Watch This: An underseen classic from a director too idiosyncratic for the Oscars
Every day, Watch This offers staff recommendations inspired by the week’s new releases or premieres. This week: With the Academy Awards coming this Sunday, we’re highlighting work by master filmmakers who never won the Best Director Oscar.
On Dangerous Ground (1951)
Nicholas Ray is the kind of director destined to be overlooked by the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences, as he was idiosyncratic and given to working within unpretentious genres, imbedding their formulas with neurotic emotional meanings. Virtually any of Ray’s films could have been titled In A Lonely Place, as many of them concern the isolation of wounded people attempting to reconcile their interior damage with their exterior life with mixed results. Regardless of Ray’s Oscar misfortune, many of his films have come to be celebrated, most famously Rebel Without A Cause, along with Bigger Than Life and Johnny Guitar, among others. But …