Heath Ledger received his first Oscar nomination for portraying Ennis Del Mar in Brokeback Mountain.
Heath Ledger like Philip Seymour Hoffman from this year uses a whole string of mannerisms in his performance, he I felt was not quite as successful. He squints his eyes constantly and does a very specific voice all to prove that he is the ranch hand he is portraying. I think these mannerisms were not entirely needed but they does not mean they are poorly done though. I do think his voice works well but I did not think all the eye squinting works quite as well as he wanted to. Still though his attempts to show where the man comes from never really fails. What he does do shows a clear place where he comes from, it might seem a little forced at time, but never too much.
The film is a rather melodramatic film, which means there are going to be many events to set off people's emotions. Although I do not think this turns this into the greatest film but it does allow for a lot of scenes to show of one's acting skills. An interesting thing about this is the men live in an area where overt showings of emotions are sort of looked down upon, so Del Mar is forced to most of the time internalize his feelings. Ledger handles this aspect of the character incredibly well. Every scene with his wife, or with his kids is brilliantly handled by him. He always just suggests perfectly without telling. He tries to suggest more of himself to his family but he never fully says it. His utmost subtlety is truly effective it makes when he becomes emotional more effecting actually.
The scenes where he shows more emotions are also brilliantly handled by Ledger, because they show the same man as his more withdrawn man, but showing that man truly showing who he is. Ledger is equally powerful showing the very hidden emotions in the man, and also the confusion the man has due to his difficult relationship with Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhall). Ledger gives many emotional scenes here the shows Ennis's pain along with his love, all made very realistic by both actors. Every difficult emotional scene Ledger does have right on spot whether its his troublesome talk with his wife, all of his time with Jack, the scene when he finds Jack's coat, or his final scene with his daughter. Ledger is always up to the difficult task of this complicated character.