Gene Tierney – The Ghost and Mrs. Muir
My Overall Thoughts:
This is a year with some talented nominees who gave nice performances, but two stand out among the rest as being the most powerful.
5. Joan Crawford
4. Dorothy McGuire
3. Loretta Young
2. Rosalind Russell
1. Susan Hayward
5. Morning Becomes Electra – Redgrave does a fine job as the heir of a Southern Estate filled with lots of mystery and infighting among the various family members. Russell outshines him and everyone else as the daughter trying to prove that she is the rightful heir. The story itself feels too much like a soap opera and isn’t as interesting as one would hope. The near 3 hour runtime is way too long and I can understand why they would trim it after the film failed at the box office.
4. Possessed – Intriguing premise that doesn’t manage to work as well as one might hope. Crawford does a nice job in this role of a woman obsessed with a former lover who will do all she can to have him for herself. The supporting cast helps things along and it was nice seeing Massey and Heflin doing their parts here. Crawford was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress for her work here but something seems slightly off that might have made things more gripping since it’s quite difficult to care or sympathize with any of the characters.
3. Smash-Up: The Story of a Woman – Intriguing concept that works even if it feels a bit too rushed. Hayward is great in the lead role and shows how someone’s life can be changed when they lose the attention they feel they should have. The film shows the effects of alcoholism on a persons life and how it adds paranoia and suspicion to situations that are already strained. Hayward was nominated for Best Actress at the Oscars for her work here. The story goes to some very dark and disturbing places that help show the dangers and pitfall of such situations and works quite well. Great supporting cast and loved seeing Albert in a small role.
2. The Farmer’s Daughter – Interesting idea that probably wouldn’t work very well today but due to the standards of the world at the time comes across quite well. Young deservingly won an Oscar for her performance here because she was able to show such a great character arc over the course of the story. Cotton and Barrymore are also quite intriguing here in very important roles. Politics was a whole different game back in the 40’s than it is now and that aspect also wouldn’t translate as well due to the various changes over the past 70 years.
1. Gentleman’s Agreement – Great movie that tries to tackle a “real world” problem. Expertly done.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Not really! LR does a nice job in TFD, but there were better roles to choose from that would have been more worthy winners of the award.
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!