Monday, 19 July 2010

Best Actor 1993: Liam Neeson in Schindler's List

Liam Neeson received his first Oscar nomination for playing Oskar Schindler a business man who saves many Jewish people by giving them work in his factory in Schindler's List.

Schindler's list is incredibly well done film about the holocaust, with many brilliant and powerful scenes throughout the film.

Oskar Schindler begins in the film, as only a selfish person who only wishes to use Jews in his factory because they are basically slave labor for his factory, enabling him to make more money. Neeson plays Schindler with the right amount of intensity and strictness in the way he goes about his business. He properly keeps Schindler as just an exploiter at first and nothing else. He has the right coldness in his performance and does not play him as a hero in the least, which makes the rest of his performance all the more powerful.

In these early scenes though he also shows the charisma of Schindler. The inherit charisma that Schindler has is something small in the overall film but it is essential to part of the success of the film. Believing in Schindler's charisma allows one to believe that Schindler was capable of everything that he accomplishes in this film. Neeson's performance is essential in showing the great feat that Schindler accomplished in convincing all the Nazi officials, and tricking them. Neeson is completely up to the task and always the right type of charisma in this performance. A nice natural charisma that is always believable, making it so Schindler's abilities never seem forced or unrealistic in the least.

The best part of Neeson performance is the his method in showing Schindler's change over from a completely selfish man to a Saint. Neeson never shows his change as an instant difference in Schindler but rather a slow deliberate change that it correctly handled by Neeson. He shows Schindler changes with short looks and reactions that are never overt but rather fine and understated. He makes Schindler change completely natural and with the right amount of power. He shows that Schindler slowly sees how truly evil the Nazi's are and slowly realizes his greater importance. The slow change builds up to the his final scene in the film where Schindler has completely become a righteous man.

The final scene of Neeson's is an incredibly powerful scene where Schindler regrets his inability to save even more lives. The scene I find is heart breaking every time, Neeson shows Schindler's true regret with all the possible true emotion and power. He shows that there was true loss of life felt by Schindler, and that he could have done more. This scene is perfect and Neeson is at the center of it with his perfect portrayal of Schindler's regrets. Neeson creates Schindler into a vivid and memorable character because of his perfect charismatic performance along with his, incredibly powerful transition. Both parts of his performance are incredibly challenging but Neeson succeeds quite well.

6 comments:

Fritz said...

Schindler List's is certainly an amazing film. Liam Neeson was fantastic but his accent annoyed me.

Louis Morgan said...

His accent did not bother me, I did not feel anyone's was really perfect (not even Fiennes's) but I never felt they were distracting.

Fritz said...

I don't know, normally, accents never bother me, not even bad ones and I don't even think that Neesons's accent was bad, it was just...distracting somehow. But even though, it wasn't too distracting for me to make me dislike his performance because he was certainly fantastic!

joe burns said...

I've seen about an hour of it like four years ago, but ran out of the room. I thought it was terrifying. But I should see the whole thing. Anyway, either he or Day-Lewis will win, I think.

Louis Morgan said...

You definitely should see it Joe, for the film itself, and the performances of Fiennes and Neeson. The film can be tough to watch at times, but the hopeful ending makes it a little easier.

Sage Slowdive said...

A 4 1/2 from me...