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rayban

Neglected Performances by Young Actors in World-Class Films

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Georges Du Fresne as Ludovic in Alain Berliner's 1997 film, "Ma Vie en rose" -

ma-vie-en-rose.20170303015002.jpg

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Brigitte Fossey and Georges Poujouly were excellent in Jeux Interdits (Forbidden Games)

forbidden-games-6.png

 

Jack Aubrey, Hugh Edwards, and Tom Chapin, in Lord of the Flies, one of my favorite books and movies.

lord-of-the-flies-1963-piggy-ralph-james

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Of course, Claude Jarman, Jr. is famous for playing Jody in Clarence Brown's 1947 film, "The Yearliing"

but Donn Gift's performance as Fodderwing is often overlooked - and it shouldn't be -

jody-and-fodderwing-2.jpg?w=500&h=629

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One of my favorites is George "Foghorn" Winslow as Henry Spoffard III in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953). He's the one who told Marilyn she had a lot of "animal magnetism". He only had a couple of scenes but he stole them from the adults, Marilyn included. I love the scene where Marilyn is stuck in the porthole with Winslow standing under the lap robe she's holding up, offering his hand to Charles Coburn in place of hers. When Coburn kisses the hand, Winslow yells "Stop that!" in that deep voice of his and poor Marilyn is left trying to duplicate it to explain she has laryngitis. Hilarious. 

Gentlemen-Prefer-Blondes-1953-classic-movies-4826654-1500-1012.jpg

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Rayban started this thread with Neil North in The Winslow Boy (1948) and I finally just watched it on my DVR after the recent broadcast. I agree that it's a very noteworthy performance, but he isn't even mentioned in the print ads and poster. The film centers more on the father, the older sister and the lawyer, but there's a standout scene in the family home where the lawyer (Robert Donat) confronts North almost brutally, confusing him and reducing him to tears in order to confirm for himself that the boy is innocent. North held his own in a very intense and intimate scene with Robert Donat, no small feat.

The-Winslow-Boy-1948-2.jpg

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Yes, Neil North deserved star billing in "The Winslow Boy".

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If there's a point of dispute, it would be as to whether or not The World of Henry Orient (1964) is a "world class" film. (I think it is.) But there shouldn't be any dispute that Merrie Spaeth and Tippy Walker gave stunningly natural performances as the two early-teen running buddies obsessed with "celebrity" pianist Peter Sellers. It's remembered mostly as a Sellers movie which included the added star power of Angela Lansbury and Paula Prentiss, but the heart and soul (and the bulk of the screen time) belongs to the two young girls. It's an especially difficult stage of life to capture accurately on film, but these performances really shine. I watch just about every showing and, thankfully, on TCM it seems to show up at least once a year. It didn't pave the way for big movie careers, but that may have been a choice on the part of these two intelligent young actresses. Walker is on the left; Spaeth is on the right.

THE_WORLD_OF_HENRY_ORIENT%201.jpg

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Yes, "The World of Henry Orient" belongs to Merrie Spaeth and Tippy Walker.

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Although it is not a world-class film, let us pay tribute to the effectiveness of Luke Halpin as Sandy Ricks in "Flipper" -

164.jpg

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Salvatore Cascio, as Salvatore Di Vita, in Giuseppe Tornatore's 1990 film, "Cinema Paradiso" -

cinemaparadiso.jpg

 

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James Kenney as Midshipman Longley in "Captain Horatio Hornblower" -

57375-2896.jpg

 

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Dominic Guard as the young boy, Michael Fitzhubert, who goes in search of the three missing girls, in "Picnic At Hanging Rock" -

MV5BNGRkMzlhZGMtMTAxOC00OWNjLTg5ZTUtMGZm

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On 5/21/2018 at 1:53 PM, DougieB said:

If there's a point of dispute, it would be as to whether or not The World of Henry Orient (1964) is a "world class" film. (I think it is.) But there shouldn't be any dispute that Merrie Spaeth and Tippy Walker gave stunningly natural performances as the two early-teen running buddies obsessed with "celebrity" pianist Peter Sellers. It's remembered mostly as a Sellers movie which included the added star power of Angela Lansbury and Paula Prentiss, but the heart and soul (and the bulk of the screen time) belongs to the two young girls. It's an especially difficult stage of life to capture accurately on film, but these performances really shine. I watch just about every showing and, thankfully, on TCM it seems to show up at least once a year. It didn't pave the way for big movie careers, but that may have been a choice on the part of these two intelligent young actresses. Walker is on the left; Spaeth is on the right.

