Giovanni Ribisi did not receive an Oscar nomination for portraying Technician Fourth Grade, Irwin Wade in Saving Private Ryan.
Ribisi is very good in that limitation as he brings a bit more empathy in Wade opposed to the more cynical quality scene in the reactions of the other members of the squad, allowing him to stand out from the other men well. He's particularly good in the scene as he portrays the very anxious concern in Wade as he asks to know where the wound is on a fellow soldier who is out of reach due to an enemy sniper. Ribisi also does well in the moment where the other men casually look at dog tags to find Ryan, and begin to make a game of it. While they are doing that fellow paratroopers of the dead men are walking by, and I have to say Spielberg kinda overplays the scene a bit much in terms of the music and the faces of each of the men as they walk by. Spielberg hammers it in too much to drive the emotions of the scene, and it is actually Ribisi's quick unassuming portrayal of Wade's reaction, as he tells the other men of their squad to stop their behavior, feels more honest, and actually ends up being much more moving as well.
Although Ribisi thrives in the limitations of his earlier scenes when he does get a chance to shine he makes the most of it. This occurs when the men stay in an abandoned church for the night before they are to go off to the battlefield again. In this scene Wade reflects back on his life at home with his mother as Wade describes that her work prevented them from seeing much of each other, and despite this he would pretend to be asleep even when they did have the chance to talk. It's a terrific moment for Ribisi as he so beautifully creates this past in Wade just through his words and his face as he tells the story. There is a great deal of poignancy in Ribisi's work as he quietly suggests the regrets in Wade as well as, better than any one else in the cast, giving a vision of what Wade's life was like before the war. It's a great scene but it's made all the more remarkable due to his final scene that is not long after this scene.
On the way to finding Ryan, the Captain (Tom Hanks) decides to take down a German fortification on the way (and for some reason decides to send the medic in on the attack), which naturally results in Wade being the only one shot. Although the set up for the scene is somewhat questionable it results in perhaps the most powerful scene past the opening battle scene. Thankfully Spielberg does not heavy hand his direction in the scene instead leaving just Ribisi to perform Wade's final moments. Ribisi makes it a difficult scene to watch in his portrayal of Wade dying as he encompasses the intensity of the physical pain as well as the fear in Wade. In addition though Ribisi also brings the desperate confusion as Wade ineffectually attempts to give himself medical advice, but cannot due to his wound. He is absolutely heartbreaking in basically his last breath as Wade cries out his mother name and Ribisi's sadly once more calls back to that early scene. It is an exceptionally well acted scene by Ribisi which contributes greatly leaving the most lasting impact out of any of the performances in the film.