Sunday, March 28, 2010

Bette Davis in "All About Eve"

Bette Davis received her eighth Oscar nomination for her role as aging, diva actress Margo Channing in All About Eve.

Margo has long been one of the best actresses on the stage, but she's beginning to show her age. Soon, her a woman named Eve, who claims to be her biggest fan, enters her life and soon, things start to change.

All About Eve is often referred to as Bette Davis's best performance, and I would have to agree.

Bette Davis's career was going through some trouble around this time, and the role fits her like a glove. Every line reading, every movement, Bette Davis nails it.

Margo basically is a diva in the beginning, clinging to her fading career, and her theater friends. Once Eve enters the picture, she starts to be more bitchy, more annoying, because she can see, before anyone else, Eve is up to something. Margo isn't just having trouble on the stage, she is having problems with her personal life, and her director/lover Bill.

Like Anne Baxter, Bette Davis has some underlying current beneath her performance. Bette Davis injects so energy into her performance. Everytime she appears on screen, there is so much energy and lightening, it's fantastic.

Bette Davis was always an actress who could seem over the top, but never goes completely over. Margo is an over the top character, but it never becomes too much for me. She shows Margo's insecurities and her false shield she uses in public.

She outshines most of everyone in the movie, especially with Gary Merrill. But, her scenes with Anne Baxter are great, and both of them play well off of each other.

Bette Davis's best performance, of a betrayed, aging, diva actress, is a fantastic accomplishment that is unforgettable.

12 comments:

joe burns said...

Completely agree! My favorite nominee ever! Can't wait to see your thoughts on Gloria!

Sage Slowdive said...

Wow, ever?

joe burns said...

Yes! Just incredible work! Swanson is your favorite, right?

Sage Slowdive said...

We'll see.

joe burns said...

And will you publish a re ranking of Best Actress? And how's your Website doing?

Sage Slowdive said...

What would be the point of that, when after I do each year, I do a ranking like Fritz does seen here:

http://sageslowdive.blogspot.com/2010/03/my-ranking-of-best-actress-nominees-so.html

joe burns said...

Oh, okay. So you'll do 2007 next?

Sage Slowdive said...

Yeah, then one of the 70s years.

joe burns said...

Do 1976 after that! That would be interesting! I'll do 2007 after you do, or I might do another year. Can you request one for me to do?

Sage Slowdive said...

Either that or 79.

Twister said...

If this isn't Bette's all time best performance, then its not too far away. It's all about Margo, not Eve! I think that Baxter is kind of co-lead, and not so supporting actually.

Although Davis commands when she's on screen, she doesn't hog the screen and generously plays with her costars and not against them.

Celso said...

One of the greatest performances ever! Enough said.