In the tradition of Marvel Comics; classic "What If...?" series, Movie Dearest takes you through an inter-dimensional portal to see what this year's Academy Award Best Picture nominees would be like if they were produced during earlier movie making time periods.
Lincoln (1917): In his pseudo-sequel to his epic The Birth of a Nation, D.W. Griffith makes his "not-so Honest" Abe into the villain, so naturally he cast Lon Chaney in the title role. Marie Dressler co-stars as the First Lady, while Griffith returns to acting as John Wilkes Booth.
Silver Linings Playbook (1940): Frank Capra reunites Jimmy Stewart (he's not bi-polar, he's just drunk!) and Irene Dunne (the gal with a "bad reputation"!) in this zany screwball comedy about two misfits who find love in the loony bin. Edward Everett Horton and Eve Arden play Stewart's wacky parents.
Life of Pi (1943): Following the success of Jungle Book, the forever loinclothed Sabu plays the spunky Pi. Since the only computers around at that time were abacuses, Richard Parker would be an actual tiger, who would speak with the voice of Monty Woolley.
Django Unchained (1966): The Rat Pack returns for this rollicking, boozy western, with Sammy Davis, Jr. starring as tap dancer-turned-bounty hunter Bo Django. Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin are his hard-drinking, poker-player partners, who compete for the attentions of sassy saloon girl Angie Dickinson.
Älskar (1972): Legendary director Ingmar Bergman and his muses Liv Ullmann and Max Von Sydow make this tale of "amour" even more depressing. (Of course, everything is more depressing in Swedish.)
Argo (1982): Paul Michael Glaser stars as Tony Mancini in this ABC Sunday Night Movie, which climaxes in an explosive finale that finds the former Starsky in a one-on-one fist fight with the Ayatollah, thereby single–handedly bringing Truth, Justice and the American Way to the Middle East.
Les Misérables (1989): Capitalizing on the latest Hollywood trend of rock stars-turned-movie actors, director Alan Parker casts David Bowie as Jean Valjean, Sting as Inspector Javert and, in a controversial case of double-casting, Madonna plays both Fantine and her grown-up daughter Cosette. Weird Al Yankovic and Cyndi Lauper round out the cast as the Thénardiers, and all the songs are lip-synched.
Beasts of the Southern Wild (1991): Japanimation genius and My Neighbor Totoro director Hayao Miyazaki manages to squeeze in even more allegory in this lushly animated tale of little Eggroll, voiced by Drew Barrymore in the English language dub.
Zero Dark Thirty (2011): Aging action stars Chuck Norris, Stephan Seagal, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren team up to take out Osama bin Laden in this over-the-top thriller that went straight to DVD. Now available at Best Buy for $1.99.