Thursday, January 28, 2016

The 2016 No Blogging for Old Men Awards - Best Supporting Actress

One thing I will say about award nominations, it is so damn difficult narrowing the field down to five. So many incredible performances throughout an entire year that it is impossible not to leave some truly beautiful work out of the race. Therefore, when a list gets churned out of the many actors snubbed by the Academy, remember just how small of an amount five is. 

Don't get me wrong, the across the board total lack of diversity at the Oscars is a shame, and a nomination or two are just baffling, so that isn't meant to defend their results. Just a general thought regarding any vitriol over your personal favorite performance missing the cut.

Anyways, onto the next category. My choices for Best Supporting Actress from 2015.

Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria

Seems like a long time ago now, when Kristen Stewart was just a joke from the Twilight films. If you haven't been paying attention you may not have noticed that she has proven in a few films since that she can, well, act. Really damn well in fact.

In 2014, her shining moment was alongside the Oscar winning performance by Julianne Moore in Still Alice. In 2015 it was Clouds of Sils Maria, a terrific film carried by the performances of Juliette Binoche and Stewart. She may play second fiddle to two amazing actresses in both of these movies, but she does so with perfection.

Lou de Laage, Respire (Breathe)

One of the biggest surprises from 2015 was a French film titled Respire, directed by actress Melanie Laurent. Exquisitely made and wonderfully performed, the title of the film is quite appropriate because after a shocking and unnerving final sequence, you will be trying to catch your breath.

The story revolves around a teenage girl named Charlie who feels inadequate and out of place until she becomes friends with the sexy, rebellious new girl in school named Sarah. Playing Sarah is Lou de Laage and she is outstanding, portraying the type of girl you are instantly attracted to yet you know you should steer clear which is exactly what Charlie experiences. Laurent's confident eye combined with Lou de Laage in the frame results in must see cinema.

Rooney Mara, Carol

Listen, I don't quite understand what makes Rooney Mara the "supporting" performance in the film either. I think she may be on screen more often than Blanchett, ironically. I only chose to include her in this category as a means to achieve uniformity with the Academy here, because she is nominated with them and holy hell does she deserve it. Just a stunningly gorgeous performance in a stunningly gorgeous film, and the only of these four nominees that I truly considered declaring my winner. 

Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Faults

Here is another performance that might be more "lead" than "supporting", but I wanted to include it and it wouldn't make the cut in the other incredible and crowded category. I am certain Faults is a film that flew well under the radar, so if anyone is curious and has Netflix streaming capabilities, look it up. The story revolves around Winstead and she is chillingly great as a daughter whose parents pay a man to try and get her out of the cult she recently joined.

I am sure a lot of people had a crush on Mary Elizabeth Winstead after her work in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. Faults may just make you forget all about that by the time she is done with you.

Four amazing performance but there can only be one winner...

Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina

Vikander is nominated at the Oscars this year for The Danish Girl, which is an offensive and terrible picture. She is still terrific in it and I don't really mind her personal recognition there, but it should have been for Ex Machina. I mentioned in my previous post for Best Supporting Actor that Oscar Isaac is amazing and yet still isn't the scene stealer in the movie. Well, here she is. 

Vikander plays the extremely human feeling artificial intelligence character named Ava and prior to this film I had never heard of her. Now I want to see everything she is ever in no matter what. An absolute home run performance in one of the finest films of the year. 

Now on to the lead categories, starting with Best Actor. Don't be surprised if you see the same person nominated twice in the category for two different films...


  1. This category is always tough for me. On one hand I tend to always forget supporting actresses for some reason, and another is frankly I haven't seen most of these. But since the only one I saw on your list was the winner then I'd say that's my winner too.

    1. All of these films are wonderful Cody, I recommend them all. Probably especially Respire (Breathe). I saw it very early in 2015 and it stayed with me all year. Spoiler alert, it's in my top 15 of the year (my top 50 will be coming pretty soon).