Jump to content

 
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
GGGGerald

Overrated talents ?

Recommended Posts

9 minutes ago, Kay said:

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.)

Yes, his rep is built upon his stage work. Olivier was notoriously awful about picking good film material, though, or at least what was suited for him. 

Similarly, an actor that used to routinely be called one of the best, if not the best, screen actor of all time was Spencer Tracy. However, I had a friend that thought Tracy was at best unmemorable. 

Personally, I'm not good at picking overrated or underrated performers or filmmakers, as I think most of them were decent in one or two things, and often that's all a reputation is built upon. 

I use to despise John Travolta, Keanu Reeves, Robert Taylor, and June Allyson, but I've mellowed a bit in recent years, and acknowledge that they've all been good, or at least suitable, in one or two things in their careers. And even then I wouldn't call them overrated, since I've not seen too many people rating them highly.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, Kay said:

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.)

* I really liked what you said about Olivier. He may be one great stage actor who never figured out the Knack of acting on film.

I've often noticed that Hitchcock can get things out of an actor that you didn't even know was there. "Rebecca" may be one of Olivier's best performances on film.

 It's funny because I can think of so many British actors who were considered great stage actors, yet they were fantastic on film:

Anthony Hopkins, Richard Burton, Michael Redgrave, Leslie Howard, Robert Stephenson, and even John Gielgud eventually became cinematic-- but it took him a little while.

Yes, Olivier was good looking. But I never could see what women saw in Robert Taylor. But he became quite a professional journeyman of an actor in his middle-ages.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Janet Gaynor is an  interesting addition.  I haven't seen all of her work, but in reviewing her last pairing with Charles Farrell, (Change of Heart, 1934) I noted that her popularity has eluded me and certainly wasn't based upon acting talent or, forgive me, looks.

I suppose that she and Farrell together had some spark for audiences of the time, or at least they liked to see him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 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. 

Now, NOwhere in my post does it say I thought Ms. Stanwyck had no "content".  I didn't claim her talent was "overrated" now, did I?  :rolleyes:

Sepiatone

Oh, and apology accepted!  ;) 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

Personally, I'm not good at picking overrated or underrated performers or filmmakers, as I think most of them were decent in one or two things, and often that's all a reputation is built upon. 

 

I share your opinion. There was a distinction, and still is, between stars and character actors, i.e the real actors. It's perhaps the nature of film. Clark Gable was one of the biggest stars ever, but his range was quite limited. It was his persona, what he represented, a type of masculinity that was appealing to men and women.  Marilyn Monroe became an icon for reasons other than her acting ability. There are many other examples we can mention. My view is that if I enjoy a film, the performances take care of themselves. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another problem with that CINEMA, is that for whatever reason some become "icons" it seems their basic ability(ies) get overlooked.  Now, YOU might see Clark Gable as being "limited" in range without possibly taking into account that his largest appeal might have been in those aspects of masculinity that appealed to both men and women, thereby causing him to be typecast by studio heads.  IMHO it was the same for MONROE, who despite what ANYBODY says, I felt had more acumen as an actress than most these days give her credit for.  Especially much younger people,who gather and form such opinions based on what they find online and not opinions formed by careful scrutiny of some performances over others.  Most of her earlier film performances are fairly competent("Don't Bother To Knock", "Niagara", "Bus Stop") and it was her struggle to break away from typecasting and the toll it took on her psyche with the resulting foray into pills and other distractions that also affected her performances and caused her "difficult" behavior that led to her downfall and eventual OD.  And I thought her final appearance in THE MISFITS was above average.  But, as stated, IMHO.

Sepiatone

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


© 2019 Turner Classic Movies Inc. A Time Warner Company. All Rights Reserved Terms of Use | Privacy Policy
×
×
  • Create New...