2013 Best Original Song - Sorry Bono, Idina's Got This

WON AND SHOULD'VE WON: "Let It Go," Frozen

Right on the heels of nominations morning, the 2013 Oscars got off to a bit of an eyebrow-raising start, and all on account of the category of Best Original Song.

Among the five nominated tunes was a real oddball by the name of "Alone Yet Not Alone," from an eponymous Christian film that never expanded beyond 103 theaters nationally. Performed by Evangelical author Joni Eareckson Tada, the song was co-written by Bruce Broughton, a former governor of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Upon discovering Broughton had used that status to lobby the track to a nomination, newly elected AMPAS President Cheryl Boone Isaacs announced the song's recognition would be rescinded, resulting in a four-nominee Best Original Song category.

This development marked the first time in Oscar history that a nomination was revoked on ethical grounds.

For what it's worth, "Alone Yet Not Alone" is a bit of a snooze and it's a real shame a terrific song like Inside Llewyn Davis' "Please Mr. Kennedy" was overlooked in favor of a track that would merely serve as a temporary nominee. (Perhaps the Academy ought to revise their rules to more closely mirror the Emmys, where, just this year, an acting nominee - Peter MacNicol on Veep - was revoked his nomination and then replaced with the sixth-place finisher, Peter Scolari on Girls.)

As for the four surviving 2013 Best Original Song nominees, Pharrell Williams' "Happy," from the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack, might well edge-out "My Heart Will Go On" as the most oversaturated record to ever grace the category - the difference being, the Celine Dion song was actually good. I wasn't enamored with "Happy" to begin with and I'm hardly more impressed 100 or so listens later. I'm also not terribly fond of Karen O and Spike Jonze's fleeting "The Moon Song," though I would at least concede it's a perfectly appropriate fit for Her. It just doesn't pack the same punch as say, their Where the Wild Things Are work.

More interesting is U2's moving "Ordinary Love," which, alongside Idris Elba's commanding performance, was one of the few great parts of the otherwise-underwhelming Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.

But I think the Academy got this one right - Frozen's "Let It Go" may have been more than a tad overplayed as well but there's no denying the exhilarating power of Idina Menzel's vocal performance or the soaring music and lyrics by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, which come awfully close to rivaling the near-untouchable work of Disney juggernauts Alan Menken and Howard Ashman.

The Oscar-winners ranked (thus far)...

  1. "Over the Rainbow," The Wizard of Oz (1939)
  2. "The Way You Look Tonight," Swing Time (1936)
  3. "Streets of Philadelphia," Philadelphia (1993)
  4. "Lose Yourself," 8 Mile (2002)
  5. "High Hopes," A Hole in the Head (1959)
  6. "Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Que Sera, Sera)," The Man Who Knew Too Much (1956)
  7. "Mona Lisa," Captain Carey, U.S.A. (1950)
  8. "Baby, It's Cold Outside," Neptune's Daughter (1949)
  9. "(I've Had) the Time of My Life," Dirty Dancing (1987)
  10. "The Windmills of Your Mind," The Thomas Crown Affair (1968)
  11. "The Way We Were," The Way We Were (1973)
  12. "Let the River Run," Working Girl (1988)
  13. "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head," Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
  14. "Under the Sea," The Little Mermaid (1989)
  15. "High Noon (Do Not Forsake Me, On My Darlin')," High Noon (1952)
  16. "Can You Feel the Love Tonight," The Lion King (1994)
  17. "Beauty and the Beast," Beauty and the Beast (1991)
  18. "I'm Easy," Nashville (1975)
  19. "You'll Never Know," Hello, Frisco, Hello (1943)
  20. "On the Atchison, Topeka and the Santa Fe," The Harvey Girls (1946)
  21. "Fame," Fame (1980)
  22. "Theme from Shaft," Shaft (1971)
  23. "Secret Love," Calamity Jane (1953)
  24. "White Christmas," Holiday Inn (1942)
  25. "Moon River," Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)
  26. "Take My Breath Away," Top Gun (1986)
  27. "When You Wish Upon a Star," Pinocchio (1940)
  28. "Thanks for the Memory," The Big Broadcast of 1938 (1938)
  29. "Lullaby of Broadway," Gold Diggers of 1935 (1935)
  30. "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah," Song of the South (1947)
  31. "A Whole New World," Aladdin (1992)
  32. "My Heart Will Go On," Titanic (1997)
  33. "Let It Go," Frozen (2013)
  34. "Flashdance...What a Feeling," Flashdance (1983)
  35. "Arthur's Theme (Best That You Can Do)," Arthur (1981)
  36. "I Need to Wake Up," An Inconvenient Truth (2006)
  37. "Last Dance," Thank God It's Friday (1978)
  38. "Colors of the Wind," Pocahontas (1995)
  39. "Falling Slowly," Once (2007)
  40. "You Must Love Me," Evita (1996)
  41. "Sooner or Later (I Always Get My Man)," Dick Tracy (1990)
  42. "Days of Wine and Roses," Days of Wine and Roses (1962)
  43. "For All We Know," Lovers and Other Strangers (1970)
  44. "All the Way," The Joker Is Wild (1957)
  45. "It Might As Well Be Spring," State Fair (1945)
  46. "The Last Time I Saw Paris," Lady Be Good (1941)
  47. "In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening," Here Comes the Groom (1951)
  48. "Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing," Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing (1955)
  49. "Skyfall," Skyfall (2012)
  50. "The Weary Kind," Crazy Heart (2009)
  51. "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp," Hustle & Flow (2005)
  52. "It Goes Like It Goes," Norma Rae (1979)
  53. "Born Free," Born Free (1966)
  54. "Never on Sunday," Never on Sunday (1960)
  55. "I Just Called to Say I Love You," The Woman in Red (1984)
  56. "Up Where We Belong," An Officer and a Gentleman (1982)
  57. "Three Coins in the Fountain," Three Coins in the Fountain (1954)
  58. "Chim Chim Cher-ee," Mary Poppins (1964)
  59. "Call Me Irresponsible," Papa's Delicate Condition (1963)
  60. "Evergreen (Theme from A Star Is Born)," A Star Is Born (1976)
  61. "Al otro lado del río," The Motorcycle Diaries (2004)
  62. "Things Have Changed," Wonder Boys (2000)
  63. "Swinging on a Star," Going My Way (1944)
  64. "Into the West," The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
  65. "Man or Muppet," The Muppets (2011)
  66. "We Belong Together," Toy Story 3 (2010)
  67. "Jai Ho," Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
  68. "If I Didn't Have You," Monsters, Inc. (2001)
  69. "You'll Be in My Heart," Tarzan (1999)
  70. "You Light Up My Life," You Light Up My Life (1977)
  71. "Gigi," Gigi (1958)
  72. "The Continental," The Gay Divorcee (1934)
  73. "Sweet Leilani," Waikiki Wedding (1937)
  74. "Buttons and Bows," The Paleface (1948)
  75. "Talk to the Animals," Doctor Dolittle (1967)
  76. "The Shadow of Your Smile," The Sandpiper (1965)
  77. "When You Believe," The Prince of Egypt (1998)
  78. "Say You, Say Me," White Nights (1985)
  79. "The Morning After," The Poseidon Adventure (1972)
  80. "We May Never Love Like This Again," The Towering Inferno (1974)