Saturday, April 17, 2010

Mrs. Miniver (1942) (2nd time)

The Minivers, an English "middle-class" family, experience life in the first months of World War II. [imdb]

Nominated for 12 Oscars:

Best Picture (WINNER)
Best Director: William Wyler (WINNER)
Best Actor: Walter Pidgeon
Best Actress: Greer Garson (WINNER)
Best Supporting Actor: Henry Travers
Best Supporting Actress: Dame May Whitty
Best Supporting Actress: Teresa Wright (WINNER)
Best Writing, Screenplay (WINNER)
Best Cinematography, Black-and-White (WINNER)
Best Editing
Best Sound
Best Special Effects

The 15th Best Picture winner is also William Wyler's first Best Director win and one of the most relevant films of its era. Let's not forget it was 1942; I'm sure that back them it really seemed the "Greatest Movie Ever Made", as the tagline suggests. A propaganda film, Mrs. Miniver does stand by itself in many ways, but couldn't be properly judged outside the political context. Here is some great trivia about the film that's worth mentioning:
Winston Churchill once said that this film had done more for the war effort than a flotilla of destroyers.
The Vicar's final rousing speech was printed in magazines like "Time" and "Look". President Franklin Delano Roosevelt ordered that it be broadcast on the Voice of America, and copies of it were dropped over Europe as propaganda. This speech has come to be known as The Wilcoxon Speech, in tribute to actor Henry Wilcoxon's stirring delivery of it.
And that's very cool. Other than that, Mrs. Miniver shows good performances and a nice story that keeps you interested. The patriotic stuff is the best and about the acting I would underline May Whitty's performance which should've won her the Oscar. Greer Garson is good, but her win can be mostly justified by the excitement for the film. I like this type of war movie mixed with some soap opera. The ending is great and justified, and even though the film is not too deep, it's a fine movie experience.
My rating for the film: 8/10. I swear it was almost an 8.5. Definitely one of the best BP winners, in my opinion.


  1. Oh! I definitely have to check this one out!

  2. It's amazing - whenever anyone mentions Mrs. Miniver I immediately think of the ghastly hat she buys in the first scene.

    Saying that it is a superb effort, and one of the many masterpieces from Wyler. Curious to think it was the same man who directed The Best Years of our Lives, with it's post-war depression and realisation of the hell of combat just 4 years later.

  3. This is definitely off-topic so I apologize in advance.

    I’m Malcolm from The Final Oscar and I wonder if you want to join in a smackdown I’m going to officiate. It’s between the nominees for Best Picture last 2008. I hope you reply for confirmation whether you’ll join or you’ll decide not to.

    You can e-mail me in or you can just visit my site

    I would truly appreciate if you join.

    Thanks and have a good day.

  4. I don't remember this well at all, I don't why...I know it was good but other than that nothing except the hideous hat runs like a gay refers. That is the strongest I have in my head...what does that say...?

  5. well, I don't know :)

    I remembered it a lot, even though I had previously seen it YEEEEEARS ago. I remembered the Nazi scene, the drama, the ending, the rose contest... :) it might've been because I've enjoyed it even back then.

  6. For me, one of the weakest Best Picture winners because it puts such uninteresting characters in the focus.