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Lee Grant tonight on TCM


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I've only relatively recently discovered Lee Grant's work.

She is now a favorite of mine.

 

Orginally STORM FEAR was on the schedule as part of the Lee Grant tribute, but it was later replaced by BUONA SERA, MRS. CAMPBELL. 

I've never seen either movie so I didn't have a strong reation to the change.

I would like to see STORM FEAR air eventually though.

 

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I've only relatively recently discovered Lee Grant's work.

She is now a favorite of mine.

 

Orginally STORM FEAR was on the schedule as part of the Lee Grant tribute, but it was later replaced by BUONA SERA, MRS. CAMPBELL. 

I've never seen either movie so I didn't have a strong reation to the change.

I would like to see STORM FEAR air eventually though.

STORM FEAR has aired on TCM in the past year or so-- I am sure they will show it again. When I looked at her credits, it really doesn't look like she stopped working after she was blacklisted. Though probably by her view, she worked much less in the 50s than she would have liked. She's very funny in THE LANDLORD. I am going to have to watch SHAMPOO again at some point, because I didn't realize she earned an Oscar for that film.

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I am really enjoying Lee Grant's commentary tonight as TCM airs DETECTIVE STORY and THE LANDLORD.

 

What a treat!

I love her commentary too, and watched The Detective Story tonight. I haven't seen it before, I've only heard it on Luxe Radio Theatre! 

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I love her commentary too, and watched The Detective Story tonight. I haven't seen it before, I've only heard it on Luxe Radio Theatre! 

DETECTIVE STORY last aired in June 2013 when Eleanor Parker was Star of the Month. Glad to see it on TCM again.

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DETECTIVE STORY last aired in June 2013 when Eleanor Parker was Star of the Month. Glad to see it on TCM again.

Two for the price of one! Ever since Eleanor Parker's passing, I have been wanting to see more of her films before The Sound of Music and the famous Baroness role. I was very satisfied tonight. 

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I am going to have to watch SHAMPOO again at some point, because I didn't realize she earned an Oscar for that film.

 

Grant has become an accomplished director in recent years. Her film "Down and Out in America" shared the 1986 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature with "Artie Shaw: Time Is All You've Got." It was one of only six ties in the history of the Oscars. Grant didn't win an Oscar herself for the film because she wasn't listed as a producer.

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Since I'm not much for 1970's films, I haven't seen a lot of Lee Grant's acclaimed performances, although I did see Voyage of the Damned and did think she was excellent.

 

I have to say though: I don't think Detective Story has aged well at all. It's one of those "pink elephant" films- too hampered by the code to where it has to beat around the bush and avoid mentioning the giant pink elephant sitting in the corner for the entire movie (in this case, it's the topic of abortion.)...and yes, I know it's implied, and I know there was only so much they could do to imply it- but still.

 

I have to also say that Kirk Douglas's performance is- in my book at least- a total misfire.

 

Top acting honors, for me, would go to the always fabulous Gladys George ("It's dyed squirrel, but don't it look like mink?") and William Bendix, who I wish had made more movies as he was a really, really fine dramatic actor. I'm sorry, but I just wasn't bowled over by Grant- she's fine, but I wouldn't have given her an Oscar nomination nor given her the Best Actress award at Cannes.

 

And speaking of head-scratching Best Actress nominations, I'm fine with Eleanor Parker, but seriously? A Best Actress nomination for a role that is twenty minutes long? (according to imdb it is the shortest performance ever nominated for a lead Oscar.) I think that could happen only in a year as weak for lead performances by an Actress as 1951 was.

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Since I'm not much for 1970's films, I haven't seen a lot of Lee Grant's acclaimed performances, although I did see Voyage of the Damned and did think she was excellent.

 

I have to say though: I don't think Detective Story has aged well at all. It's one of those "pink elephant" films- too hampered by the code to where it has to beat around the bush and avoid mentioning the giant pink elephant sitting in the corner for the entire movie (in this case, it's the topic of abortion.)...and yes, I know it's implied, and I know there was only so much they could do to imply it- but still.

 

I have to also say that Kirk Douglas's performance is- in my book at least- a total misfire.

 

Top acting honors, for me, would go to the always fabulous Gladys George ("It's dyed squirrel, but don't it look like mink?") and William Bendix, who I wish had made more movies as he was a really, really fine dramatic actor. I'm sorry, but I just wasn't bowled over by Grant- she's fine, but I wouldn't have given her an Oscar nomination nor given her the Best Actress award at Cannes.

 

And speaking of head-scratching Best Actress nominations, I'm fine with Eleanor Parker, but seriously? A Best Actress nomination for a role that is twenty minutes long? (according to imdb it is the shortest performance ever nominated for a lead Oscar.) I think that could happen only in a year as weak for lead performances by an Actress as 1951 was.

