching, like I do, you're sometimes surprised. Poor Great Dane, hope you still let him sleep on your bed!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      4 years ago from Central Florida

      The Godfather scared the pants off me. At the time we had a black Great Dane who used to sleep on my bed. I loved that dog but the movie gave me nightmares.

      Jeremiah Johnson was a great movie. I've always loved Robert Redford.

      1972 was a good year for movies. I didn't realize it until I read this post.

    • Matt Easterbrook5 profile image

      Matthew A Easterbrook 

      4 years ago from Oregon

      Really enjoyed your hub. Thanks for sharing Mary!


    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      drbj glad you enjoyed the films and my hub! Definitely many worth watching and some just because they're so bad (like Frogs).

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      4 years ago from south Florida

      Great job as usual, Mary. You made me remember how great '72 was for outstanding films. My favorites were Cabaret, The Godfather, Jeremiah Johnson, Frenzy, Last Tango, The Candidate, What's Up Doc and Ben. They were outstanding. Saw all the rest which were also entertaining except somehow missed Blacula and Frogs.

      I watch the first group almost every time they are repeated on cable. Still great entertainment.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      Twelve! Oh dear, I am certainly your senior :) Glad you enjoy these movies from your youth!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      4 years ago from England

      Love these movies! and yes I can smuggly say as I was only 12 at the time no I don't feel old! LOL! great job as always Mary! nell

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      You're welcome. Yes, the classic Man from La Mancha is always a pleasure.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 

      4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      I really enjoyed The Man from La Mancha, so long ago now, but it was interesting reading about the awards. Thank you.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      Ann, I found the top runners violent as well. However, as you point out the acting was excellent and I think the story lines were lifelike. I appreciate your compliments. While I do enjoy writing these hubs, I also put a lot of research in and try to make them interesting beyond just movie reviews.

      Thanks Larry!

      I'm glad you enjoy these hubs Anne.

      DD, I appreciate you always taking the time to read these hubs.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      I was about three at that time. Great memories indeed! Interesting and informative.

    • Anne Harrison profile image

      Anne Harrison 

      4 years ago from Australia

      I love these Acadamy Award hubs, and the memories they bring! It's hard to beat th duelling banjo. Thanks for sharing

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      4 years ago from Oklahoma

      The Godfather is one of my all time favorites.

      Great hub!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      4 years ago from SW England

      It seems to have been a very violent year which probably accounts for the fact that I either haven't seen or didn't like any of the film mentioned! I hate The Godfather though I recognise the brilliant acting. Cabaret was ghastly too but then I don't like the actors in that much. Aren't I awful?! The Poseidon Adventure was good though.

      One in your extra list is Maggie Smith in Travels with my Aunt; love her as an actress and have read the book though haven't seen the film.

      Great hub, though, Mary. You always bring all the incidental interesting information to our attention and that's what constructing a brilliant hub is all about. Superb!


    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      4 years ago from New York

      Seems we are in the same boat Bill. As I do each Awards ceremony I realize I've seen almost every movie, but then I am a diehard movie fan. You are most welcome, and thanks for always being here for me.

      You have hit the nail on the head Peg. Each movie we see reminds us of someone or something we did at the time, "making memories". We've lost the closeness of those old movie theaters.

      They certainly were good movies Bill. You can see the movies changing over the years, but many of the subjects are timeless.

      Karen so many had a crush on Robert Redford! So you wanted to live in the wilderness, bears and all ;)

      Manatita, Brando did not change his mind. I bet you were a stunning policeman in your uniform! Have a great week my friend.

      Thanks Mike. We can always find something good about any year if we only look.

      Suhail, so nice to see you here. Thank you for sharing a bit of your life.

      Thanks Maria. I loved the first planet of the Apes, especially Charlton Heston! Lots of classics that year for sure GF.

      Glad I could list one of your favorites Frank! Thanks for the blessings, I can always use them. Sending blessings back your way as well.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      4 years ago from Shelton

      the mechanic.. wow I loved that movie... Bronson was great.. I love when you do these.. bless you

    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 

      4 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Dear Mary,

      I adored the whole Planet of the Apes series of movies...still do actually.

      The Godfather and The Poseidon Adventure were amazing on the big screen...timeless classics to me.

      Excellent overview of a great year in movies.

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

      Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent 

      4 years ago from Mississauga, ON

      Awesome hub on a fantastic era gone by!

      I saw many films made in 1972, but later in the years, because I was growing up in a small town in Pakistan. There, we lagged behind the major cities of the country by 2-3 years and of the developed world by 5-7 years. For example, I saw 'God Father' in 1975, 'The Poseidon Adventure' in 1976, and 'The Way of the Dragon' not until 1979.

      But I have some memories from 1972 Olympics, especially the terrorist attack on Israeli team.

      And my brother was born in that year too :-)

    • mckbirdbks profile image


      4 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      'The Godfather' what a movie! And what a franchise. Like yourself, I liked and recommend Jeremiah Johnson. It was a metaphor for the way men live.

      1972 was a good year. Even for the movies.

    • manatita44 profile image


      4 years ago from london

      Thank you for bringing the seventies to life, once more. I was at home, a policeman in Grenada. Since I have seen the Godfather, then it's likely that I saw it at home for the first time. I've certainly seen it a few times.

      The movie path that you follow is so similar to mines! I do not remember Marlon Brando refusing his award. Did he change his mind later?

      I love Jeremiah Johnson, too, and also Liza Minnelli. Have a great day.

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 

      4 years ago from Georgia

      What a trip down Memory Lane Mary. Thanks for this. I was 12 at the time and have heard of most of those movies and saw many of them. My favorite of these is Jeremiah Johnson, but I did have a crush on Robert Redford and have always wanted to live out in the wilderness so there you have it! I enjoyed this hub!

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 

      4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Great year for the movies Mary. Loved Deliverance and of course the Godfather. Poseidon Adventure and the Planet of the Apes were also very entertaining. Great job Mary.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 

      4 years ago from Northeast of Dallas, Texas

      Oh, yes, Mary! I loved the Godfather series and remember seeing the first one at the theater. We lived in a small town in Florida at the time that still had the old fashioned movie house with the curtains and a balcony where smoking was allowed. I also saw, "The Sting" at that theater.

      "Cabaret" was among my favorites for the songs and the twists and turns of the plot and of course, the toothpaste in the glass. Michael York was a hot actor who starred in so many movies from that decade.

      "Butterflies are Free" was another entertaining one that showed Goldie Hawn as more than just a comedic go-go dancer.

      "Poseidon Adventure" was one that the family went to see at the theater after Christmas dinner that year. What a great film stocked full of incredible actors and actresses: Shelley Winters, Ernest Borgnine, Gene Hackman. And that wonderful hit song that so many of us sang on New Year's Day: "There's Got To Be a Morning After."

      Thanks for the many fond memories.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      4 years ago from Olympia, WA

      My goodness I used to watch a lot of movies. I didn't realize it until you started this series. This was a very good year...loved Jeremiah Johnson. I think I've seen it ten times, and I remember Brando boycotting the ceremonies. Great review, Mary!


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