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Best Films - 1954

The Barefoot ContessaConsidered by many one of Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s lesser films, The Barefoot Contessa is a classy, intelligently written, and generally well acted morality tale. Inspired by the life of Rita Hayworth (née Margarita Cansino), the film’s plot revolves around the tragic fate of Maria Vargas, a great, earthy beauty who becomes a Hollywood movie star.

Besides Jack Cardiff’s beautiful cinematography and Mario Nascimbene’s melancholy score, The Barefoot Contessa offers Ava Gardner in top form – both as a star and as an actress. Humphrey Bogart offers solid support as a film director, while director-screenwriter Joseph L. Mankiewicz (All About Eve, 5 Fingers, Sleuth) handles the proceedings with his usual sophisticated flair.

Best Film
The Barefoot Contessa, dir.: Joseph L. Mankiewicz.
Hobson’s Choice, dir.: David Lean.
Johnny Guitar, dir.: Nicholas Ray.
On the Waterfront, dir.: Elia Kazan
Royal Affairs in Versailles / Si Versailles m’était conté, dir.: Sacha Guitry.
Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, dir.: Stanley Donen.
Them!, dir.: Gordon Douglas.
Woman’s World, dir.: Jean Negulesco.

SCREENPLAY
Claude Binyon, Russel Crouse, Howard Lindsay, Mary Loos & Richard Sale, Woman’s World.
Julius J. Epstein & Lenore J. Coffee, Young at Heart.
Frances Goodrich & Albert Hackett, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.
Sacha Guitry, Si Versailles m’était conté.
Frederick Knott, Dial M for Murder.
Joseph L. Mankiewicz, The Barefoot Contessa.
Budd Schulberg, On the Waterfront.
Ted Sherdeman, Them.
Norman Spencer & Wynard Browne, Hobson’s Choice.
Philip Yordan, Johnny Guitar.

Best Actress
Joan Crawford, Johnny Guitar.
Dorothy Dandridge, Carmen Jones.
Doris Day, Young at Heart.
Brenda De Banzie, Hobson’s Choice.
Ava Gardner, The Barefoot Contessa.
Judy Garland, A Star Is Born.
Judy Holliday, It Should Happen to You.
Judy Holliday, Phffft!.
Eva Marie Saint, On the Waterfront.
Jane Wyman, Magnificent Obsession.

Best Actor
Humphrey Bogart, The Barefoot Contessa
Humphrey Bogart, The Caine Mutiny.
Charles Laughton & John Mills, Hobson’s Choice.
Spencer Tracy, Broken Lance.

Best Supporting Actress
June Allyson, Woman’s World.
Ethel Barrymore, Young at Heart.
Claudette Colbert, Si Versailles m’était conté.
Mercedes McCambridge, Johnny Guitar.
Kim Novak, Phffft!.
Thelma Ritter, Rear Window.
Margaret Rutherford, The Runaway Bus.
Barbara Stanwyck, Executive Suite.

Best Supporting Actor
Lee J. Cobb, On the Waterfront.
Sacha Guitry, Si Versailles m’était conté.
Fredric March, Executive Suite.
Edward Underdown, Beat the Devil.
Clifton Webb, Woman’s World.

Best Cinematography
Jack Cardiff, The Barefoot Contessa.
George J. Folsey, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.
Jack Hildyard, Hobson’s Choice.
Boris Kaufman, On the Waterfront.
Milton Krasner, Desirée.
Joseph LaShelle, River of No Return.
Ted McCord, Young at Heart.
Otello Martelli, La Strada.
Franz Planer, The Caine Mutiny.
Jun Yasumoto, Miyamoto Musashi / Samurai.

Best Original Score
Mario Nascimbene, The Barefoot Contessa.
Nino Rota, La Strada.
Frank Skinner, Magnificent Obsession.
Victor Young, Johnny Guitar.
Victor Young, Three Coins in the Fountain.

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