Sunday 7 April 2013

Musical Project: Best Supporting Actor 1972: Robert Duvall - The Godfather

As I said in my previous review, after re-watching The Godfather I was surprised how much I've changed my opinion about some performances in it.
I thought Robert Duvall was very dull and lackluster in The Godfather after I've seen it for the first time. He absolutely didn't capture me, I rarely noticed him in the film and I couldn't understand his nomination. Now I can't believe I really thought this. This time I not even understood his nomination, I can see the brilliantness of this performance.
Duvall never goes over the top and knows, where his place is. He gives a very supporting performance and he doesn't try to be the scene stealer, or something like that. He gives a perfect subtle supporting performance, that I don't usually adore (and I didn't adore him before). He realized he is some kind of a messenger to the Corleone family, but he's irreplaceable to them. And this fact is wonderfully portrayed in his performance. It's a very subtle and gentle work, but also very effective and powerful.
I need to give some examples to this. For instance the scene he goes to the film director into his studio. He realized that the best thing would be just say the lines and don't do anything more (the same 'more' I wanted from Caan) and this scene works perfectly. Also the next scene at the director's house. He eats and just listens to the director. This fact, that he does nothing, that he is so calm and just eats, makes it so powerful. This fact is very promising, you wonder why is he so calm. The director is telling him something he didn't want to hear. But it's because Duvall's character knows, he's gonna get what he wants, anyway. Duvall succeeded even in this.
And finally I must mention the best scene of him, but it contains spoiler. It's the scene, where he informs Vito Corleone, that Sonny died. He showed a great amount of emotions. He is a calm man, but he cares about his brothers. His performance in this single scene amazed me more than James Caan's whole performance.
The chances of winning an Oscar: I think, he was the second, at the worst the third. He didn't have his Oscar in 1973 and his performance here is really very very decent and solid...

1 comment:

  1. Duvall is one of my favorite actors, and I like him here, but just like him.