Gregory Peck received his second Oscar nomination for playing Ezra "Penny" Baxter a pioneer farmer in Florida in The Yearling.
Peck actually has a lot less screen time than the boy Jody played by Claude Jarman Jr, and he really is more supporting as the supportive father. Peck though plays the supporting father as you would probably expect him to play it. He is warm and supportive, and tells the boy an important lesson when he needs to. His character does not have that much depth nor does his character really go under any changes.
The performance is nothing great by any measure for sure, but I did enjoy his performance to a degree. He does give the right amount of warmth, and little humor that is nice. He helps the film along well enough but he does not do anything more than expected from this sort of performance. He does in fact do a little less do to the script. In the script it has Peck's character speak in this old fashioned slang dialect that Peck clearly is not that comfortable with. It never seems at all natural that Peck is speaking that way, and Peck seems slightly out of place because of that. It does not ruin his performance though and Peck still is a nice enough presence in the film. Overall Peck gives just a nice performance but never really a memorable performance.