The Oscar Quest: Best Actor – 1965
It’s weird that I think of 1965 as a blank year. Yet, one of Hollywood’s landmark films won that year, The Sound of Music. For some reason, I was never over the moon about the choice of that as Best Picture. I love the film, and I don’t think any of the other nominated films could (or should) have beaten it (even my personal favorite film on the list, Darling), so I’m not sure why my reaction is the way it is. I guess it’s because I’m strange. Robert Wise also won Best Director for the film, which — obviously.
Best Actress this year was Julie Christie for Darling, which I love as a decision. Julie Andrews would have won, but she won the year before this for Mary Poppins. Christie gave a tremendous performance in a category that was pretty stacked. I can’t wait to get to that one. Best Supporting Actor was Martin Balsam for A Thousand Clowns, which was an okay decision. The category was really, really bad, and Martin Balsam is awesome, so I support the decision. And Best Supporting Actress was Shelley Winters for A Patch of Blue, which is a great decision. She was terrific in the film, and didn’t really have any competition.
As for this category — this is one of the toughest Best Actor categories I’ve ever seen. Not so much strongest, but the toughest. Both Rod Steiger and Richard Burton were terrific in their respective roles, and then you get the big monkey wrench of Lee Marvin, who, while he didn’t give a performance that rivals those of the other two, is still Lee Marvin. So a tough decision must be made.
BEST ACTOR – 1965
And the nominees were…
Richard Burton, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold
Lee Marvin, Cat Ballou
Laurence Olivier, Othello
Rod Steiger, The Pawnbroker
Oskar Werner, Ship of Fools (more…)