Did They Get it Right? – Best Actress – Oscars 1974


Here are the five nominees: (Winner in Bold)

Diahann Carroll (Claudine)
Ellen Burstyn (Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore)
Faye Dunaway (Chinatown)
Valerie Perrine (Lenny)
Gena Rowlands (A Woman Under the Influence)

Biggest Snub:

Goldie Hawn – The Sugarland Express

My Overall Thoughts:

This is a year with some very powerful performances and 4 out of the 5 nominees had a very good chance of taking home Gold.

My Rankings:

Actress

5. Valerie Perrine
4. Gena Rowlands
3. Faye Dunaway
2. Diahann Carroll
1. Ellen Burstyn

Movies

5. LennyHad high expectations for this and was sorely disappointed. Hoffman is ok here but he has done must better work elsewhere. Think I just don’t like the way Fosse presents movies.
4. A Woman Under the InfluenceInteresting look at how a mental illness can affect a family and disrupt their calm way of life. Falk is great in the lead especially since he is cast against character but Rowlands steals the show with her Oscar nominated / Globe winning performance. The story drags on a bit too much and has too many lulls along the way and would have been better if it would have been shorter.
3. ClaudineReally interesting look at the way that the welfare system works because it shows the complex ways people must live in order to still get help from the system. Carroll is great in the lead and makes us truly believe that her character is a mother of six trying to find a way to make ends meet in a lower class area. She was deservingly nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress for her performance here. Her chemistry with Jones is quite realistic and its quite easy to believe that these characters are in love and want to make a better life for themselves and their families despite the various problems that keep arising.
2. Alice Doesn’t Live Here AnymoreGreat cast. Interesting story and characters that was the basis for a hit tv sitcom. Not your typical Scorsese fair but still has a young Harvey Keitel showing how scary he can really be. Burstyn is great here in the title role and definitely deserved her Oscar for this performance.
1. ChinatownGreat detective film that does a great job of keeping things moving at a superb pace. The twists and turns throughout the story keep things so interesting the whole way through. Loved how they slowly give us information about the past history of some of the characters which gives us insight into what may or may not be relevant later on. Nicholson, Dunaway and Huston are all excellent here but Nicholson stands out because he is able to show how great an actor he could be with this role. One of Polanski’s best films! 

Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Definitely!  EB does a great job with this powerful role and made it so iconic and despite some tough competition was the right choice here.

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

Let me Know what you think!!

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