January 29, 2013

MOVIES: Best of 2012 -- Supporting Actress

Woefully slim pickings in this category this year, and I found myself having to dig deeper than usual to produce a full slate, choosing performances that I might normally have thought not quite large enough to qualify

The runners-up:
  • Amy Adams, The Master
  • Pauline Collins, Quartet
  • Shirley MacLaine, Bernie
  • Frances McDormand, Madagascar 3
  • Tilda Swinton, Moonrise Kingdom
The nominees:
  • Samantha Barks, Les Miserables -- What happens when you cast singers in a musical? You get actual singing, instead of sniffling and wheezing (yes, Anne Hathaway, I'm looking at you). Barks's "On My Own" is the best five minutes in the movie.
  • Emily Blunt, Looper-- The strength of a farmer; the fear of a child who isn't quite like most; the love and devotion of a single mother, strong enough to overcome that fear -- Blunt plays them all with ferocious determination.
  • Judi Dench, Skyfall -- The best performance in a dull movie, bringing an emotional depth and complexity that that the movie doesn't really require and certainly doesn't deserve.
  • Dreama Walker, Complaince -- Walker's progression from bubbly young woman to withdrawn, nearly catatonic victim is remarkable; you can see her slowly shutting down to avoid the horrors she's going through.
And the winner:
  • Kelly Reilly, Flight -- This could easily have been just another addict with a heart of gold, but Reilly digs deep enough to find the humanity and the courage. How refreshing it is when she cuts Denzel loose, refusing to be caught up in his problems and denial.

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