Parker should have won for CAGED (over Judy Holliday). And her nomination for INTERRUPTED MELODY was deserving, but yes I agree that she really doesn't have a lot to do in DETECTIVE STORY, and as you said, because the story is hampered by the code, she is really acting in circles. I also agree that Kirk's performance is a little off, definitely over the top-- especially his scene in the vehicle with George Macready. Gladys George was good but she is on screen for a fleeting moment.  Lee Grant did fine, and at the very least, it was a good starting point for her in movies.

 

Although abortion could not be openly discussed in a film in 1951, I do think the audience would have gotten the gist of it and knew what the subject was all about. 

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Parker should have won for CAGED (over Judy Holliday). And her nomination for INTERRUPTED MELODY was deserving, but yes I agree that she really doesn't have a lot to do in DETECTIVE STORY, and as you said, because the story is hampered by the code, she is really acting in circles. I also agree that Kirk's performance is a little off, definitely over the top-- especially his scene in the vehicle with George Macready. Gladys George was good but she is on screen for a fleeting moment.  Lee Grant did fine, and at the very least, it was a good starting point for her in movies.

 

Although abortion could not be openly discussed in a film in 1951, I do think the audience would have gotten the gist of it and knew what the subject was all about. 

But it served as the main inspiration for 'Hill Street Blues" more than 30 years later, so it couldn't have aged that badly.

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I've only relatively recently discovered Lee Grant's work.

She is now a favorite of mine.

 

Orginally STORM FEAR was on the schedule as part of the Lee Grant tribute, but it was later replaced by BUONA SERA, MRS. CAMPBELL. 

I've never seen either movie so I didn't have a strong reation to the change.

I would like to see STORM FEAR air eventually though.

 

 

I've never heard of Storm Fear. I was only able to watch the wraparounds for Detective Story and the beginning of The Landlord. Did she mention (anyone) her work on Peyton Place? I remember her saying years ago that was her first West Coast job after the blacklist (mid 60s). I think she won an Emmy for that role........

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STORM FEAR has aired on TCM in the past year or so-- I am sure they will show it again. When I looked at her credits, it really doesn't look like she stopped working after she was blacklisted. Though probably by her view, she worked much less in the 50s than she would have liked. She's very funny in THE LANDLORD. I am going to have to watch SHAMPOO again at some point, because I didn't realize she earned an Oscar for that film.

 

I think she basically worked in NY during that time. Or NY based productions........

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Since I'm not much for 1970's films, I haven't seen a lot of Lee Grant's acclaimed performances, although I did see Voyage of the Damned and did think she was excellent.

 

I have to say though: I don't think Detective Story has aged well at all. It's one of those "pink elephant" films- too hampered by the code to where it has to beat around the bush and avoid mentioning the giant pink elephant sitting in the corner for the entire movie (in this case, it's the topic of abortion.)...and yes, I know it's implied, and I know there was only so much they could do to imply it- but still.

 

I have to also say that Kirk Douglas's performance is- in my book at least- a total misfire.

 

Top acting honors, for me, would go to the always fabulous Gladys George ("It's dyed squirrel, but don't it look like mink?") and William Bendix, who I wish had made more movies as he was a really, really fine dramatic actor. I'm sorry, but I just wasn't bowled over by Grant- she's fine, but I wouldn't have given her an Oscar nomination nor given her the Best Actress award at Cannes.

 

And speaking of head-scratching Best Actress nominations, I'm fine with Eleanor Parker, but seriously? A Best Actress nomination for a role that is twenty minutes long? (according to imdb it is the shortest performance ever nominated for a lead Oscar.) I think that could happen only in a year as weak for lead performances by an Actress as 1951 was.

 

 

While I agree Parker did not. dominate the proceedings, she did have the biggest female role and top billing. Who else was up that year?

 

I agree the film has dated, but I still find it involving. But the ending is a bit over the top (and I couldnt stand that actor who played the hood, too much over-acting) Does anyone know if in the play she actually HAD an abortion???? (Parker's character) They soft soap that in the film by saying the baby died at birth. Doesnt make a whole lot of sense WHY she would need this doctor if she had the baby anyway. But I realize the code.....

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While I agree Parker did not. dominate the proceedings, she did have the biggest female role and top billing. Who else was up that year?

 

 

Best Actress in a Leading Role (1951)

 

Katharine Hepburn in The African Queen

*Vivien Leigh in A Streetcar Named Desire

Eleanor Parker in Detective Story

Shelley Winters in A Place in the Sun

Jane Wyman in The Blue Veil

 

Of those nominees, the best is clearly and easily Vivien Leigh in Streetcar- absolutely the right choice. Other than Hepburn, the other nominees just don't rate a space- Parker and Winters because they're totally supporting roles (and I have issues with Winters' performance in A Place in the Sun. )

 

If a borderline supporting performance by an Actress deserved to make it in the "Lead" category, I'd give it hands down to Jan Sterling in Ace in the Hole over Winters or Parker. She is amazing in that film and should have been nominated (either category would be fine.)

 

1951 was a strangely weak year for actors- outside of the four actors who were nominated for Streetcar (Leigh, Brando, and winners Malden and Hunter), Brando and Hepburn in Queen, and the unnominated (but astounding) performances of Robert Walker in Strangers on a Train and the aforementioned Sterling and Kirk Douglas in Ace in the Hole, I can't think of that many other truly awesome performances.

