GGGGerald

Overrated talents ?

56 posts in this topic

I think I'm having trouble coming up with examples to add to this thread simply because there are too many to mention! It seems like the extreme popularity of most of the really big stars is a bit lost on me. Really- how can anyone get that studio-era-star reverence and NOT be a bit overrated? I don't know if anyone can live up to that kind of legend!

However, one person who I've always been rather baffled over the success of is Raymond Burr. I have more grounds to pick on him because screen villains are my favorites, and he pretty much cornered the market on heavies during the studio era. He got every bad guy role there was to get, and I'm yet to be impressed by his performance in any of them. He was... fine... a bit understated for my taste... but just being fine shouldn't be enough to warrant the monopoly he had on the field. When I think of all the great menacing actors who never got a really great role in their whole careers... Couldn't he have just given half of his roles to Jack La Rue? Is that asking too much?

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On 5/8/2019 at 7:41 AM, Cinemartian said:

I'd have to say Norma Shearer - I had to google her name I forgot it- I just don't find her very appealing nor important.

I think this is an exceptionally apt choice, good sir.

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Grace Kelly

grace-kelly-9362226-1-402.jpg

Hollywood's most sophisticated ice queen. 

Slept her way to the top, but because of her subsequent royal title her scandals were largely covered up and forgotten. But becoming a princess was no small feat for Kelly, as her family had to fork up a $2 million dowry!

 

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When I first read this thread,  Grace was among the first to come to mind.  Thank you for being brave enough to name her. I don’t dislike Grace, but she was not all that.

I might also include Jane Russell here....fun, but not really talented.

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30 minutes ago, RoyCronin said:

When I first read this thread,  Grace was among the first to come to mind.  Thank you for being brave enough to name her. I don’t dislike Grace, but she was not all that.

I might also include Jane Russell here....fun, but not really talented.

Precisely - I don't dislike her, but I do not seek out films to watch her 'acting'.

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18 minutes ago, RoyCronin said:

When I first read this thread,  Grace was among the first to come to mind.  Thank you for being brave enough to name her. I don’t dislike Grace, but she was not all that.

I might also include Jane Russell here....fun, but not really talented.

You're velcome.

But Jane Russell untalented? Try telling that to Howard Hughes! 😈 😊

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Kay and Cinemartian:  I am a big Norma Shearer fan so polish your swords.  She's never failed to impress me with her performances, in costume or "modern dress". 

I also second, or is it third, Rumann Koch's opinion of Grace Kelly.  Her voice is totally annoying and I don't find her believable.  I know from biographies of her and comments in other star's books that she did indeed "sleep her way to the top"; is this how she got her Oscar? 

I've read that she was the first choice to play Leslie in Giant rather than Elizabeth Taylor.  What a disaster that would have been!  While I know she got Oscars and nominations for other roles ET will always be Leslie and Rebecca in Ivanhoe to me.    

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Two for the price of one. Both overrated, but they made some good movies. Wish there was another actor/actress in them most times, though. (Totally disagree about Davis and Bacall, though. I think they're both excellent.) 

stanwycktaylor.jpg

 

 

 

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I don't know that I've ever heard anybody call Robert Taylor a great actor. He was a movie star; he was serviceable, and most of his films I've ever seen are enjoyable. So I'm unsure the term "overrated" really applies. He had, I think, bigger stardom than maybe his talent should have brought him.

But BARBARA STANWYCK overrated? I'm so flabbergasted by that assessment I don't think can type the ten-thousand word response I'd like to make! She's one of the all-time greats, in my opinion.

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I'd have to say(and IMHO) that what's overrated about Ms. Stanwyck  as far as I'M concerned, is her "beauty".  :rolleyes:

To me, she barely manages to be cute at times,  and in some of her movies where men are falling all over themselves to pursue her( or ruin their lives, as in "Double Indemnity") just makes me shake my head.  

Sepiatone

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34 minutes ago, Sepiatone said:

and in some of her movies where men are falling all over themselves to pursue her(

I would have been one of those men, even after her hair turned white!

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8 hours ago, sewhite2000 said:

I don't know that I've ever heard anybody call Robert Taylor a great actor. He was a movie star; he was serviceable, and most of his films I've ever seen are enjoyable. So I'm unsure the term "overrated" really applies. He had, I think, bigger stardom than maybe his talent should have brought him.

But BARBARA STANWYCK overrated? I'm so flabbergasted by that assessment I don't think can type the ten-thousand word response I'd like to make! She's one of the all-time greats, in my opinion.

