Wings (1927)

The first year of the Academy Awards there were two separate categories for Best Picture. Best Production and Best Unique Production, where Best Production is more of a movie for the masses... a statistic that is basically captured by box office statistics nowadays and arguably has the reward of making the most money. Meanwhile the Best Unique production is considered the best acting, screenplay, etc. and you could say that the current "Best Picture" winner is not necessarily the favorite movie of the year.

Since the category has been terminated and a single best picture award was given the 2nd year of the Academy Awards, some think that this should not be considered the first Best Picture winner, while others think that this should share the distinguision with Sunrise. Now, since The Broadway Melody won the single award the following year, was a huge box office success, but did not win any acting, screenplay, or director awards I have to consider that the award still cared about box office in the 2nd year, therefore this is in fact the first best picture winner.

That being said I gave this and Sunrise both 7/10 ratings. If I had to pick which I liked better though, this one would win. It was actually a really entertaining silent film, and both films are the only Best Picture winners that were also silent. As a side note I liked The Crowd, a nominee up against Sunrise, better than both of these films.

It isn't typical for me to suggest a silent film, and won't suggest this one either. I do have to say though that this was a very exciting film. There were a number of dogfights, which is probably why it won a Best Effects Oscar, and the story and action worked well together. If it was 1929 right now I'm sure I would have loved this film. Considering what had some out at this point in cinema, this was a fantastic production and compelling storyline. If you are into silent era films, check this one out.

Vote: 7/10

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