Natalie Portman – Beautiful Girls
My Overall Thoughts:
This is a year where there was one performance that dominated the entire awards season and it was suspected that it would also take home Gold as long as it could get past the fact that a juggernaut film was going to come steaming thru and might pick up some extra awards on the way to winning the big awards of the night.
5. Barbara Hershey
4. Joan Allen
3. Marianne Jean-Baptiste
2. Lauren Bacall
1. Juliette Binoche
5. Portrait of a Lady – Really boring and tedious period drama that is quite hard to get through because it moves along so slowly. Kidman is overbearing in the lead and its hard to care about her or any of the other characters as things constantly seem to be moving in cyclical directions instead of moving forward. Besides Kidman, this film has a very talented cast, but they are completely wasted here because of the way that they choose to present things along the way. Hershey was nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her performance here yet failed to win.
4. The Mirror Has Two Faces – Surprisingly good rom-com despite Bridges and Streisand having so little chemistry with one another. Characters are created very well and are believable. Because of my familiarity with the academic setting, I enjoyed many of the jabs to the profession. Bacall is great as Streisand’s mother. Excellent theme song by Adams and Streisand.
3. The Crucible – Very good adaptation of the play. Excellent cast; Day-Lewis is superb as is Scofield and Ryder. Really makes one think about how similar these trials were to the HUAC ones during the 1950’s. Miller captured the feeling perfectly and conveyed his message about innocence and perceived guilt so well in his analogy.
2. Secrets & Lies – Great idea that works really well because it gives us characters that are easy to relate to. The idea that we all have some kind of secret that we keep from others is very universal and the way this story unfolds keeps us interested the entire time. Nominated for 5 Oscars; Picture, Director, Actress (Blethyn), Supporting Actress (Jean-Baptiste) and original Screenplay but didn’t mange to win any of them.
1. The English Patient – Great love story set on the eve of WWII. Very deserving of all its accolades.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Yep! JB is great in this role and was a very deserving winner even though LB comes in a close second even if she dominated during the entire awards season.
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!