Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Best Actor 1943: Walter Pidgeon in Madame Curie

Walter Pidgeon received his second and final Oscar nomination for portraying scientist Pierre Curie in Madame Curie.

Madame Curie I found to be a biography picture which at times was good, but also rather boring, such as the actual scenes of discovering radium seemed like they needed something more visually.

Walter Pidgeon plays the french scientist Pierre Curie, without a french accent which is fine with me, since it just fits with how things were done most of the time back then. Walter Pidgeon performance and character here is somewhat similar to Paul Muni's performance in The Story of Louis Pasteur. He plays a scientist who is right in his thinking and only wants to improve the knowledge of mankind. He just is around a smart and decent guy, and I feel there is nothing wrong with such a portrayal. His portrayal is similar acceptable, suitable, and enjoyable at times, nothing less and it really does not have to be all that more. He has one difference and that is his partner in science is also his wife Marie Curie.

His scenes with Marie (Greer Garson) are not of the big romantic scene style, but rather far more simple scenes of showing affection for one another. There is not all that romantic tension, but I feel both of the actors do a very good job of showing just a more subtle love for one another that is simpler but properly sweet when it needs to be. I particularly thought he was strong in his final scene of the film where he shows his true love for Marie incredibly well. Besides that he was just good never all that great with Garson.

There are a few flaws that hold back his performance. I could see how many could see Pidgeon as dull, or to bland. I never thought he really was, and almost always thought his performance worked well enough in the film it was in even if it was never amazing. There was one scene I felt his performance was a little lacking, and that was in a scene where he was fighting to support the research of the Curies, and then defending his wife as a scientist. I felt he just needed a little more passion in his performance, not that much more, but a little more. I never felt his performacne truly failed and was just suitable fine performance that I enjoyed.


dinasztie said...

Haven't seen this one and if I do, it will be when I do 1943.

joe burns said...

Haven't seen it, I'm guessing he'll be fourth or fifth.