Best Picture Nominees: 1954

It's the Eisenhower 50's...and the Army v. McCarthy hearings.

For more information about 1954, see The Learning Network's Fact Monster.

On the Waterfront
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On the Waterfront (Elia Kazan)
Won Best Picture
The Waterfront Crime Commission is about to hold public hearings on union crime and underworld infiltration. As workers are turned against each other, Terry Malloy (Marlon Brando) inadvertently participates in the murder of a fellow longshoreman. Union boss Johnny Friendly (Lee J. Cobb) orchestrates the murder along with other illegal dockside activities, aided by Terry's brother Charley (Rod Steiger). Terry begins to feel pangs of conscience. The murdered man's sister, Edie (Eva Marie Saint), sees more in Terry than he sees in himself, and Father Barry (Karl Malden) urges him on. Terry reassesses his past and begins to regain responsibility for his actions.



Caine Mutiny
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The Caine Mutiny (Edward Dmytryk)
Nominated Best Picture
Based on the novel by Herman Wouk, this is the story of a group of officers who get a new captain (Humphrey Bogart) during World War II. The new captain is different from their laid-back ex-commander DeVriess (Tom Tully), and they begin to suspect his sanity--with the encouragement of Lt. Keefer (Fred MacMurray).



Country Girl
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The Country Girl (George Seaton)
Nominated Best Picture
From the play by Clifford Odets, washed up singer/actor Frank Elgin (Bing Crosby) has a chance to make a comeback when director Bernie Dodd (William Holden) offers him the leading role in his new musical. Frank, however, is very insecure and turns to alcohol, shunning even the smallest of responsibilities. He leaves everything up to his wife, Georgie (Grace Kelly), who finds it harder and harder to cope with her husband's lack of spirit. Bernie tries to help Frank regain his self-confidence, believing that it is Georgie who's the cause of his insecurity.



Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
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Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Stanley Donen)
Nominated Best Picture
An MGM musical, based on the play by Stephen Vincent Benet. Adam (Howard Keel), the eldest of seven brothers, goes to town to get a wife. He convinces Milly (Jane Powell) to marry him that same day. They return to his backwoods home. Only then does she discover he has six brothers--all living in his cabin. Milly sets out to reform the uncouth siblings, who are anxious to get wives of their own. Then, after reading about the Roman capture of the Sabine women, Adam develops an inspired solution to his brothers' loneliness: kidnap the women they want!



Three Coins in the Fountain
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Three Coins in the Fountain (Jean Negulesco)
Nominated Best Picture
A romance, set in Rome, where a secretary (Maggie McNamara) meets Prince Dino de Cessi (Louis Jourdan) at a party at her boss's home. He invites her to fly to Venice in his private plane. Frances (Dorothy McGuire), who has been in Rome for 15 years tells her at first to say "no" and then decides that together they can handle the man nicknamed the predatory prince.



Seven Samurai
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The Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa)
IMDb Highest Rated
A veteran samurai (Toshiro Mifune), who has fallen on hard times, answers a village's request for protection from bandits. He gathers 6 other samurai to help him, and they teach the townspeople how to defend themselves. In exchange, the villagers supply the samurai with three small meals a day. The film culminates in a giant battle when 40 bandits attack the village.



Rear Window
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Rear Window (Alfred Hitchcock)
Solonor's Pick
Professional photographer L.B. "Jeff" Jeffries (James Stewart) breaks his leg while getting an action shot at an auto race. Confined to his New York apartment, he spends his time looking out of the rear window observing the neighbors. He begins to suspect that the man opposite (Raymond Burr) may have murdered his wife. Jeff enlists the help of his society model girlfriend, Lisa Freemont (Grace Kelly), and his nurse, Stella (Thelma Ritter), to investigate.



La Strada
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La Strada (Federico Fellini)
Gelsomina (Giulietta Masina) is sold for a few coins by her very poor mother (Marcella Rovere) to Zampano (Anthony Quinn), a fairground wrestler. She follows him on the road and helps him during his shows. Zampano mistreats her. She meets "The Fool," (Richard Basehart and feels like going with him, but he puts confusion in her mind by pointing out that perhaps Zampano is in fact in love with her.



Dial M for Murder
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Dial M for Murder (Alfred Hitchcock)
Ex-tennis pro Tony Wendice (Ray Milland) decides to murder his adulterous wife (Grace Kelly) for her money. He blackmails an old college associate (Robert Cummings) to strangle her, but when things go wrong he sees a way to turn events to his advantage.



Sabrina
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Sabrina (Billy Wilder)
Sabrina (Audrey Hepburn) is the young daughter of the Larrabee family's chauffeur (John Williams). She has been in love with David Larrabee (William Holden) for all her life. David is very spoiled and crazy for women and has been totally ignoring Sabrina for years. When Sabrina goes to Paris for a few years, she returns a very attractive and sophisticated woman, and David is quickly drawn to her. David's brother, Linus (Humphrey Bogart), sees this and fears that David's imminent wedding with a very rich woman may be endangered. If the wedding is canceled, so will a great corporate deal with the bride's family. So, Linus tries to keep Sabrina off his brother, and the best way to do so is by charming her himself.



White Christmas
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White Christmas (Michael Curtiz)
In this musical, Bob Wallace (Bing Crosby) and Phil Davis (Danny Kaye) team up to become a top song-and-dance act. Davis plays matchmaker and introduces Wallace to a pair of beautiful sisters--Betty (Rosemary Clooney) and Judy (Vera-Ellen)--who also have a song-and-dance act. When Betty and Judy travel to a Vermont lodge to perform a Christmas show, Wallace and Davis follow, only to find their former Army commander, General Waverly (Dean Jagger), is the lodge owner. A series of romantic mix-ups ensue as the performers try to help the General.



20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
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20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (Richard Fleischer)
From the novel by Jules Verne, this is Disney's version of the mysterious submarine, the Nautilus, and it's even more mysterious Captain Nemo (James Mason). Sailors have returned to port with stories of a vicious narwhal which sinks their ships. A naturalist, Professor (Pierre) Aronnax (Paul Lukas), his assistant, Conseil (Peter Lorre), and a professional whaler, Ned Land (Kirk Douglas), join an expedition which attempts to unravel the mystery.



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Best Picture: 1954
What is the best film of 1954?

On the Waterfront
The Caine Mutiny
The Country Girl
Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
Three Coins in the Fountain
The Seven Samurai
Rear Window
La Strada
Dial M for Murder
Sabrina
White Christmas
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea


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1953 <- Main Menu -> 1955

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