It’s Oscar night tonight (I may be live-blogging over at thoughtfulthinkingthoughts.wordpress.com). So here’s part 2 of the list of Obscure Oscar Nominees.
Our Town (1940)
It’s hard to believe than an adaptation of one of the greatest plays ever written, starring William Holden, which was nominated for Best Picture, is practically forgotten today. It’s not quite as brilliant as most stage productions you’ll find of it, but it’s an extremely poetic movie.
Hold Back the Dawn (1941)
This was one of the more worthy nominees of this year, and sadly the most forgotten. With the trio of Charles Boyer, Olivia DeHaviland, and Paulette Goddard, it’s a sexy, romantic tale.
The Talk of the Town (1942)
Cary Grant, Ronald Coleman, and Jean Arthur are delightful in this wonderful mix of comedy, drama, and suspense. It’s not a perfect movie, but at the same time it’s hard to really look at it as having any faults. It’s just a delightful movie.
Watch on the Rhine (1943)
I think if this were released on DVD it would find a new life. It’s an incredibly powerful film about self-sacrifice and nobility. Paul Lukas, who I sometimes find dull, especially in the last two films I watched with him (Downstairs and Ladies In Love), but he gives an incredible performance here, which beat out Bogart’s Casablanca performance for Best Actor.
A gritty as all get-out film noir starring three Roberts (Young, Mitchum, and Ryan) that gets nominated for Best Picture? And not even one of those early, ten nominees years, but the later, much more selective five nominees a tear Oscars? AWESOME.
The Snake Pit (1948)
This is an eerie, unsettling drama about life in an insane asylum. DeHavilland’s performance in this is incredible, one of her very best. DeHavilland lost the Best Actress Oscar to Johnny Belinda‘s Jane Wyman. It’s definitely a close race, but I’d give it to DeHavilland.
And that’s all I’ve got for you, folks. Enjoy the Oscars tonight!