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March 29, 2020 at 2:06 pm #1203399734
Even though she had the least screen time of the three central characters, to me Nicole Kidman was the lead as she opened and closed the film and Woolf’s writing and life literally determines or greatly affects the characters in the movie. I’ve heard many people say that Moore should have been nominated as lead and Kidman in supporting or saying all three should have been nominated as leads.
I also think Kidman gave the best performance and agree with her winning Best Actress and after that the best performance was by Moore, and then Collette. I know Collette was in the movie for literally 8 mins but she was so simple yet effective.March 29, 2020 at 2:22 pm #1203399747
I think you may have accidentally made two topics but I’ll answer here. Lead vs. supporting is complicated because sometimes there are logical signifiers like screentime and sometimes it’s just a gut thing. In this case, even though she had the least screen time I agree Kidman was the primary lead. She still felt present in the other two timelines, and her character/performance informs how you see the other two, and it doesn’t go the other way. The story is essentially “about” Virginia Woolf and two women who she influenced. Streep and Moore it could be argued “support” Woolf’s story in that they exist only in relation to it.
And I also think Kidman gave the best performance out of the bunch, although all were great. That train station scene that everyone calls attention to really is incredible. It’s almost like her eyes bottom out and she completely becomes the darkness that was inside Woolf, speaking with a calm desperation that seems completely contradictory yet entirely riveting. I’m glad she won the oscar for it and I’m glad it was in lead.March 29, 2020 at 6:45 pm #1203400289
I think all three of them were leads. Their impact was pretty similar story wise even if the screen time was different.
Kidman was pretty riveting and Streep had her moments too. Moore doesn’t remain in my memory as much since she has played so many similar roles.March 29, 2020 at 6:59 pm #1203400309
All 3 were leads. Moore was category fraud in supporting. Ranking the 3 main performances:
Moore was robbed of an Oscar that year. She was amazing in Far From Heaven and this.
As amazing Kidman is, the only time I might given her the win was for Moulin Rouge the year before.March 29, 2020 at 8:55 pm #1203400425
They’re all leads but I don’t mind the category placements. I adore Kidman’s performance in this – the train station scene alone is some of my favorite acting (and writing) ever. Moore was also terrific and would have made a worthy winner. Streep is good, but not on the same level as the other ladies.March 30, 2020 at 6:11 am #1203400814
I adore “The Hours” so much. It was definitely one of the best films of the decade. I know it was never going to win Best Picture because that was between “Chicago” and “The Pianist,” but it would have been a very worthy, excellent winner. All three are equal co-leads, although I also agree that Julianne Moore had the best performance, Nicole second best, and Streep last.March 30, 2020 at 12:10 pm #1203401535
Agree they are all leads. To me it was always Julianne Moore who stood out the most but everyone is great in it, even the players with less screentime like Miranda Richardson.March 30, 2020 at 1:10 pm #1203401645
This is coming from someone who hasn’t seen the film since 2003 so I could very well change my mind if I saw the film again. I remember thinking that Streep and Moore were more of the true leads while Kidman was borderline supporting.
I think Moore left the biggest impression on me in full but Kidman had the famous train station scene which was one of the best Oscar scenes an actress has gotten in recent years.
I also loved the smaller performances of Richardson and Collette.
“The art of making art is putting it together...”March 30, 2020 at 2:03 pm #1203401693
I think they all were leads. I know during The Favourite last year there were a lot of comparisons, but they really do have a lot of similarities. Colman and Kidman both did not have the most screen time, but as the central character in the movies they both felt the most “lead.”
Kidman’s scene at the train station remains in my head probably the most from the movie, as well as Moore’s scene in the bathroom with her husband in the room next door. While I think Meryl should have been nominated (I know she was for Adaptation), I think Moore and Kidman were better.March 31, 2020 at 9:25 am #1203402748
I agree with the original post and the one following. The story revolved around Woolf, and Kidman transcended in her scenes. She became her malady.
