Most of us think of the 1950s as a bland, forgettable decade. The calm before the storm. On the movie front, however, it was a decade of spectacle and style. One of its best years was 1954, which featured these movies:
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea – Shared the prize as the year’s box office champ. Starring Kirk Douglas and James Mason. The first sci-fi film from Disney.
The Barefoot Contessa – Perhaps Ava Gardner’s finest role. Humphrey Bogart co-starred.
The Caine Mutiny – Humphrey Bogart and those little steel balls. (Great American Things, July 15, 2010)
The Country Girl – Grace Kelly won the Academy Award for Best Actress in this film that co-starred Bing Crosby and William Holden.
Dial M for Murder – Hitchcock’s second-most-successful film of the year. Starred Ray Milland and Grace Kelly.
On the Waterfront – The critical hit of the year, winning eight Oscars, including Best Picture. Elia Kazan directed Marlon Brando, Eva Marie Saint and Rod Steiger.
Rear Window – Big at the box office, and one of Hitchcock’s best. With Jimmy Stewart and Grace Kelly. (Great American Things, September 6, 2010)
Sabrina – Billy Wilder’s comedy-drama starring Audrey Hepburn, William Holden, and Humphrey Bogart.
A Star Is Born – Maybe Judy Garland’s most famous (adult) performance. With James Mason.
White Christmas – The other co-leader at the box office. No snow in Vermont. Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney. (Great American Things, December 24, 2009)