2011 Outstanding Female Roles

About a year ago I listed 23 possible great female roles that had enough buzz to obtain an Oscar nomination and dared to make my very-early prediction (I had 4 right and 1 wrong!) so it’s time for me to review how kind or not 2011 was with female roles and play the guessing game for the Best Actress category.

Haven’t seen many of the movies that could have great performances by female actors but from the ones I have seen, I’m sure that Viola Davis is going to get a nod thanks to her outstanding performance in The Help. Even when European film industry is honoring Melancholia, I honestly doubt that American film industry will honor anything related to the film so doubt that Kirsten Dunst or Charlotte Gainsbourg could get a nod; I didn’t like Dunst performance or segment but I did enjoy a lot more Gainsbourg performance and segment but doubt that her great performance will be recognized as such in America.

From movies that haven’t seen, again this year Tilda Swinton pops-up with her role in We Need to Talk About Kevin –hope she gets it this year but 2011 is a year where there are other roles that now are being labeled “sure Oscar nod” like Michelle Williams in My Week With Marilyn, Glenn Close in Albert Nobbs, and Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady.

With performances that have gathered industry buzz we have Jodie Foster and Kate Winslet in Carnage but American film industry is not an easy to forgive industry and doubt will honor anything related to Roman Polanski. Charlize Theron looks absolutely FANTASTIC in the upcoming Snow White movie but is her role in Young Adult (directed by Jason Reitman and with a Diablo Cody script) what could bring her an Oscar nomination in a role that has been described as “Theron finally gets to kill it and be beautiful”, which obviously refers to her Oscar winning performance in Monster.

In the lesser known movies that could get nods for their lead actress we have Felicity Jones in Like Crazy (saw movie is okay, she has a very good performance), Rachel Weisz in The Whistleblower (great performance in a so-so movie that could have been better with a different script), Elizabeth Olsen in Martha Marcy May Marlene –which I believe she could be the “surprise” nod (have to watch movie first), Abbie Cornish in W.E. (yep, Madonna’s film), one of my favorite young actress Carey Mulligan in Shame, that not sure if qualifies for lead or supporting and the same goes to Keira Knightley in A Dangerous Method.

Another young actress that is gathering too-much buzz is Rooney Mara in THAT film (yes, the film/character that BELONGS TO Noomi Rapace!!!) oh gosh, I’m really torn with this as I know will watch Hollywood remake but I’m hoping is awful!!! (lol!) Anyway the industry keeps mentioning Mara as a possible contender, even when they haven’t seen but trailers from film, odd isn’t?

Maybe I should include Ellen Barkin in Another Happy Day and wonder if Michelle Yeoh in The Lady plus Olivia Colman in Tyrannosaur can also be consider as contenders.

Nevertheless I have the feeling that there were less outstanding performances in 2011 than in 2010 and if we count the mentions we notice that this year there are 20 versus 23 last year so is about the same, but still have the perception that 2011 was not that good for female roles. Sigh.

If I have to guess the five nominees considering what I have seen plus the buzz index, they will look as follows.

Viola Davis in The Help
Meryl Streep in The Iron Lady
Glenn Close in Albert Nobbs
Michelle Williams in My Week With Marilyn
Elizabeth Olsen in Martha Marcy May Marlene

I’m almost certain that Davis will be nominated and won’t be surprised at all if she’s the second African-American women to win an Oscar; she truly deserves it as she did an excellent performance in a complex, layered film. Won’t be surprised IF Streep is not nominated as critics are “destroying” film but claim that Streep saves movie.

Close has five nominations and no wins, this could be her sixth but not sure that could be translated into a win, still Academy members LOVE when good looking actresses do “not-good-looking” characters (remember Theron and Kidman?) so maybe there is a chance. Williams has two nominations and I’m almost certain that this will be her third (but have to see movie, which of course I’m “dying” to watch), this brilliant young actress will get her Oscar soon if she continues to choose her roles SO goodly as she has been doing. The last spot is the one that I’m always unsure and could go to Olsen, as well as Theron, any of the other women mentioned or a new “surprise” role that could appear before the award deadline.

If you ask about the Best Actor I believe that Brad, Leonardo, and George could make the list, BUT I hope that the winner will NOT be an American actor, has to be a European as last year, the two contenders are British Michael Fassbender in Shame and French Jean Dujardin in The Artist.


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