I am talking about the Best Picture of 1952 which, I consider, the stupidest win ever. Mind you I still have not seen “Around The World In 80 Days” with David Niven but this was a year Chock (or is that chalk?) full of great films and this movie, although entertaining, just doesn’t measure up to any of the others. I am going to choose 3 movies, the winner, a nominee and one that didn’t get any recognition for Best Picture and the one, I think, should have won although, ask me, on another day, and I might choose one of the nominees.
The nominees for this year were “The Quiet Man”, “The Greatest Show On Earth”, “High Noon”, “Ivanhoe”, and “Moulin Rouge” and this is, gulp, the winner…
1. THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH
I like circus movies and this is a good flick starring a ton of major stars headed by Charlton Heston, Cornell Wilde and Betty Hutton with James Stewart, Dorothy Lamour and many others in supporting roles. This is a Cecil B DeMille production about the trials and tribulations of a circus and the people working on them including a love triangle and a big train wreck. It’s fun but why it won, I just don’t get it when you realize that “High Noon” and “The Quiet Man” were also best picture nominees. I love Jimmy Stewart but this should not have been nominated.
2. THE QUIET MAN
This is one of my favourite films! It stars the great John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara as 2 people who fall in love when Wayne moves to Ireland to his mom’s home. When he see O’Hara he is instantly attracted but doesn’t understand the culture and how important her dowry means to her. Her brother, played by Victor McLaglin, refuses to give her her dowry nor his blessing and she is, upset that Wayne refuses to fight for what she feels is important. This is a superb film comedy directed by John Ford with many of his troupe in the film including the 3 principles, Ward Bond and Barry Fitzgerald. When Wayne’s character has had enough you are right with him and agree with his way of handling the dowry, his wife and her brother. The epic fight scene goes down in history as one of the best fight scenes captured on camera.
3. SINGING IN THE RAIN
I am dumbfounded that this brilliant musical was not nominated for best picture and I would choose this as my best picture. Mind you I go back and forth between this, “The Quiet Man” and “High Noon” but this musical is brilliant, not only in the dancing and singing but the story holds it up on its own even if there was no singing or dancing. It is very funny headed by Jean Hagan as a spoiled silent screen actress playing a beautiful, queenly lady but, in reality, can’t talk, is nasty and is as stupid as dumbnut. It takes place when silent movies are becoming a thing of the past and everyone is in a panic to make films , “All Singing-All Dancing” extravaganzas. It stars Gene Kelly, Donald O’Connor and Debbie Reynolds in this film with Cyd Charisse making a wow appearance as a Louise Brooks Femme Fatale dancing sinuously around Gene Kelly. This would be my choice but The Quiet Man is a very, very close second.
This year also had the films, “ The Bad and The Beautiful”, “The Lavender Hill Mob”, “Viva Zapata”, “Come Back, Little Sheba”, “My Cousin Rachel”, “Rashomon” and “ Five Fingers”.
Which film would you choose as Best Picture?
So, what year would you like me to choose and which category but, no best sound, documentary etc.. because I would not know them. The main awards and even best cinematography, art direction and costumes are all a go.