It's just four days until Oscar and I remain stunned and overjoyed that god* will be taking home her first Oscar. I can scarcely believe it. I thought it would be a nail biter given that this never happens. It's true we're about to get our first fiftysomething Best Actress winner in 62 years and I couldn't be happier about it! Given Oscar's very limited idea of what constitutes great acting (let's face it they were never going to "get" how well Scarlett Johansson was embodying a inhuman alien psyche distracted by curiousity) they didn't have much to choose from this year. But we cinephiles did. Best Actress is always a tough category for the actressexual, so I truly wish I had 8 nominees each year. I truly do. Of course then I'd weep for the 9th. You're always going to have to leave people out.
I force myself to narrow it down to 12 semi-finalists each year for a happy dozen before I make the final calls so here's a last shout out to a dozenish favorite leading ladies of 2014 (in alpha order) though this time it's a baker's dozen because I had to include the baker's wife albeit in her other incarnation this year.
Let's hear it for this incredible work. (Weak year my ass)
- Emily Blunt, Edge of Tomorrow
- Marion Cotillard, Two Days One Night
- Essie Davis, The Babadook
- Anne Dorval, Mommy
- Luminita Gheorghiu, Child's Pose
- Scarlett Johansson, Under the Skin
- Keira Knightley, Begin Again
- Agata Kulesza, Ida
- Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Beyond the Lights
- Julianne Moore, Still Alice / Maps to the Stars **
- Elisabeth Moss, Listen Up Phillip
- Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
- Reese Witherspoon, Wild
* Julianne Moore is God.
** I could never understand what the f*** was happening with Maps to the Stars (Globe eligible but not Oscar eligible - what the hell?) so it is not included in my 2014 awards though I would surely have nominated Juli for it. I haven't yet decided if I will consider it for 2015 -- it supposedly opens February 27th -- but it seems to have been lost in the gap between film years. I will never understand this predilection of distributors to confuse potential audiences and critics in year end prizes. Never ever. It fills me with such bile every annum.