Akira Kurosawa – The Seven Samurai
My Overall Thoughts:
This was another year filled with 5 worthy nominees and any of them could have been deserving of a win.
5. Billy Wilder
4. George Seaton
3. William A. Wellman
2. Elia Kazan
1. Alfred Hitchcock
5. Sabrina – Holden, Hepburn and Bogart are all amazing here, but the story slightly misses its mark. Wilder does wonders with the dialogue and there are some really great zingers thrown in here every so often. Hepburn is a wonder to watch here because of her eyes and beauty.
4. The High and the Mighty – Great disaster movie before there was even a name for the genre. Wayne does a great job in the lead and keeps things interesting. The various storylines of the passengers are good yet there is a feeling that some of the back stories are a bit long and take away from the suspense of the film. It’s also sometimes a bit difficult to differentiate between the various characters which makes things slightly confusing at times. There is no doubt that many of the episodes and scenes featured in this film were used for the basis of so many disaster movies or their spoofs decades later.
3. The Country Girl – All 3 leads are great here and they all do a wonderful job making their characters feel real. Amazing dialogue helps this film move along at a great pace. Kelly won Best Actress for this film and she truly deserved it because of the emotional range of her character. This story manages to give us characters with lots of psychological baggage and we get to see how it effects everything they do in life.
2. On the Waterfront – Should be seen on it’s own merit and not for underlying themes. Excellent acting.
1. Rear Window – Excellent Hitchcockian thriller. Perhaps one of his best. The claustrophobic feeling really puts the viewer in the place of the characters.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Yes and No! Hitchcock should have won, but due to the time and era of this year’s awards ceremony, it wasn’t surprising that Kazan would be awarded this award even if he wasn’t the most deserving nominee yet still worthy of it.
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!