Sunday, August 5, 2018

1944 Alternate Oscars

Notes: Shirley Temple and the two Jackies (Coogan and Cooper) notwithstanding, Margaret O'Brien's performance in Meet Me in St. Louis is the best by a child in the history of Hollywood. From explaining to Chill Wills that her doll will likely die of four fatal diseases, to dancing the cakewalk with Judy Garland, the marvelous Halloween sequence, and the legendary "Have Youself a Merry Little Christmas" climax, O'Brien steals every scene she's in.

"If that child had been born in the Middle Ages," Lionel Barrymore once said, "she'd have been burned as a witch."

It's my favorite performance of 1944, bar none.

By the way, I may or may not have mentioned before that I'm nominating American movies by the date of their Oscar eligibility (so To Have and Have Not will show up in 1945 not 1944), but foreign-made movies, including British movies, by the date of release in their home country. Foreign films, even British ones, tend to show up here late, sometimes years late, so that from the perspective of using these alternate awards to reveal movie history, nominating a foreign film in terms of its Oscar eligibility is somewhat counterproductive to my purposes.

Anyway, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

And finally, I once wrote about Double Indemnity and film noir in general here. Check it out.

My choices are noted with a ★. A tie is indicated with a ✪. Historical Oscar winners are noted with a ✔.

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