May 30, 2016

Barbara Stanwyck, Sorry, Wrong Number


It's an hour and a half of Barbara Stanwyck experiencing a meltdown in bed! As with Irene Dunne, Stanwyck's run with the Academy came to an end in 1948 with this nomination, and the implications of this role along with the fact that Stanwyck is always a fab actress make this a prospectively juicy endpoint. But while I'm inclined to say that I'm impressed by her work here, there's also much that I wished I could have seen.  

May 28, 2016

Ingrid Bergman, Joan of Arc

I was aggressively displeased about having to watch Joan of Arc, for the obvious reason that I've already seen 1928's The Passion of Joan of Arc and knew that the former had no chance of stacking up, no matter the level of softness I have for Ingrid Bergman. And I was right: Joan of Arc is a severely long-winded film, its subject matter superficially Hollywoodified as 1948's half-baked attempt at a Prestige Picture. But the worst part of it all is that this dull dreck is led and anchored by an actress who is wholly miscast.

May 27, 2016

Irene Dunne, I Remember Mama

What is I Remember Mama really but another footnote in the deep vault of sentimental trite that was 1940's Hollywood? For over 2 hours we are witness to random vignettes of the lives of the Hanson family, rather hastily strung together for no incisive reason at all. And the acting? We've got an ooey gooey and oh-so-sleepy performance from Barbara Bel Geddes, Oscar Homolka in one of the most criminally overracted performances of the decade, and Ms. Irene Dunne, scooping up what would be the last nomination of her career.

May 24, 2016

Olivia de Havilland, The Snake Pit*

Won: New York Film Critics Circle - Best Actress | National Board of Review - Best Actress | Volpi Cup for Best Actress

Having built the foundation to her career playing saints in the likes of Gone with the Wind and Hold Back the Dawn, it's shocking to see Olivia de Havilland so completely, flagrantly flawed in The Snake Pit. And while she took a quick detour from this image as a semi-flawed yet redemptive woman in To Each His Own, there's little atonement to be had for Virginia Cunningham. de Havilland goes absolutely go-for-broke with in this film, and the resulting performance is polarizing in a most literal sense. 

May 23, 2016

Happy Birthday Oscargasms!

Oscargasms turns 3! Now's the time of year I tell any and all readers of this blog how grateful I am for your attention. Thanks for sharing your passion for movies and actors and Academy Awards with me. I've said it before and I'll say it again - it's weird to like the Oscars as much as I do, and the fact that there's an actual audience out there who's happy to read one's ramblings on their peculiar obsession is a great thing.

Happy Third Birthday Oscargasms!* 
And while life has certainly kept me very busy as of late, I've not forgotten about it. More content coming soon!