I know Stanwyck is beloved here; I don't see it. I've enjoyed some of her performances though, and many of her movies. She began her career as a chorus girl for Ziegfeld. I'd like to have seen more of that aspect of her talent on film, to see what she was like.

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WOW!  Some interesting opinions here.  Here is a small sample of my input.

Grace Kelly - Never been impressed with her.

Lauren Bacall - Never been impressed with her, except a few moments with Bogart.  But I've only seen a handful of her work.

Barbara Stanwyck - I've seen plenty of her work and I've never been disappointed.  I think she had real talent, but I have to agree that she was likely more naturally beautiful than on camera beautiful.  Not that she was unattractive on camera.  I've always thought the attraction she was meant to be generating on screen wasn't just about her looks.

Bette Davis - I can't see anything but talent there.  I've never been disappointed when she is on screen.  I think she and Stanwyck were pretty amazing.  I don't know that they were great people, but they could certainly fool me into thinking they were if they used their talents. :lol:

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On 6/3/2019 at 7:49 AM, Sepiatone said:

I'd have to say(and IMHO) that what's overrated about Ms. Stanwyck  as far as I'M concerned, is her "beauty".

Spoken like a typical man. Sorry sepia, but that's how your comment struck me - a woman's appearance being more important than content. 

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3 hours ago, TikiSoo said:

Spoken like a typical man. Sorry sepia, but that's how your comment struck me - a woman's appearance being more important than content. 

You mean spoken like a typical women.   It is women that judge other women on looks in a very judgmental manner.    I.e. women built the jails.

 

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3 hours ago, jamesjazzguitar said:

It is women that judge other women on looks in a very judgmental manner.

Yes, you are absolutely right. Men seem to view "beauty" overall-she either IS or ISN'T. 

I've noticed women's criticisms tend to nitpicking, focusing on individual aspects like hair, nails, eyes, etc-doesn't even have to be personal-like someone's choice of shoes or hat!

My Mother was one of those hyper critical people and I inherited the disgusting trait-I was vicious. In my 30's I realized it was an entirely negative aspect of my personality that needed to change. I think I lashed out at others because my life sucked and most likely that's why my Mom had too.  

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If a movie cast has Raquel Welch, her figure is always plastered across the poster like she is the whole movie. But, what has she ever done ? Any memorable performances ?

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2 minutes ago, GGGGerald said:

If a movie cast has Raquel Welch, her figure is always plastered across the poster like she is the whole movie. But, what has she ever done ? Any memorable performances ?

That wasn't the point.

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1 minute ago, LawrenceA said:

That wasn't the point.

Well , what was the point ?

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1 minute ago, GGGGerald said:

Well , what was the point ?

I think there were two. I suppose I will pitch into this thread and mention two actresses I consider overrated, both of whom are quite popular with this group: Margaret Sullavan and Janet Gaynor.

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There are many actresses known simply for their looks. And good looking actresses who could act. But, I've not seen someone with such a substantial yet, empty career.

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1 minute ago, GGGGerald said:

There are many actresses known simply for their looks. And good looking actresses who could act. But, I've not seen someone with such a substantial yet, empty career.

Thenryb hit the nail on the head. Welch was just another in a long line of actresses (and actors, too) hired for their looks. No one ever accused them of being accomplished thespians.

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Another overrated actress: Loretta Young. 

 

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22 minutes ago, LawrenceA said:

Thenryb hit the nail on the head. Welch was just another in a long line of actresses (and actors, too) hired for their looks. No one ever accused them of being accomplished thespians.

That's the feeling I get, too, from a lot of names pitched on this thread. I've never heard anyone praise Grace Kelly, Robert Taylor, Jane Russell, Elvis Presley or even Lauren Bacall as straight-out great actors. The fact that they managed to turn in adequate performances at times shows that they may have become experienced actors, or nabbed the right role to for their abilities, but ultimately they are no Laurence Oliviers in anyone's book...

Hey, speaking of Laurence Olivier! Why is this guy supposedly the greatest actor of all time? I've seen a number of his films and have never been very impressed by his acting, and find his demeanor strained and uncharismatic most of the time. I get the feeling that a lot of his legacy may have been built on his stage career, and the level of his modern-day praise is an artifact of wooped-up hearsay. (Ironically, I do think he's way handsome, tho.)

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1 hour ago, GGGGerald said:

If a movie cast has Raquel Welch, her figure is always plastered across the poster like she is the whole movie. But, what has she ever done ? Any memorable performances ?

She was pretty funny as the accident-prone Constance in The Three Musketeers and The Four Musketeers, I thought.

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