1943 in Review

1943
BEST PICTURE

Nominees that didn’t make it:
10. Madame Curie-Greer Garson + biopic = no
9. The Human Comedy-Mickey Rooney is not appealing
8. For Whom the Bell Tolls-pretty and very stupid

For Twitter length reviews click here

40. The Man in Grey
Fun enough period melodrama gets racist.
Favorite Moment: The weird show.
39. Flesh and Fantasy
Inconsistent Duvivier anthology ends on a weirdly racist note.
Favorite Moment: Middle segment.
38. Douce
Cute little romance.
Favorite Moment: Ending.
37. Watch on the Rhine
The Victor Laszlo movie.
Favorite Moment: Final chat between Lukas/Davis.
36. Air Force
To be discussed for 333 Great Directors.
Favorite Moment: Ending.
35. Le Capitaine Fracasse
Gance’s sound work is underrated. Plot silly, though.
Favorite Moment: Final performance.
34. A Night to Remember
What the hell even is this?
Favorite Moment: Ending.
33. Phantom of the Opera
Horror isn’t suited for Technicolor, but melodrama sure is!
Favorite Moment: Opening performance.
32. Presenting Lily Mars
Garland and Heflin and Bainter = good time.
Favorite Moment: Spring Byington and Judy’s number.
31. Song of Bernadette
Much too long but it looks good and the cast performs well.
Favorite Moment: The digging at the stream.
30. Carnival of Sinners
Love those sets.
Favorite Moment: Money falls.
29. Lady of Burlesque
Amusing little B pic.
Favorite Moment: Stanwyck does the splits.
28. This Land Is Mine
Discussed for 333 Great Directors.
Favorite Moment: Singing with the bombs.
27. In Which We Serve
Discussed for 333 Great Directors.
Favorite Moment: Blitz deaths.
26. Angels of Sin
Renoir does nuns.
Favorite Moment: Cat gets thrown.
25. His Butler’s Sister
So many weird moments to savor.
Favorite Moment: The weird opening title card.
24. Stormy Weather
Love the music, but everything else is aggressively hokey.
Favorite Moment: Stair splits.
23. Sanshiro Sugata
Slashed, but Kurosawa’s composition eye is still great. What could’ve been.
Favorite Moment: Festival fight.
22. Hi Diddle Diddle
A mix of the overly conventional and the sublimely weird.
Favorite Moment: Opening credits.
21. Five Graves to Cairo
Feels like The Thin Man At War in how the plot is damn near untrackable. Love Von Stroheim’s warmup for Sunset Blvd, though.
Favorite Moment: Franchot Tone’s bizarre introduction.

For my Top 20 of 1943 click here.

BEST ACTING (Finalists in bold)
Nominees that didn’t make it (Actor):
5. Walter Pidgeon, Madame Curie-dry and old-fashioned
4. Mickey Rooney, Human Comedy-manic and old-fashioned
3. Gary Cooper, For Whom the Bell Tolls-bizarrely uninflected

Nominees that didn’t make it (Actress):
5. Greer Garson, Madame Curie-starchy like her experiments
4. Ingrid Bergman, For Whom the Bell Tolls-her slight flatness in Casablanca becomes exponential

Nominees that didn’t make it (S. Actor):
5. J. Carrol Naish, Sahara-would’ve taken a miracle to make this role pop
4. Akim Tamiroff, For Whom the Bell Tolls-exhaustingly hammy

Nominees that didn’t make it (S. Actress):
5. Lucile Watson, Watch on the Rhine-old lady schtick
4. Katina Paxinou, For Whom the Bell Tolls-insane caricature who definitely gets attention

ACTOR
Don Ameche, Heaven Can Wait
Humphrey Bogart, Casablanca-the hardboiled hero we deserve, birth of a persona
Joseph Cotten, Shadow of a Doubt
Errol Flynn, Edge of Darkness
Henry Fonda, Ox-Bow Incident
Charles Laughton, This Land is Mine
Paul Lukas, Watch on the Rhine-dry, but desperate
Joel McCrea, The More the Merrier
Thorkild Roose, Day of Wrath

ACTRESS
Jean Arthur, The More the Merrier-sharp as a tack
Ingrid Bergman, Casablanca
Claudette Colbert, So Proudly We Hail
Joan Fontaine, The Constant Nymph-reshapes some shaky material into thoughtfulness
Marianne Hoppe, Romance in a Minor Key
Kim Hunter, The Seventh Victim
Jennifer Jones, The Song of Bernadette-a doe in the headlights, but a legitimately interesting one
Lisbeth Movin, Day of Wrath
Madeleine Renaud, Lumiere D’Ete
Ethel Waters, Cabin in the Sky
Teresa Wright, Shadow of a Doubt

S. ACTOR
Dana Andrews, The Ox-Bow Incident
Charles Bickford, Song of Bernadette-a figure of complications and authority
Charles Coburn, Heaven Can Wait
Charles Coburn, The More the Merrier-goes full speed ahead with humor
Richard Dix, The Ghost Ship
Paul Hurst, Ox-Bow Incident
Eugene Pallette, Heaven Can Wait
Claude Rains, Casablanca-his unctuous charms are at their peak
Tonio Selwert, Hangmen Also Die
Erich von Stroheim, Five Graves to Cairo

S. ACTRESS
Spring Byington, Heaven Can Wait
Patricia Collinge, Shadow of a Doubt
Gladys Cooper, Song of Bernadette-like if she had a revelation in Now Voyager
Jane Darwell, Ox-Bow Incident
Paulette Goddard, So Proudly We Hail-sass and charm in abundance
Margaret Hamilton, Ox-Bow Incident
Teresa Harris, I Walked With a Zombie
Signe Hasso, Heaven Can Wait
Lena Horne, Cabin in the Sky
Veronica Lake, So Proudly We Hail
Marjorie Main, Heaven Can Wait
Carmen Miranda, The Gang’s All Here
Joy Page, Casablanca
Anne Revere, Song of Bernadette-warm, but confused
Elizabeth Russell, Seventh Victim
Anna Svierkier, Day of Wrath

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