THE_WORLD_OF_HENRY_ORIENT%201.jpg

Walker did appear in Peyton Place when she was a little older, then disappeared from view. I remember her being a media darling when the movie came out. But her career never really went anywhere. Maybe she lost interest.....

 

She has no credits listed on imdb after 1972.

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Watched the Dick Cavett show last night and he was interviewing Ron Howard.   Didn't know what year this was but Ron looked to be around 35 - 40.   Interesting what he had to say about being a child actor and how difficult the transition is to being an adult actor.     He felt he was one of the lucky ones.    Garland was mentioned by Cavett as someone that was able to make the transition (duh),  but wondering if that was the primary reason for her life struggles.

 

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On ‎6‎/‎4‎/‎2018 at 8:39 AM, rayban said:

Richard Eyer in 1955's "The Desperate Hours" -

Cinelists-+The+Desperate+Hours+-+Wyler-+

Richard Eyer also played the crippled boy in Sincerely Yours (1955), the Liberace tearjerker in which he sees the boy sitting on the sidelines in the park and decides to help him get the operation he needs. Eyer is very effective in what he's called upon to do, but the whole episode is saccharin in the extreme.

This made me realize that I've gotten him confused in the past with Jimmy Hunt, who played the young boy who sees his parents turned into space zombies in Invaders from Mars (1953). Now the whole thing seems pretty silly, but I remember really connecting with him in that role as a kid.

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Richard Eyer gave an excellent performance in one of my favorite films, Friendly Persuasion. He was a natural, funny and touching. 

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12 minutes ago, lavenderblue19 said:

Richard Eyer gave an excellent performance in one of my favorite films, Friendly Persuasion. He was a natural, funny and touching. 

I agree.  And young Richard had the chops to not be overshadowed by a goose!   

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17 hours ago, Hibi said:

Walker did appear in Peyton Place when she was a little older, then disappeared from view. I remember her being a media darling when the movie came out. But her career never really went anywhere. Maybe she lost interest.....

 

She has no credits listed on imdb after 1972.

https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/a-star-is-born-lost-and-found

The New Yorker published an article about Tippy in 2012. The article quotes Tippy, she had written about her life on the internet. The article also discuss Meredith Spaeth. Check it out, it's very interesting.

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35 minutes ago, lavenderblue19 said:

https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/a-star-is-born-lost-and-found

The New Yorker published an article about Tippy in 2012. The article quotes Tippy, she had written about her life on the internet. The article also discuss Meredith Spaeth. Check it out, it's very interesting.

Thanks! Always wondered what happened to her. Kinda sad. What might have been. :(

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Many (most?) of the performances mentioned in this thread are hardly neglected. 

In fact, they are quite acclaimed. 

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4 hours ago, lavenderblue19 said:

https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/a-star-is-born-lost-and-found

The New Yorker published an article about Tippy in 2012. The article quotes Tippy, she had written about her life on the internet. The article also discuss Meredith Spaeth. Check it out, it's very interesting.

The article clears up why the film felt so odd to me when I saw it (not until it was shown on tv). It didnt seem like a Peter Sellers film, and though he had top billing, the film revolved around the 2 girls, not him. They dominated the film and had the most screen time. Editing can really change the focus of a film. I dont think the film would've been as good if it had concentrated on Sellers. Thanks again for the article!

The film was adapted into a Broadway musical a few years later, but it was not a success, though the score was recorded. (Don Ameche in Sellers role). Henry, Sweet Henry.

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