Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Best Supporting Actor 1987: Sean Connery in The Untouchables

Sean Connery won his Oscar from his only Oscar nomination so far for portraying Jimmy Malone in The Untouchables.

The Untouchables depicts the efforts of Elliot Ness (Kevin Costner) to take down crime boss Al Capone (Robert De Niro).

Sean Connery's nomination and win is a rather strange one because despite his long career that included many performances far better than this one he was nominated only for this performance as he street smart beat cop who shows Eliot Ness how to do things the Chicago way. The most notable thing really about this whole performance is the fact that for some reason this beat cop needed to be Irish therefore Connery had to do an Irish accent.

I really do not like to make a big deal about accents unless they really aid in a characterization like for example Al Pacino in a Dog Day Afternoon or if they are distracting because of how bad they are unfortunately Connery's accent falls into this latter category. Connery as he grew older his Scottish accent grew thicker and thicker, perhaps Connery could have done an accent back say in his Darby O'Gill days but this time in his career his accent was far too thick and distinct for him to attempt anything else.

All I can really think is why did they not just change the character's last name, and make him a Scottish cop that was all that was required. Instead Connery attempts an Irish accent over his Scottish that just comes off as awkward when it is apparent, but it is also exceedingly inconsistent. He loses constantly and quite randomly, and this whole problem only ever serves to take away from whatever else he might be doing with his performance. 

The rest of his performance is not remarkable either all he does is look and act tough and gives various talks just to toughen up Ness. No one should never sell short acting tough it is a harder really than it looks, and Connery certainly is good at it, but this not his best display of it. Also there are so many other times where he not only acts tough but has a fuller characterization otherwise than just tough honest cop. Otherwise than the accent Connery really is not bad, but there is nothing special about his work here, which is a shame since you might have noticed I have found Connery has given more than one deserving performance in many other years.


RatedRStar said...

It could have been worse lol I thought others were a lot worse than him in the Untouchables =D

Louis Morgan said...

I wouldn't disagree with you there.

dinasztie said...

Sean Connery used to be my favorite actor long ago, I still like him a lot. This one is an undeserving performance.

RatedRStar said...

which performance did you least like Louis? =)

Louis Morgan said...

I think the blandness of Costner stands far and above as the worst.