A hack screenwriter writes a screenplay for a former silent-film star who has faded into Hollywood obscurity. [imdb]
Nominated for 11 Oscars:
Best Director: Billy Wilder
Best Actor: William Holden
Best Actress: Gloria Swanson
Best Supporting Actor: Erich von Stroheim
Best Supporting Actress: Nancy Olson
Best Writing, Story and Screenplay (WINNER)
Best Cinematography, Black-and-White
Best Music, Scoring (WINNER)
Best Art Direction, Black-and-White (WINNER)
Not that I don't believe All About Eve to be a better film or just more on my taste, but I am still surprised that Sunset Blvd. didn't win Best Picture and Best Director. It's a film done so well and, more importantly, in takes place right in Hollywood's backyard. It seems to be the perfect film for Academy members to vote for. I'm sure it was a close race and in any other year Sunset Blvd. would've been a sure bet.
The camera work is amazing and the film has a freshness to it, it feels new and important. The direction is brave, with one or two mistakes I've spotted, but still incredible alltogether. The screenplay is definitely worth of an Original Screenplay win and I'm just happy it didn't go up against All About Eve and both got to win for writing. Does Sunset have one of the best endings ever? That final scene is simply perfect and as a movie fan I just couldn't get enough.
The acting is good, great at times and it's a strong ensemble. I'm not saying Gloria deserved to win, but she was a fine runner-up for Best Actress and I'm sure she lost just by a couple of votes. William Holden is very effective, but I think he was even better that year in Born Yesterday. I could live without those supporting nominations, but nothing bad there. From the technical point of view, it would've deserved a Costume Design nomination, but I don't really get the win for Best Music, considering All About Eve had two legendary catchy tunes.
Sunset Blvd. remains a classic and has definitely passed the test of time. It still feels fresh and a delight for any Hollywood fan.
My rating for the film: 9/10. Even though I'm on the All About Eve side, I can still call it a must-see.