Did They Get it Right? – Best Supporting Actor – Oscars 1941


Here are the five nominees: (Winner in Bold)

Walter Brennan (Sergeant York)
Charles Coburn (The Devil and Miss Jones)
Donald Crisp (How Green Was My Valley)
James Gleason (Here Comes Mr. Jordan)
Sydney Greenstreet (The Maltese Falcon)

Biggest Snub:

Joseph Cotten – Citizen Kane

My Overall Thoughts:

This is quite a tough year since all 5 nominees are veteran actors who give great performances here and any of them could conceivably have won.

My Rankings:

Supporting Actor

5. Walter Brennan
4. Charles Coburn
3. Sydney Greenstreet
2. Donald Crisp
1. James Gleason

Movies

5.  Sergeant YorkInteresting biopic, movie feels missing something and is quite slow moving, but still worth seeing.
4.  The Devil and Miss JonesInteresting idea that works quite well. Coburn is very fun in the lead role and manages to play a character with so much energy despite his age and size that it makes things even funnier to watch. The way that they integrate the idea of striking workers looking for a way to be more appreciated by management works well here.  Somehow Coburn was nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his performance here despite the fact that he is unquestionably the lead.  Witty dialogue also helps keep this very fun the whole way through.
3. How Green Was My ValleyIt moves a bit slowly, but flows, so make sure you aren’t in a rush and you can enjoy this very well made movie.
2. Here Comes Mr. JordanGreat film that was done way before its time. The ideas of taking over someone else’s body and knowing “heavenly” secrets works extremely well here. Not at all a film that I would have expected to have been made in the 40’s, yet feels like it was done perfectly. Great characters that come to life for us. Superb cast.
1. The Maltese FalconExcellent thriller/mystery that does a great job keeping the viewer’s interest because something is always happening to move the plot further along. Bogie at his best as the fast talking smart PI Sam Spade.

Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Yes and No!  DC is great here and was quite deserving of the win, but I still think JG does a slightly better job with his performance.

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

One thought on “Did They Get it Right? – Best Supporting Actor – Oscars 1941

  1. Disagree. Crisp’s role was one of far more depth.As good as gleason was in a movie i love – he was almost comic relief and the audience’s surrogate as the shocked observer to what was going on. A lot of reactions etc, les “acting” than crisp gave in a beautiful film.

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