Friday, January 13, 2012
Grand Hotel features several actors I have either heard of or seen in other films. Here, I want to focus on three that stood out for me. The first is Greta Garbo's worn out ballerina who gets a new view of life after meeting John Barrymore's "baron". You gotta love that immortal line of hers: "I vant to be alone."
Lionel Barrymore's dying man also got my attention. Once mourning not living his life up enough, he soon makes up for lost time. To think this is the same man who played Mr. Potter fourteen years later.
In the film's best performance, Joan Crawford as Wallace Beery's stenographer is perhaps in her most natural performance. None of her lines feel forced, her actions aren't contrived, and she appears to be a normal person. And personally, I adore it.
Grand Hotel describes itself within the title. It's a grand film. All of the actors play their parts magnificently, none of them feeling out of place. I usually gripe about AMPAS choosing the wrong films for Best Picture. Not here.
My Rating: *****