Best Actress 2006

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  • NoirJo
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    #539594

    1. Kate Winslet in “Little Children”
    2. Meryl Streep in “The Devil Wears Prada”
    3. Judi Dench in “Notes on a Scandal”
    4. Penelope Cruz in “Volver”
    5. Helen Mirren in “The Queen”

    Mirren gives a fine performance in “The Queen”, but she was the weakest nominee, in my opinion. It’s a good performance, the mannerisms and the overall technical approach were fantastic, and she handled the material with much subtlety, but it was a rather superficial performance. It was subtle work, but it wasn’t deep. I admire her achievement, but she wasn’t great or anything like that.

    Cruz is slightly behind Dench. Cruz’s performance surprised me because I didn’t expect her to give such a good performance. So, yeah, she was the revelation of the bunch. Almodovar’s direction helped her significantly, I guess. Here, Cruz creates a multilayered, earthy, passionate and colorful character, and we feel for her. She’s the film’s heart and soul (the singing scene is the most important moment for both the film’s quality and Cruz’s performance) and she more than delivers. It’s lovely work, and it’s become an iconic film performance, due to the natural, grounded and humane persona she creates onscreen. 

    Dench gives the best performance of her career in ‘Notes on a Scandal’ and this is coming from someone who doesn’t love her acting. She takes a typical villainous character and brings so much substance to it, humanizing Barbara and eventually creating a very sad and lonely person. These dimensions are handled brilliantly and her performance delivers. She is the film. And I loved those moments of bitchy lines and bitter looks. Dench nailed it. 

    Streep is my runner-up. She was absolutely phenomenal. I was biased when I was watching ‘Prada’ because I expected a predictable romcom. But I was definitely surprised. First of all, it was a well-directed, well-shot and well-acted (Streep, Tucci, Blunt, Hathaway) comedy that whenever I rewatch it, I feel so relaxed and cool. But the main reason why this film succeeds, despite its genre and the story’s cliches etc., is Meryl Streep’s fantastic achievement here. Yesterday, I paused and only watched the scenes where Streep is acting. Every single detail of her character was there. The mannerisms, the looks, the body language, the costumes, the way she was talking. It was an excellent lived-in performance and I’m glad Miranda Priestley has become such an iconic film character. Meryl goes deeper, though, especially in the last scenes of the film. We see Miranda’s sadness, her betrayal and her final monologue in the limo and that’s when Streep achieves brilliance.

    Winslet, though, is undoubtedly my winner. Should have easily won the Oscar for this performance. Winslet had the toughest character to play and created such an intriguing, cryptic and multidimensional character that I was shocked by the amount of detail and subtlety Kate brought to this. In fact, each facial expression is so complex that we can feel different emotions at the same time. Her Sarah is a confused housewife dying from ennui. The scene where she orders the swimsuit, the scenes in the pool, the crying scene in the car, the decision scene in the baseball stadium and her nervous breakdown in the final scene were all brilliant acting moments, filled with nuances and complex depth. It’s an extraordinarily difficult performance, and Kate Winslet becomes Sarah and we get through the changes of her life, her risks, her worries, her confusion, her desires. All the conflicts play out on Winslet’s face and she does it with ease and elegance, proving what a great actress she really is. 

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    Madson Melo
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    #539595

    Helen freakin’ Mirren, without even blink!

    I’m astonished with the love that Dench received here. I mean, she was good, very very good, but the character was – easily – the less nuanced and in a year like that, she was the undoubtedly last spot for me.

    Mirren had everything, it was a subtle performance in every single way that you can imagine. She had range, a character created with guts and every look that Mirren gave was absolutely brillant. Technique and emotional impact was never used in that way since then.

    Cruz is my second choice, a role in a Almodovar movie is always good, but she built that woman with such strong path that I couldn’t get tired of her. Cruz was on fire during the whole movie.

    Winslet come down in third. She had a humanized character that opens Winslet as an actor with not only the technique, but with also the emotional range and impact that I needed to confirm that she was the greatest actress of the 00’s.

    My problem with Streep was the place to put her, her characterization was marvelous, but she was supporting for me.

    Maggie Gyllenhaal in Sherrybaby was amazing and I would be happy to see her receiving her nomination.

    But, it was Cate Blanchett in Little Fish that gave an OUTSTANDING performance that was completely overlooked because it was a small movie, released very early (February) and she already had NOTES ON A SCANDAL in the end of the year. Fortunately, Australia gave her the recognition that she deserved.

    My ballot:

    1. Helen Mirren, THE QUEEN
    2. Penélope Cruz, VOLVER
    3. Kate Winslet, LITTLE CHILDREN
    4. Cate Blanchett, LITTLE FISH
    5. Maggie Gyllenhaal, SHERRYBABY

    Streep goes to supporting, if she has to be in lead, replace her with Gyllenhaal.

