Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Best Actor 1949: Richard Todd in The Hasty Heart

Richard Todd received his only Oscar nomination for portraying Cpl. Lachlan 'Lachie' MacLachlan in The Hasty Heart.

 The Hasty Heart is an okay somewhat charming film about a group of sick or once sick soldiers in a mobile surgery unit who try to get a soon to die soldier, but doesn't know it yet, to enjoy life and break out of his shell.

Richard Todd portrays this soldier who is Scottish, and you know he is Scottish, because Todd does a very Scotty Scottish accent in the role. He portrays Lachie as a angry annoyed man and everyone and everybody. He quickly turns everyone else off with his obnoxious behavior. In this early part Todd does very little to show Lachie's anger than what he is showing on the surface. Not that the anger he shows is poorly done, its fine I suppose, he just does not really anything to the character.

The men manage to get him to break from his shell through the work of a nice nurse (Patricia Neal), and a nice fellow soldier Yank (Ronald Reagan in a fairly charming performance). Todd when he breaks out of his shell does it quite suddenly and becomes the opposite of an mean man but now an overly nice guy. Todd again is sort of charming, and properly nice now, but his transition is a bit too rapid. He again though really keeps his character relatively simplistic.

Lachie eventually is told he is going to die, and I will give credit to Todd his reaction to hearing the news is sad and well handled. Lachie though then becomes just like he was at the beginning. He is now angry though in believing everyone was being nice to him because he was dying. Then he changes back at the very end when he learns they were his friends after all. Todd again leaves something to be desired although still remains okay. Not a terrible performance, but altogether unimpressive.

1 comment:

Sage Slowdive said...

Still haven't seen! Which I'm going to one day work on all on seeing all of the ones I need.