Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Rae Kasey over at Nitflicky just recently posted an article in which she said Tom Hardy in Bronson delivered her favorite performance of the year so far. This got me to thinking about what my favorite performances have been so far this year. I am a firm believer in the fact that powerful acting can raise a mediocre film to one that is wholly worth seeing. My most recent example would be Carey Mulligan and Peter Sarsgaard in An Education, who both give towering performances, and in my opinion, are what make the film worth seeing.
I also just reviewed A Serious Man and Michael Stuhlbarg delivers what is easily one of the best male performances so far, and I think he definitely deserves an Oscar nomination. Another male performance that is probably not on most people's lists, but is one that has stuck with me for months is Johnny Depp's work in Public Enemies. Similar to my thoughts on An Education, I thought Depp and Marion Cotillard were much better than the script they were given, and still managed to create something powerful out of a mediocre foundation.
Another romantic duo I would add to my list is Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart in Adventureland. A terribly mismarketed film, Greg Mottola's teen romance is a sincere effort straight from the heart that is brought to life with lively, charming, and believable performances from both of the leads. And I cannot end this article without mentioning Christoph Waltz in Inglourious Basterds. A complete lock for an Oscar nomination, Waltz's performance as the infamous "Jew Hunter" is -- along with Heath Ledger's Joker -- one of the best villains this entire decade has seen.
A Few Other Favorties: Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker; Matt Damon, The Informant!; Abbie Cornish, Bright Star
Obviously I have not named all of my favorites, but only a select few that come immediately to mind. I would enjoy to hear from all of you. What are the performances from 2009 that have had the greatest impact on you?