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 Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, unless otherwise noted. twitter | facebook | pinterest | tumblr | letterboxd

 

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Entries in Best Actress (198)

Tuesday
Jul012014

Happy Olivia de Havilland Day!

A very happy 98th birthday to the woman who collected Oscars and cats as if she were personally flirting with me before I was born.

Thank you for Maid Marian, cousin Melanie Hamilton, heiress Catherine Sloper, identical twins Terry & Ruth, Miriam who hushed sweet Charlotte, Virginia in that snake pit... and many more.

Your summer Centennial party is just around the corner in 2016!

 

Thursday
Jun192014

Throwback Thursday FYC: Felicity Huffman in Transamerica (2005)

Imagine if this came out today.

 

A lot changes in a decade's time... and I'm not talking about IFC Films no longer ever being in the Oscar conversation (they probably wouldn't even launch a campaign  today).

You can still win Oscars playing transgender characters (see Jared Leto) but now it comes with a chorus of disapproval that a trans actor wasn't selected. And speaking of... love love love Orange is the New Black but when are they going to give Laverne Cox something else to do besides sassy oneliners as she plays with someone's hair? She had like only two scenes of any note this season.

Saturday
May312014

First Round Oscar Predix: Best Actress

The initial Oscar charts from this already rolling film year are nearing completion. Now it's time for our favorite category... BEST ACTRESS

from top left: jessisa chastain, juli, nicole, AMY ADAMS, Dame Mirren, The Swank, Anna Kendrick, Dame Maggie, Meryl, Jess again, Charlize, CATE, MICHELLE, REESE, ROSAMUND, Shailene, Marion, Mia, Melissa

If this doesn't get you talking, nothing will...

Coming out of Cannes, things don't look great for Marion Cotillard (who can't seem to win Cannes best actress or a second Oscar nomination despite numerous buzzy attempts at both) or Hilary Swank (The Homesman) but it's worth remembering that Oscar voters are a very different sort and voting in a very different climate than Cannes critics and jury members. Cannes is never the be all and end all for movies with big stars... or movies that fall closer to mainstream prestige than auteur prestige, if you know what I mean.

That said, the only thing Grace of Monaco might do for Nicole Kidman's Oscar chances is help her knock people's socks off unexpectedly if she's great in Queen of the Desert. Not that we know what kind of release that Werner Herzog biopic might get. And not that we should necessarily hope that Oscar keys in to Herzog since they've had trouble there before. 

As for our darling Julianne Moore, a Cannes win is a big deal for any actress but it is unfortunately free of Oscar boosts beyond bragging rights.

Julianne with her prize

What it does do -- which is not unimportant -- is open people's ideas to the fact that she's impressive in it and makes them more likely to engage and consider whatever it is she's doing in it. That can't hurt given that it's an outre role and the performance is considered excessively mannered by some. Even though the film and the role aren't exactly Oscar bait, anything is possible and after a 12 year absence from Oscar shortlists, it'd be wonderful to have her back and might require a shock to the system like this to accomplish.

Stay tuned.

my first wave predictions... 

 

Wednesday
May282014

Barbara Stanwyck: The Real Best Actress of 1941

It's unofficially 1941 Week. Here's Abstew on the year's greatest actress...

See anything you like?

Purrs Barbara Stanwyck's con artist Jean Harrington to Henry Fonda's smitten ale-heir-turned-Ophiologist Charles Pike in Preston Sturges' 1941 screwball classic, The Lady Eve. The question is asked as the contents of her wardrobe are on display (and the sultry delivery let's us know that Jean is hardly talking about the fuzzy slippers), but Stanwyck might have easily been asking movie-goers the same thing regarding her stellar body of work that year. In a quartet of successful films (The Lady Eve, Meet John Doe, You Belong to Me, and Ball of Fire), Stanwyck earned her second Oscar nomination, starred in a film Time magazine named one of the 100 greatest movies of all-time, and became one of the highest paid actresses in Hollywood. Unquestionably, 1941 would prove to be a peak Stanwyck year. 

Click to read more ...

Monday
May262014

Cannes Monologue: Norma Rae

Andrew's Cannes-inspired subseries in our Monday Monologue tradition ends with Sally Field in Norma Rae, one of only four Best Actresses to win both Cannes and the Oscar...

 

Is Julianne Moore finally going to get that Oscar? Blame it on the human urge to tie everything down to laurels, but it seems that's biggest wishful-thinking question coming out of Cannes after the awards ceremony. It’s not enough that she’s recently joined Juliette Binoche as one of the few  “European Best Actress Triple Crown” winners –the allure of Oscar is hard to resist. Cannes and Oscar rarely measure up, of course, but it seems like a good excuse to look back to one of only two performance to manage both Best Actress wins in the last 50+ years: Sally Field in Norma Rae (1979)...

Click to read more ...