Saturday, January 7, 2012
Best Actress 1965: Elizabeth Hartman in A Patch Of Blue
Elizabeth Hartman received her 1st Oscar nomination for playing Selina Darcy,a blind girl who is living with her abusive mother Roseanne (Shelley Winters) and her indifferent Grandfather.Given her extreme loneliness,Selina goes to the park and there she meets a black man named Gordon Ralfe (Sidney Poiter) who she befriends and soon starts to help her really take charge of her condition.
A Patch Of Blue is a film I have mixed feelings on: It's a lovely story of a relationship between Poiter and Hartman's characters, but the script is sometimes too unbelievable and the scenes with Roseanne and the grandfather just don't really work.
Anyway,Elizabeth Hartman is just perfect in this movie.At first,I felt her somewhat awkward and mannered, but then I found out she never went to school,and then something clicked.Hartman is so convincing as a blind person and she makes her character's state of mind so naive and sad.As with Julie Christie, there is no one else who could have played this part.Maybe not AS perfect as Julie Christie's casting was, but it was certainly brilliant casting.
Hartman shows Selina's loneliness and longing to have someone to talk to besides her flawed relatives.She shows us how happy Selina is when Gordon Ralfe befriends her and how she slowly falls in love with him.She conveys Selina's fear and excitement on discovering the world just right, never taking one false step. Hartman makes the transformation of Selina from a shy, ignorant girl to a young woman longing for happiness wonderful and mesmerizing to watch.Her chemistry with Poiter is great too.
Elizabeth Hartman gives a luminous,wonderful performance that is the heart and soul of the film.I give her