The first two triple crowners were more character actors than movie stars, though their pedigree and filmography might suggest otherwise. Thomas Mitchell and Helen Hayes were accomplished and revered, but neither had the stardust that bursts from the screen every time Ingrid Bergman casts her eyes this way and that. Flick, flick, burst, burst. A firework display of grace with every look.
I wish I could give you a full essay on Bergman, but several factors will delay this indefinitely:
1) Despite its claims to the contrary, my Netflix area does not have the 1944 version of Gaslight, Bergman's first Oscar-winning performance.
2) I ordered the 1944 version on Amazon, but it was lost in the mail.
3) I'd have to pay Amazon $68 to see her Emmy-winning performance in "A Woman Called Golda." I can't bring myself to do that, especially when things get lost in the mail.
4) I'm leaving for Telluride on Thursday morn, and I don't have time to scour the indie rental places, watch the footage and write about it before then.
Eventually we will loop back and discuss Bergman (whose birthday is tomorrow! How perfect would it have been if I actually had the post ready). But do not fear -- I have studied up on our No. 4 triple crowner, and will blog about her in the next few days. Who is she? She's brassy. She's doughy. And she brings us back into character actor territory...