And the Academy selected:
- Gladys Cooper in The Song Of Bernadette
- Paulette Goddard in So Proudly We Hail!
- Katina Paxinou in For Whom The Bell Tolls
- Anne Revere in The Song Of Bernadette
- Lucile Watson in Watch On The Rhine
5. Lucile Watson as Fanny Farrelly in Watch On The Rhine
Lucile Watson's rather shrill performance as Bette Davis' mother in Watch On The Rhine, is clearly a nomination that rode the wave of the film. For the majority of her performance, she sits around, bosses and makes bitchy comments to anyone who will listen to her - it's not my cup of tea and Watson doesn't make a totally large impression with her small part and shrill character.
4. Paulette Goddard as Lt. Joan O'Doul in So Proudly We Hail!
I would probably like this performance more if Paulette Goddard was a much more talented actress. The part of Lt. Joan offers an actress to be continually charming, even hints of sexiness, but Goddard is the wrong choice for such a character or maybe it's just because her performance feels entirely ineffective and misunderstood. Simply a performance that is ridden with problems.
3. Anne Revere as Louise Soubirous in The Song Of Bernadette
Another actress I couldn't care less about, but Anne Revere is helped out a great deal with having very good material. She's doing her usual shtick, but there is a little hint of something great going on behind her that usually held my attention with her. It's still not a perfect performance in any sense of the word, but Revere is still good enough to be noticeable in a film that tries to overshadow her.
2. Katina Paxinou as Pilar in For Whom The Bell Tolls
Sitting through this awful movie is nothing but a chore, but Katina Paxinou is able to create her own whirlwind by herself playing the man-like mountain fighter Pilar. I used to be sort of in love with this performance, but watching it again after all this time, she is sucked up in the mediocre environment of the film. I still think it's a totally interesting performance filled with surprising moments and great depth injected into a normally dry film. Just not a favorite performance of mine anymore.
1. Gladys Cooper as Sister Marie Therese Vauzous in The Song Of Bernadette
No one can play a mean authority figure like Gladys Cooper - here, a strict nun with jealous and bitter intentions constantly showing beneath her veil. She is always after Bernadette because she knows she has been chosen for the holy vision and not she, who feels it should have been her. It's kind of a small part, but Cooper makes such a big impression with her small screentime that it's hard to ignore her or not love the way she slips into this character with such fierceness.
Honorable Omissions: None.