Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Verdict -- Best Supporting Actress 1983

#5. Glenn Close in The Big Chill: While Glenn is in not bad in any way in The Big Chill, she just never really was meant to be anything more than subtle, reserved and absolutely relatable. Sarah Cooper is such a cliched character, it is a testament to Glenn that she managed to make her seem at all real. A perfect performance for the film she was making, a true ensemble performance.

#4. Amy Irving in Yentl: Probably the most interesting and offbeat performance I've reviewed so far, Irving deserves more credit than she receives for making Hadass so enchantingly alluring. She is asked to do not a whole lot beyond looking beautiful and a few lovelorn looks, but takes this role to its full potential. The film has it's own problems that affect Irving in various different ways, but all the while Irving remains nothing but incredibly interesting to watch. 

#3. Alfre Woodard in Cross Creek: It's always great to see a stock character become something amazing in the hands of a talented actress, and that is exactly what Woodard does here with Geechee in Cross Creek. Stuck in an abysmally boring film with a charisma-less lead like Mary Steenburgen, it's nice to see Woodard transcend those limitations and take on the challenge to make the "black servant" stereotype unique and entertaining. By simply being funny, charismatic, and energetic, Woodard steals the who movie away and delivers a delightful performance. 

#2. Cher in Silkwood: A performance of utter devastation that thrives off the fact that she doesn't have much to do, Cher does very little wrong. Her simplicity is her biggest strength, and by keeping the herself subdued and sullen, this background part takes a step firmly into the spotlight. Dolly is a terrible sad human being, and Cher portrays this with an almost uncanny amount of restraint and calculation. She is a true supporting actress in that her journey adds to the incredibly storyline of Silkwood and somehow manages to make the already amazing Meryl Streep even more amazing. A truly astounding achievement from an icon who is often underrated as an actress.

#1. Linda Hunt in The Year of Living Dangerously: There was just no way not to give the win this year to Linda Hunt's gender-bending performance as Billy Kwan, she just could not be denied. She is heartbreaking, mischievous, and completely natural in every which way while playing Billy. The complete journey he takes over the course of the film is brilliantly calculated, and each emotional note hits the exact perfect note. It may not be a performance that I love or call one of my 'favorites', but it is impossible to take away from her technical acting achievement. One of the mst admirable choices made by the Academy.

The Year in Review: This year took way too long to finish, and that wasn't because any of the ladies were particularly bad or tough to write about, but rather because the films they starred in were without a doubt the worst collection of nominated films to date. Even though they were a whole half a point away, you wouldn't believe how much I would have liked to give Cher 5 Stars and the win, but like I said there was no way that Linda wasn't winning this one. I was surprised to see Glenn fall into last place, especially over Amy and Alfre, from who I was expecting very little but that the way these things work. I will probably start the next year mid-week, after a few other posts but I'm glad to be finished with 1983 and start my first round at this new blog.

Shoulda Been a Contender: Sigourney Weaver in The Year of Living Dangerously

All Supporting Actress Nominees Ranking:

  1. Patty Duke in "The Miracle Worker" 
  2. Linda Hunt in "The Year of Living Dangerously"
  3. Anna Paquin in "The Piano"
  4. Cher in "Silkwood"
  5. Emma Thompson in "In the Name of the Father"
  6. Claire Trevor in "Dead End"
  7. May Whitty in "Night Must Fall"
  8. Angela Lansbury in "The Manchurian Candidate"
  9. Alfre Woodard in "Cross Creek"
  10. Anne Shirley in "Stella Dallas"
  11. Amy Irving in "Yentl"
  12. Shirley Knight in "Sweet Bird of Youth"
  13. Rosie Perez in "Fearless"
  14. Glenn Close in "The Big Chill"
  15. Alice Brady in "In Old Chicago"
  16. Mary Badham in "To Kill a Mockingbird"
  17. Holly Hunter in "The Firm"
  18. Thelma Ritter in "Birdman of Alcatraz"
  19. Winona Ryder in "The Age of Innocence"
  20. Andrea Leeds in  "Stage Door"


dinasztie said...

This couldn't have been any other way.

Which movies of great Glenn have you seen?

Derek Bowman said...

Not nearly enough, and only two of her Oscar-nominated ones. Most are inconsequential: 101 & 102 Dalmatians (where she is actually pretty amazing), Mars Attacks!, The Stepford Wives, some of her voice roles.

The biggest one I feel guilty for not falling head over heels for her is Fatal Attraction. I thought she was creepy and good but not nearly as good as some of her fellow nominees that year. I'm saving the rest of her nominated supporting performances & Dangerous Liaisons until they come up on this blog.

mrripley said...

1990 reversal of fortune a missed opportunity for glenn to get nommed a 6th time.