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The Most Underrated Film Performances in film history

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  • Marcus Snowden (The Artist Formerly Known as msnowden1)
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    #94232

    There have been many great performances in film history, but some of them have never been noticed by some moviegoers because they didn’t recieve any awards attention or because they were focused on the other performances. What do you guys think are some of the most underrated performances in film history? Let me start things off:

    1. Brad Davis, Midnight Express
    2. James Dean, Rebel Without a Cause
    3. Marlon Brando, Apocalypse Now
    4. Ed Harris, A History of Violence
    5. Daniel Day-Lewis, The Unbearable Lightness of Being
    6. John Cazale, The Godfather Part II
    7. Martin Sheen, Badlands
    8. Ben Kingsley, Schindler’s List
    9. Sam Rockwell, Moon/Seven Psychopaths
    10. Paul Dano, There Will Be Blood
    11. Mark Wahlberg, Boogie Nights
    12. Gary Oldman, The Dark Knight
    13. Bruno Ganz, Downfall
    14. Colin Farrell, In Bruges
    15. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Departed
    16. Albert Brooks, Drive
    17. Ray Winstone, Nil by Mouth
    18. Harvey Keitel, Bad Lieutenant
    19. Forest Whitaker, Bird
    20. Orson Welles, The Third Man 

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    nkb325
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    #94234

    1. Bjork, Dancer in the Dark
    2. Connie Nielson, Gladiator
    3. Dwight Henry, Beasts of the Southern Wild
    4. Marlene Dietrich, Witness for the Prosecution
    5. Melanie Laurent, Inglorious Basterds
    6. Hilary Swank, Conviction
    7. Emma Stone, The Help
    8. Bryan Cranston, Argo
    9. Cameron Diaz, Being John Malkovich
    10. Margaret Hamilton, Wizard of Oz

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    Marcus Snowden (The Artist Formerly Known as msnowden1)
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    #94235

    Same here on Hilary Swank. I actually though that she was going to get an Oscar nomination for Conviction.

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    AroundU
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    #94236

    Anne Hathaway – Brokeback Mountain. In such a huge movie with very powerful performances it is easy to understand why she was overlooked and got virtually nothing. But i thought she was great and would of given her a supporting nomination.

    Ryan Gosling – Blue Valentine 
    Shailene Woodley – Best thing about The Decendants
    David Kross – The Reader

    I guess these arn’t huge overlooks, but they were the first that came to mind. 

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    Leo Grant Logan
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    #94237

    Linda Fiorentino – The Last Seduction
    Martin Sheen – Apocalypse Now
    Robert Redford – All the President’s Men
    Paul Newman – The Sting
    Jane Horrocks – Little Voice
    Pam Grier – Jackie Brown
    Ray Liotta – Goodfellas
    Kevin Costner – JFK
    Rebecca De Mornay – Runaway Train
    Andie MacDowell – Sex, Lies and Videotape 

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    Scottferguson
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    #94238

    Dustin Hoffman and Warren Beatty in Ishtar – for me it is Hoffman’s best performance, and ranks near the top of Beatty’s.

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    Miss Frost
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    #94239

    Kathy Bates in Dolores Claiborne; Bates best performance to date.

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    Gabriel
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    #94240

    Laura Dern – Citizen Ruth.

    Her performance was just terrific, and Dern can act circles around most, if not all of the recent Best Actress winners. I know it was Alexander Payne’s first film before he really established himself, but I can’t believe the film didn’t gain any awards season traction. If it came out now, now that people know who Payne is, there’s no doubt it would have been a force to be reckoned with.

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    Alijah Purdy
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    #94241

    Kimberly Elise – For Colored Girls

    She should have won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. One of the biggest snubs in that categories history, IMO. She gave the best performance in that movie, but was overlooked because of the quality of the movie. She was much better than the winner for Best Supporting Actress that year, Melissa Leo in The Fighter. That scene of her in the street after her kids have died, trying to clean up that blood, still takes my breath away to this day.

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    Halo_Insider
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    #94242

    It’s been a long time since I’ve seen the film, so there’s a good chance that my position could change upon watching it again, but I was surprised that Jo Van Fleet got the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for East of Eden. If anyone deserved a prize for that film, I figured that it would be Julie Harris.

