It’s March 7, 1946 and the Second World War is over. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is celebrating the movies of 1945 at its yearly awards ceremony, and to commemorate the end of the war, the event is more lavish than the wartime ceremonies – the plaster statuets of the war years, for example, reverted back to the bronze statues with gold plating. So what movie received the top prize at the happy, post-war awards bash? Why a really dark movie about alcoholism starring Ray Milland as a struggling, alcoholic New York writer, of course. But is this bleak character piece directed by Billy Wilder (who won an Oscar for Best Direction and shared an award for Best Screenplay with Charles Bracket) and also starring Jane Wyman, Phillip Terry, and Howard Da Silva any good? Watch my video review below to find out.
Taking a break from the war films that occupied the prior winning slots at the last two Academy Awards, the 1945 Oscar ceremony honored a very different film. It was a movie that only briefly mentions the battles raging overseas. It was a lighthearted picture that wasn’t hard hitting or dramatic but instead optimistic and joyous, a much needed film ingredient for the low spirits of Americans worn down by the war. It was the 1944 Leo McCarey musical comedy Going My Way starring Bing Crosby, Barry Fitzgerald, and Risë Stevens. My review below.
Here is the long awaited new entry in my Best Picture Oscar series (the last really new entry was Mrs. Miniver, and up until now I’ve been playing catch up and producing video reviews for my first six entries, which were text reviews only). With this addition comes a change. From now on, the Best Picture reviews will only be available as a video review. Most other reviews on the site will still be in text form but this series won’t. Well, I say that, but if enough people say they want a text review as well, I’ll start providing them again. Let me know. I really want to know your thoughts. Anyway, here’s my review of Casablanca (1942) starring Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid, Claude Rains, Conrad Veidt, Peter Lorre, and Sidney Greenstreet. It also won Best Director for Michael Curtiz and Best Screenplay for Julius J. Epstein, Phillip G. Epstein, and Howard E. Koch.