Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Voting Like It's 1947

After all this 1947 viewing I've been doing, considerably aided by your suggestions, I've hit the quotient of 30 U.S. release-year contenders that makes me feel justified in posting a personal Oscar ballot for the year. Which is the only framework in which I can really summon the will to discuss "ballots" and "voting" today. My only misgiving is that I've seen so many great performances, especially given the vivid and large ensembles of so many of the noirs and pseudo-noirs, that I wish the list hadn't just wound up looking like I did what Oscar voters so often appear to do: start with their five favorite movies and just keep ticking them off through every category. Lots of very close calls in arriving at these groups of five, and almost always at the expense of candidates whose films would have thrown more variety into the list.

So, by way of honorable mention, and since the main page for 1947 already clarifies my next stable of candidates for Best Picture...

Best Director: Alf Sjöberg, Torment; Jean Renoir, The Woman on the Beach; Carol Reed, Odd Man Out; Robert Rossen, Body and Soul; Robert Montgomery, Ride the Pink Horse or Lady in the Lake; Vittorio de Sica, The Children Are Watching Us

Best Actress: Joan Crawford, my beloved Possessed; Shirley Temple and Myrna Loy, The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer

Best Actor: Roger Livesey, I Know Where I'm Going!; Cary Grant, The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer; Victor Mature, Kiss of Death; Robert Ryan, The Woman on the Beach; Ronald Colman, A Double Life; Edmund Gwenn, Miracle on 34th Street; Dana Andrews, Boomerang!; Nikolai Cherkasov, Ivan the Terrible, Part 1

Best Supporting Actress: Elsa Lanchester, The Bishop's Wife; Celeste Holm, Gentleman's Agreement; Marilyn Nash, Monsieur Verdoux; Gloria Grahame, Crossfire

Best Supporting Actor: Robert Alda, The Man I Love; Thomas Gomez, Ride the Pink Horse; Lloyd Gough, Joseph Pevney, and Canada Lee, Body and Soul; Lloyd Nolan, Lady in the Lake

Two bonuses: one is that Oscar's Best Supporting Actor lineup from 1947 turns out to be a really high-grade lineup, to include very solid work from Robert Ryan and Charles Bickford, though I preferred them both in other movies; the other is that, while I can't make up my mind about hypothetical Cinematography nods, I cannot see how the Academy omitted Body and Soul and Nightmare Alley. The Ghost and Mrs. Muir is very, very pretty but not quite in the same league, and I can't speak from Green Dolphin Street, but as ever, I think I smell a rat.

Not done with '47 till the next Best Pictures installment goes up, so I may still sneak in a few more titles. Recommend away if you've got performances to stump for, in addition to the films you might have pointed me toward in the previous entry.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does this mean you'll also be updating the 1947 slot in the Best Actress files? :)

1:13 PM, November 03, 2010  
Blogger NATHANIEL R said...

I so need to see like almost every single one of these. (sigh). But I loved Celeste Holm in Gentleman's Agreement (and all of Black Narcissus of course)

6:52 PM, November 03, 2010  
Blogger NicksFlickPicks said...

@Anonymous: No need to be afraid to ask! I haven't re-watched three of the five so a full rundown is unlikely, but maybe I'll do a performance write-up of one of the two I've just re-screened. Thanks for the push!

@Nathaniel: Well, one that you've seen that I haven't is Lured. Worth it? Memories of Lucille Ball?

8:43 PM, November 03, 2010  
Blogger Robert Hamer said...

I was almost certain that James Mason would take your Best Actor prize. Maybe my memory of Out of the Past is hazy, because I don't remember Robert Mitchum knocking my socks off the way he did in The Night of the Hunter.

11:37 PM, November 03, 2010  
Blogger NATHANIEL R said...

nick -- i dunno. depends how much free time you have. it's definitely interesting from a Sirk perspective (if you believe you should see a range i.e. peaks and programmers) but i guess it didn't do much for me otherwise. and if i remember correctly I'm not sure i'm onboard with Lucille Ball as a film actress (though obvs i love her classic sitcom) although she's a million times better in LURED than she was in, like, Mame. (not that that's hard to do)

8:05 AM, November 04, 2010  

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