Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday Similar Standards: Abigail Breslin

Welcome to a new semi-regular weekly feature here at Movies with Abe. On those weeks where reviews are sparse, I’ll be taking a look at an actor or actress whose body of work boasts many roles that may not be as diverse as those taken on by other actors or actresses. This is hardly a judgment on their abilities; rather an analysis of the kind of parts they play so well.

With the theatrical release of “Janie Jones” on Friday, it’s only fitting that Sunday Similar Standards returns to honor the commendable, recognizable talents of Abigail Breslin. The fifteen-year-old New York native has already starred in over twenty films, and earned an Oscar nomination at the age of ten for her role in “Little Miss Sunshine.” Her feature film debut was in 2002 in M. Night Shyamalan’s “Signs.” Since then, you’ll find her playing a teenager wise far beyond her years, exhibiting considerable charm and knowledge. Here’s a quick look at the familiar characters she tends to play.

Signs (2002): A young, somewhat fearless child whose family farm is being invaded by aliens.

Little Miss Sunshine (2006): An excitable tween named Olive thrilled by the idea of entering a beauty contest.

Definitely, Maybe (2008): The exceptionally mature daughter of a man who reveals his daughter’s mother identity to her by telling her the story of three different ex-girlfriends.

Zombieland (2009): A strong survivor of a zombie-infested world known only as Little Rock.

Janie Jones (2011): A talented budding musician left by her mother with her rock star father.

Anything different?

Not really.

What’s next?

A surely precocious role in the ensemble piece “New Year’s Eve” and a true game-changer in the sex-based comedy “Virgin Mary.”

The verdict?

Alan Arkin famously hoped that Breslin wouldn’t win her Oscar in 2006 because he wanted her to have a childhood and not get too much attention, but Breslin has proven over the past decade that she is one of the most talented young actresses working today, and her future looks plenty bright.

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