    Steve Buscemi, one of my favorite character actors, has really tended to get the shaft from the Academy. Personally, I thought he should have won for Fargo, though a nomination for Ghost’s World was also just as deserving. Love him in Reservoir Dogs, too (and so glad that he actually won an Independent Spirit Award for it).

    Some others not mentioned already (how underrated or not these are may vary by quite a bit, I grant you):
    Lee J. Cobb, 12 Angry Men 
    Willem Dafoe, The English Patient 
    Jeff Daniels, Terms of Endearment and The Purple Rose of Cairo (along with several more, I’m sure)
    Embeth Davidtz, Schindler’s List (given the reverence for this film, I’m actually kind of surprised more people don’t talk about her) 
    Aaron Eckhart, Thank You for Smoking (actually really enjoyed him in The Dark Knight as well) 
    John Goodman, Barton Fink
    James Earl Jones, Field of Dreams  
    Jack Lemmon, Glengarry Glen Ross
    Fred MacMurray, Double Indemnity AND The Apartment 
    Robert Mitchum, The Night of the Hunter  
    Nick Nolte, The Thin Red Line 
    Brad Pitt for Burn After Reading and The Tree of Life 
    Stellan Skarsgaard, Good Will Hunting (not that I would have called for him to get in. Just wanted to give him a shout-out because I feel like he was just as enjoyable to watch as the rest of the Oscar-nominated cast members.)
    Katharine Ross, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid 
    Michael Stuhlbarg, A Serious Man 
    Donald Sutherland, Ordinary People  
     

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    Laactingnyc
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    #94243

    Kimberly Elise – For Colored Girls

    She should have won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. One of the biggest snubs in that categories history, IMO. She gave the best performance in that movie, but was overlooked because of the quality of the movie. She was much better than the winner for Best Supporting Actress that year, Melissa Leo in The Fighter. That scene of her in the street after her kids have died, trying to clean up that blood, still takes my breath away to this day.

    Her performance was great in that movie. Too bad the movie itself sucked.

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    Laactingnyc
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    #94244

    Bjork – Dancer in the Dark

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    Anonymous
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    #94245

    Bjork is amazing. I agree to the guy that said Steve Buscemi- Oscar worthy in Fargo and Ghost World. Actually, I agree with everything you guys have mentioned.

    Robert DeNiro- King of Comedy
    Michael Fassbender- Hunger
    Jeff Daniels- Squid and the Whale
    Ben Stiller- Greenberg
    Adam Sandler- Funny People
      
       
        

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    Riley
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    #94246

    16. Albert Brooks, Drive

    Along with a bunch more nominations, he was awarded Best Supporting Actor by the:

    1. African-American Film Critics Association
    2. Austin Film Critics Association
    3. Boston Society of Film Critics
    4. Chicago Film Critics Association
    5. Florida Film Critics
    6. Golden Satellite Awards
    7. Houston Film Critics Society
    8. Las Vegas Film Critics
    9. National Society of Film Critics
    10. New York Film Critics Circle
    11. New York Film Critics Online
    12. Oklahoma Film Critics Circle
    13. Phoenix Film Critics Society
    14. San Francisco Film Critics
    15. St. Louis Gateway Film Critics Association
    16. Utah Film Critics Association
    17. Village Voice Film Poll
    18. Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association

    He is the much closer to being the most over-rated performance in film history.

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    Anthony
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    #94247

    To point out some that were already mentioned, I definitely agree about Aaron Eckhart in The Dark Knight and especially in Thank You For Smoking, a great film that also deserved much more attention. I just rewatched it this past Sunday and forgot how great the film was and how great of a job he did with what was really a unique and somewhat bizarre role.

    Then there is Donald Sutherland in Ordinary People….who was robbed of a nomination.

    I know it has been brought up in the past by me and a few others. I am not saying I would have necessarily given her awards for it but I found JoBeth Williams to be absolutely wonderful in Poltergeist. She had so many great moments and she was always an underrated actress to begin with.

    Mia Farrow never got any major notice for he work in Woody Allen movies. She was lovely in The Purple Rose of Cairo (which Jeff Daniels was also underrated in), the little-seen September, and even her brief vignettes in Radio Days.

    Robert Mitchum should have WON for The Night of the Hunter.      

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