Friday, February 17, 2006
Academy Award Countdown [#002]: Claudine
In 1973, Diahann Carroll received a Best Actress nomination for her performance as the title character in Claudine, a love story set against the trying times of the 1970s social services system. The role of a single mother on welfare was a huge stretch for the 60s glamour girl, who was sometimes criticized for her perceived distance from the struggles of African Americans during the civil rights era. Diahann Carroll's gritty performance in Claudine proved that the singer/actress was ready for more than just a close-up.
Joining Diahann is James Earl Jones.His booming energy and presence as Roop, a garbage man trying to fight for love is riveting. Other stirring performances come from Claudine's eldest children played by teen hearthrob Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs and Tamu Blackwell.
Strong performances by Carroll, Jones and the cast of children is one reason to check out this classic film; another is the soulful soundtrack by Gladys Knight and the Pips.