My current Top 5

My current Top 5


Best Actress 1998 - The resolution!

After having watched and reviewed all five nominated performances, it's time to pick the winner!

Meryl Streep gives a memorable and moving performance that unfortunately doesn’t give her more chances to create her character apart from the guidelines of the average script as she never gets to show how her illness and the thought of death really affect her. One True Thing spends more time letting people talk about Kate than letting Kate talk for herself but Meryl Streep’s qualities as an actress surely add to the overall impact of the story.

Seldom has an actress ever been so radiant and full of light as Gwyneth Paltrow in Shakespeare in Love. It’s a typical star performance that rests on the actress’s own personality but she is smart enough to see the part’s depth and possibilities and how her character is the beginning and the end of the movie. In creating a character as romantic and charming as the movie she stars in, Gwyneth Paltrow makes an unforgettable impression and creates a wonderfully passionate heroine.

In the part of Jacqueline, Emily Watson never tries to get the audience’s sympathy. Instead, she more than once shows the unlikable, ugly, manipulative and temperamental sides of her character and gives a difficult and hard-to-understand performance that seems to pose more questions than give answers but it’s a fascinating and unique characterization that dominates and controls the movie.

2. Fernanda Montenegro in Central do Brasil

Fernanda Montenegro has a very distinctive, unique face that is perfectly able to communicate anger, frustration and bitterness without becoming too appalling and maybe distance the character from the viewer. Instead, she is able to combine almost grandmother-like qualities with a strong and unfriendly exterior. In playing Dora, Fernanda Montenegro never tries to manipulate the audience but makes her character’s actions and intentions constantly believable and is always in control of what she wants Dora to communicate to the audience without playing ‘for the audience’.      

In the showy and thankful part of Queen Elizabeth I, Cate Blanchett is always a very dominant and controlling power, a woman who is constantly aware of her acts and deeds, a woman who is both strong and weak and learns about the dangers, schemes and possibilities of her life as a Queen. All this is done in a performance that never seems forced but is constantly extremly natural and believable as it combines the typical domineering gestures and movements one would expect of a Queen with various modern and refreshing acting choices. A truly royal performance!


Anonymous said...

Cate Blanchett was at her best here.

Too bad everything went haywire in The Golden Age.

joe burns said...

I thought Paltrow would be your second choice, but I guess not. Would you say this was a strong year?

joe burns said...

Is 2007 possible for you? It would be interesting to see what you think of Blanchett in Elizabeth The Golden Age. I know that you've seen Christie and Marion, but I could give you links to Elizabeth The Golden Age, Juno, and The Savages, if they're not avaliable.

Louis Morgan said...

Great reviews Fritz.
It is always interesting when someone is nominated for playing the same character twice, although almost everyone is far better the first time except Peter O'Toole who was great both times as Henry II.

joe burns said...

I checked and I can for sure give you links to Blanchett, Linney, and Page's films.

Fritz said...

@Sage: This is surely a career-high for her!

@Louis: Thanks! I already have my opnion on Cate's second try...

@Joe: I will do 2007 soon in the future! I have seen Marion, Julie and Cate and Laura and Ellen are no problem. But the next year is already planned!

Fritz said...

Oh, and I would say it's a very good year. Maybe not really strong but apart from Meryl Streep, everyone of them would have been a good winner.

Anonymous said...

I've only seen Blanchett's performance but I can say it is hard to beat, she was amazing and she went through so many emotions as her character evolved, she did a brilliant transition. Great reviews!