Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Actors on Actors: SAG Buzz

Have you read the Variety feature where SAG card holders are essentially campaigning for other actors for awards season? Sometimes the admiration is surely talent-based and not about who they're friends with or have worked with and sometimes it's clearly a mixture of the two.

Nicole Kidman, marvelous again in Rabbit Hole.
Marion Cotillard worked with Nicole Kidman on Nine, for example, but her tribute has one very insightful observation. She's talking about how, in the first moments of Rabbit Hole you know nothing about Becca's (Kidman) story but you're instantly drawn in despite her abrasiveness.
"Becca" is so far and yet so close at the same time. The space that is created between her and the audience is simultaneously delicate, strong, violent and full of life. A part of her is gone and will always be gone, yet you feel nothing but life.
Marion & Nic' last year
And when Marion concludes her tribute with...
She is simply one of the world's best actresses.
You have to say "amen." That's too true and a half, whether or not the actresses hit it off on musical soundstages.

Reading all the articles is a pain since Variety takes such measures to hide their content but read we must. Helen Mirren loves the theatricality and imagination of Lesley Manville in Another Year, Alec Baldwin was wowed by the authenticity of the duet in Blue Valentine. And a few actors cite the cast of The Kids Are All Right. Laura Dern calls Mark Ruffalo one of her acting heroes and delivers an astute read on why he's so magical in that very difficult part (which, alas, probably won't look difficult enough to voters less discerning than Dern). Amy Ryan gives props to The Bening, particular in the Joni Mitchell scene (her obvious Oscar clip, yes?) and Colin Firth's ode to Julianne Moore (his co-star last year in A Single Man) is wonderfully expressed. His conclusion gives me hope that The Kids Are All Right will get that "Ensemble" nomination it so richly deserves at the SAG Awards.
All of the actors in this film are on the same formidable level. I kept thinking what a joy it must have been for them to all play off of each other.
Colin & Sally. She moves him.
But my favorite might be Colin Farrell's ode to Sally Hawkins in Made in Dagenham since he admits their offscreen friendship right up front but is clearly bowled over by the talent of the friend in question. Here's the fun intro.
Sometimes I see a film. Sometimes I see a film that moves me. Sometimes I see a film that has a friend in it. Sometimes that friend's name is Sally. When I see a film with a friend in it and that friend's name is Sally, that film moves me.
I can't say that I know the feeling exactly as I have few close friends that I regularly just happen to catch on the silver screen. But I can say that I know the feeling; when I see a film with a stranger in it and that strangers name is Sally, that film moves me.

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