Nicole Kidman – My Life
My Overall Thoughts:
This year has some great actresses nominated, but two of them gave amazing performances that stood out above the rest.
5. Emma Thompson
4. Winona Ryder
3. Holly Hunter
2. Rosie Perez
1. Anna Paquin
5. The Firm – Not as thrilling as the book and the changes to the story actually hurt the momentum of the story. Cruise is fine as the main character but had they cast someone else in the lead, it might have worked much better. Hackman was a great choice for the role of Tolar despite being twenty years older than the character is meant to be. The music is the most memorable thing about this film. This film is 2.5 hours long yet it still feels quite incomplete for anyone who may have read the novel it is based on because too many important plot points are either changed or excised from the finished product.
4. The Age of Innocence – Excellent cast helps bring the past social rituals to life before our very eyes. Scorsese’s direction once again proves his genre diversity and how masterful a director he really is. Great script helps transport us to a time a place that is both familiar and foreign to us. Drags a bit too much here and there but overall it is quite an enjoyable story. Day-Lewis and Pfeiffer are superb and Ryder also does a nice job with what she has been given.
3. The Piano – Great premise that moves along at an extremely slow pace which hurts its impact. The cast is great with Hunter, Neill, Kietel and Paquin all giving great performances. Nominated for 8 Oscars that year and managed to win 3 of them for Actress (Hunter), Supporting Actress (Paquin) and Original Screenplay, but it had no chance in the rest of its categories since it was up against Schindler’s List (1993) which plowed through it’s awards that year.
2. Fearless – Very intriguing premise that works on numerous levels since it allows us to see into the various minds of different kinds of victims of the same tragedy. Bridges is great in the lead and truly makes us believe that his character has chosen to make radical changes to his way of life due to this near death experience. Perez stands out as a young mother who was also saved in the same accident. She deservingly was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar for this role which is quite powerful and realistic feeling. Weir does a great job directing this film in a way that things that happen all seem plausible as things move along. The story has a few huge gaps in the plot line which are never fully explained which is a shame since having filled those gaps, this might have been even more powerful.
1. In the Name of the Father – Very good depiction of how not every convicted criminal is always guilty of their crimes, but the story at some points feels like it is trying too hard to sensationalize events. Liked the way that the maturity of Day-Lewis’ character evolves over the course of the movie. Postlethwaite is amazing here and was a much better actor than he ever got credit for.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Most Definitely! AP is clearly the most powerful of the 5 nominees and despite her age was a great choice to win.
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!