 

(for the record, Clift is great and Taylor is terrific in A Place in the Sun, but I don't think either role is dynamic enough to rate a nomination.

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Best Actress in a Leading Role (1951)

 

Katharine Hepburn in The African Queen

*Vivien Leigh in A Streetcar Named Desire

Eleanor Parker in Detective Story

Shelley Winters in A Place in the Sun

Jane Wyman in The Blue Veil

 

Of those nominees, the best is clearly and easily Vivien Leigh in Streetcar- absolutely the right choice. Other than Hepburn, the other nominees just don't rate a space- Parker and Winters because they're totally supporting roles (and I have issues with Winters' performance in A Place in the Sun. )

 

If a borderline supporting performance by an Actress deserved to make it in the "Lead" category, I'd give it hands down to Jan Sterling in Ace in the Hole over Winters or Parker. She is amazing in that film and should have been nominated (either category would be fine.)

 

1951 was a strangely weak year for actors- outside of the four actors who were nominated for Streetcar (Leigh, Brando, and winners Malden and Hunter), Brando and Hepburn in Queen, and the unnominated (but astounding) performances of Robert Walker in Strangers on a Train and the aforementioned Sterling and Kirk Douglas in Ace in the Hole, I can't think of that many other truly awesome performances.

 

(for the record, Clift is great and Taylor is terrific in A Place in the Sun, but I don't think either role is dynamic enough to rate a nomination.

 

 

Yeah, I agree about Sterling being worthy, but the film tanked so she had probably zero chance of getting a nomination (in another Kirk film........)

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Yeah, I agree about Sterling being worthy, but the film tanked so she had probably zero chance of getting a nomination (in another Kirk film........)

Yeah, I know.

 

Just consulted my copy of Inside Oscar, and according to them both Douglas and Parker ran very aggressive campaigns in the trade papers for their roles in Detective Story. Douglas's didn't pay off.

 

Also- a little off topic, but what the hey?- Vivien Leigh told reporters that she thought Hepburn would win and when Leigh was announced as the victor, Shelley Winters stood up and headed for the stage. Someone stopped her on the way, but she swore she heard her name called.

 

Oh Shelley.

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But it served as the main inspiration for 'Hill Street Blues" more than 30 years later, so it couldn't have aged that badly.

Some comments I read on the IMDB compared it more to Barney Miller.  But Hill Street Blues and Barney Miller are a bit dated now (good as they are).

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Yeah, I know.

 

Just consulted my copy of Inside Oscar, and according to them both Douglas and Parker ran very aggressive campaigns in the trade papers for their roles in Detective Story. Douglas's didn't pay off.

 

Also- a little off topic, but what the hey?- Vivien Leigh told reporters that she thought Hepburn would win and when Leigh was announced as the victor, Shelley Winters stood up and headed for the stage. Someone stopped her on the way, but she swore she heard her name called.

 

Oh Shelley.

How does one hear "Vivien Leigh" and translate it to "Shelley Winters?" It reminds me of Rosalind Russell getting up in 1948 at the Oscars when Loretta Young was announced the winner. I never bought that "my real name" excuse. 

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Overall I thought it was a great evening with some wonderful insights. She's certainly a survivor.

 

This evening ranked up there (for me) with the Mitzi Gaynor, Dolores Hart and Quincy Jones segments. This is what I love about TCM-- how they bring people on to discuss films that they were involved with making.

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How does one hear "Vivien Leigh" and translate it to "Shelley Winters?" It reminds me of Rosalind Russell getting up in 1948 at the Oscars when Loretta Young was announced the winner.

 

Well, I think Shelley thought a lot of her own undeniable talents, and people in HOLLYWOOD tend to think of their selves before all else, and I'm sure she had people to the left and right telling her they voted for her, she was the best, the award was hers, etc. Never having been nominated for an Oscar, I can only imagine the nerves/complexes/ hallucinations that go with the whole grandiose ordeal. Plus there's Robert Osborne's story about how he first became interested in the history of the Academy Awards when Shelley erroneously claimed she was nominated for A Double Life.

 

You gotta have some delusions of grandeur to make it.

 

As for the Roz/Loretta thing, Roz was totally the expected winner, no one thought Loretta would win. And according to (again) Inside Oscar by Hedda Hopper's account, Roz (sitting immediately in front of her) rose to her feet and led the applause for Loretta as she made her way to the stage.

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Yeah, I know.

 

Just consulted my copy of Inside Oscar, and according to them both Douglas and Parker ran very aggressive campaigns in the trade papers for their roles in Detective Story. Douglas's didn't pay off.

 

Also- a little off topic, but what the hey?- Vivien Leigh told reporters that she thought Hepburn would win and when Leigh was announced as the victor, Shelley Winters stood up and headed for the stage. Someone stopped her on the way, but she swore she heard her name called.

 

Oh Shelley.

 

 

LOL.

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