I have seen the greatest performance by a supporting actor in 2013. All hail "ULYSSES". Here he is in a key moment from his star-making role in the Coen Bros Inside Llewyn Davis.
What a face! But he doesn't coast on it. He acts with his whole body. If there's any justice in the world, a BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR campaign will rev right up.
Okay okay. I realize this is a silly argument and I know exactly what you're thinking...
"But Nathaniel, a nomination for Ulysses will never happen. I mean, hello, Oscar Trivia! The Coen Bros filmography, which is chalk full of excellent supporting turns never produces nominations in the supporting category that aren't arguably leads (William H Macy in Fargo and Javier Bardem in No Country For Old Men are both in the driver's seat of their film's narrative even if they aren't the protagonists). It's only happened once: Michael Lerner in Barton Fink. And complete unknowns rarely get traction... especially when the film they're in doesn't even feature them in the press notes"
To this I say "But you haven't seen this awesome performance yet and Ulysses DOES drive the plot along -- sometimes in soft footed silence and other times with a sprint. Plus, where's your faith? No supporting actor in a Coen Bros film has ever given a performance this pure of heart or this instinctual. I don't mean to be disrespectful to John Goodman, John Turturro, and the entire Coen repertory company but none of them have ever purred or kneaded their leading men on cue so maybe they just didn't deserve one.
I consider it an indignity that Ulysses will be left out of the film's SAG ensemble nomination (if it gets one) since he goes uncredited. He has way more screen time than Garrett Hedlund and better close-ups than Justin Timberlake.
Don't hate on gingers. Root for Ulysses.