Sunday, 22 September 2019

Alternate Best Actor 2001: Results

5. Heath Ledger in A Knight's Tale - Ledger delivers a winning star turn that balances the tone of the film nicely through his charismatic turn.

Best Scene: Seeing his father.
4. Liu Ye in Lan Yu -Liu Ye delivers a moving portrayal of absolute honesty and vulnerability that works well in contrast to the primary protagonist's life of repression.

Best Scene: Pondering the pain of the relationship.
3. Anton Yelchin in Hearts in Atlantis - Yelchin delivers a terrific performance by just completely being genuine in his portrayal of this kid both in moments of joy and sorrow.

Best Scene: Reacting to the attack.
2. Jim Carrey in The Majestic - Carrey successfully evokes the needed earnestness in his attempt to replicate the great Capra turns of James Stewart, even if doesn't quite reach the heights of those earlier performances, partially due to working with lesser material.

Best Scene: Saying goodbye to his "dad"
1. Jake Gyllenhaal in Donnie Darko - Gyllenhaal gives a convincing portrayal of mental illness, a captivating portrayal of a man's journey into metaphysical madness, but also just a moving portrayal of a young man finding a bit of joy and enlightenment in his journey on Earth we think we know.

Best Scene: Final enlightenment. 
Updated Overall

Next Year: 2001 Supporting


Luke Higham said...

Louis: Ratings and thoughts on the rest of the leading performances.

Your Female Lead And Supporting Top Tens with ratings and other 4+ honourable mentions.

And your wins for 2001.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Thoughts on Spirited Away.

Bryan L. said...

I had a hunch Spirited Away was going to end up at #3.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: I'll ask about Band Of Brothers and Conspiracy on the Supporting lineup. I want it posted as soon as you possibly can.

Bonus: Christensen

Mitchell Murray said...

Louis: Where might I find your thoughts/rating for Halle Berry in "Monster's Ball"?.. that is, if you've written them down yet.

Bryan L. said...

Mitchell: You can find those thoughts here

Anonymous said...

Can you please do Gene Hackman in Heartbreakers? It's been a long time since we've seen a Hackman performance review.

Omar Franini said...

Louis: your ratings and thoughts on Isabelle Huppert and Annie Girardot in The Piano Teacher, the cast of Lantana and Maribel Verdú in Y Tu Mamà Tabién?

Calvin Law said...

So happy with your reappraisal of Washington!

Luke Higham said...

Louis: If you've seen it, Ratings and Thoughts on the cast of The Others, as well as your thoughts on the film as a whole.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: I have to ask, would Gregory Peck and Denzel Washington still be anywhere near an overrated list.

Calvin Law said...

I feel like Washington has definitely gone much further up Louis’ good books now.

Calvin Law said...

Louis: could Diana Lin possibly go up to a 4 for The Farewell? I thought she added a lot to the film beyond her big scenes with her reactions and also felt so...authentic, I don’t know how to describe it.

Anonymous said...

I'm wondering if Jeff Bridges in Lebowski will go up from a 4.5 to a 5 at some point.

GM said...

Anthony Hopkins, Hearts in Atlantis
Paul Bettany, A Knight's Tale
Paddy Considine, Last Resort
Georges Siatidis, No Man's Land
Bill Nighy, Lawless Heart
Raul Cortez, To the Left of the Father

Louis Morgan said...


Choi - 4.5(Terrific work from him once again, and I mean Choi's just an expert when it comes to being a mess of a man. He just does it with such style, yet is wholly just this completely inarticulate fool that he realizes so effectively throughout the film. Choi is someone who is typically compelling to watch just do his thing, and he is that just as the "waste of space" gangster of sorts. Of course Choi is also fantastic in mining an emotional depth of such a man, as the film takes its turn and he is consistently heartbreaking as he portrays a man whose realized just how much he's wasted through his "non-wife".)

LaPaglia - 4.5(Although the film I felt was a bit strange, and directed with a little too little of panache, LaPalgia gets a strong showcase here. This in creating just a moving portrayal of this detective who is dealing with both a growing intensity in his job that is connected to his growing discontent with his home life. LaPaglia is great in portraying really this reflections through the crimes, and is also incredibly powerful in his portrayal of the character's intense regrets later on.)

Santoro - 4(A moving portrayal to be sure. This in portraying with first just enough of this charisma of young man. This without overplaying the intensity in the moments of fulfilling his family vendetta. Santoro is effective in portraying the slowly growing humanity after the murder, and too is very moving as he begins to waste away emotionally later on.)

Recoing - 4(An interesting performance to be sure built upon the different ideas of presenting this front of respectability and the internal desperation that defines the man. His performance works as this sort of constant wearing away of the front as the man's really place of distress slowly destroys the apparent attentive family man who is going to "work" every day.)

Darin - 3.5(Just more than anything a nice charismatic turn from him. He balances well the sort of lighter elements with the more dramatic ones rather effectively to give a solid leading turn.)

Depp - 3.5(Although the film just felt like a less impressive ripoff of better films, I'll say that Depp gives a solid turn here. This as he brings the appropriate charisma to the guy just sort of flying by the thinnest thread every few seconds. He brings the right sort of charisma to the man who falsely thinks he can talk through every difficult situation. He's also good though in portraying the character's late remorse regarding his daughter particularly in his final scene.)

Louis Morgan said...

