My Overall Thoughts:
Once again, the Academy decided to reward a “light” musical instead of making a bolder choice for Best Picture.
Both Wilson and Double Indemnity would have been much better choices over the ultimate winner Going My Way.
- 5. – Going My Way – Weak best picture winner, but the music makes it bearable and entertaining. Could have been so much better had they thought to add a plot.
- 4. – Gaslight – Great premise that works so well despite feeling so ahead of it’s time. The cast is superb with Bergman having great chemistry with both Boyer and Cotten. Bergman rightfully deserved her first (of 3) Oscar for this role. Landsbury was surprisingly good in her first film role which ended up garnering her a Best Supporting Actress Nomination. Loved the way that the suspense gets higher and higher as the film moves along.
- 3. – Wilson – Well done epic, especially taking into account that it was made in 1944. Gives a clear picture of the life of Wilson.
- 2. – Double Indemnity – Great thriller that has nice twists and turns throughout. MacMurray is amazing in the title role. Excellent plot by Chandler and dialogue by Wilder.
- 1. – Since You Went Away – Amazing film that takes a complex subject and makes it so heartwarming. The mixing and matching of numerous parallel storylines works extremely well and it helps make it all seem so realistic. The multi-generational look at how people perceive war is done superbly. The cast is great and despite multiple characters and storylines, this film is so easy to follow as things move forward. Still shocked that this film only got one Oscar win of its 9 nominations (for dramatic musical score) and it is so much better than the eventual winner, Going My Way (1944).
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Not at all! GMW is a fun, yet silly musical and the two other films that I’ve seen from the nominee list are so much better. Guess they needed a “light” film to win while in the midst of a horrific world war.
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!