Take a moment to picture her acting as Woolf. Now switch and think about her as Celeste. The RANGE!March 31, 2020 at 11:12 am #1203402983
Nicole Kidman was impresive in this also was Julianne Moore and id put Toni Collete third she was amzing too in that little sceneMarch 31, 2020 at 11:22 am #1203403010
Nicole Kidman was impresive in this also was Julianne Moore and id put Toni Collete third she was amzing too in that little scene
Colette was amazing! If the movie wasn’t already stacked with powerhouse performances with more screentime I would say she deserves a nomination for her few minutes of screentime.March 31, 2020 at 11:38 am #1203403088
Moore was the biggest stand out for me, her agony just carried thru the movie.
Meryl had my favorite moment in the climax scene with ed harris. Both should be nom’d for that.
Nicole was great and I understand her win, but for some reason didnt snap me that hard.
They’re all leads. But it’s understandable Nicole was the only one since shes the seed for the other stories even if not so tied as Moore and Meryl wereApril 2, 2020 at 11:57 am #1203406659
All were leads. I don’t like Julianne Moore’s performance. I adore her in Far From Heaven, but she was too calculated and mannered here.April 2, 2020 at 2:14 pm #1203406930
I think about “The Hours” quite a lot. Performance given by Ed Harris is among the most divisive ever nominated. There are people who loathe it and find it terrible while others put it at the top of their favorite lists.
Given the structure of the film all main performances are leads and there’s nothing to suggest that Laura Brown is supporting while Virginia and Clarissa are leading with – spoilers – Laura being the only one to show in 2 stories out of 3.
Julianne Moore had had a fantastic year with two great, very different characters – her stellar turn in “Far From Heaven” found her as the one who gets her heart broken and has to rebuild her life while in “The Hours” she’s the one who is conflicted about her own life and decides to change it. The trouble is – both of those characters were housewives from 1950s. I can’t help but feel that it diminished the impact Moore would have with only one role. There’s also no escaping the fact that she was nowhere in contention to actually win for “The Hours” with Streep being the main alternative for Catherine Zeta-Jones. Maybe others felt like I feel that this category fraud actually killed any chances her co-star Toni Collette had for her scene-stealing turn? Still, great year for Moore.
I don’t know whether Meryl Streep has made it on purpose but after two consecutive Best Actress nominations in late 1990s that – it’s fair to say – didn’t muster much enthusiasm from general public, she has disappeared and after 3 years earned herself a little comeback with two very different but still fantastic projects that are among her best films with other factors going for it (other than her performance). “Adaptation.” was a change of pace for her – like it usually is in the universe of Charlie Kaufman – and she gave a very lived-in, relaxed performance that would probably win her third Oscar if “Chicago” hadn’t been in contention. At the same time internal competition and unusually strong year for Best Actress made her miss in the main category for “The Hours” despite the fact that her Clarissa was also another memorable role (and quite underrated, if this thread is to be believed). Kidman, Moore and Zellweger were always in while Salma Hayek and Diane Lane peaked in time for their sole Oscar nods at the expense of Streep. As she was still in the running for “Adaptation.” I guess the outrage over that snub didn’t happen.
And then there was Nicole Kidman. It’s shocking to learn that she’s in roughly… 21% of the picture. That’s gotta be among the shortest performances to win in Best Actress but it’s true that Virginia looms over two other storylines much like Anthony Hopkins is always on our mind during “The Silence of the Lambs” even when he’s not on-screen. Just like Streep, Kidman had impressed with her range in 2 years – she was top-notch as withdrawn writer in a serious drama, scared (and scary) mother of two in a gothic horror and as sensational performer on a colorful musical. Given the genres it’s no wonder that she won for that particular performance and it’s a deserving win.
I’d say it’s Kidman, Streep and Moore but all are very powerful in this movie. It’s odd to think that Kidman’s Oscar record is the least impressive given the fact that she probably has the best acting resume in terms of co-workers and artistic risks taken among the three.
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