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We’re counting down to the Oscars by introducing you to some of the best and sometimes overlooked performances of this year’s Oscar contenders. Today’s Episode: Welcome Back, Eddie.

One of the biggest surprises this year was the return of one of our lost (or at least believed lost) comedy heroes. Trapped in a perpetual hell of bad comedies or family films, his origins as a cutting edge, raunchy comic were long behind him – and while he still enjoyed success, his critics were scathing. Of course, over time, many have begun to claim that Murphy was never talented. Here’s the proof that they’re wrong.

Essential Filmography:

48 Hrs. The buddy cop comedy that set the standard for buddy cop comedies. Eddie Murphy plays a convict who is teamed up with bitter, bad-boy cop Nick Nolte. One of the greats of its kind.

Trading Places. A comedy with a social conscience, trading places is an assault on the wanton consumerism and focus on business of the early ’80s. When two aging businessmen bet that they can ruin one man’s career while simultaneously elevating a homeless man to his place, Dan Aykroyd and Murphy effectively trade places. But it is when these two discover the machinations of these aging methuselahs that they join together to get revenge.

Coming to America. Anyone who thinks Murphy never had a good film has slipped, bumped their head and completely blocked out this comedy masterpiece. A wealthy African prince comes to America to find a beautiful American wife, but decides to feign poverty so he can be loved for who he is, not what he’s worth.

Beverly Hills Cop. Come on, whistle the theme song. You know you want to. Axel F was a big hit in its day, as was this cop comedy – which spawned two sequels. One of them worth mentioning.

Why he probably shouldn’t get the gold: Well, if I had to pick one reason, it would be Norbit. If I had to pick two reasons, they would be Norbit and Daddy Day Care. If I had to pick three reasons, they would be Norbit, Daddy Day Care and Beverly Hills Cop III. If I had to pick four reasons .…

C. Robert Cargill – – – Email Me
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Austin-based Cargill, who not only loves but owns The Cutting Edge, writes on movies and DVD two times a week.

This is part of Film.com’s coverage of the 2007 Academy Awards. For more Oscars articles, analysis, news, and red carpet photo galleries, visit our Oscars page.

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