Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Final Conclusion - Best Actress 1998

About the field: Three totally forgettable works and two brilliant performances. 1998 was not a very balanced year in terms of greatness. The field is worth not more than 3 Meryls, however if we see the individual performances, we can see that actually, this race was very colorful. We can find many characters: a monarch, a poetic young girl, a lonely woman, a cancer-stricken mum and a musician. Not all the performances were great, but I actually liked all the movies except for One True Thing. In the case of this year, the decision was much easier (Gosh, I'm still a bit sour about Carey Mulligan) and probably even obvious for me. Actually, this was the ranking that I imagined at the very beginning. So here it is:

5. Gwyneth Paltrow in Shakespeare in Love
This is a performance of which I did not have a very high opinion and I still don't, but I managed to like or at least appreciate it. In the last 20 minutes she was utterly charming and lovable, probably what she should have been during the whole movie. I'm not saying this is Oscar material but not bad anyway.

4. Emily Watson in Hilary and Jackie
She mostly gives the same performance she did in Breaking the Waves in a more subtle way. From a mediocre actress, this would have been a terrific achievement. However, we must NOT forget that this is Emily Watson, an amazing talent and therefore you can understand why I was so disappointed with this performance.

3. Meryl Streep in One True Thing
This performance was probably not as bad as it might seem to be from my review, yet I was just very-very disappointed as this is probably the weakest performance I've ever seen from Meryl Streep. I really hoped for something heartbreakingly sad, but never reall got what I wanted. Too bad for her.

2. Cate Blanchett in Elizabeth
The perfect example of "in another year".The best thing about this performance is probably Blanchett's magnetic and flaming on-screen presence, which is so strong, that she does not only commands the screen, she becomes a true dictator or if you like it, a queen with absolute power.
Amazing work by an amazing talent.

1. Fernanda Montenegro in Central Station
This performance is so indescribable as it relies mostly on emotions, so you cannot really get it across unfortunately. I thought that would not impress me that muchi but I was truly wrong. She does not only break your heart and makes you feel sorry for the character, but also lets you know the regrets, desires, thoughts of this person. Totally mesmerizing, beautiful performance for the ages.

So I can proudly announce 
that my winner for this year is,
Fernanda Montenegro 
in Central Station

I have already chosen my next year (which I won't begin until next Thursday unfortunately) and I give some clues so that you can find out:
  • a winner with a horrible personal life
  • a nominee who's a member of a legendary comedy couple
  • Britain rules
  • a foreign nominee
  • one of the LEAST talked about races ever (if not the one)
These clues might be misleading, so think twice and don't think about the most obvious one.


Sage Slowdive said...

Way too easy...1963.

dinasztie said...

I can't believe this.:) OK, you're right, I should not have helped so much. Anyway, who's your pick for this year?

Sage Slowdive said...

As soon as you said "winner with horrible personal life" I knew it had to be Pat Neal :]

ThiagoTos said...

Wow! I really like your choice. I'm from Brazil and I can say that Fernanda Montenegro is probably our best actress ever. She has a large and incredible career, also on TV and theater. Her work in Central Station is exactly how you described it. Ahh, congrats for the blog. It's great.

Fritz said...

I am really looking forward to 1963 because, as you said, it's so rarely talked about. I've only seen Patricia so far but I was not as fascinated by her as so many others are.

dinasztie said...

Well thank you ThiagoTos very much for the kind words, you made me very happy.

BTW I'm also very happy when a foreign actress gets recognition. We have (or unofrtunately had) so many brilliant actresses in Hungary who gave such amazing performances but never received a nom. Montenegro is very lucky and deserved every nom and award.

Anonymous said...

Agreed, Montenegro!