Best Picture Nominees: 1943

For more information about 1943, see The Learning Network's Fact Monster.


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The Ox-Bow Incident (William A. Wellman)
Nominated Best Picture
Solonor's Pick
Two drifters (Henry Fonda and Dana Andrews are passing through a Western town, when news comes in that a local farmer has been murdered and his cattle stolen. The townspeople, joined by the drifters, form a posse to catch the perpetrators. They find three men in possession of the cattle and are determined to hang them without trial.

Although produced two years earlier than its release date, it was kept out of circulation by the apprehensive studio for two years due to its pessimistic and somber message. The stark anti-Western, neither a war morale-booster or entertainment picture, was critically acclaimed for its honest and powerful portrayal and adaptation of the original novel, but it failed at the box-office.




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The More the Merrier (George Stevens)
Nominated Best Picture
It's World War II and there is a severe housing shortage everywhere--especially in Washington, D.C., where Connie Milligan (Jean Arthur) rents an apartment. Believing it to be her patriotic duty, Connie offers to sublet half of her apartment, fully expecting a suitable female tenent. What she gets instead is mischievous, middle-aged Benjamin Dingle (Charles Coburn). Dingle talks her into subletting to him and then promptly sublets half of his half to young, irreverent Joe Carter (Joel McCrea)--creating a situation tailor-made for comedy and romance.




IMDb


Heaven Can Wait (Ernst Lubitsch)
Nominated Best Picture
Henry Van Cleve (Don Ameche) presents himself at the gates of Hell only to find he must prove his qualifications for entry. Surprised there is any question on his suitability, he recounts his lively life and the women he has know--from his mother onwards, mainly concentrating on his happy but sometimes difficult twenty-five years of marriage to Martha (Gene Tierney).




IMDb


Watch on the Rhine (Herman Shumlin)
Nominated Best Picture
Based on the play by Lillian Hellman, but scripted by Dashiell Hammett, this is one of the best of all the anti-Nazi films of the war years. Kurt Muller (Paul Lukas), a European Resistance underground leader, must flee from Nazi Germany just prior to Pearl Harbor in order to find safe refuge in America. He and his American wife, Sara (Bette Davis), and their three young children move in with her mother Fanny Farrelly (Lucile Watson) and brother (Donald Woods) in Washington D.C. Refusing to remain silent, he explains to them the true nature and threat of the Nazis (and to the American public in a bit of propagandizing). Muller is confronted with the threat of being betrayed to Gestapo Third Reich agents by other boarders in the home, including blackmailing spy Teck de Brancovis (George Coulouris), a Rumanian count and his American wife Marthe (Geraldine Fitzgerald).




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The Song of Bernadette (Henry King)
Nominated Best Picture
In 1858 France, Bernadette (Jennifer Jones), an adolescent peasant girl, has a vision of "a beautiful lady" in the city dump. She never claims it to be anything other than this, but the townspeople all assume it to be the virgin Mary. The pompous government officials think she is nuts, and do their best to suppress the girl and her followers, and the church wants nothing to do with the whole matter. But as Bernadette attracts wider and wider attention, the phenomenon overtakes everyone in the the town and transforms their lives.




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For Whom the Bell Tolls (Sam Wood)
Nominated Best Picture
The film adaptation of the novel by Ernest Hemingway. Spain in the 1930s is the place to be for a man of action like Robert Jordan (Gary Cooper). There is a civil war going on and Jordan who has joined up on the side that appeals most to idealists of that era has been given a high-risk assignment up in the mountains. He awaits the right time to blow up a bridge in a cave. Pilar (Katina Paxinou), who is in charge there, has an ability to foretell the future. So, that night she encourages Maria (Ingrid Bergman), a young girl ravaged by enemy soldiers, to join Jordan who has decided to spend the night under the stars.




IMDb


The Human Comedy (Clarence Brown)
Nominated Best Picture
Mr. Macauley (Ray Collins), the recently deceased father of a family in Ithaca, a small California valley town, narrates this story about the effects of World War II on their everyday life and the need to cope with new responsibilities and hardships. The teenaged Macauley son, Western Union bicycle messenger Homer (Mickey Rooney) must deliver mostly tragic war news to families about wounded or killed boys. A series of vignettes highlight life in Americana as he comes into close contact with all the families in town. Members of Homer's family include older brother Marcus (Van Johnson) off fighting in uniform, his older college student sister Bess (Donna Reed) who is in love with telegraph office operator Tom Spangler (James Craig), and his younger kid brother Ulysses (Jackie 'Butch' Jenkins). One day, Homer has to deliver the news to his own family that big brother Marcus has been killed in battle. Marcus' best friend and service pal, orphaned and parentless Tobey George (John Craven), is more or less adopted by the Macauley family after the heart-tearing news.




IMDb


Madame Curie (Mervyn LeRoy)
Nominated Best Picture
Based on the biography of famous scientists Marie and Pierre Curie (Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon). On their honeymoon, they decide to find out what caused the strange effect Professor Becquerel (Reginald Owen) has noticed with the uranium/thorium stones for her dissertation. After many experiments, they find out that there must be more radioactive elements than uranium and thorium, and they try to isolate them. After years of experiments in a makeshift lab at the University, they are able to isolate a few grains of a new element, radium, from seven tons of raw material, but at the height of their success, Piere is killed in an traffic accident.




IMDb


Shadow of a Doubt (Alfred Hitchcock)
IMDb Highest Rated
Congenial and suave Uncle Charlie (Joseph Cotten), a devious psychopathic killer who suspects his apprehension by police is imminent, drops out of sight by visiting adoring middle-class relatives in the quiet, small California town of Santa Rosa. His young niece Charlie (Teresa Wright), named for the uncle she idolizes, is fascinated by his wit, urbane and worldly sophistication--and then she has a "shadow of a doubt" and begins to suspect that he is the 'Merry Widow Killer'. As she gets closer to him and learns the truth, she realizes that he is aware of her knowledge and suspicions. She must decide whether she should reveal her findings to the authorities or protect her family in a tense cat-and-mouse game that leads to an exciting conclusion.



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Best Picture: 1943
What is the Best Picture of 1943?

The Ox-Bow Incident
The More the Merrier
Heaven Can Wait
Watch on the Rhine
The Song of Bernadette
For Whom the Bell Tolls
The Human Comedy
Madame Curie
Shadow of a Doubt


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1942 <- Main Menu -> 1944

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