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Personal Ballot: Best Supporting Actress

"Must admit to not having seen "20th Century Women" yet. I'm already an Elle Fanning admirer. So I'm looking forward to seeing whether she or Greta Gerwig can shake up my list." - Ken


Pablo Larraín (Jackie)
Jessica Chastain (Miss Sloane)
Gael García Bernal (Neruda)
Billy Crudup (20th Century Women)
Nicole Kidman (Lion)
Denis Villeneuve (Arrival



The Films of 2016. The 17th annual FiLM BiTCH Awards




Best Supporting Actress
Elle Fanning
Greta Gerwig
Naomie Harris
Riley Keough
Nicole Kidman
"Sue Brierley"
She does her best work yet as a promiscuous teenager who knows less than she thinks but will definitely get there. Bonus points for the careful delineation of when she's putting on airs, when she's honestly speaking her truth, and when they're mixed up together and she isn't sure.  This very 21st century star is a huge boon to this memoir as the connective tissue between adults (past) and kids (future). Gerwig is juggling a lot here -- childwoman spirit, health problems, creative drive -- but feels utterly spontaneous. Bonus pts: "men·stru·a·tion" Three distinct dazzling views of the same addict; Watch as she recedes from larger than life theatrical (the child's view) to fading pitied obstacle (her son now a teenager) and finally to something like a grieving touchstone, with shared history. What was lost in her private war? So real you'd think they just saw her on the street and started following with a camera. Keough fascinates with spiteful glimpses as to what drives this callous nomad. Imagine if she'd been born into wealth; a less miserable soul or even more top dog-eats-dogs hurtful? Yes, she gets a showcase monologue that obliterates the traditional confines of similar "sad mother" roles. But she's perfect before that too, emanating heaps of love and affection but the pained tenacity of metering it out carefully; she knows it's a long haul.

Finalists: Kate Dickie is agonizingly self-flagellating and pious in The Witch; Olivia Colman perfectly sells the satiric vision of The Lobster. Her comedy is so cruelly deadpan it never betrays its pulse and would judge you for having one; and Rossy de Palma is so perfect as the distrustful housekeeper in Julieta that you want to follow her into her own side movie whenever she walks offscreen.

Semi-Finalists: Molly Shannon in Other People, Antonia Zeggers in The Club, Octavia Spencer in Hidden Figures, Gugu Mbatha Raw in Ms Sloane, and Michelle Williams in Manchester by the Sea


Best Supporting Actor
Mahershara Ali
Tom Bennett
"Sir James Martin"
Alden Ehrenreich
"Hobie Doyle"
Ralph Fiennes
"Harry Hawkes"
Trevante Rhodes
Though he's only in the first third of this triptych, his ghost understandably haunts the rest of it, such is Ali's gravitas and the complex weight of the masculine exterior and guilt-plagued interior he's modelling for "Little" A remarkable feat of playing dumb within a very smart movie. Sir Martin never knows what to say but can't stop saying it. Bonus points for that thoroughly unexamined happiness: in this case ignorance is bliss. From the moment he first pivots to the camera, huge cowboy hat framing a dim but endearingly guileless movie starmug, he's stolen the picture as effortlessly as Doyle is effortful once he's in a tux. Best known for magnificently pained stiff men, Harry is a shaggy let it all hang out 180. Fiennes aces that familiar if rare push and pull of your friend with the personality so intense its both irresistible and exhausting.
An impossible task: Melt down three performances by other actors. Stir stagnant years into their soulful mix. Wear your exterior like a well worn but still ill-fitting suit of armor. Somehow Rhodes does all this. And then some.

Finalists: Stephen Henderson is lived in, relatable, and nuanced, particularly when he pushes back against the role he's usually willing to play for his best friend in Fences; Jeff Bridges is utterly Jeff Bridgesian in Hell or High Water but this is always a good thing in the proper context -- he's especially good at revealing affection for his partner (Gil Birmingham, also strong) while always keeping him at a ribbing distance; Finally Billy Crudup does his best work in years as a sweet directionless handyman who lets those 20th Century Women come to him.

Semi Finalists:John Goodman for 10 Cloverfield Lane, Ralph Ineson in The Witch, Michael Shannon in Nocturnal Animals, and Lucas Hedges in Manchester by the Sea