Did They Get it Right? – Best Director – Oscars 1962

Here are the five nominees: (Winner in Bold)

Pietro Germi (Divorce — Italian Style)
David Lean (Lawrence of Arabia)
Robert Mulligan (To Kill a Mockingbird)
Arthur Penn (The Miracle Worker)
Frank Perry (David and Lisa)

Biggest Snub:

Ken Annakin, Andrew Marton and Bernhard Wicki – The Longest Day

My Overall Thoughts:

This was a year where there was no real competition because Lean’s work blew all of the others out of the water.

My Rankings:


5. Frank Perry
4. Arthur Penn
3. Pietro Germi
2. Robert Mulligan
1. David Lean


5. David and LisaInteresting idea that moves along at too slow of a pace and doesn’t really age very well in the nearly 60 years since it was made. This film deals with some important issues, but it feels as if it all is too superficial in the way it’s presented here. The cast is alright but unfortunately none of them manage to stand out here. I’m still a bit baffled how this film was nominated for best director because there really doesn’t seem to be anything special here that would warrant such a thing.
4. Divorce — Italian StyleHilarious dark comedy about a man no longer in love with his wife he tries to scheme his way out of his marriage since due to his faith, he cannot divorce her. Mastroianni is great in the lead role because he comes across as so straightforward yet we constantly see how his mind works throughout. The way that the film gives us scenario upon scenario about ways to end his marriage works really well because it always flows really well with the story and you are never sure at first what is real and what is fantasy. Love the constant “Grass isn’t always greener attitude of the story.
3. The Miracle Worker – The acting by Bancroft and Duke truly is amazing and they both deservingly won Oscars for their respective roles in this movie. The story is weakly portrayed. Best Scene is clearly the egg scene, it really explains the difficulties faced by Sullivan.
2. To Kill a MockingbirdExcellent movie about prejudice in the South and the importance for standing up for what you believe.
1. Lawrence of Arabia  – Great Lean epic that is done amazingly. The only drawback is that it’s very slow in certain scenes.

Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – No Question about it!  Lean created a superb epic here and very few films in any year could have beaten his work here.

Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!

One thought on “Did They Get it Right? – Best Director – Oscars 1962

  1. here we agree once again. And nice idea on The Longest day (which saved 20th century Fox after the debacle of Cleopatra). I’d easily sub that in for Divorce, Italian style. Lean wins. So in a flip – Lean beats Mulligan(who might have won going away in any other year) while O’Toole loses to Peck – when in any other year – young Peter might’ve waltzed off with Best Actor for his titanic T.E.Lawrence.


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