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    BamaEd75
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    #539596

    I did love Cate in Little Fish, she was amazing.

    But I went with Mirren for the reasons Madison perfectly listed here. I haven’t seen Volver so I can’t judge Cruz. Therefore my top 4 are

    1. Mirren
    2. Dench
    3. Streep
    4. Winslet

    All 4 were very good though.

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    babypook
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    #539597

    @madsonmelo:
    I thought everyone was great in Little Fish, including Hugo Weaving, who I feel is outstanding.

    BamaEd75: I hope you get a chance to see Volver. It’s an engaging charmer and Cruz is absolutely worthy here. I loved her perf. Recommended.

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    Anthony
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    #539598

    I am surprised by the Kate Winslet love here.

    I will cast my vote for Helen Mirren, but Judi Dench is literally nipping right at her heels. 

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    babypook
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    #539599

    ^
    That scene with Kate and her reading group is what does it for me. Once in a while, I’ll catch Kate “acting”, but I didnt here. I’d say the cast does great work with special kudos to Jackie Earle Haley, who I was so happy in seeing his comeback. Even Patrick Wilson is good imo. And I abolutely loved Phyllis Somerville. 
     I had Kate around third, after Mirren and Cruz.

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    Laactingnyc
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    #539600

    Judi Dench

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    Gabriel
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    #539601

    I do not understand why people think that Streep should not have been nominated in Lead.

    Maybe because Anne Hathaway was the main character? lol.

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    Mrs. Doolittle
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    #539602

    I am surprised by the Kate Winslet love here.

    I will cast my vote for Helen Mirren, but Judi Dench is literally nipping right at her heels. 

    So am I. Winslet was easily the weakest in this category.

    Judi Dench and Mirren were easily the best 🙂   

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    babypook
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    #539603

    Helen freakin’ Mirren, without even blink!

    I’m astonished with the love that Dench received here. I mean, she was good, very very good, but the character was – easily – the less nuanced and in a year like that, she was the undoubtedly last spot for me.

    Mirren had everything, it was a subtle performance in every single way that you can imagine. She had range, a character created with guts and every look that Mirren gave was absolutely brillant. Technique and emotional impact was never used in that way since then.

    Cruz is my second choice, a role in a Almodovar movie is always good, but she built that woman with such strong path that I couldn’t get tired of her. Cruz was on fire during the whole movie.

    Winslet come down in third. She had a humanized character that opens Winslet as an actor with not only the technique, but with also the emotional range and impact that I needed to confirm that she was the greatest actress of the 00’s.

    My problem with Streep was the place to put her, her characterization was marvelous, but she was supporting for me.

    Maggie Gyllenhaal in Sherrybaby was amazing and I would be happy to see her receiving her nomination.

    But, it was Cate Blanchett in Little Fish that gave an OUTSTANDING performance that was completely overlooked because it was a small movie, released very early (February) and she already had NOTES ON A SCANDAL in the end of the year. Fortunately, Australia gave her the recognition that she deserved.

    My ballot:

    1. Helen Mirren, THE QUEEN
    2. Penélope Cruz, VOLVER
    3. Kate Winslet, LITTLE CHILDREN
    4. Cate Blanchett, LITTLE FISH
    5. Maggie Gyllenhaal, SHERRYBABY

    Streep goes to supporting, if she has to be in lead, replace her with Gyllenhaal.

    “I’m astonished with the love that Dench received here. I mean, she was good, very very good, but the character was – easily – the less nuanced and in a year like that, she was the undoubtedly last spot for me.”

    I thought I was the only one who feels this way, although my assessment of her perf isnt quite as harsh.
    So, she glammed down, didnt wear any makeup that I could see, glowered a lot, and double-choked the more animated character in this duo? Dench is good, even very good. But Mirren deserved her win hands down.

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    MiMicMick
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    #539604

    1. Judi Dench (Notes on a Scandal)
    2. Helen Mirren (The Queen)
    3. Meryl Streep (The Devil Wears Prada)
    4. Penelope Cruz (Volver)
    5. Kate Winslet (Little Children)

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    MiggyV
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    #539605

    It shouldve been Meryl Streep…. She embodied Miranda Priestly in a very Effortless way

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    MiggyV
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    #539606

    It shouldve been Meryl Streep…. She embodied Miranda Priestly in a very Effortless way

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    MiggyV
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    #539607

    It shouldve been Meryl Streep…. She embodied Miranda Priestly in a very Effortless way

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    Laactingnyc
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    #539608

    Meryl Streep wasn’t exactly Lead in that film though. Anne Hathaway was. I am a Streep fan but she was supporting in that film.

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