People in Oregon have a lot of strong feelings about movies filmed in our state. Some projects were mainly done here, and others were made here and partly in Oregon. Some of the pieces show off Oregon’s natural beauty. There has a more gritty feel. But whether the movie makes Oregon look like a beautiful place to visit or is embarrassing, we have thoughts—so many ideas.
That all raises a question: What should Oregon’s official movie be? It was brought up again when House Resolution 14 was introduced in the Oregon legislature. It says that the 1975 movie “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” should be named the official film of the state.
As a summary of the resolution says, “the film was shot almost entirely on location at the Oregon State Hospital in Salem,” and that a fishing scene showcased “the coastal charms of Oregon’s Depoe Bay.” The movie was also based on a book by a “born and raised Oregonian” named Ken Kesey.
Not only that, the summary continues, “in the nearly half-century since the film’s release, Jack Nicholson’s character Randle ‘R.P.’ McMurphy has endured as an anti-authoritarian folk hero whose outside-the-box thinking and vehement rejection of the status quo exemplifies the irrepressible spirit of the people of the State of Oregon.”
Oh, and “the film, like Oregon, embraces the downtrodden, the misjudged, and all who have failed to thrive within the bounds of conventional society.”
“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” was a big hit when it came out. It went on to win Oscars for Best Picture, Best Director (Milos Forman), Best Actor (Jack Nicholson), Best Actress (Louise Fletcher), and Best Screenplay Adapted from Other Material (Laurence Hauben and Bo Goldman).
The Oregonian/OregonLive put the movie at the top of a list of the best films shot in Oregon, even though it has some dated parts (like McMurphy being locked up for statutory rape, which doesn’t make him seem very sympathetic).
But does “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” deserve to be Oregon’s official film, given that it won awards, got good reviews, and was shot in the state? Or are other features that deserve that honor? Here are some suggestions for alternatives. Let the arguments begin!
“The Goonies” (1985):
Hey, you guys! What about this all-time favorite, which came out as a movie for kids but is now loved by people of all ages? Tourists keep going to the Astoria house from the movie “The Goonies,” When a fan of the movie bought it, it made national news.
Locations on the Oregon coast, brave kids, and a movie in which Ke Huy Quan, who just won an Oscar, played one of the courageous kids, equals a strong candidate. (Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, and iTunes are all platforms for streaming.)
“Animal House” (1978):
“Animal House” came out in 1978. If some parts of “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” haven’t held up well over time, the comedy about a frat house in the 1960s that was shot in Eugene and other places in Lane County is full of jokes that seem very inappropriate now.
On the other hand, many viewers love the food fights, toga parties, slobs vs. snobs humor, catchphrases (“double secret probation,” anyone? ), and outrageous cast, which included the late John Belushi at his craziest. (Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, and iTunes are all platforms for streaming)
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“Stand By Me” (1986):
Based on a Stephen King short story, this movie has some gross scenes (like that pie-eating contest!). But even though the story is about boys looking for a dead body, everyone remembers how sensitively the characters are portrayed and how well Wil Wheaton, Corey Feldman, Jerry O’Connell, and the late River Phoenix worked together when they were all young actors.
Brownsville, Cottage Grove, Eugene, and Veneta are all in the Willamette Valley, which adds to its appeal. (Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, and Paramount+ are all streaming services.)
“Sometimes a Great Notion” (1971):
“Sometimes a Great Idea” was written in 1971. This family drama is based on a book by the late Oregon author Ken Kesey. Like “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” it was a book. It was filmed in places like Lincoln City and Newport on the central Oregon coast. Paul Newman played the logger Hank Stamper, and Newman also directed the movie.
The rest of the cast, including Henry Fonda, Lee Remick, and Richard Jaeckel, nominated for an Oscar as Best Supporting Actor, is also pretty good. But putting on the show was hard because Newman took over after firing the first director.
“The Last Movie Stars,” an HBO Max documentary, says that Newman himself said that making the movie was “a bad, unsettling time” because “I was at war with everybody.” (The film used to be available on Amazon Prime Video, but it isn’t now.)
Source – Oregon live
“Wild” is a memoir by Cheryl Strayed, who lives in Portland, Oregon. The book is still trendy, as is the 2014 movie based on it. Reese Witherspoon, who played Strayed, and Laura Dern, who played Strayed’s late mother, both got Oscar nominations.
The movie also shows some beautiful places in Oregon, like Ashland, Bend, Cascade Locks, and more. This one is a candidate for an Oregon official film. (Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, and DirecTV are all streaming platforms.)
“Drugstore Cowboy” (1989):
“Drugstore Cowboy” came out in 1989. Gus Van Sant, a director who used to live in Portland, may be best known for “Good Will Hunting,” which won Oscars for Robin Williams, Ben Affleck, and Matt Damon. But Van Sant’s more sad and personal movies, like “Drugstore Cowboy” and “My Own Private Idaho,” were shot in and around Portland.
“Drugstore Cowboy” helped Van Sant get a good name among critics, and it is still a powerful look at a group of drug addicts who steal to pay for their habit. It’s not a lovely picture of Portland, but in some depressing ways, it’s all too true. (Amazon Prime Video is one of the streaming services)
“Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio” (2022):
Let’s end this list with something better. The 2023 Oscar for Best Animated Feature went to Guillermo del Toro’s darker take on the classic story of a boy with puppet hands.
It also showed again that Portland is where high-quality stop-motion animation is made. Mark Gustafson, a veteran of Portland’s stop-motion animation scene, was given the honor of being co-director of the Netflix film. A stop-motion animated movie that has won awards sounds like it could be Oregon’s official movie. (It’s available on Netflix).
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1 thought on “What Should Be The official Movie of Oregon?”
What about the Dukes bronco Billy, I think it was back in Sisters oregon