Magimel - 3.5(Well among the Cannes contenders, I'm not sure why they went with him, Thornton would've been a far more deserving winner out of the crop. Magimel though is good enough as the barely secondary lead. This in portraying just this youthful enthusiasm of a crush and also frustration as he attempts to deal with the rather strange Piano teacher.)

Ellefsen - 3(A kind of enjoyable at times off beat performance he has a nice off-beat energy to him that is somewhat entertaining.)

Spacey - 3(Spacey is extremely miscast as this sort of working class average Joe type. Given that I give wins to Robert Blake, I won't suddenly say Spacey was a bad actor, as even through that miscasting Spacey does have some good moments here in portraying the more emotional desperate moments as the character deals with one extreme heartbreak after another.)

Mitchell - 3(Very theatrical even for the character, and the act gets a little tiresome pretty quickly. He's fine though, but not really sort of the larger than life performance, with the charisma needed to really carry the film properly.)

Pitt - 3(Fine leading turn from him here, in a film that seems to have not a single bit of passion within it. Pitt delivers on his end at least, even as the whole film is such a perfunctory effort.)

De Niro - 3(Fine sort of post-Goodfellas De Niro, in that he's not sleep walking. He's not overly compelling here however either, but he's decent at least.)

Redford - 3(Like Pitt does his part well enough in delivering just some really uninteresting material.)

Norton - 3(He's good when he's being the slick criminal, however he loses points for his I Am Sam routine. Yes here it is suppose to be a fake, but shouldn't a fake be believable. Well Norton at least isn't doing it during his entire performance but it's not his finest hour.)

Redford - 2(Boring performance from him here in a really boring film. I wish the film had been about its original concept, as the film is such dull film as is in hitting every single expected note possible.)


1. Naomi Watts - Mulholland Drive
2. Sissy Spacek - In The Bedroom
3. Nicole Kidman - The Others - 5
4. Isabelle Huppert - The Piano Teacher - 4.5
5. Renee Zellweger - Bridget Jones's Diary - 4.5
6. Laura Elena Harring - Mulholland Drive
7. Cate Blanchett - Bandits
8. Thora Birch - Ghost World
9. Judi Dench - Iris
10. Nicole Kidman - Moulin Rouge

Louis Morgan said...


1. Gwyneth Paltrow - The Royal Tenebaums
2. Hope Davis - Hearts in Atlantis
3. Ronit Elkabetz - Late Marriage
4. Kerry Armstrong - Lantana
5. Kelly Macdonald - Gosford Park
6. Marisa Tomei - In the Bedroom
7. Alakina Mann - The Others
8. Mika Boorem - Hearts in Atlantis
9. Maggie Smith - Gosford Park
10. Frances O'Connor - A.I. Artificial Intelligence

Spirited Away fulfilled the much hyped reputation given to it before I watched the film. As always the animation is absolutely gorgeous amplified as well by the beautiful score. Just so much of the imagery is so inventive and potent on all its own, the story almost wouldn't matter. What takes the film further though is that the story does, and manages to create a compelling plot as sort of the through line to take us through the spirit world in deeply emotional way. It achieves that through so much creativity and character, as even though most momentary appearance of someone or something is something special. It's just really a magical experience, and it's sufficient to say that I loved it.


Huppert - (I'll admit the film left me more than a little cold, even in the context and expectation of the filmmaker at its helm. This left the particularly gruesome scene of sexual abnormality as horrible for the sake of it, as I felt the protagonist was far too distant despite the rather detailed imagery of the character we are granted. Huppert though of course is great at doing cold as ice and doing so with a real vindictiveness. Huppert excels in this to be sure and is great in portraying the moments of derangement. I wish there was more detail within, not spelling it out, but just more interesting situations rather than just another scene of her being disgusting or violent somewhere, which frankly wasted Huppert in those moments. My favorite moments were easily those with her mother, which allowed a bit more a sense to the character, and I felt Huppert was terrific in these moments. These in creating the sense of frustration in this constant push and pull of hate within love, and this overall intensity. Unfortunately to me these scenes were only the potential of a more interesting film, that I did not find in the finished product.)

Louis Morgan said...

Girardot - 3.5(Again the mother/daughter scenes were the best to me, and Girardot is a terrific scene partner to have for Huppert. She gives as good as she gets so to speak with the strange derangement. She's effective in being more overt and obvious within this manner. This as creating the sense of the behavior that the mother helped to cultivate in her daughter, even if she's less of an extreme. Unfortunately I felt she was a touch underused and would've preferred far more with her.)

Rush - 4(Rush gives a strong particularly subdued performance for him. I like how he completely avoids his showboating here to give just a moving portrayal of both the attachment and detachment of a husband who is unsure of how to exist with his wife due to their mutual trauma.)

Hershey - 2.5(Found her performance a touch too artificial and calculated here. She's not terrible but she doesn't leave the impression she needs to in her brief screentime.)

Armstrong - 4.5(A fantastic performance in offering the most honest soul in the film and the most abused in a way. Her performance is fantastic in finding such genuine quality within every interaction with her husband, from the moments of trying to be so directly in love with him, to the moments of desperation as their love wilts, and her own struggling attempts to try to betray him as she did to him. Armstrong consistently keeps such a power to her own journey by making every betrayal happen to such an honest and well realized person.)

Well with Washington I never thought of him as a bad actor, just I didn't held him in "as" high of esteem. Still one can probably easily eliminate him off the list, as he always consistently delivers.

Peck remains for me for so much of his early work, though he earns his praises for his later work.



Anonymous said...

Anyone seeing the Emmys? What do you think of Arquette beating Clarkson and Watson?